|Location||950 West Hersheypark Drive
Hershey, Pennsylvania 17033
|Broke ground||November 8, 2000|
|Opened||October 15, 2002|
|Owner||Derry Township Industrial and Commercial Development Authority|
|Operator||Hershey Entertainment and Resorts Company|
|Construction cost||$65 million
($85.2 million in 2014 dollars)
|Project manager||Reynolds Construction Management, Inc.|
|Structural engineer||Century Engineering|
|Services engineer||Smith Seckman Reid, Inc.|
|Field size||17,000 square feet (1,600 m2)|
|Hershey Bears (AHL) (2002–present)
Harrisburg Stampede (PIFL) (2014-present)
Giant Center is a 10,500-seat multi-purpose arena in Hershey, Pennsylvania, a census-designated place in the Harrisburg metropolitan area. It is home to the Hershey Bears ice hockey team, the longest-existing member of the American Hockey League since 1938. Giant Center replaced the Hersheypark Arena as the Bears' home venue in 2002.
Giant Center is owned by the Derry Township Industrial and Commercial Development Authority, as much of the money for its construction was provided by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. It is operated by Hershey Entertainment and Resorts Company, with the naming rights owned by the Giant-Carlisle grocery store chain based in Carlisle, Pennsylvania.
In addition to Bears games, Giant Center also hosts an annual concert series and attracts many well-known entertainers. The first performance at the arena was by Cher and has since continued to host a wide variety of popular acts, including American Idol Live! and the Harlem Globetrotters. In 2003, Giant Center held the WWE's Unforgiven.
WWE Raw was held at Giant Center with a three-hour Thanksgiving themed episode on November 23, 2009, and returned for a three-hour 'Old School' themed episode on November 15, 2010. WWE has also held several other Raw and WWE Friday Night SmackDown episodes here as well.
Giant Center and the city of Hershey also hosted the 2011 AHL All Star Game and Skills Competition on January 30–31, 2011.
Photos of the arena
Giant Center before the start of a game against the Lake Erie Monsters
In 2007, the Giant Center Food and Beverage Department finalized a deal with PepsiCo, with all food and drink stands in the building switched from Coca-Cola products to Pepsi products. The switch was made to equalize operations with the rest of the Hershey Entertainment Complex.
Giant Center's concessions include traditional fast food items such as hamburgers, French fries, and hot dogs, as well as various Italian items. Additional concessions available include common coffeehouse treats such as flavored coffee and pastries. Turkey Hill, a local company from nearby Lancaster County, provides its own brand of ice cream products.
Various Hershey's chocolate products are available at most of the concession stands.
- Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–2014. Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Retrieved February 27, 2014.
- "GIANT Center". Reynolds Construction Management, Inc. Retrieved June 10, 2014.
- Century Engineering "Giant Center Arena". Retrieved September 28, 2011.
- "Giant Center". Smith Seckman Reid, Inc. Archived from the original on March 8, 2004. Retrieved January 27, 2013.
- "Special Report: What's On Deck". SportsBusiness Journal. July 30, 2001. Retrieved September 28, 2011.
- Conroy, Scott (October 28, 2008). "Palin Makes 11th Visit to PA". CBS News. Retrieved October 28, 2008.
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