When you think about Memorial Day celebrations you probably picture backyard barbecues or picnics filled with hamburgers and delicious side dishes. You may have a family tradition of firing up the grill and inviting your aunts, uncles and cousins over for a feast or spending a relaxing day biking through your neighborhood. While its always fun to host a get together in your own backyard consider a new way to celebrate this holiday. This year gather up your friends and family, pack the car and head out for an all day adventure to an east coast theme park. Here are a few worth visiting:
In 1906, Milton S. Hershey created Hershey Park for employees of the Hershey Chocolate Factory. Today HersheyPark includes a wide range of attractions for both children and adults including 13 roller coasters and more than 70 rides. The Boardwalk at HersheyPark was added in 2007. It features the Shore, (a 378,000-gallon wave pool), and a lazy river otherwise known as Canyon River Rapids Intercoastal Waterway. With a ticket to HersheyPark you will also gain admittance to ZOOAMERICA the North American Wildlife Park housing more than 200 live animals. If you make your way to Hershey Pennsylvania be sure to check out Hershey’s Chocolate World before heading back home. There you can take a Hershey’s chocolate tour, participate in an assembly line to make your own candy bar, ride on the Hershey Trolley Works and watch the Hershey’s Great Chocolate Factory Mystery in 4D.
Dutch Wonderland is a little known theme park located in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, which is roughly two and a half hours from Washington, DC. Established in 1963 this park features 30+ kid-friendly rides and a water park. This isn’t the place to find fast-paced roller coasters that turn, flip and spin, but it is the type of place young children will absolutely love. Just because the rides are devoted to your little tykes doesn’t mean this is a little park. In fact, Dutch Wonderland’s 35 rides are spread out over 43 acres. There are a number of ways to get a lay of the land. You can travel throughout the park via train, a monorail, boat tours and a sky ride. In addition to rides, Dutch Wonderland features a variety of daily shows geared towards both children and adults. You can find dance shows, story times and live diving demonstrations.
Busch Gardens Williamsburg
Busch Gardens is located in Williamsburg, Virginia roughly 60 miles northwest of Virginia Beach and three hours south of Washington, DC. This theme park is styled to look like European villages from a by gone era. The park is divided into separate areas representing six countries including England, France, Germany, Italy, Scotland, and Ireland. As you walk throughout the park you’ll feel immersed in the scenery of European villages. One minute you are celebrating Oktoberfest in Germany, the next you are passing through the streets of France or the hamlets of Scotland. Busch Gardens is home to 54 rides and 8 separate roller coasters.
Very few theme parks are focused solely on children, but like Dutch Wonderland, Sesame Place was created with the littlest ones in mind. At Sesame Place your children will meet and greet their favorite Sesame Street characters. They will enjoy pint sized rides and water slides designed for even the youngest member of your family. A highlight of any day at Sesame Place is the Character Parade. Stand alongside main street and watch your children’s favorite Sesame Street characters stroll by. Your kids will get a chance to take photos with their favorite furry friends too. Sesame Place is located in Bucks County, Pennsylvania.
This Memorial Day plan for an adventure; gather up the kids and explore the thrills and spills of one of these east coast theme parks.