Yes, Hersheypark had a Monster. No, it wasn’t the Timber Rattler that was in Pioneer Frontier from 1984 to 1987. No, it wasn’t Roller Soaker that was in Midway America and The Boardwalk at Hersheypark from 2002 to 2012. Indeed, Hersheypark had Monster, an Eyerly Aircraft Company ride, from 1972 to 1982.
The Monster was a ride manufactured by Eyerly Aircraft Company. It was one type of ride in a set of rides that Eyerly made. The others were the Spider and the Octopus. Spiders had 2 cars per arm, while Monsters had 4 cars per arm (Monster sets of four cars also spin, unlike the Spider).
They were operationally the same, with the center of the ride manually controlled by an accelerator, and the “eccentric” – what made the arms go up and down – controlled by its own accelerator.
Monster was one of the rides selected for the new Carrousel Circle theme region in 1972.
Hersheypark was in a period of low evolution in the early 1980s. Up until 1980, most of the rides Hersheypark purchased were generally manually operated. Some rides, such as sooperdooperLooper, were run by a computer and were thus automatic in operation. In the early 1980s, the park began purchasing automatic rides, such as Pirat.
Monster was a manually operated ride. Furthermore, despite the capacity of the ride, it took a long time to load the ride. There was only one load position for each arm, meaning the ride had to be rotated to load and unload people from the ride. As a result, it took a long time for a cycle to start from loading the first cars to the twenty-fourth.
Hersheypark also experienced maintenance difficulties with the ride. It took time and money to keep the ride in the kind of operating shape Hersheypark expected of its rides. Between these issues, the park decided to replace the Monster with a Sellner Manufacturing Tilt-a-Whirl for the 1983 season.
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