Arooga’s coming to Shippensburg this spring

2013-12-23T12:00:00Z 2013-12-23T13:13:40Z Arooga’s coming to Shippensburg this springBy Debbie Chestnut, The Sentinel The Sentinel
December 23, 2013 12:00 pm  • 

SHIPPENSBURG — Ship Wreck Pub and Inn, 105 W. King St., closed its doors last weekend following the sale of the business to Arooga’s Grill House and Sports Bar.

Gary Huether and Mike Murphy, owners and co-founders of the Arooga’s chain, bought the business from Ship Wreck owners Mark Bricker and Buddy Hartman Jr. Huether and Murphy plan extensive renovations as soon as the liquor license transfer is complete, and they expect to re-open in time for March Madness.

Shippensburg will be the ninth location for the Arooga’s chain of restaurants, which started in 2008. There are three restaurants in Harrisburg, and others are located in Camp Hill, Hanover, Mechanicsburg, Hershey and York.

“We’re trying to grow out our circle, so the next logical location would be Carlisle/Shippensburg,” Huether said. “We looked around and talked to different people, and we were told that a lot of (local) people go to (Arooga’s in) Mechanicsburg or to Appleby’s. We thought what we could bring to the community would fit well.”

Huether said renovations will include a bar with high-top seating and 50 beers on draft, more than 100 televisions, surround sound and a separate room with low-top seating for family dining. The new Arooga’s will also be a certified green restaurant.

“We plan to continue the same traditions as the other Arooga’s,” he said. “When we’re done with renovations, you’ll walk in and know you’re at Arooga’s.”

The new owners take pride in their menu, which includes wings and an assortment of foods made in-house.

“We hand-bread our onion rings, we make our own salad dressings, soups and dips, we make soft pretzels to order — we do a lot of things you wouldn’t expect at a sports bar,” Huether said.

“We took food to the next level. ... We’re a neighborhood restaurant with casual dining and the bonus of being an awesome sports bar,” he said.

Bricker and Hartman have owned and operated Ship Wreck for the last three years.

“It was a huge financial success,” Bricker said. “It was more fulfilling than I could ever have expected. It was an absolute thrill, and the town of Shippensburg was a huge supporter. I can’t thank the town enough for making it such a success.”

The only downfall, he said, was the toll it took on his health.

“The restaurant business is tough; it’s demanding physically and mentally,” he said. “I couldn’t put into it what I thought I needed to put into it.”

Bricker said Arooga’s is “really looking forward to being a part of the Shippensburg community.”

Community leaders say they will welcome Arooga’s.

“We’re excited about it,” said Mickey Nye, president of the Shippensburg Area Development Corp. “Anything that will bring more energy to town, I’m all for it. It sounds like a very positive thing to me — very favorable for Shippensburg.”

Scott Brown, executive director of the Shippensburg Area Chamber of Commerce, agrees.

“We think it’s great,” he said. “It’s always a good thing when a regional chain comes to town. I think it’ll be a nice addition. We’re sorry Ship Wreck is leaving but happy another restaurant is coming.”

Curt Cramer, president of Downtown Organizations Investing Together, said Arooga’s will give people more choices when dining in downtown Shippensburg, and Rebecca Yearick, downtown program services manager with the Cumberland County Redevelopment Authority, said another restaurant will benefit Shippensburg in many ways.

“There are a number of businesses that are expanding, and then you have these new entities, like Proctor and Gamble, that are adding hundreds of jobs, and others that are in the works,” Yearick said.

Huether said to look for updates on Arooga’s at

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(12) Comments

  1. Hs1977
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    Hs1977 - April 06, 2014 7:25 pm
    Where do you go to get a applacation for this site in shippensburg
  2. Carlisle92
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    Carlisle92 - December 25, 2013 6:11 pm
    Leo's is coming to Carlisle (High St.), and I hear Five Guys might share the spot with them. Euroburger was complete trash, and that location is great for any good food place.
  3. pystil
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    pystil - December 25, 2013 10:15 am
    Oh for a real English pub, comfortable seating, no garish lighting, no music or TV ( except for World Cup and other special occasions). A place you can sit and talk with friends and neighbors with a selection of brews, not 101 to choose from.
  4. pystil
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    pystil - December 25, 2013 10:13 am
    I agree with PA born, wing splitting is important. I love a few hot wings but not a dozen at a time, I like variety.
  5. pystil
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    pystil - December 25, 2013 10:11 am
    Looks like Carlisle will be the next stop for Aroogas when the Masland site is developed. I would prefer a better quality Brew pub than Arooga's. Carlisle is ripe for a sports bar. Applebees is the only place close. We also need a Brew pub with better food than the Market X, and comfortable seating.
    Aroogas should be a good fit for the non fussy Shippensburg college students.
  6. PABornandRaised
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    PABornandRaised - December 24, 2013 8:38 pm
    I can go to Market Cross Pub, North Hanover Grille and a few other places outside of the area that I know of and split flavors. It surely doesn't keep me up at night, but does keep me from visiting the place. No reason to bilk extra money from a customer just because they can. If you notice, I wished them well. Their food is good, but their policy is a money grab.
  7. HyperU2
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    HyperU2 - December 24, 2013 2:25 pm
    Good luck to any business hoping to thrive in that black hole of a town.
  8. cosmicmom
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    cosmicmom - December 24, 2013 7:03 am
    I'm so sorry to see the Shipwreck, their great food and pub atmosphere go. I've never been to Arooga's, even though I hear good things about it, simply because it's a sports' bar. Why does EVERY bar these days have to be a sports' bar? Some of us like a pub atmosphere without all the TVs and noise. I'll give it a try for the food, to be fair, but the thought of being surrounded by TVs tuned to all sports, or anything else, for that matter, leaves me cold.
  9. summersky
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    summersky - December 24, 2013 5:52 am
    A couple of out-of-town pirates renovating the Ship Wreck?
  10. Traveler
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    Traveler - December 24, 2013 12:22 am
    ..... And I bet your Wing issue keeps you up at night, doesn't it? One can ONLY guess that they miss you terribly and are sure to change their policy .....JUST to talk! Congrats to Arooga's and best wishes for your additional expansion. Just remember; There will always be those who are so jealous of other peoples success.
  11. PABornandRaised
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    PABornandRaised - December 23, 2013 6:27 pm
    Hope they do well at their new location, but until they allow a customer to split wing flavors, they'll never have my business again. I get that I can't do 2 of this flavor and 2 of that, etc. But...if I order 12, 18, 20 and so on, why can't I get half one flavor and half another? Oh...I know why. They can force the consumer to spend more money for half and half rather than just doing what is right. Fix this policy and then we can talk!
  12. justmorefacts
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    justmorefacts - December 23, 2013 2:21 pm
    Does anyone else get the "irony"?
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