Carlisle Connections: The Great Escape

Allenberry Resort

Photos by Carl Socolow '77.

by Tony Moore

How often do you wish you could stay somewhere like the resort where Johnny Castle triumphantly hoists “Baby” Houseman into the air in Dirty Dancing? Be honest; it’s often. Well, just outside Carlisle, a mere six miles from Dickinson’s campus, the Allenberry Resort awaits in the hilly Boiling Springs woods.

“The setting at Allenberry is idyllic and charming, and there are beautiful spaces throughout the property, both indoors and out, to relax with friends and reconnect,” says Mike Kennedy, co-owner of the 75-room, recently renovated and reimagined resort. “The cottages, the historic mansion and all of our lodges have nicely appointed common areas for gathering together. Plus, there’s so much to do right on resort property.”

The resort’s 57 acres are penned in on the back side by the Yellow Breeches Creek, a world-renowned fly fishing destination and perfect spot for kayaking and tubing. And after a day of hiking the nearby Appalachian Trail, guests can relax with the help of a full-service spa, great dining and drinks and live entertainment year-round. Since 1949, the centerpiece of Allenberry’s entertainment scene has been the Allenberry Playhouse, which has presented more than 600 productions over its history. And with the rebirth of the resort, the Playhouse is going strong, staging a regular slate of dramas, musicals, comedies, murder-mystery dinners and live music performances.

The property has been drawing visitors since James Crockett, the uncle of American folk legend Davy Crockett, began welcoming travelers in the 1790s. And the recent renovations—which took more than a year to finish—create a warm air of hospitality and pair it with elegant, contemporary amenities. Guests can stay in the 1820s-era Stone Mansion, cottages with full kitchens or the Carriage House with wall-to-wall windows and a series of suites. And event spaces abound, making Allenberry perfect for weddings, parties and business retreats.

Fly fishing at allenberry resort

The resort’s flagship eatery, The Barn, features seasonal and local fare, a full bar with handcrafted cocktails and a 50-beer bottle list and the open-air 1798 Terrace, which overlooks a huge swath of the property and the Yellow Breeches. All in all, once you drive up the long, tree-lined entranceway  and get a lungful of that good country air, you’ll be as reborn as the resort itself.

“Allenberry offers a great escape from the busy outside world, and when you enter the property you can feel the world melt away,” says Kennedy. “It’s held a special place in the local community for generations, and we wanted to be a part of continuing that local connection while also creating a destination for out-of-towners.”

Read more from the winter 2018 issue of Dickinson Magazine.


Published January 23, 2018