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Everything You Need to Know About First Friday in Lancaster, PA

art gallery

When you find yourself visiting a new city, what’s the first thing you search for? Is it the favorite local restaurants, fun activities you can’t do anywhere else, or maybe you just like to find some of the best site-seeing spots? No matter what your pick is, you’ll be glad to know that First Friday in Lancaster, Pa. has it all!

The best part? You can be right in the center of the First Friday events in the heart of downtown when you stay at the Lancaster Arts Hotel. We pride ourselves in being at the epicenter of tourism in central Pennsylvania, and we’re happy to share that with our guests. Keep reading to learn more about the Lancaster City First Friday celebrations!

What is First Friday?

On the first Friday of every month, Lancaster City comes together to celebrate art, creativity, and community. You’ll see Lancaster City come alive with creative energy that includes exhibitions, performances, boutique openings, restaurant specials, and much more.

The events officially start at 5 p.m. and go until 9 p.m., though many gathering places stay open much later. You can find most happenings centered on Gallery Row, located in the first and second blocks of North Prince Street, but you’ll see many people just enjoying the atmosphere of the city throughout downtown, especially in the warmer months of the year.

Participate in Digital First Friday

Unfortunately, due to COVID-19, the regular First Friday events have been put on hold. The creative minds of Lancaster have put together the idea of a “Digital First Friday” that will take place while social distancing remains in place. So even if you can’t quite visit or get outside to enjoy Lancaster County just yet, you can get a little taste of it from the comfort of your own home.

Current Scheduled Events

Right now, there are a few virtual events available to explore, as well as some specific events scheduled for June. Here’s what is currently planned according to the City of Lancaster website:

WHAT: Create Sidewalk Chalk Art Across the City
WHO: Lancaster City’s Chalk the Walk
WHERE: Lancaster City sidewalks!
WHEN: Friday, June 5, 2020
DETAILS: Help beautify the city with art and create sidewalk chalk art in front of your home or business! Please make sure to practice safe social distancing during this event and stay 6 feet away from anyone you do not live with. Also, wear a facemask if you decide to walk around the city to enjoy the art.

WHAT: Free Art Workshop-Painting with Coffee
WHO: Art to Heart – Emergency Fund for Artists
WHERE: Hosted online at www.millersville.edu/arttoheart
WHEN: Anytime!
DETAILS: Teaching artist, Jen Tarr, is part of an ongoing series of free art classes to kids and adults. Get creative and “wake up your talent” anytime with these classes. You can also donate to the Emergency Fund for Artists to help out during these difficult times.

You can also explore the city online with the following events:

  • Lancaster Public Art: There are more than 80 pieces of public art located in Lancaster City. You can check out some of the online virtual tours or other tour options online!
  • #LancHomeArt: Use this hashtag on Instagram to share your own works of art in the city or to view others! Now’s the time to show off your chalk art or what you’ve been working on during quarantine. Don’t forget to tag @visitlanccity when you post something.

Ready to Visit Lancaster City?

While the world is just starting to get back to some semblance of normal, the Lancaster Arts Hotel is taking every precaution to keep you safe. You can still book a room online with us for any future visits or events that you’re planning, and we’ll work with you every step of the way if there are any changes to social distancing guidelines. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to us if you have any questions!