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Hersheypark Unveils New Home for Iconic Carrousel

100-Year-Old Ride to be Featured in Hershey's Chocolatetown

Earlier this week, Hersheypark unveiled the design of the new Carrousel pavilion that will house the iconic ride in a place of prominence in Hershey's Chocolatetown, an all-new region at Hersheypark where guests can play, eat, shop and gather. The design reflects the personality of the new setting while still preserving the original historic charm with a nod to the original pavilion design from the early 1900s.


History of the 100-Year-Old Carrousel

The Carrousel at Hersheypark is one of the oldest in the country. It was built by the Philadelphia Toboggan Company (PTC) in 1919 and celebrated its 100th anniversary last year. Known as PTC #47, the Carrousel operated at two other amusement parks in Maryland and New York before calling Hersheypark home in 1945.

Prior to purchasing the Carrousel in 1945, Hersheypark was home to a few other carousel models. A used merry-go-round built by Herschel Spillman was actually the first ride to operate in the Park. A general contractor for Milton S. Hershey and his men constructed a pavilion for it on the north side of Spring Creek.

The Park's next carrousel came from the William H. Dentzel Company. A new building to house it was constructed from wood ordered from a Lebanon, Pa. firm. The building was octagon shaped and measured 86 feet by 86 feet. The Dentzel carrousel was later sold to an amusement park in Ohio to make room for the PTC #47 Carrousel.

When the PTC #47 Carrousel arrived at Hersheypark, it was installed in a pavilion along Spring Creek where it remained until the winter of 1971. During the off season of that year, the Carrousel was partly renovated and carefully moved to the Carrousel Circle area of the Park. It was housed underneath a large metal canopy painted red, white and blue that paid homage to the time period it was built.

Given the age of the Carrousel, artistic restoration is occasionally completed to preserve the history of the ride. In 1975, the organ that produces the traditional Carrousel music was completely restored. It is a 153-duplex Wurlitzer Military Band Organ that contains 164 pipes, 54 keys and 16 bells. Then in 1978, the Hersheypark Maintenance Team completed a restoration of the 66 original, hand-carved horses, chariots and ride decoration, the latter of which features Miss Liberty and American Flags on the outer rim.

In advance of the 2019 operating season, the Wurlitzer organ was overhauled by Durward Center in Baltimore, MD. Currently,the Carrousel is undergoing another restoration in preparation for the move to its new home in Hershey's Chocolatetown. Many of the wooden elements are receiving a new coat of paint.

Ride the Carrousel This Summer

With the opening of Hershey's Chocolatetown this summer, the Carrousel will enter a new, exciting chapter of its rich history in delighting generations of guests. We hope you will join us and take a ride back in time on the Carrousel during the biggest summer ever at Hersheypark!

If you are planning to visit, you can save more than 40% on summer tickets when you purchase them online by March 31. 2020 Season Passes are also on sale and include unlimited visits to Hersheypark and other sweet perks.