Amusement parks have been around for years and years, drawing in guests of all ages. They are full of rides that either delight in a cute way or thrill in an over-the-top way. They probably have themed areas and attractions that make people feel like they are deep in the sea, high in the clouds, part of a superhero team or in an actual royal castle.

And, theme parks feature all kinds of crazy (but often unappetizing) foods that make the visit even more interesting. 

How did this relationship between snacks/meals and amusement parks begin? How has it all changed over time? How much do people really eat while at these places? What types of foods from movies and TV shows can be enjoyed?

These questions and similar ones will be answered down below, as we go over 20 strange yet true facts about theme park food.

20 It Has Been Drawing In Guests For Centuries

The oldest theme park in the world has been around since 1583, while the oldest in North America opened in 1846. These attractions have been drawing in guests for quite some time, and even way back when, the appeal was the same: There were rides, there was entertainment, and there was food.

19 Today, It’s On A Whole New Level, Though

As mentioned, the theme park food scene is on a whole new level. Nathan’s isn’t just the basic bun and meat any longer, there is not a famous eating contest, milkshakes now come with donuts on top, and all kinds of foods can be fried and eaten off a stick.

18 People Eat 15K Funnel Cakes A Day… Just At Six Flags

Funnel cakes are synonymous with amusement parks and fairs, and at Six Flags alone, over 15,000 of these sweet treats are ordered and enjoyed by visitors every single day. And that is just at this one park!

17 Some Offer Loaded Funnel Cakes

Plus, there are loaded funnel cakes, like the ones at Hersheypark with nuts, candies, powdered sugar and chocolate syrup on top, or this one, with lots of whipped topping... Yum.

16 Doritos Were Invented At Disneyland

Chips are a popular snack, too, and one of the most known chip brands actually got its start at Disneyland; a restaurant didn’t want to throw away any tortillas, so it invented this tasty chip instead.

15 Disney Parks Don’t Sell Gum

Something people won’t find at Disney, though, would be gum. These parks are leading ones for many reasons, including the fact that they are super clean… and part of why they are so clean is because they discourage anyone from throwing gum on the ground!

14 Disney Creates Fake & Fabulous Scents In Its Parks

Similarly, Disney theme parks smell really nice, and that is because they use machines to blow out scents such as freshly baked desserts. Talk about smart advertising. It's strange to think that your favorite foods don't smell the way Disney makes them seem to.

13 Animal Kingdom Doesn’t Give Out Lids Or Plastic Straws

Disney’s Animal Kingdom is all about furry friends and cool creatures, so this spot doesn’t hand out plastic lids or straws, in order to help protect the animals and Mother Earth. Plenty of other parks and attractions are following suit, too.

12 At Cedar Point Alone, Over 800K Gallons Of Soft Drinks Are Consumed Each Year

So many people drink soft drinks regularly, including at amusement parks. And just at Cedar Point in Ohio, more than 800,000 gallons of these bubbly beverages are consumed every year by those who visit.

11 Epcot Grows Its Own Fruits & Veggies

Another green fact is that Epcot grows over 30 tons of fruits and vegetables annually. Furthermore, these foods are then cooked and served in this park’s restaurants… Smart!

10 And Disney Is Going Vegan

On a similar note, Disney parks are starting to offer vegan and vegetarian options, for those who have plant-based diets. Many eat like this, and this change will surely allure even more people to these magical places and to these healthy restaurants.

9 Knoebels, On The Other Hand, Has Alligator Bites

Many amusement parks are not about vegan diets, though, as they offer hearty and meaty dishes like turkey legs, cheesesteak sandwiches, and alligator bites; yes, Knoebels in Pennsylvania, for instance, offers this fried treat.

8 Legoland Has Granny’s Apple Fries

Another famous and unique food option would be the Granny’s Apple Fries from Legoland in California. They are fried apple slices with cinnamon, sugar, and vanilla whipped cream on top… Gimme!

7 Disney Parks Only Sell Coca-Cola Products

If anyone is wanting a Pepsi while at a Disney theme park, think again; these properties only sell Coca-Cola products. We can imagine that's quite a lucrative partnership.

6 And It Actually Sells The Grey Stuff

Disney also brought the world one of the most iconic and strange foods out there… the grey stuff from Beauty and the Beast! And it can actually be ordered and eaten in some spots.

5 Knott’s Berry Farm Used To Be Just A Berry Farm

In California, Knott’s Berry Farm, another well-known amusement park, can also be found. Ever wonder how it got its name? Well, when it opened in the ‘20s, it was actually just a berry farm that preserved and sold berries and pies.

4 SeaWorld Feeds Its Animals 400K Pounds Of Lettuce

Guests are not the only ones who eat at theme parks… At SeaWorld, the animals eat 400,000 pounds of lettuce and 30,000 pounds of fish each and every week.

3 And Then There Is All The Food At The Wizarding World

A list about amusement park food cannot exist without mentioning The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal properties. All the meals and treats and beverages that fans have read about and seen on the big screen can actually finally be enjoyed!

2 Where Actual Harry Potter-Inspired Treats Can Be Obtained

Plus, all of these items can be purchased and eaten inside replicas such as The Leaky Cauldron and Honeydukes, making the experience even more magical.

1 And Where THE Butterbeer Lives

Hot dogs and ice cream are great… but so is butterbeer, the famous drink from Harry Potter. And in 2020, it is nice that all of this and so much more make up amusement parks around the world.