If you’re planning a trip to the Capital Area, be sure to include a stop in Newville. Though it’s a smaller city than other American cities, there are plenty of unique things to do in the area. Newville is also a great side trip from larger cities such as Harrisburg and Washington, D.C.
Colonel Denning State Park
Colonel Denning State Park is a 273-acre Pennsylvania state park located in the Doubling Gap of the Blue Mountain. It is on Pennsylvania Route 233 between Newville and Landisburg. It features a man-made lake covering 3.5 acres.
There are a number of things to do in Colonel Denning State Park, including fishing, hunting, and bird watching. You can also boat, kayak, and swim in Doubling Gap Lake. You’ll have to keep pets on leashes.
Despite the fact that the Denning cannons don’t survive today, you can still visualize them with historical documents. William Denning was a Revolutionary War veteran who forged wrought iron cannons for the American army. He served as a sergeant in Nathaniel Irish’s Company of Artillery Artificers in the Pennsylvania Continental Army. He was buried in nearby Newville, where his family lived.
The Colonel Denning State Park is an ideal family destination. It has a lot to offer for all ages. There are picnic areas and a camping area. There is also a state-of-the-art play area, beautiful nature center, walking trails, and a fish pond.
The park is also home to a CCC Spillway, a historic structure that was constructed in the 1930s. It is open to the public and is part of a restoration project. The park’s water drawdown will continue into the fall, but fishing and watercraft around the lake is prohibited until the drawdown is complete. It is important to remember that the lake has a large population of deer and elk, which are susceptible to Chronic Wasting Disease.
Randall D. Shughart United States Post Office Building
The Randall D. Shughart United States Post Office Building was named on May 4, 2005 in honor of the Medal of Honor recipient Randall Shughart. This soldier died in the 1993 Battle of Mogadishu while serving under the Special Operations Command. His story was depicted in the 2001 movie Black Hawk Down. Shughart was from Newville.
Big Spring Presbyterian Church
The town of Newville, Pennsylvania is nestled in the Cumberland Valley. It was officially incorporated in 1790, but the area dates back much earlier. In 1728, Andrew Ralston settled near a spring called Big Spring, and in 1737, William Laughlin donated the town’s land for the construction of a Presbyterian church. This historic church remains one of the best places to visit in Newville, PA.
Built in 1737, the Big Spring Presbyterian Church was completed in 1789. Its graveyard includes many Revolutionary War soldiers. Visitors are welcome to pay their respects and take a look around. The church has two beautiful spires.