deep creek rentals

Will O’ the Wisp: History, Tradition and Modern Amenities

How far back in time should we travel?

LONG ago, our countryside was at the bottom of the ocean. Gigantic upheavals in prehistory forged the Appalachian mountains, and marine fossils can still be found in the old limestone quarry across the street from Will O’ the Wisp. Indian tribes lived here at the beginning of the eighteenth century one of the large boulders on property has a hollow in which they ground their corn.

Deep Creek Lake was built by Pennsylvania Electric Company in the 1920’s. Early vacationers Gustav and Alice Heise moved here permanently in the 1940’s with their children, Helmuth and Doris, and bought a summer camp called Will O’ the Wisp from the local dentist, Dr. Bullard Helmuth and his wife Evelyn.  In 1953, they built a small, ten unit “modern” motel. After earning a total of $14 for the month of February during their first year of business, they decided something had to be done to promote winter trade, so Marsh Mountain Ski Area was started in nearby McHenry. It was renamed Wisp, both to encourage thoughts of affinity with Will O’ the Wisp and to discourage thoughts about marshes. (The terrain is anything but marshy!)

Sold in 1970 by the Heise family and other shareholders, Wisp is a well known ski, golf and ;so much more’ resort!

Back to the Will O’ the Wisp, the Four Seasons Dining Room was added in the 1960’s. The stone used for the original motel was recycled to form the stone pillars and the wood was planed from trees removed to make way for ski trails at Wisp.

Ace’s Run Restaurant & Pub is now the on-site fun and fine dining establishment.  The food is creative yet simple and always fresh!  Be sure to experience the ever-popular open kitchen nights!

The history is long at Will O’ the Wisp but the condos are modern and comfortable and the lakeside amenities vast.  Book one of our newly renovated rooms today!

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