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Hersheypark Arena

Hersheypark Arena (originally Hershey Sports Arena) is a multi-purpose indoor arena located in Hershey, Pennsylvania, managed by Hershey Entertainment & Resorts Company. The arena has a seating capacity, for hockey, of 7,286 people and in excess of 8,000, including standing room.[2]

Hersheypark Arena
"The Old Barn"[1]
HersheyPark Arena.svg
Hersheypark arena outside1.jpg
Former namesHershey Sports Arena (1936–1972)
Location100 West Hersheypark Drive
Hershey, Pennsylvania 17033
Coordinates40°17′17″N 76°39′23″W / 40.28806°N 76.65639°W / 40.28806; -76.65639
OperatorHershey Entertainment and Resorts Company
Capacity7,286
SurfaceIce
Construction
Built1936
Tenants
Hershey Bears (AHL) (1936–2002)
Hershey Impact (NPSL) (1988–1991)
Lebanon Valley College hockey (UCHC) (1998–present)
Philadelphia Warriors (1 game, 1962)
View from ice level

HistoryEdit

When built in 1936 as the Hershey Sports Arena, the building was the largest monolithic structure in the United States in which not a single seat suffered from an obstructed view.[3] For 66 years it was the home of the Hershey Bears hockey team from 1936 to 2002. The second sport at the arena was basketball. It hosted the PIAA basketball and wrestling championships, and it also served as the home of the Hershey Impact, a National Professional Soccer League team from 1988 to 1991. It has also hosted the Ice Capades, Disney on Ice, professional boxing, tennis competitions, and the World Wrestling Federation's (WWF) In Your House 5 pay-per-view in 1995. Previously it hosted WWF's Saturday Night's Main Event V on October 31, 1985 (aired November 2) with the main event being a tag-team match featuring WWF Champion Hulk Hogan teaming with André the Giant facing the team of Big John Studd and King Kong Bundy.

On October 13, 1953, the arena also hosted an extravagant birthday celebration for President Dwight D. Eisenhower whose farm and "weekend White House" was located in nearby Gettysburg. Phish performed and recorded their show, on December 1, 1995, which was later released as a live album, entitled Live Phish 12.01.95.

 
Bears players salute fans after final game at Hersheypark Arena

On September 22, 2012, the arena played host to its only wedding. It was held at center ice.

BasketballEdit

On March 2, 1962, Philadelphia Warriors center Wilt Chamberlain recorded a record-setting 100 points in an NBA game against the New York Knicks, a record that still stands today.

Date Home Score Away Game Type Attendance
December 29, 1961 Philadelphia Warriors 123-118 Los Angeles Lakers RS 5,000
January 26, 1962 Philadelphia Warriors 136-110 St. Louis Hawks RS 4,473
March 4, 1962 Philadelphia Warriors 129-128 New York Knicks RS 9,346

Roof fireEdit

On July 5, 2012, a fire damaged the arena, which was in the midst of refurbishment.[4] At about 3:00 PM local time, the fire was upgraded to five alarms.[5] The fire burned for about two hours before being extinguished. The roof was damaged, but reported to not be in danger of collapse. The cause of the fire is still unknown.[6]

Current useEdit

Hersheypark Arena is the home rink for the Lebanon Valley College ice hockey team. LVC competes in NCAA Division III as of 2016, and previously competed in the ACHA.[7] In addition, the arena hosts the Hershey Junior Bears, a youth team sponsored by the Bears organization. On most weekends during the fall and winter months, the rink is open to the public for ice skating.

Annually, it hosts part of the Music in the Parks competition.[8]

Notes and referencesEdit

  1. ^ Miller, Barbara (August 29, 2011). "'The old barn': Hersheypark Arena still draws crowds". PennLive. Retrieved April 25, 2017.
  2. ^ Cooper, Bruce C. (April 7, 2002). "1936-2002: HERSHEYPARK ARENA'S SIXTY-SIX YEARS AS HOME TO HERSHEY BEARS HOCKEY". HockeyScoop.net. Retrieved April 25, 2017.
  3. ^ Sennott, Stephen. Encyclopedia of 20th-century architecture: A-F. Volume 1 of Encyclopedia of 20th Century Architecture. Taylor & Francis, 2004. illustrated ed. ISBN 978-1-579-58433-7.
  4. ^ Kemeny, Matthew (July 5, 2012). "Hersheypark Arena roof is on fire; firefighters have been battling blaze for hours". PennLive.com. Retrieved March 27, 2013.
  5. ^ Hughes, Travis (July 5, 2012). "Hersheypark Arena Fire Contained By Firefighters, Damage Should Be 'Easy To Repair'". SBNation. Retrieved November 30, 2019. Hersheypark Arena caught fire Thursday afternoon, reaching five-alarms before several fire crews were able to contain the blaze
  6. ^ "Fire erupts at Hersheypark Arena, site of 100-point game". CBSPhilly 3. Associated Press. July 5, 2012. Retrieved March 27, 2013.
  7. ^ Viquez, Marc (6 December 2018). "Hersheypark Arena – Lebanon Valley College Flying Dutchman". Stadium Journey. Retrieved 30 November 2019.
  8. ^ "Festival Dates: Hersheypark Arena". Music in the Parks.
 
Hershey Bears opening night, 1937
 
Aerial view

External linksEdit