Today, I am writing about the removal of Laugh Land and the installation of Tip Top. Laugh Land was torn down following the 1965 season, when Hershey Park Theatre was torn down. This occurred because Laugh Land was part of the Hershey Park Theatre building.
Sadly, there is very little mention of the closure of Laugh Land and I wanted to share how I researched and came to the conclusion that Laugh Land was closed following the 1965 season.
The picture of Tip Top, above, comes from a film of Hersheypark from 1966. You can see the Chicken House restaurant on the hill overlooking Tip Top and you can see a brick building to the left of Tip Top. These same buildings can be seen in a picture of the Giant Slide and Paratrooper from 1972. (The brick building served as an electric substation for the park.)
You can see in the picture above, there is a picture of Laugh Land. Circled in yellow is the same building seen in the other two pictures – the brick building. You can see how it is in fairly close proximity to Laugh Land. This picture is from 1962.
Also above is an advertisement for Hersheypark printed on April 22, 1966. This says “Ride the New SKY VIEW and TIP TOP Rides.”
A news article from April 14, 1966, in the Lebanon Daily News, discusses the addition of Tip Top and the removal of Hershey Park Theatre: “…while the Tip-Top is a rotary amusement with air pressure controls to give its cars an up and down motion as well. The latter is situated near the site of the former Park Theatre which was demolished after last season.”
This article also says Hersheypark “also operates…a fun house…”. Comparing this to an article about the opening of the 1965 Hersheypark season: “[the park] also operates…two funhouses…” (The Daily Mail, Hagerstown, MD, April 20, 1965, page 6).
This is how I came to the conclusion Laugh Land was removed after the 1965 season.
I have a wide variety of interests, from sports to politics, music to Star Trek. I write about the history of amusement parks on my website, The Amusement Parkives, which I founded in 2016.