Friday, June 24, 1988

1988 Vacation Hershey, PA (6/24/1988)

Friday, June 24, 1988
Vacation time! Kent was in Washington, DC on business.
After breakfast and packing the car, I left with Kyle and Erich at 7:15 to begin the drive down I-195 to I-95 south. Through Rhode Island, then Connecticut. Once in New York we headed for the Tappan Zee Bridge, and once in Rockland County, we took the Palisades Interstate Parkway into NJ. Managed to get through Fort Lee and get on I-80. The other direction was backed up due to an accident.
We stopped at a scenic view area for lunch of tuna sandwiches and juice, grapes and fig newtons. The boys played some catch. A custom Volvo came in for a rest. Had a view out over the Delaware Water Gap, a break in the Kittatinny Ridge of the Appalachian Mountains. The Delaware River cuts through, getting to be 90 feet deep in the gap.
We continued along I-80, paying a quarter to cross the bridge into Pennsylvania. Drove through the mountains. Near the bottom of one long hill, I spotted a police car, and thought I was going too fast. But he crossed the road to help a stranded motorist.
Stopped for gas near Stroudsburg, and later took I-81 towards Hershey. Turned off onto PA-743, taking us on a hilly country road, past the State Police Academy on a hill, into Hershey. Drove through town with the Hershey Kiss street lights, and out US-422 to Palmyra to Sue H’s condo, arriving at 14:15, an hour behind ETA, but safe and sound. Sue had the afternoon off. We unloaded the car and had lemonade. Sue gave me a colorful windsock she had made. We all then headed for Hershey Park, and found a parking space as close as one could get! First we went to Chocolate World, which was air-conditioned and free. A new set-up opened just this season. We joined a short line to a revolving platform and hopped aboard an automated conveyance. A TV monitor showed us a quality assurance controller who talked us through a simulated world of chocolate production, along with CP-1, an alien wanting to learn the secrets of making chocolate. Saw examples of production from raw ingredients to finished product. Walked through the extensive souvenir boutiques and eateries, all under one roof. Outside, a girl with a camera snapped a couple photos that we could purchase later. We never went to look at them.
Sue had a free pass for Hershey Park from her singing guild, which had performed in the park. She also gave us some coupons, and also because it was after 15:00, we got in for reduced rates.
Hershey Park ticket
Erich cost us $11, and Kyle and I got in for $13.75 each. The park covers 84 acres, most of which we covered until 21:30!
Hershey Park map
Walked in past the shops and first took a ride on the Swiss gondolas, the Sky Ride, across the park. The first big ride was the Coal Cracker, a flume ride with nearly a vertical hill at the end. We zigzagged around the park. One of the best rides was the Canyon River Rapids, with round rafts traveling through simulated rapids, and then going past and under waterfalls to get totally soaked!
Very wet boys
Erich and Sue went on the SooperDooperLooper, a roller coaster with a loop. Kyle and Erich went on the Wave Swinger a couple times. They also drove sports cars around the Twin Turnpike.
Erich on the Twin Turnpike
Kyle (in second car) on the Twin Turnpike
Erich wasn’t tall enough to go on the Fender Bender bumper cars with Sue and Kyle, so we went downstairs to the AutoSkooters. The Cool Shaker was wild, like the Mad Hatter’s Teacups, and Sue and I kept sliding side to side. The boys went down the Frontier Chute-Out, basically using plastic rafts down a water slide. They also went on the Himalayan and Tilt-A-Whirl. We watched a dolphin and sea lion show. The highlights were the trainer holding a fish in his mouth for the dolphin to leap 17 feet to grab, a dolphin pulling a child volunteer around on a raft, and a volunteer man holding a rope across the pool for the dolphins to jump over. Two kid volunteers got kissed by the sea lions (they have ears and stronger front flippers than seals).
We had dinner about 18:30, getting plain and a pepperoni pizzas to share. Sue had milk, Kyle had Sprite, and Erich and I tried Birch Beer. Later we played miniature golf,
Mini Golf score card
and the boys spent money on a few arcade games and pitching. Kyle won a tiny stuffed bear dressed as a ballerina in a horse-race arcade game. Erich tried the basketball-shoot. We stopped in the souvenir shop where Kyle bought a plastic cup, and Erich got a small banner on a large pencil. Outside the exit, we checked out a chocolate shop and bought a bag of Hershey mixed miniatures for dessert.
Back at Sue’s, Kyle and Erich were put to bed on the sleeper sofa. Sue and I looked at the wedding photos, and I gave her a hostess gift of pineapple candles. Then to bed; I was in Sue’s bed and she on her couch.

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