Distelfink Drive-In

Distelfink Drive-In
2699 Old Harrisburg Road
Gettysburg, Pennsylvania


The Distelfink is what remains of an old “drive-in” style restaurant. It is located just outside of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania — at the intersection of Old Rt15 (the Harrisburg Pike) and Rt 394; or you can take the Hunterstown Exit of Rt15 and turn toward Hunterstown.

They don’t have car service any longer, but you can easily see “what used to be” based on the remaining architecture. When I was there last (at the end of summer ’08) the Distelfink was for sale. It would be great to see someone buy it and at least partially restore it (though restoring it too much might result in the loss of its charm).

Their current claim to fame is soft ice cream available in 101 flavors — they are able to achieve this modern miracle with the use of various scary-looking flavored syrups. I didn’t have the intestinal fortitude to try a cone, but the kids at the picnic table next to me seemed to be enjoying their psychedelic cones. 🙂

They also used to be known for a purple-colored “special sauce” on their hamburgers. I’m not sure if they still serve that, but it might be worth trying!

In the picnic table area, they generally have a table featuring local produce and baked goods for sale. I bought some banana bread to take home with me the last time that I stopped there. It was delectable!

For those of you who don’t know what a “distelfink” is — they are folk art goldfinches that are often featured in Pennsylvania Dutch hex signs and other decorations.