Central PA's LGBT News Source

Does it take a village?


Allison Hill, also known as The Hill, is a Harrisburg neighborhood located directly east of downtown Harrisburg. The Hill sits on a bluff overlooking downtown.

Pictured are students from Penn State, Shippensburg University and Columbia University working with the intergenerational Pride of the Neighborhood program to maintain green spaces around Allison Hill’s Catholic Worker facility.

The Hill comprises many sub-neighborhoods with nicknames such as “The Ville” and the “Third Ward” and encompasses the Mount Pleasant Historic District. Architecture is brick, in Italianate, Victorian, or Colonial Revival styles.

Historically, some residents had beautiful gardens. So many people grew grapes that in the Fall, residents would shut down the streets and make wine. Many homes still have the same ancient grapevines in their backyards.

The neighborhood is also dotted with murals, some hidden and others placed in full view of the main roads. Sylvan Heights Mansion, which is now occupied by the YWCA, and serves as housing for homeless women and children who are victims of domestic violence, sits on the hill and overlooks downtown.

As of 2004, 6,003 people were living in Allison Hill. The majority are low income and one third are under the age of 18. The many cultures represented in Allison Hill include West African, Vietnamese, Indonesian, diverse Latin American, African-American, and European-American populations. The Hill is home to many businesspeople, artists, and social justice and community activists.