The AACA Museum in Hershey, PA is consistently ranked as one of the top automotive and transportation museums in the United States!
The Antique Automobile Club of America (AACA) national headquarters is in Hershey, so it makes perfect sense to have the organization’s flagship museum there as well.
The museum is dedicated to the preservation and presentation of America’s motor vehicle history in an educational and entertaining environment.
What follows is an overview of what you can expect to see and experience when you visit this excellent museum, just minutes from Hersheypark.
Exhibits Outside the AACA Museum
Before you even step foot inside this beautiful 71,000 square foot facility, there are a number of interesting exhibits outside, to the left and right of the entrance.
Among those exhibits are examples from the museum’s antique bus collection.
There’s a Dodge Brothers “Kid’s Truck” that is meant to be climbed on and played with.
And the iconic 1997 Hershey Kissmobile, a 12-foot tall, 26-foot long custom-made vehicle resembling three Hershey’s Kisses.
First Floor of the AACA Museum
The first floor of the AACA Museum features the main gallery of the collection.
The exhibit floor is broken up into a series of life-like dioramas, depicting different time periods and locations in America.
Some vehicles are on permanent display, other are on loan or part of temporary exhibits.
Immortalized in Back to the Future, these DeLoreans were a favorite of mine when I visited in the summer of 2022.
Iconic muscle cars are well-represented at the museum.
As are Tucker automobiles in the museum’s Cammack Gallery, home to the world’s most extensive collection of Tucker automobiles and artifacts.
The Driving after Sundown exhibit in the Main Gallery shows how lighting technologies evolved over the past 140 years, giving drivers usable light while minimizing the effects of glare on oncoming vehicles.
There’s even a full-size replica of a 1940s service station, precursor to today’s self-service convenience stores.
Ground Floor of the AACA Museum
The Museum of Bus Transportation on the ground floor of the museum was created to preserve the heritage of that industry and educate the public about bus transportation’s contributions to American history.
One of the most famous busses on display here is a 1959 GM coach, used in the filming of Forrest Gump.
While the bus had a rather ordinary life in the 1960s, transporting commuters between norther New Jersey and New York City, it became famous when Forest Gump was released in 1994.
Not only can you look at the bus from the outside, you can climb on board and recreate this scene from the movie.
Depending on how old your kids are, they may have to Google the film to understand why Dad insisted on doing this!
The ground floor is also home to an exhibit tracing the evolution of ATVs.
I especially enjoyed this exhibit, as I remember riding many of these vehicles long before I was old enough to drive a car.
Vintage motorcycle fans will find lots to look at as well.
The Roads to Rails model train exhibit resides on the ground floor of the museum.
As does the Flow Inn Café, a restored 1940s diner that originally resided in Wichita, Kansas.
The Mezzanine at the AACA Museum
The mezzanine level of the rotunda features a number of smaller exhibits, including more motorcycles and scooters, hood ornaments, and other automotive-related collectibles.
Roadmaps, automotive-themed toys, and other vintage items are displayed in glass cases surrounding the mezzanine.
As a fan of the show, this Jackie Gleason / Ralph Kramden bus driver’s outfit from The Honeymooners caught my eye.
Hours and Directions
The AACA Museum is located at 161 Museum Drive, Hershey, PA 17033 – CLICK HERE to open a Google Map to the museum.
The museum is open daily 9 am – 5 pm, closed on Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas, New Year’s Day.
Admission fees are: Adult $14.00, Children (4-12) $10.00, Senior (61+) $12.50, Under 3 – Free.
Parking is free and plentiful, and the entire museum is wheelchair accessible.
The Simeone Automotive Museum in Philadelphia is home to one of the world’s greatest collections of racing sports cars!
The Swigart Auto Museum in Huntingdon County is the oldest automobile museum in the United States!
The Grice Museum in Clearfield County features nearly 70 classic cars on display, along with hundreds of taxidermy mounts of wild game animals from around the globe.
Jerry’s Classic Cars and Collectibles Museum in Pottsville is MUCH more than just another car museum, featuring two floors of pop culture memorabilia and dozens of beautiful automobiles.
Hersheypark is PA’s largest and most-visited theme park, located in the town that bills itself as “the sweetest place on Earth”!
Located on a hill directly across the road from the entrance to Hersheypark, Hershey Gardens is a wonderful respite from the hustle and bustle of the busy theme park.
Indian Echo Caverns is a beautiful “show cave” located 3 miles west of Hershey in Dauphin County.
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