One of the benefits of being married without any kids or pets is that Drea and I can up and go on little mini-getaways pretty much whenever we please. It’s freaking amazing.

Since we’re both roller coaster junkies (although in different ways – more on this later), I decided a trip to Hershey Park would make for a fun getaway.

Since I don’t have too much vacation time built up, we had to go on a weekend. I knew we were taking a chance since Saturdays are the busiest days at amusement parks, and paying $45 a pop to stand in long lines in the heat can make for a pretty miserable day. But thanks to some enthusiastic recommendations and some research of my own, I had faith in Hershey.

We made the short drive up to PA and checked into our hotel. Drea wanted to stay at the Hotel Hershey and partake of their famous Chocolate Spa, but seeing how this costs as much as, say, a Mercedes, I instead booked us a nice room at a Quality Inn in nearby Harrisburg. :)

We grabbed some Red Robin for dinner (de-lish), and arrived at the park around 8:00 Friday night for the “preview plan”, where they let you into the park for a few hours the night before your big day. We rode like five roller coasters in just over an hour. We barely waiting in line for anything. Not bad for a Friday night. Things were looking pretty good for our main trip to the park on Saturday.

I think it’s safe to say our already high expectations were exceeded the next day. Hershey Park is obviously well-managed, and the whole place runs like a well-oiled machine. A free tram takes you from the parking lot to the gate. The park itself is well laid out and immaculately kept. Trees and bushes provide shade for the walkways and queueing areas. Rides and attractions aren’t just plopped down haphardly, but seem to be thoughtfully positioned to complement the landscape. Employees are efficient and surprisingly friendly. The whole atmosphere of the place makes you feel like a valued guest, not just one in a herd of cattle. I was impressed to say the least.

As mentioned before, Drea and I have differing tastes in roller coasters. Simply put, she likes going upside down, but hates that free-falling sensation you get on a steep drop, where you feel like you’re plummeting to your death. (I love that feeling.) As such, I was unable to talk her into getting on this:

That’s Fahrenheit, Hershey’s newest coaster that features a 97 degree drop. (That’s 7 degrees past vertical.) She missed out – it was off the heezy. :) Maybe next year?

After knocking out most of the coasters, we spent some time in the waterpark, which was a little crowded but still fun. Around 4:00, we decided to call it a day. I’ve found to my great dismay that my stomach can’t tolerate roller coasters like it used to.

We had a fantastic time. Hershey impressed me from top to bottom. Who knows, maybe we’ll make it an annual trip.

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