2020 Best of Lancaster

The Best of Lancaster County 2020

About Artist Brenda J. Blank 

Brenda was one of the artists who responded to the call-for-submissions project Lancaster County Magazine launched in early summer. The submitted work was so impressive that we devoted the August issue and our social media sites to “Art in the Age of Covid.” We loved Brenda’s submission – The Refuge – and purposely didn’t publish it in the August issue, thinking it would be perfect for the November “Best of Lancaster” issue. 

Brenda, who was born and raised in Lancaster County, is a self-taught artist – her favorite medium is watercolor and her muse is Andrew Wyeth – who became serious about her God-given talent in 2014. She says she is inspired by “simple everyday scenes,” and loves to put the spotlight on people, places and things that are often overlooked. Hence, her work features architectural details such as windows, weathered barns, cherished homes, pets, wildlife, the natural world, portraiture and what she calls “prophetic images” that relate to the Bible. She also paints in miniature, creating one-of-a-kind pieces she calls “mini-masterpieces” that measure between 4×4” and 6×6”. She also accepts commission work relating to homes, weddings, engagements and pets.  

The Refuge pays homage to the staff at Lancaster General Hospital who are on the frontlines of fighting the battle against the pandemic. The hands that are seemingly protecting the staff were inspired by Psalm 91: “He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.” While the original has been sold, prints and notecards are available for purchase.  

Brenda’s work can be seen at Purple Robin Reserve in Lititz and the Prussian Street Arcade in Manheim. She was the winner of the Myrtle Tremblay Award for Watercolor at this year’s Lancaster County Art Association Spring Membership Show. 

For details, visit bjblankart.com, as well as Facebook and Instagram.


A survey (1,000 adults) conducted for the National Restaurant Association in August verifies how much Americans love dining out at their favorite restaurants: 78% of those surveyed said that going out to a restaurant is one of the things they have missed the most in the wake of Covid, while 88% said they consider restaurants to be an important part of their communities. They also fear for the industry: 89% were concerned their favorite restaurant will not survive, while 56% were already aware of restaurants that will not reopen. With winter coming, restaurateurs will undoubtedly face new challenges. You can show your love by making a reservation at your favorite restaurant, ordering take-out and buying gift cards as part of your holiday shopping strategy. 


1. Gracie’s on West Main 

2. Gus’s Keystone Family Restaurant 

3. Dienner’s Country Restaurant 

Weekend Brunch

1. Eden Resort & Suites

2. Gracie’s on West Main 

3. (tie) Rachel’s Café & Creperie & Shady Maple Smorgasbord


1. Rachel’s Café & Creperie 

2. Isaac’s Restaurants

3. Tomato Pie Café 


1. The Belvedere Inn 

2. Horse Inn 

3. Ciro’s Italian Bistro 

Celebrating/Special Occasion 

1. The Belvedere Inn 

2. The Log Cabin 

3. LUCA 

Casual Dining

1. Loxley’s Restaurant

2. Annie Bailey’s Irish Public House 

3. Trio Bar and Grill


1. Caruso’s Italian Restaurant & Pizzeria 

2. Vigis Parties LLC

3. Rice & Noodles Vietnamese Eatery

Outdoor Dining

1. Loxley’s Restaurant 

2. Funck’s Restaurant & Bar

3. T.J. Rockwell’s American Grill & Tavern

Hotel Restaurant

1.  John J. Jeffries, Lancaster Arts Hotel 

2. (tie) Eden Resort Restaurants: Arthur’s Terrace and Garfield’s & Plough, Lancaster Marriott


1. Annie Bailey’s Irish Public House 

2. Bulls Head Public House 

3. (tie) Quips Pub & Mick’s All American Pub 

New Restaurant

1. Whisk Café

2. C’est La Vie 

3. (tie) Blackworth Live Fire Grill & Double C & Plough 

Specialties of the House


1. Stockyard Inn 

2. J.B. Dawson’s Restaurant & Bar

3. Johnny’s Bar & Steakhouse 


1. The Fat Crab Café 

2. Gibraltar 

3. Kyma Seafood Grill 


1. Harvey’s Main Street BBQ 

2. Pork U BBQ

3. Hess’s Barbecue Catering, Inc. 


1. Horse Inn 

2. 551 West 

3. (tie) Lancaster Brewing Company & T.J. Rockwell’s American Grill & Tavern


1. Isaac’s Restaurants

2. Bruno’s 

3. (tie) Gracie’s on West Main & Primanti Bros. 


1. Caruso’s Italian Restaurant & Pizzeria 

2. Venice Pizza & Pasta

3. Metro Express Pizza 


1. Beanie’s Bar & Grill 

2. American Bar & Grill 

3. Joe’s Famous Wings ‘n Wieners 


1. House of Tacos

2. El Serrano 

3. Chilangos Authentic Mexican Restaurante 


1. Ginza Sushi 

2. (tie) Wasabi Japanese Restaurant & Blue Pacific Sushi & Grill & Café East 


1. Root of Lancaster

2. (tie) Harvest Seasonal Grille & Wine Bar & Rice & Noodles Vietnamese Eatery


1. Ciro’s Italian Bistro 

2. LUCA 

3. Pasquale’s Italian Restaurant & Pizzeria 

Mexican/Latin American

1. El Serrano 

2. Cocina Mexicana 

3. Chilangos Authentic Mexican Restaurante 


1. Hong Kong Garden 

2. Café East 

3. Yang’s Restaurant


1. Issei Noodle 

2. Oka Asian Fusion 

3. Mojo Asian Cuisine & Sushi Bar 


1. Himalayan Curry & Grill 

2. Taj Mahal 

3. Namaste Restaurant 

Pennsylvania Dutch

1. Oregon Dairy 

2. Shady Maple Smorgasbord

3. Dienner’s Country Restaurant 

Beer Selection

1. Funck’s Restaurant & Bar

2. The Fridge 

3. Federal Taphouse 

Wine/Spirits Selection

1. Harvest Seasonal Grill & Wine Bar

2. Amorette 

3. Horse Inn 


1. Bistro Barberet & Bakery 

2. Harvest Seasonal Grill & Wine Bar

3. (tie) Rachel’s Café & Creperie & Country Table Restaurant


With so many of us working and learning from home, meal prep – breakfast, lunch and dinner – has become part of our daily routines. Still others are teaching themselves to cook or are working their way through their favorite cookbooks. We are incredibly fortunate to live in Lancaster County, where we have access to a phenomenal selection of grocery stores, specialty shops, farmers markets, orchards, bakeries, dairies and roadside stands. If you tire of cooking, there’s probably a food truck parked nearby! 

Grocery/Food Store

1. Stauffers of Kissel Hill 

2. Giant Food Stores

3. (tie) Oregon Dairy & Weis Markets

Prepared Foods

1. Stauffers of Kissel Hill 

2. S. Clyde Weaver, Inc. 

3. The Country Store

Farmers Market/Pick-Your-Own

1. Lancaster Central Market 

2. Root’s Country Market & Auction

3. Cherry Hill Orchard 

Taylor Ann Photography

Coffee/Tea Shop

1. Square One Coffee 

2. Coffee Co. 

3. Mean Cup 

Food Truck

1. Walk-O Taco 

2. Lancaster Cupcake 

3. Souvlaki Boys 


1. Bird-in-Hand Bakery & Café 

2. Achenbach’s Pastries 

3. Ric’s Bread 

Specialty Cakes

1. Oregon Dairy 

2. Byers Butterflake Bakery 

3. Lancaster Cupcake 


1. Vigis Parties LLC

2. Simply from Scratch 

3. Hess’s Barbecue Catering, Inc. 

Pretzels/Snack Foods

1. Hammond’s Pretzel Bakery 

2. Martin’s Snacks 

3. Auntie Anne’s Pretzels 

Ice Cream

1. Fox Meadows Creamery 

2. Pine View Dairy 

3. Lapp Valley Farm 


1. Nissley Vineyards & Winery Estate

2. Waltz Vineyards Estate Winery

3. (tie) Grandview Vineyard & Moon Dancer Winery 


1. Lancaster Brewing Company 

2. Spring House Brewing Company 

3. Mad Chef Craft Brewing 

Things to See & Do

The arts have been profoundly impacted by the pandemic. For the most part, parks, arenas, breweries, restaurants and concert halls were not alive with the sound of music over the summer. Theaters are dark, art/craft/makers shows continue to be canceled and amusement parks have had to abide by the new attendance standards. On a positive note, golf courses and parks have been enjoying a booming surge in popularity. 

Live Music Venue

1. Tellus360 

2. American Music Theatre 

3. Chameleon Club 

Performing Arts

1. Fulton Theatre 

2. Sight & Sound Theatres 

3. American Music Theatre 

“Firefly Dinner Party” by Liz Hess

CityFolk Gallery

Art Gallery

1. (tie) Liz Hess Gallery & CityFolk Gallery 

3. (tie) Christiane David Gallery & Red Raven Art Company

Museum/Heritage Site

1. Landis Valley Village & Farm Museum

2. North Museum of Nature & Science

3. LancasterHistory: Wheatland

Golf Course

1. Crossgates Golf Club 

2. Overlook Golf Course  

3. Lancaster Country Club 

Family Fun

1. Dutch Wonderland

2. Go ‘N Bananas 

3. Cherry Crest Adventure Farm 

Park/Recreation Area

1. Long’s Park 

2. Lancaster County Central Park 

3. Lititz Springs Park 

Event Venue

1. Tellus360 

2. (tie) Melhorn Manor & Long’s Park


1. Tellus360 

2. Marion Court Room 

3. (tie) Chameleon Club & The Exchange 

Local Musician/DJ

1. Josh Mast – DJ Mast Productions, LLC

2. (tie) 30 West Entertainment & Chuck Colson Entertainment


Yoga pants, sweats and slippers became the uniform of the pandemic – except when you had to attend a Zoom meeting! We longed for the day when we could visit our favorite salon for a cut and color. We learned to do our own mani/pedis and concocted magic potions to give ourselves facials. Some consulted YouTube for tutorials in cutting hair. Needless to say, when the salons and spas reopened, the appointment books filled in record time. 

Specialty Shop/Boutique/Vintage

1. Festoon Boutique 

2. Space 

3. Clemintines 


1. Next to New Fine Clothing 

2. Fashion Cents Consignment 

3. Wearhouse Consignment 

Thrift Store

1. CommunityAid 

2. Re-Uzit Shop of New Holland, Inc. 

3. Jubilee Ministries 


1. Koser Jewelers 

2. Ream Jewelers 

3. (tie) Brent L. Miller Jewelers & Goldsmiths & Finch Jewelers 

Hair Salon

1. Tangles Salon 

2. Attitudes Hair & Nail Salon 

3. LUXE Salon & Spa 

Barber Shop

1. The Black Comb 

2. Tangles Salon 

3. Gary and Joel’s Barber Shop 

Tattoo Artist

1. Mehndi Sol – Alicia Lyter

2. Dreams Collide Tattoo 

3. Transcending Flesh 


1. LUXE Salon & Spa 

2. Attitudes Hair & Nail Salon

3. Vi Nails


1. LUXE Salon & Spa 

2. Visage a’ Visage Day Spa & Salon

3. Blossom Med Spa 


When gyms and fitness/rec centers closed in March, we improvised and took to the sidewalks of our neighborhoods to walk and run. Then, we rediscovered the joy of riding a bike and sales went through the roof. We also discovered the wild side of Lancaster County and have been taking advantage of the fitness opportunities that parks, rail-trails and nature preserves provide.   

Fitness Center

1. Universal Athletic Club 

2. (tie) Lititz recCenter & Spooky Nook Sports Complex

Yoga Studio

1. Evolution Power Yoga 

2. The Light Within Yoga Studio 

3. West End Yoga 

Bike Shop

1. Lancaster Bicycle Shop 

2. Martins Bike Shop 

3. The Common Wheel 

Biking/Hiking/Jogging Trail

1. Warwick to Ephrata Rail-Trail 

2. Silver Mine Park 

3. Northwest Lancaster County River Trail 

Home & Garden

Staying home has created a monster: Homeowners are taking close looks at their residences and are not liking what they see. As a result, we’ve been busy painting, redecorating, remodeling kitchens and bathrooms and transforming basements, attics and spare bedrooms into home offices and classrooms. Outdoors, we’ve been turning our backyards into entertainment centers. We’ve embraced gardening. We are growing our own veggies and herbs. Remodeling contractors and landscaping companies have never been busier. 

Residential Builder/Remodeler

1. Metzler Home Builders 

2. Garman Builders 

3. (tie) Charter Homes & Neighborhoods & EGStoltzfus 


1. Choice Windows, Doors & More 

2. Bomberger’s 

3. (tie) Horizon Kitchens & KbE Design & Build (Kitchens by Eileen) 


1. Greenawalt Roofing Company 

2. Zimmerman’s Roofing 

3. George J. Grove & Son, Inc. 


1. Martin’s Flooring 

2. Bomberger’s  

3. Quality Floors 

Specialty Contractors 

1. George J. Grove & Son, Inc. 

2. Choice Windows, Doors & More 

Interior Design

1. Heritage Design Interiors, Inc. 

2. Interiors Home 

3. Henrietta Heisler Interiors, Inc. 


1. Yale Lighting Concepts & Design

2. The Lighting Gallery 

Audio/Video Systems

1. WeeBee Audio & Video 


1. Two Dudes Painting Company 

2. (tie) Ville Painters & Terry Kline Painting & Mitchell Forry Wallcovering, Inc. & Barry Hoover Painting & Paperhanging 


1. JK Mechanical 

2. Neffsville Plumbing, Heating & Cooling Services

3. Haller Enterprises 


1. JK Mechanical 

2. Neffsville Plumbing, Heating & Cooling Services

3. (tie) Brubaker Inc. & Haller Enterprises 

Electrical Work

1. M. Goodman Electric, LLC 

2. Lapp Electric 

3. Haller Enterprises 

Carpet Cleaning

1. Certified Carpet 

2. Lancaster Carpet Cleaning 

3. (tie) Martin’s Flooring & The Rug Beater Cleaning Enterprises, Inc.

Furniture/Home Accessories

1. Interiors Home 

2. Always Never Done 

3. Sensenig’s Furniture 

Paint/Wallcovering Center

1. Grauer’s Paint & Decorating Center

2. Phillips Paint & Decorating Center

3. Bomberger’s 

Appliance Center

1. Martin Appliance 

2. Gochnauer’s Home Appliance Center 

3. (tie) Brubaker Inc. & LH Brubaker Appliance

Hardware Center

1. EM Herr Farm & Home Center

2. Bomberger’s 

3. J.B. Hostetter & Sons 

Outdoor-Living Center

1. Stauffers of Kissel Hill

2. Bowman’s Stove & Patio

3. Penn Stone

Garden Center

1. Stauffers of Kissel Hill 

2. Esbenshade’s Garden Center 

3. (tie) Tudbink’s Farm & Ken’s Garden 

Landscape Design

1. Full Effect Lawn & Landscape Services 

2. Stauffers of Kissel Hill 

3. Tomlinson Bomberger Lawn Care, Landscape & Pest Control

Lawn/Yard Maintenance

1. Full Effect Lawn & Landscape Services 

2. Tomlinson Bomberger Lawn Care, Landscape & Pest Control

3. (tie) Indian Run Landscaping LLC & Wolggie’s Lawn Care 

Professional Services

Layoffs, furloughs and terminations from jobs have made the services provided by accountants, attorneys and insurance professionals all the more important. In view of the fact that 2020 has become a seller’s market, it’s critical for buyers to have a savvy real estate agent on their side. Looking for a job? You’ll need the perfect head shot. Indeed, life goes on and whether the news is good or bad for a friend or loved one or a scaled-back celebration is held in place of a gala extravaganza, we can always express our sentiments and good wishes with flowers. 


1. Brad Rauch – Cloister Group Accountants

2. (tie) Brian W. Rosenberg – Brown Schultz Sheridan & Fritz • J. Ronald Risser – J. Ronald Risser, CPA  • Jeffrey Blevins – Jeffrey F. Blevins, CPA • Brian D. Wassell – Trout CPA 


1. Anthony M. Georgelis – Georgelis Injury Law Firm

2. Rebecca Cheuvront – Law Office of Rebecca Cheuvront

3. (tie) John R. Gibbel – Gibbel Kraybill & Hess • Kevin D. Dolan – Nikolaus & Hohenadel, LLP • Robert F. Musser – Clymer, Musser & Sarno, P.C. • Stephen Cody – Cody & Pfursich Law Firm

Insurance Agent

1. Bart Ziegler – Olweiler Insurance Agency 

2. Owen White – Allstate 

3. (tie) Chris Skundrich – State Farm • Dan Naumann – Allstate • Rick Milanak – State Farm • Rip Lawhead – State Farm

Floral Designs of Mount Joy

Splints & Daisies

Floral Design

1. (tie) Floral Designs of Mount Joy & Splints & Daisies 

2. Royer’s Flowers

Real Estate Agent

1. Craig Hartranft – Berkshire Hathaway Homesale Realty

2. Nicole Messina – Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage

3. Anne Lusk – Lusk & Associates Sotheby’s International Realty

Auto Repair

1. Landis Garage 

2. Steffy’s Garage

3. (tie) Bender’s Garage & M & R Auto Center 

Bank/Credit Union

1. Fulton Bank 

2. PNC Bank 

3. Members 1st Federal Credit Union 


1. Richard Waine – Richard Waine Photography

2. PhotOle Photography

3. (tie) Jeremy Hess – Jeremy Hess Photographers/The Premise Studio & Lauren Fisher – Lauren Fisher Photography


The pandemic has created a furry phenomenon – we’ve discovered there is nothing more comforting than a dog or cat (or other creature) when times are tough. Across the country, animal shelters have been inundated with potential adopters. The adoptees have hit the jackpot – last year, Americans spent $95.7 billion on their pets ($490 million of which was on Halloween costumes). The number is significant – it’s the first time Americans spent more money on pets than alcohol. Stats for 2020 should be interesting!  

Pet Store

1. That Fish Place – That Pet Place 

2. Keystone Pet Place 

3. Basset & Lab 

Pet Boarding

1. Gochenauer Kennels 

2. Oscar’s Pet Resort 

3. Canine Country Club 

Dog Daycare

1. Gochenauer Kennels 

2. Oscar’s Pet Resort 

3. Canine Country Club 

Veterinary Practice

1. Manheim Pike Veterinary Hospital 

2. Landisville Animal Hospital 

3. Neffsville Veterinary Clinic 

Rescue Organization

1. Pet Pantry of Lancaster County 

2. Pennsylvania SPCA Lancaster Center

3. Furever Home Adoption Center

Healthcare Providers

Where health is concerned, Lancaster is very fortunate to have the quality of care that is available. As we move forward to 2021, the healthcare industry is urging people to schedule the checkups, physicals, screenings, dental procedures, blood tests and therapy sessions they canceled or postponed over the last year. If you haven’t visited a hospital or medical/dental office lately, you’ll find that safe and secure environments have been created to decrease your stress and ensure your comfort levels.  


1. Lancaster General Hospital

2. (tie) UPMC Pinnacle & Wellspan Ephrata Community Hospital

Family Physician

1. Dr. Jessica M. Walker – Lancaster General Health Physicians

2. (tie) Dr. Christopher J. Putney – Lancaster General Health Physicians Family Medicine Strasburg • Dr. Andrea L. Stern – Lancaster General Health Family Medicine Mount Joy 


1. Dr. Ronald V. Krak (in memoriam) – Lancaster General Health Physicians
Roseville Pediatrics 

2. Dr. Pia B. Fenimore – Lancaster Pediatric Associates 

Physician Assistant

1. Stacy Spence – Penn State Health Medical Group – Prospect 

2. Kimberly Brown – Penn State Health Lime Spring Outpatient Center

3. (tie) Esther DiGiacomo – Argires Marotti Neurosurgical Associates of Lancaster • Adam Truax – Argires Marotti Neurosurgical Associates of Lancaster


1. Dr. Louis A. Marotti – Argires Marotti Neurosurgical Associates of Lancaster

2. Dr. Christopher D. Kager – Lancaster General Health Physicians NeuroScience & Spine Associates 

3. (tie) Dr. David D. Sieger – Orthopedic Associates of Lancaster, Ltd. • Dr. Christopher C. Cooke – Orthopedic Associates of Lancaster, Ltd. 


1. Dr. Stephanie A. Mackey – Stephanie A. Mackey, M.D. 

2. Dr. George E. Groleau – Dermatology Physicians, Inc. 

3. (tie) Dr. Richard J. Herschaft – Dermatology Physicians, Inc. • Dr. William K. Andersen – Lancaster Skin Center 


1. Dr. Edward E. White – White Family Dental 

2. Dr. Roger H. Strause – Centerville Family Dental 

3. Dr. Donald H. Burgess – Dr. Donald H. Burgess, DMD 

Eye Physician

1. Dr. Philip J. Schwartz – Eye Center of Lancaster County 

2. Dr. Wenxin T. Wei – Eye Associates of Lancaster 

3. (tie) Dr. William J. Jacobson – Jacobson Eyecare • Dr. Francis J. Manning – Manning, Rommel & Thode Associates 

Orthopedic Physician

1. Dr. Thomas R. Westphal – Westphal Orthopedics 

2. Dr. Carl E. Becker – Westphal Orthopedics 

3. Dr. Christopher C. Cooke – Orthopedic Associates of Lancaster 

Chiropractor/Holistic Practitioner

1. Dr. Mary Colman – The Hetrick Center 

2. Dr. Leah Reiff-Herr – Blue Skies Chiropractic Health Center 

3. Dr. Rustin Glass – Advanced Chiropractic & Rehab


National Retailer

1. Target 

2. Lowe’s Home Improvement 

3. Boscov’s 


The pandemic helped to put the spotlight on the sense of community that defines Lancaster County. Groups came together to sew masks. We supplied food banks with necessities. We donated meals to hospital staffs and first responders. We supported restaurants and other small businesses by ordering take-out meals and making online purchases. We’ve also continued to help the many nonprofits that have had to cancel/revise their major fundraising events. We’ve assisted neighbors with grocery shopping and childcare. We’ve stood in support of those who protest the social injustice that continues to exist in this country. The mantra, “We’re all in this together,” exemplifies Lancaster’s sense of community during this challenging time. 

When you’re shopping in grocery stores, retail shops, department and big box stores, garden centers, etc. this holiday season, please be patient with and courteous to their employees. It’s been a long and trying year for everyone. 


Penn Grant Commons


1. (tie) Lititz & Penn Grant Commons (Willow Street)

2. School Lane Hills (Lancaster)

Senior Living

1. Willow Valley Communities

2. Masonic Village at Elizabethtown

3. Brethren Village Retirement Community


1. Taylor Miller – Penn Manor School District 

2. Mick Steckbeck – Kraybill Mennonite School 

3. Randy Gehman – Dayspring Christian Academy 


1. Dayspring Christian Academy 

2. Hempfield School District 

3. Manheim Township School District 


1. Nate Nixdorf 

2. Liz Hess 

3. Christiane David 

Unsung Community Hero

1. Karen Gerth – KPETS 

2. (tie) David Wauls – Long’s Park Amphitheater Foundation • Saheeb Sabur – Dig It! • Jordan Steffy – Attollo Prep

Nonprofit Organization


2. (tie) Pet Pantry of Lancaster & Water Street Mission 

Word That Best Describes Lancaster County

1. Scenic 

2. Diverse 

3. Historic 

4. Friendly 

5. Foodie-licious 

6. Supportive 

7. Artistic 

Owned by the Pennsylvania College of Art & Design (PCAD) since 2012, the grassy plot across Prince Street from the college has come to be known as Art Park. Even before that, it was used by students for artistic self-expression and as a place to take a break between classes. Of late, it’s become the epicenter of gatherings that serve to protest the social injustices that plague the country. As a result, PCAD encouraged artists to creatively express their activism in the park. One such project saw artists Keisha Finnie, Adam Serrano, Kaya Hobbs, Kearasten Jordan and Eleazar Jimenez update the Ampersand sculpture that was installed in the park in 2018 by collaging it with images and words that represent protest and activism.

Shocks Mill Bridge is one of the sights along the Northwest Lancaster County River Trail.

Have a craving for comfort food? Head for Shady Maple Smorgasbord!