Friday, March 18, 2011

Hersheypark, Pennsylvania, 1957

When my dad was still in the navy, we moved around a lot. In the 70's we wound up in land-locked (not counting Lake Erie) Pennsylvania, near the capital city of Harrisburg. More importantly, we were only about 20 minutes from the town of HERSHEY, home of the famous chocolate factory, and the only real amusement park to help me through my Disneyland withdrawals. I always thought it was called "Hershey Park", but apparently the correct name is "Hersheypark" (possibly a play on the name "Disneyland"). Today's photos are from many years before I visited the place!

This flume ride was seen on this blog once before; notice that instead of water, the boat floated on melted chocolate! Just over that big wall you can just see the top of the twin Ferris Wheel...

... which can be seen more clearly here. It was added to Hersheypark in 1950, and was 66 feet tall. Looks like the wheel on the left was out of order on this particular day.

This wooden roller coaster is known as "The Comet". It was built in 1946, and is still at the park today! Its maximum speed is about 50 mph, which sounds pretty impressive for such an oldie. Love the photo with the kids in the rowboat.

This 1919 Carousel was built by the Philadelphia Toboggan Company, and replaced Hersheypark's original carousel (a 1912 Denzel) in 1946, for reasons that are unclear to me (apparently the Denzel was considered one of the biggest and "most magnificent" carousels in the area at the time). The one seen in this photo is still at the park.

Here's another Ferris Wheel; I believe that this is a small version that was added to the park in the 1920's. They really REALLY didn't want you to fall out! Those icy Pennsylvania winters really took their toll on these old rides. I assume that this one is long gone.

I hope you've enjoyed your visit to Hersheypark!


TomT said...

At Fontaine Ferry Park in Louisville there was a twin Comet that went out over the Ohio River. They also had the steel cage ferris wheel.

Katella Gate said...

Obviously that flume ride is a blatant piece of industrial espionage from the Wonka Factory's waterfall-churned chocolate.

I really doubt the wisdom of coloring the water, but at least they got the shade of mahogany brown right.

Connie Moreno said...

Major, this is so cool! I have been wanting to go to Hersheypark for YEARS and now I wanna go even more!

Nancy said...

even tho i have lived in PA all my life (54 years now) i have been to Hersheypark only once, and that was when Rachel was about 3 so we rode NO adult rides, not even the roller coaster....even Rachel has been there twice.

I need to go back. thanks for reminding me of this. i do remember it was so nice, a lot like our Kennywood here in Pgh, lots of trees and beautiful like Disneyland in that way. :)

the password today is bikes...spring is coming!!

Harry said...

Hersheypark was Hershey Park (two words) from 1907 (when the park opened) until 1970. From 1971 to present, it is called Hersheypark (one word).

So, calling it Hershey Park since this is about the park in 1957 is fine.