Welome to our Visitor Page! Listed here are some wonderful attractions for you to visit while in Pennsylvania! All are within an hours drive of Newville!


The Battle of Gettysburg was the largest Civil War battle ever waged in the Western Hemisphere. The Soldiers' National Cemetery at Gettysburg contains more than 7,000 internments including over 3,500 from the Civil War. It is also the site of President Abraham Lincoln's immortal Gettysburg Address. Preservation efforts saved portions of the battlefield as a memorial and in 1895, Gettysburg National Military Park was established as a national park by an official act of congress. The park incorporates nearly 6,000 acres, with 26 miles of park roads and over 1,400 monuments, markers, and memorials, making it one of the world's largest collections of outdoor sculpture. Contact Information: Gettysburg National Military Park 97 Taneytown Road Gettysburg, PA 17325 Phone: (717)334-1124

Features * Disabled Access



This charming town nestled in the rolling hills of Pennsylvania Dutch Country is the place where families come together to enjoy the sweet life. It's where smiles come easy, days are action-packed and nights are restful. It's chocolate, and much, much more! And now, there's never been a better time to come to Hershey.

HersheyPark is a world-class theme park with more than 55 rides and attractions including six drenching water rides, a steel inverted roller coaster, 20 kiddie rides, and one of the oldest operating carousels in America. New for 2000 - Lightning Racer - America's only racing, dueling, double-track, wooden roller coaster.

Our 11-acre walk-through zoo features over 200 animals representing five regions of North America. ZooAmerica is open year round. There are seasonal special events, including the popular night time adventure, "Creatures of the Night" in late October.

Hershey Gardens
Featuring the largest outdoor butterfly house in Pennsylvania featuring 400 to 500 butterflies. It’s the largest addition to the spectacular 23-acre botanical garden created for Milton Hershey in 1937. The recently restored award-winning rose garden is one of the largest of its kind in the United States, and started with the original roses from Catharine Hershey’s own garden. The garden shop offers unique botanical and butterfly gifts.

Hershey Museum
Visit the only place where real things from Hershey's unique past are displayed. We exhibit original machinery, early Hershey products as well as antiques owned by industrialist Milton Hershey and his wife Catherine.

The Hotel Hershey
The Hotel Hershey is a member of Historic Hotels of America and a winner of AAA's prestigious Four Diamond Award and Family Circle's Resort of the Year. A grand hotel in the finest European tradition, the Hotel Hershey is tailored to American tastes. It's home to two of Central Pennsylvania's most outstanding restaurants, The Circular Dining Room and the Fountain Cafe.

The Hershey Lodge
Step into the new Hershey Lodge, and you'll immediately know you're in Hershey. With its loft ceilings, exposed beams, hand-sewn quilts, and a huge, four-sided fireplace, it's a spacious, yet cozy reflection of our Pennsylvania Dutch heritage. Completely transformed - into a more comfortable and uniquely "Hershey" family retreat.

For more information about Hershey area attractions, restaurants and accommodations call 1-800-HERSHEY, or visit their web site.


Pennsylvania State Parks
For the sightseer and nature photographer, Colonel Denning is a park of surprises, great beauty and charm. The woded park area nestles at the side of a mountain and has a scenic lake and excellent hiking trails. A hike on a 2.5 mile trail rises to Flat Rock for a beautiful vista of the Cumberland Valley.

Colonel Denning State Park is located in Doubling Gap, northcentral Cumberland County, along PA Route 233. The park is 8 miles north of Newville and 9 miles south of Landisburg. The park includes 273 acres of woodland and a 3.5-acre lake.

Young Girls Have Fun At Colonel Denning State Park!


Recreational Opportunities

Swimming: A guarded beach is open 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily from Memorial Day weekend to Labor Day, unless otherwise posted.

Fishing: Trout are found in Doubling Gap Lake. Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission limits, seasons and regulations apply.

For complete information on fishing rules and regulations in Pennsylvania, visit the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission Web site.

Environmental Education: A visitor center, exhibiting plants, animals and minerals found in the park, is open during the summer season. An environmental interpreter offers ecological and historical walks and programs, audio-visual programs, campfires, environmental education activities and youth programs during the summer season.

Go to environmental education and interpretation for more information.

Hiking: A 2.5-mile trail rises to Flat Rock, a beautiful scenic vista of the Cumberland Valley. The 1.0 mile Doubling Gap Trail is a self-guided moderate hike. Other trails are shown on the map side. There are more than 18 miles of hiking trails accessible from the park, including the 105-miles Tuscarora Trail. Refer to the Hiking and Nature Trail Guide for a map and detailed description of the hiking trails in the park and surrounding forest lands.

Picnicking: Over 200 picnic tables are available. A limited number of charcoal grills are available. There are two picnic pavilions which may be reserved up to 11 months in advance for a fee. Unreserved picnic pavilions are free on a first come first served basis. All tables are in wooded areas. Play equipment is located near picnic pavilion #1.

Camping: The 52-site, tent and trailer campground is open from the opening day of trout season to the day after antlerless deer season. Non-flush toilets and a sanitary dump station are available.

Hunting: Many acres of Colonel Denning State Park are open to hunting, trapping and the training of dogs during established seasons. Common game species are deer, squirrel and turkey. Hunting woodchucks, also known as groundhogs, is prohibited. Dog training is only permitted from the day following Labor Day to March 31 in designated hunting areas. The Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and the Pennsylvania Game Commission rules and regulations apply.

Use extreme caution with firearms at all times. The park is used by other visitors during hunting seasons. Firearms and archery equipment may be uncased and ready for use only in authorized hunting areas during hunting seasons. In areas not open to hunting or during non-hunting seasons, firearms and archery equipment must be kept in the owner’s car, trailer or camp.
Hunting is also permitted on the adjacent State Forest lands.

For complete information on hunting rules and regulations in Pennsylvania, visit the Pennsylvania Game Commission Web site.

Cross-country Skiing:While there is no formal trail system, skiing is permitted on existing roads and trails and in all other areas of the park. Terrain is moderately hilly to mountainous.

Ice Skating: Ice skating is available on the Doubling Gap Lake when ice conditions permit. There are 2.5-acres maintained and monitored for ice skating on the lake. Skating is permitted from 8 a.m. until 10 p.m. and lighting is provided.


A food and refreshment concession is available near the beach during the summer season.

Access for People with Disabilities

If you need an accommodation to participate in park activities due to a disability, please contact the Pennsylvania Bureau of State Parks:
888-PA-PARKS (voice)
888-537-7294 (TTY)
717-558-2711 (local or international TTY)
800-654-5984 (PA AT&T relay service)


William Denning, (1737-1830) Revolutionary War veteran for whom the park is named, was never a colonel but he is deserving of a place in history for his manufacturing of wrought iron cannon. William Denning served his country as a sergeant from March 1778 to April 1780 in Nathanial Irish's Company of Artillery Artificers in Benjamin Flower's Regiment. Denning's company was stationed just outside Carlisle, PA at Washingtonburg Forge, now Carlisle Barracks. Washingtonburg Forge provided armaments for the Continental Army including cannon. It is at this forge that William Denning made wrought iron cannon in a process of welding gads (strips) of wrought iron in successive layers to produce a cannon lighter and better able to resist failure during firing than cast iron cannon. Unfortunately, none of Denning's cannons survive today, we can only imagine from documents what Denning's cannon looked like. It is also not known when or who added the Colonel to Sergeant William Denning's name. William Denning lived out his life after the Revolution near Newville, PA and is interred with his only son and daughter in the Big Spring Presbyterian Church in Newville. His monument reads "Blacksmith and Forger of Wrought Iron Cannon."

The park became a state recreational area about 1930, under the Pennsylvania Bureau of Forestry and was developed formally in 1936, through the efforts of the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) camp in Perry County.

The park is situated in Doubling Gap, so named by the "S" turn where the Blue Mountain doubles back on itself. This feature may be seen from the Doubling Gap Vista on adjacent state forest land.

Nearby Attractions

There are three scenic views located on nearby state forest lands and are accessible by vehicle. The locations of these vistas can be obtained by contacting the park office.

State Forest Lands: Over 30,000 acres of state forest lands are adjacent to, and northwest of the park. These lands are open to the public and are accessible by state forest roads. There are many scenic and historical features throughout these areas.

Information about state forest lands may be obtained at the park office or by contacting Tuscarora State Forest, Forest District 3, R.D. 1 Box 42-A, Blain, PA 17006
Telephone (717) 563-3191.

Hemlocks Natural Area: This stand of virgin hemlock is located approximately 20 miles from the park near New Germantown, in Perry County. Information can be obtained by contacting the District Forest Office listed above.

State Game Lands: Several thousand acres of State Game Lands 169 are within 10 miles of the park. These lands are primarily managed for upland game animals and deer. These lands lie between PA Routes 641 and 997 approximately five miles southwest of the park.

Attractions in Carlisle, Harrisburg, Gettysburg, York and Chambersburg are all within a one-hour drive of the park and accessible over major roadways.

Doubling Gap Sulphur Springs Hotel: (Located nearby on private land) The mineral springs in Doubling Gap have drawn people to the area since the 1700s. The first hotel license was issued in 1803. The hotel was nothing more than a long log cabin. In 1847, the central portion of the present hotel was built and became a resort for the wealthy. Springs in the Doubling Gap area contain carbonate of soda and magnesia, glamber salt, epsom salt, carbonic acid and bi-carbinate of iron. With the advent of modern medicine people began to learn that the bad tasting waters were not as healing as their ancestors had thought and the resort fell in to disrepair and closed in the 1920s. The hotel still stands and is the focal point for a summer church camp.

In an Emergency

Contact a park employee or dial 911.
For directions to the nearest hospital, look on bulletin boards or at the park office.
Nearest Hospital:
Carlisle Hospital
246 Parker Street
Carlisle, PA 1701
3 717-249-1212
Pennsylvania State Parks Mission

The primary purpose of Pennsylvania State Parks is to provide opportunities for enjoying healthful outdoor recreation and serve as outdoor classrooms for environmental education. In meeting these purposes, the conservation of the natural, scenic, aesthetic, and historical values of parks should be given first consideration. Stewardship responsibilities should be carried out in a way that protects the natural outdoor experience for the enjoyment of current and future generations.
Protect and Preserve Our Parks

Please make your visit safe and enjoyable. Obey all posted rules and regulations and respect fellow visitors and the resources of the park.

Be prepared and bring the proper equipment. Natural areas may possess hazards. You are responsible for you and your family’s safety.
Alcoholic beverages are prohibited.
Please camp only in designated camping areas and try to minimize your impact on the campsite. Your pets are welcome in many areas, but are not permitted in overnight or swimming areas. Uncontrolled pets may chase wildlife or frighten visitors. Pets must be controlled and attended at all times and on a leash not exceeding six feet in length. Do your part to keep wildlife wild! Enjoy wildlife from a safe distance and do not feed or approach wild animals.
Prevent fires by properly disposing of hot coals and having a fire in proper facilities. Do not leave a fire unattended.
Please park only in designated areas and obey all traffic regulations.
Please recycle. Place trash accumulated during your stay in proper receptacles, or take it home with you. Soliciting and posting signs is prohibited without approval from the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.
For a detailed listing of the formal rules and regulations of the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Bureau of State Parks, please go to Summary of Regulations.
Want To Do More?

Volunteer! Pennsylvania State Parks are always looking for enthusiastic, qualified individuals to lend their talents and skills to enhance and preserve state parks. For more information, contact:
DCNR Conservation Volunteer Program
P.O. Box 8767
Harrisburg, PA 17105-8767
Visit our Website

For More Information Contact:

Colonel Denning State Park
1599 Doubling Gap Road
Newville, PA 17241-9796
Telephone: (717) 776-5272
An equal opportunity employer

For general state park information or to reserve a campsite, cabin, picnic pavilion or an organized group tenting area, call toll-free 888-PA-PARKS.




These listings are a courtesy of B.L. Sweets. B.L. Sweets has no affiliation with these businesses and none is implied. We are not responsible for the business practices of the above named entities.