As you have already discovered, the skiing in the poconos isn't great- but it's better than nothing. I've done the much of my skiing the past couple years in the poconos , and I am likely to do so again this year. Others have given you some very good information. As far as bars/restaurants/activities- Pick up a copy of the local paper or This Week in the Pocons from WaWa. TW in the Poconos lists lots of bars/ect and has an events listings (also online). You also have several options along the access road to Split Rock -but don't forget about the dollar toll each way. If you are looking for a small but decent restaurant close to you, try Terra Cottage. Lots of locals like it but its BYOB. There is also a ski shop about 1-2 miles west on 940 from the entrance to Jack Frost. I think its Alpinia Ski/940 Snowboard. I have skied quite a bit at Jack Frost, Camelback, and Blue Mt, and less frequently at Elk and Big Boulder.
Jack Frost- Close for you. Good snowmaking and decent grooming. Can get crowded for parking and on beginner/int runs but east mountain rarely has much wait in the liftline. The lodge has a small upstairs bar and frequently has a band. If you are lucky enough to be there for a decent snow, they do have some small gladed areas that are open for skiing. As far as I know, Elk , Camelback and Blue do not allow off trail skiing. The big downside is the runs are short and limited steeps. Has a demo day scheduled for this Sunday I believe.
Camelback- More selection of "expert" runs, and reasonably close but can be more crowded than JF and main lodge food may be even worse.
Elk- A haul to get to. Longer runs and more steeps and bumped runs, better natural snow but less snowmaking. Also, a strange set up with the shuttle b/w parking and main lodge.
Blue-longer runs, fair steeps but a real zoo (to the point of being dangerous) on weekends. Also warmer and even more likely to get rain.
Big Boulder- caters to boarders
Hope this helps. Let me know if you have any specific questions, or maybe I;ll see you on the slopes. Most weekends I will be at Jf or Camelbk, sometimes with and sometimes w/o my kids.