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Lebanon is an old transportation and minor industrial center located on the route of the original canal through the region. The area once had a steel mill. Bypassed by modern transport routes I-78 and the Pennsylvania Turnpike, this quiet town with a typical core is centrally located between Harrisburg, Hershey, Lancaster, and Reading. Annville, a minor college town 5 miles west, is attractive but areas of Lebanon itself have a somewhat old, gritty, and working-class feel.
There are a number of historic structures in the town, some of which are being nicely repurposed into small businesses and residential refurbishments. Economically, the area is attempting to make the transition into more of a new-economy, small business center with a lot of state and local help. The city has also invested a lot in parks and recreation centers, and crime rates are low.
Lebanon sits in a flat to slightly rolling area of consisting mainly of farmland. The main Allegheny Ridge lies in sight to the northwest, and protects the area somewhat from harsh weather arriving from that direction. The climate is pleasant for the region, with warm, humid summers and variable winters with relatively less snow and bitter cold than other areas in the northeast. Precipitation is frequent and can become heavy when storms move up the Atlantic Coast or when hurricane remnants stall over the area.
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