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When people think of Lancaster PA, “tech hub” usually isn’t the first descriptor to come to mind. But a healthy culture of innovation and entrepreneurism is thriving here, and it’s becoming a prime location for building a new ecosystem of next-generation technologies. Now, the Lancaster tech community is finally getting the national recognition it deserves.

Steve Case, founder of AOL and investor in emerging tech startups across the nation, has announced his route for the Rise of the Rest bus tour coming this October. With a first stop in Central Pennsylvania, Case will tour eight startups at each stop to hear their pitch for a $100,000 investment. After visits in Harrisburg, York, and our hometown Lancaster, Case will continue his journey into Ann Arbor, MI, Indianapolis, IN, Columbus, OH, and end in Green Bay, WI.

Case believes inventive tech companies can flourish outside of major tech hubs like New York, Boston, and Silicon Valley. In rural places such as Lancaster County, we foster great technological innovation in a non-budget breaking setting. Unlike most major tech hubs, small cities offer lower taxes, lower cost of living, more government support, and solid corporate communities and infrastructure.

Technology that could change the world doesn’t need to be restricted to big-name cities. And Case’s tour is shining the spotlight on ecosystems, like ours, that are working behind the scenes to create innovative technology. After visiting 26 cities, and surely more to come, recognizing the potential behind these small tech communities could be the driver to redistributing tech across the country.

At Aspire, we are excited about this opportunity for Lancaster and the Central PA region to finally get deserved recognition for the burgeoning culture of innovation happening here. We’re proud to be a part of it, we’re committed to nurturing it, and we look forward to sharing the great technological innovations coming from our region.