Sellner Manufacturing Company

This is my regular Tuesday series about ride manufacturers who have made rides for Hersheypark. Today’s article is about Sellner Manufacturing Company. 

Sellner Manufacturing Company, Inc., was a ride manufacturer based out of Faribault, Minnesota. The company was founded by Herbert W. Sellner in 1923, when Sellner created a water toboggan slide, and then began producing their most well known ride, Tilt-A-Whirl, in 1926. Sellner was acquired by Larson International, Inc., in 2011, when the Sellner family decided to exit the business. A restored Tilt-A-Whirl car sits on a corner in the town of Faribault, a reminder of the classic ride invented there.

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Advertisement; The Billboard, February 27, 1954, page 53.

Hersheypark purchased one ride from Sellner, Tilt-A-Whirl, in 1982. It was installed in Carrousel Circle in 1983, replacing the Monster. The description of the ride in a 1983 press release was:

NEW for Hersheypark’s 1983 season is a TILT-A-WHIRL on which courageous riders are flung around a circular track. The waved construction of the track causes each gondola, and its occupants, to tilt and whirl!

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Tilt-A-Whirl in it’s second location, in Comet Hollow, from 2010. Photo courtesy of Shawn Marie Mann.

Tilt-A-Whirl was relocated to Comet Hollow in 1995, replacing the Chance Rides manufactured Rotor. Tilt-A-Whirl remained in this spot until 2011, when construction for Skyrush was beginning. The ride was relocated back to it’s original spot in Founder’s Circle (Carrousel Circle was renamed Founder’s Circle in 2005).

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Tilt-A-Whirl, shortly after being reinstalled in its original Founder’s Circle location (now called Founder’s Way, originally Carrousel Circle), in 2012. Photo courtesy of Shawn Marie Mann.


To read more about other ride manufacturers that have made rides for Hersheypark, click here.

KL Industries

This is my regular Tuesday series about ride manufacturers who have made rides for Hersheypark. Today’s article is about KL Industries. 

In 1982, Hersheypark renovated the hollow into Spring Creek Hollow. One of the rides added were Paddleboats. This ride was manufactured by KL Industries, of Muskegon, Michigan.

The paddleboats Hersheypark had were of KL’s Sundolphin brand, the first year KL began making these kind of boats. The boats Hersheypark had were a Sun Dolphin 3 seater pedal boat. KL continues making these kind of boats, as well as a variety of other boats under several other brands.

Paddleboats storage

Boats for Paddleboats in the storage area, 2006.

Paddleboats docks

Paddleboats dry dock and wet dock, 2006.

1985 circa Paddleboats

Paddleboats were originally orange, to fit the orange theming of Spring Creek Hollow, circa 1985.

Paddleboats was an extra-charge ride, meaning you had to pay money in order to ride it. The ride typically cost five dollars per rider over the years. In the ride’s final season, 2006, it cost six dollars per rider.

When a group would pay to ride the Paddleboats, you would then go to the dock where there was a floating dock. Boats would be loaded between the dry tock and floating dock. Attendants would help keep the boat steady so guests could get in the boat. Up to three people were allowed in a boat. You were permitted to boat from the low bridge near Comet all the way to Comet’s bridge over Spring Creek. There were signs at either end of the area which told people to not go beyond those points.


To read more about other ride manufacturers that have made rides for Hersheypark, click here.

TBT #25 | 1982 Spring Creek Hollow renovation

In 1982, Hersheypark made its first significant update to an area adjacent to Comet known as the hollow, since Comet was built in 1946. In the 1950s and 1960s, this area was referred as the park’s “amusement center.”

1962 Amusement Center [large]

Amusement Center of Hersheypark circa 1962.

While some adjustments were made in 1973 with the relocation of the Whip, the renovation in 1982 was an overhaul of the entire area. Several new rides and attractions were added to the hollow, and this area of the hollow was given its first proper name – Spring Creek Hollow. A Cinemavision was also added in another area of the park – this will be covered in a separate article.

The renovations included the retirement of a Traver Engineering Company ride, The Bug. This ride operated in Hersheypark from August 1933 through 1981, having been added to the park as part of the town of Hershey’s 30th anniversary celebration. The Bug reportedly operated at the Chicago World’s Fair (Century of Progress) earlier in 1933.

Circa 1984 The Bug scrapped near Monorail [JWGreen].jpg

The Bug, seen near Monorail, after removal from the park, circa 1984. Photo copyright J W Green.

The Bug was replaced by Wave Swinger, which continues to operate in the park today. The Wave Swinger was manufactured by Josef Zierer and designed by Franz Schwarzkopf, brother of Anton Schwarzkopf.

Wave Swinger’s nameplate includes the names of Zierer and Schwarzkopf. Photo courtesy of Shawn Marie Mann.

Wave Swinger

Wave Swinger in 2009.

A miniature golf course and paddle boat ride were installed in the park that included an extra fee. The miniature golf course was placed where Sooper Sizzler Cafe was, forcing that to be relocated to the building housing the Kiddie Auto Skooters. The Kiddie Auto Skooters were relocated into the lower level of the Fender Bender Building. The new food place was called Paddleboat Cafe, as it was located not far from the new Paddleboats dock (today, this is a Famous Famigilia’s stand as well as a slushie stand). The dock was located at the base of Comet’s first drop, underneath sooperdooperLooper.

My beautiful picture

Sooper Sizzler Cafe in 1979, would be replaced by a miniature golf course in 1982.

The miniature golf course would remain in the park until the end of the 1997 season, when Great Bear was built. Paddleboats remained in the park through the 2006 season. The dry dock can still be seen today.

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The area of the park was given a name: Spring Creek Hollow. This name only stuck for a few years, disappearing from documentation after the 1985 season. In 1990, this area gained a more permanent theme: Comet Hollow. It was rethemed The Hollow in 2012.


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