Sellersville: Rural beauty, small-town charm and big-city accessibility

JOE FERRY


The Sellersville Theater.

From fine dining to disc golf, from classic rock to high-tech manufacturing, Sellersville Borough is one of Bucks County’s up-and-coming small towns.

Tucked in along Bethlehem Pike between Quakertown and Souderton, Sellersville offers a balance of rural beauty, small-town charm, and big-city accessibility, making it a perfect place for couples to start families and empty nesters to downsize while enjoying an active lifestyle.

Like many small towns in Bucks County, Sellersville saw its share of hard times after passenger rail service stopped in the 1980s and manufacturing jobs began to leave in the 1990s. But an emphasis on smart planning and economic development in the last few years has put the borough back on track.

The renaissance began soon after William Quigley and Elayne Brick rescued the historic Washington House Restaurant and Hotel at a sheriff sale. They renovated the neglected building, developed an eclectic menu, and began drawing loyal patrons who appreciated a fine-dining experience.

A few years later, they purchased the adjacent Cinema 1894 and turned into the Sellersville Theater, a regional venue for live music (upcoming performers include the Marshall Tucker Band, Taylor Hicks of American Idol fame, classic rockers Vanilla Fudge, the Oak Ridge Boys, and Leon Russell) and other entertainment. Each establishment enhanced the other.

Last year, Quigley and Brick completed an ambitious remodel of the hotel that now features 11 beautifully restored rooms with private baths and a host of luxury amenities. The Tower Suite, for example, provides three floors of deluxe accommodations and access to an observatory with 12 grand arch top windows and a 360-degree view of Sellersville and beyond.

Across from the Washington House is another popular eatery: Stella’s House Blend Cafe, where patrons can get breakfast or lunch seven days a week while nourishing “body, mind, and spirit in a cozy, vibrant ambiance.”

Visitors to Sellersville can pamper themselves at Seyschelles Salon & Day Spa, relax with a haircut and shave at the Modern Male Barber Shop, or get some ink at Carl Hesse’s World Famous Tattoos.

No visit to the borough would be complete without a stop at the Sellersville Museum at 120 E. Church St. to check out one of the monthly exhibits such as Star Wars memorabilia or comic book collections.

Later this month (Nov. 12-13), the museum will feature the Model Railroading and Trolley Display. In December, it will host the annual Christmas Tree Forest. Admission to the museum is free but donations are accepted.

Sellersville also has its share of popular annual events, including a St. Patrick’s Day Parade and Celtic Festival in March, the Pennridge Gallery of the Arts in September, and a Winterfest celebration (Dec. 6 this year) that includes the Christmas lighting.

Looking for more physical activity? Sellersville’s Lenape Park includes an 18-hole disc golf course that winds through trees and around streams.

“Sellersville holds about as much fun as you could possibly pack into a disc golf course whether you're playing by yourself, with some friends, or if you show up at their weekly tags (Saturday at 9:45) or dubs,” says an online reviewer. “And this park has as much disc golf as could be fit into the available park property without having to worry too much about hitting other players or park patrons.”

Sellersville has also attracted the attention of commercial developers such as Craig Edwards, who recently spent about $1 million turning a historic grist mill on Mill Street near the southern entrance to the borough into a mixed use, three-story building that includes office and retails pace. Eventually, he hopes to find someone to operate a small restaurant or bakery on the first floor, taking advantage of its location next to the East Branch of the Perkiomen Creek and along a popular walking trail.

Edwards also hopes to acquire the vacant lot upstream of the mill so he can build townhouses with a view of the creek and a visual connection with the mill.

“It’s a real pleasure to be doing this renovation in a manner consistent with the building’s history and having the opportunity to become part of the local business community,” said Edwards, who operates The Land Group Ltd.

Meanwhile, the Sellersville Business Campus is awaiting final permit approvals from the state Department of Environmental Protection before construction can begin on the former U.S. Gauge site, once the largest employer in Upper Bucks County. The plan calls for six buildings on 44 acres that will attract hi-tech manufacturers. Two have already been approved and a third is waiting in the wings.



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