This article is to go into further detail about the history of Hersheypark’s Monorail, as well as the Monorail Amusement Company. If you haven’t read the first article about the history of the Monorail, I suggest you read that article first and then read this.
The Monorail Amusement Company was formally established by an agreement between Hershey Estates (today, Hershey Entertainment & Resorts Company) and Hershey Foods Corporation (today, The Hershey Company) on February 12, 1968. It was submitted to Dauphin County Recorder of Deeds and put into public record on March 31, 1969 – this is known as the “1969 Agreement.” This agreement featured description of the land which the Monorail would occupy, as well as the foundation of a new company, the Monorail Amusement Company.
As said in the previous article on the history of the Monorail, the Monorail Amusement Company was 50% owned by Hershey Estates and 50% owned by Hershey Foods. The Monorail opened in 1969, with Hershey Estates maintaining and operating the system. In early 1973, Hersheypark decided to make the system a park ride. On November 8, 1973, Hershey Estates and Hershey Foods Company reached a new agreement called the “1973 Assignment.”
This agreement is known as an “Assignment of Interest.” Hershey Estates paid Hershey Foods $1 for Hershey Food’s share of Monorail Amusement Company. This effectively ended the Monorail Amusement Company.
This agreement had several conditions. First was that Hershey Foods retained the right to revoke any (or all) rights of way by September 10 of any year. In this case, the “right of way” is referring to the Monorail track and station on Hershey Foods property. This means that if Hershey Foods didn’t want the Monorail on their property any longer, they had to give Hershey Estates written notice at least six months prior to September 10, which is April 10.
Hershey Estates would then be required to dismantle and remove the Monorail from Hershey Foods property as soon as reasonably possible. At the time this meant no later than September 10, as the park season normally ended on Labor Day.
The second condition was that if Hershey Foods did enact the first condition prior to September 10, 1978, it would reimburse Hershey Estates for the reasonable cost of the equipment and relocation of the track. However, Hershey Foods would not be responsible for paying for any extension of the system, even if an extension was necessary due to the request of removing the track from their property.
Of course, the second condition never came into play, as Hershey Foods didn’t revoke Hershey Estate’s right of way by 1978. In fact, Hershey Foods never revoked Hershey Estate’s right of way –
– that was, until 2014.
2017 Monorail Track Relocation
…In 2014, [The Hershey Company] began discussions with [Hershey Entertainment & Resorts] pursuant to its rights under the 1973 Agreement and requested [Hershey Entertainment & Resorts Company] to relocation a portion of the Monorail that passes over the main entrance of [The Hershey Company’s] office building at 19 East Chocolate Avenue, Hershey, Pennsylvania….
— The Monorail Agreement, Right of Way And Easement, reached on November 29, 2016, between Hershey Entertainment & Resorts Company and The Hershey Company.
As Hershey Entertainment was subject to the terms and conditions of the 1973 agreement, they “agreed to relocated that portion of the Monorail.” Both The Hershey Company and Hershey Entertainment agreed to a new location – which we saw in the Monorail Track Relocation Update from January 2017.
The companies agreed to 11 terms in this agreement. These terms included Monorail Relocation Work, Monorail Easement, and that this agreement superseded the existing 1969 and 1973 agreements.
About a month before an agreement was formally reached, The Hummelstown Sun published an article stating that the Monorail was to be slightly relocated. The agreement was then reached on November 29, 2016, with relocation work beginning promptly on January 6, 2017. Track relocation work was completed by March 2017.
This has been a deeper look into the history of Hersheypark’s monorail. I hope you enjoyed this article. Keep checking back for more on the history of Hersheypark!
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.