By Alicia Dziak
Allegany State Park (ASP) is a sprawling park of natural beauty that boasts hundreds of cabins, on numerous trails, which oftentimes filled to the brim come summer. While thousands of people flock to the park to stay in the rustic park cabins, other prefer to rough it a little less, and the park’s full service cottages offer just that. They include bathrooms with showers, a stocked kitchen with stove, fridge, microwave, utensils and plates, a grill outside, and pillows and bedding.
There are currently only a handful of these cottages within the park. One older style cottage (Pitt) is located on the Red House side of the park, and the rest are a newer style, located on the Fancher and Parallel Trails on the Quaker side. These cottages are so popular that if you don’t hop online exactly nine months before your stay (the window for making reservations at ASP), it’s unlikely you’ll be able to reserve them during peak season.
In order to accommodate more guests looking to enjoy the cottage experience, more cottages are being built on both sides of the park.
According to Mark Barbera of ASP Partners LLC, the company that will be constructing and operating the cottages, the first phase of the project will include constructing an estimated 13 additional cottages along the remaining section of Parallel Trail. The trail’s former one-room cabins had been unrented for several years due to their dilapidated state and were torn down last year.
The second phase of the project will see an estimated 15 additional cottages built on the Red House side of the park, on Bove Road, near Camp Allegany.
All new cottages will be serviced by ASP Partners LLC. Groundbreaking is tentatively scheduled for May, and the hope is that some cottages will be completed and able to be rented in the 2014 season.
“My family has been enjoying Allegany State Park since it opened, so I have a very personal stake in this project,” Barbera said.
In addition to the new cottages, discussions between the park and ASP Partners LLC regarding the redevelopment of Group Camp 10 are underway. The old camp is located on Red House, between the Ryan cabin trail and Group Camp 12. This site formerly housed several small cabins running in two parallel rows in a meadow overlooking ASP 2. These were also torn down last year.
To make reservations for an unforgettable camping experience at ASP, whether in a cottage or in a traditional ASP cabin, visit www.reserveamerica.com.
Reservations will be handled through the state park rental offices or online at www.newyorkparks.reserveamerica.com. They can be booked up to nine months in advance and cost $695 a week, or $173.75 for a night.