Thursday, July 05, 2012

Hersheypark Arena victim of blaze

The venerable 76-year-old venue caught fire on Thursday afternoon, according to multiple sources.

Primarily built to house the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League -- the oldest continuously operating franchise in the league which served as the Flyers' primary affiliate from 1984-96 -- the Arena also hosted numerous other events, from concerts to high school tournaments to a birthday celebration for former President Dwight D. Eisenhower.

On the night of March 2, 1962, Hersheypark Arena witnessed Wilt Chamberlain's NBA record 100-point game against the New York Knicks, a 169-147 victory for the Warriors.

The arena fell into disuse after the construction of the GIANT Center in 2002 to house the Bears and other major regional events.

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