Hersheypark secrets and fun facts

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Hersheypark is located in Hershey, Pennsylvania. The theme park features 13 roller coasters, 15 water attractions and 26 kiddie rides throughout the park.

Guests can also check out bears, wolves, bald eagles and porcupines at Zoo America, which is included with each purchased ticket. The Hershey Story, a museum dedicated to the legacy of the Hershey empire, features "Museum Experience," with interactive activities such as quizzes and puzzles, while "Sweet Innovations" gives an inside look at the evolution of the company -- from the creation of the various confections to the packaging of them.

You may have made many memories at Hersheypark, but how much do you really know about this sweet park? Check out 30 secrets and fun facts you may not know.

Hersheypark was originally a picnic area

The park was originally a picnic and pleasure
(Credit: Hersheypark)

The park was originally a picnic and pleasure grounds for chocolate founder Milton Hershey's employees and their families. Today, all Hershey Entertainment & Resorts' employees receive free admission to Hersheypark.

The first roller coaster launched in 1923

The current Wild Cat roller coaster was named
(Credit: Hersheypark)

The current Wild Cat roller coaster was named in honor of the park's first roller coaster, which launched in 1923 as Milton Hershey's way of celebrating the town's 20th anniversary. Hersheypark's 13 coasters range in age over 71 years.

The train cars have names

Janelle and Scooter are the names of the
(Credit: Hersheypark)

Janelle and Scooter are the names of the Dry Gulch Railroad train cars. The engines run on live stream.

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Hersheypark leads in annual attendance

Hersheypark has the highest annual attendance of any
(Credit: Hersheypark)

Hersheypark has the highest annual attendance of any privately owned amusement park in North America.

Hundreds of gallons of ice cream were used in 2016

More than 800 gallons of ice cream were
(Credit: Hersheypark)

More than 800 gallons of ice cream were used in 2016 for king-sized shakes.

A "Hamilton" star was a costume character at Hersheypark

Javier Munoz, currently starring as Alexander Hamilton in
(Credit: Hersheypark)

Javier Munoz, currently starring as Alexander Hamilton in the smash hit "Hamilton" on Broadway, was a Reese's costume character at Hersheypark.

One carousel horse is unlike the others

There is only one horse on the carousel
(Credit: Hersheypark)

There is only one horse on the carousel that has a closed mouth. Also, one of the carousel's horses is painted in honor of Milton S. Hershey. The colors, chocolate brown and gold, reflect the colors of the school he founded.

The statue is life-sized

The Milton Hershey Statue at the front of
(Credit: Hersheypark)

The Milton Hershey Statue at the front of Hersheypark is 5 feet, 7 inches, which was his actual height.

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Staying on property has its perks

If you stay at one of the Hersheypark
(Credit: Hersheypark)

If you stay at one of the Hersheypark resorts or you are a Season Pass holder, you will have Sweet Start access. This allows you to enter the park one hour before it opens.

Guests love funnel cakes

More than 67,000 funnel cakes are hand poured
(Credit: Hersheypark)

More than 67,000 funnel cakes are hand poured and topped in a year.

A zoo is included

ZooAmerica is an 11-acre zoo featuring 200 North
(Credit: Hersheypark)

ZooAmerica is an 11-acre zoo featuring 200 North American animals, and admission is included with every Hersheypark ticket.

Toots along with the treats

The Hershey Band played every evening during the
(Credit: Hersheypark)

The Hershey Band played every evening during the park's first few years. The band was formed when Milton Hershey purchased band instruments and encouraged his employees to learn to play and to join the band.

Hersheypark features the first choose-your-thrill ride

The new Hershey Triple Tower allows guests to
(Credit: Hersheypark)

The new Hershey Triple Tower allows guests to choose the tower they'd like to ride depending on their level of freight. Guests can choose to ride the Hershey's Tower, which stands 189 feet high and rockets riders to the top before blasting back to the bottom at 45 miles-per-hour. The Reese's Tower stands 131 feet high and the Hershey's Kisses Tower stands 80 feet high.

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Maintenance happens in winter

Every part of a coaster and/or ride car
(Credit: Hersheypark)

Every part of a coaster and/or ride car is removed from the tracks, taken apart, reassembled and inspected during every off-season.

First looping coaster on the East Coast

when it opened in 1977, the Sooperdooperlooper was
(Credit: Hersheypark)

when it opened in 1977, the Sooperdooperlooper was the first modern looping coaster on the East Coast. The ride is celebrating its 40th anniversary.

Don't wait till morning! Preview the park the night before

With the purchase of a Hersheypark ticket, you
(Credit: Hersheypark)

With the purchase of a Hersheypark ticket, you can enter the park the night before for more than 2 1/2 hours before closing.

The Boardwalk honors the first swimming pool at the park

The Boardwalk was created to celebrate the park's
(Credit: Hersheypark)

The Boardwalk was created to celebrate the park's 100th anniversary. It was also designed to honor the first swimming pool in Hersheypark.

Specialty acts and performances were the park's first source of entertainment

In 1903, the first entertainment in the park
(Credit: Hersheypark)

In 1903, the first entertainment in the park was vaudeville. The original main buildings, a rustic bandstand and pavilion, served as a stage for vaudeville and theater shows.

The Monorail was introduced in 1969

A Monorail was originally constructed in downtown Hershey
(Credit: Hersheypark)

A Monorail was originally constructed in downtown Hershey to alleviate traffic problems. That same year, 1969, the Monorail was introduced to Hersheypark and is the last remaining one of its kind in the world.

Giant Hershey's bars are the top-selling candy

Hersheypark sold about 340,000 units of candy last
(Credit: Hersheypark)

Hersheypark sold about 340,000 units of candy last year. The most popular are the Giant bars which is about 23 percent of the total Hershey candy business, followed by King Size bars, which are about 17 percent of the park's total.

Height requirements are named for Hershey's candy

Hersheypark's height categories are named after Hershey's candy
(Credit: Hersheypark)

Hersheypark's height categories are named after Hershey's candy products. You can be anything from a Kiss to a Jolly Rancher.

The Ferris wheel features many colors

There are eight colors on the Hersheypark pinwheel
(Credit: Hersheypark)

There are eight colors on the Hersheypark pinwheel inside the Ferris wheel.

Hersheypark features four seasons of fun

Hersheypark celebrates the four seasons. Summer, of course,
(Credit: Hersheypark)

Hersheypark celebrates the four seasons. Summer, of course, but also Hersheypark in the Dark in the fall, and Christmas Candylane for winter and spring fun.

The kiddie rides are dispersed throughout the park

Hersheypark is designed so families can enjoy rides
(Credit: Hersheypark)

Hersheypark is designed so families can enjoy rides together. There are kiddie rides by each roller coaster and spread throughout the park.

Keep an eye out for candy characters

You can meet larger-than-life candy characters, such as
(Credit: Hersheypark)

You can meet larger-than-life candy characters, such as Hershey's Bar, Hershey's Kiss and more.

International award winner

In 2000, Hersheypark won the
(Credit: Hersheypark)

In 2000, Hersheypark won the "Applause Award," presented bi-annually by Liseberg Park of Sweden recognizing excellence and inspiration in the theme park industry.

The park is allergy friendly

The Outpost is a food stand that offers
(Credit: Hersheypark)

The Outpost is a food stand that offers gluten-free and nut-free options, among many other items.

Kisses with a view

The Kissing Tower ride features kiss-shaped observation windows,
(Credit: Hersheypark)

The Kissing Tower ride features kiss-shaped observation windows, allowing guests to get a 360 degree view of Hershey, Pennsylvania.

Some rides have an odd number of fixed ride vehicles

Fixed ride vehicles are the cars, trains or
(Credit: Hersheypark)

Fixed ride vehicles are the cars, trains or seats that you sit in during a ride. Most rides have an even number of those; the Frog Hopper and Tilt-a-Whirl are the only two rides with an odd number. They both have seven.

If you see a concert, you get a discount on park admission

If you attend a concert at Hersheypark Stadium
(Credit: Hersheypark)

If you attend a concert at Hersheypark Stadium you can present your show ticket the day before, day of or day after the concert and receive a discount on admission to the park.

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