Adams County is a popular destination for wedding ceremonies, largely due to its widespread appeal for many different audiences.
A wedding at Hauser Hill Event Center [Lindsey Ford]
“Adams County is built for tourism, so we are fully equipped for people to come from all over the place to explore the battlefields, the history of the town, and our robust agribusiness,” said Round Barn Events LLC Manager Jessica Knouse. “We not only have venues on the more traditional spectrum, but we also have unpretentious, newer, outdoor options. There’s something for everyone.”
For couples seeking to host their wedding at an upscale, indoor location, the Federal Pointe Inn and the Gettysburg Hotel are two possible options.
The Federal Pointe Inn, a location that has been open for nearly ten years, hosts approximately twenty wedding groups each year, with many couples choosing to spend their honeymoon at the boutique hotel.
According to Owner Pete Monahan, “We’re historic, unique, and upscale. One of our amenities is a pub that our wedding groups can use before and after the wedding so they don’t have to leave the hotel. We also offer tea and scones every afternoon and our rooms are larger than most hotels.”
Another prominent feature of the Federal Pointe Inn is that it offers historic areas for wedding groups to take pictures. “It photographs really well,” said Monahan. “We just had a wedding where we hung the bride’s dress from a chandelier and the photographer took a picture. The chandelier made a beautiful shot.”
At the Gettysburg Hotel, couples also appreciate the unique and historic indoor space to host their weddings.
“In 2000, we acquired our Grand Ballroom space, which was originally the Gettysburg National Bank and was still operating as a PNC Bank at the time,” shared Catering & Events Manager Megan Wherley. “The space was transformed into our beautiful ballroom, keeping the iconic, historic elements, including the original hand-painted and gold inlaid 28-foot ceiling with a Grecian border, as well at the impressive and formidable bank vault.”
Additionally, the Gettysburg Hotel offers amenities that are popular with their wedding guests. Wherley said, “One of the biggest benefits to our couples is that we do all of their personal decorating for them. All they need to do is bring the decorations to the hotel before the wedding, then we go through it all and set up everything.”
When the couple returns before the wedding, “they get a grand reveal of the space, seeing the ballroom for the first time with flowers in place, candles lit, and champagne poured, ready for guests to enter and be amazed,” said Wherley. At the end of the night, the Gettysburg Hotel staff takes the decorations down as well, allowing couples to pick up their decor in the morning.
“Our venue is really a one-stop location,” said Wherley. “We provide all catering, alcohol, guestrooms, tables, chairs, linens, napkins, house centerpieces, setup and teardown and even the wedding cake. We have an extensive preferred vendor list who can provide any services that we do not offer in house. Beyond that, we have guestrooms on site, a Starbucks, and our award-winning restaurant, One Lincoln. Our goal is to provide a stress-free wedding planning experience.”
For those couples who prefer scenic outdoor locations with indoor options, the Historic Round Barn, Hauser Hill Event Center, and Gettysburg National Military Park are three of the many picturesque locations in Adams County.
The Historic Round Barn began hosting wedding events in 2007 for family members associated with the barn. It has since hosted nearly 200 weddings and strives to maintain the original family-oriented concept.
Manager Jessica Knouse said, “There’s a lot of flexibility because we’re family owned. We do one wedding per weekend, so we are very focused on one couple. We don’t rush people on setting up or tearing down. They can have any vendors they prefer because we don’t have restrictions on vendors.”
Knouse believes that guests typically choose their location for weddings because “they want to get married, but they don’t want to be in a banquet room; they want a more homey and comfortable feel. Our venue is unpretentious, uninhibited, and laid back. We’re on a farm so people can drive right up and unload.”
Additionally, she shared that “One of the biggest selling points is that we have a huge inventory of decorations that people can use at no additional cost so that they don’t have to buy decorations they’ll never use again.”
Another scenic outdoor venue is the Hauser Hill Event Center. It began as the Hauser Estate Winery which hosted weddings but remained open to the public. It has since rebranded to the Hauser Hill Event Center and is only open for weddings and private events.
“It is such a beautiful property for weddings with stunning views in every direction,” said Event Coordinator Mindi Wood. “If they want an outdoor ceremony, we have a deck and a terrace for outdoor seating. Using tents, people can also enjoy the gorgeous views and be outside for the reception.”
Wood, a former wedding photographer with 25 years of photography experience and 30 years of wedding planning experience, has an eye for detail that she believes is helpful for events. “It is important to me that every detail is carried out and that the day goes smoothly. I care about people and I want them to just enjoy the day and not have to worry about anything,” said Wood.
“Hauser Hill is so beautifully decorated inside and outside that the couples really do not need to do much except show up, and that is my goal,” said Wood. “We also are very flexible with the table arrangement, times for the events, and we are handicap accessible and dog friendly.”
Finally, couples who are interested in hosting their wedding at the Gettysburg National Military Park are able to do so at the park’s amphitheater on West Confederate Avenue. The location has a seating capacity of approximately 50 people on benches. However, couples may bring additional seating for larger crowds.
“People can use that area via a Special Park Use permit which can be found through the park’s website,” said Special Permit Coordinator Pam Neil.
Neil also noted that “there are living history encampments in the wooded area adjacent to the amphitheater itself on the weekends.” For those interested in the history of Gettysburg, Neil believes “the soldiers would certainly make an interesting backdrop.”
Because Adams County is home to many different wedding venues, there are options available to all couples, whether they wish to be married under the 1920’s chandeliers at the Federal Pointe Inn, under the stars at the Hauser Hill Event Center, or anything else in between.
“Adams County is the perfect wedding destination because there’s something for everyone,” said Wherley. “Foodies will find lots of unique dining options. Historians can enjoy the battlefields, museums, downtown walking tours and period shops. Nature lovers can hike the trails with plenty to explore.”
Alli is a summer intern with the Connection and a sophomore at Gettysburg College, majoring in Sociology and Public Policy with a minor in Peace & Justice Studies. She is the News Editor for the college newspaper, The Gettysburgian, and enjoys exploring various areas of writing and journalism.