Hersheypark Reveals New Comet Coaster Trains
Oldest Roller Coaster at Hersheypark to Debut New Trains in 2024
Today at the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA) Expo 2023, Hersheypark and Philadelphia Toboggan Coasters Inc. (PTC) unveiled new trains for Comet, the oldest continuously operating coaster at the largest amusement park in Pennsylvania.
Comet was the last coaster purchased by Milton S. Hershey. It was built by the Philadelphia Toboggan Company (PTC) and opened to the public in May 1946. For more than 75 years, the classic wooden roller coaster has been widely known for its great first drop, several airtime-producing bunny hills and long reign inside Hersheypark.
A New Look for A Classic Coaster
As Hersheypark continues to evolve as a world-class destination for family fun, the team takes pride in not only investing in new attractions and experiences but also preserving the history and legacy of iconic rides like Comet. In fact, since its opening in the 1940s, the classic woodie has received multiple different logo treatments and train color schemes like green, black and at least two shades of blue.
The color scheme will change again in 2024 with the introduction of new custom trains featuring a three-tone blue color scheme and a glittering metal flake treatment. The lead car will have new logos that harken back to the early 70's iconography of the Comet but with a new celestial treatment that carries onto the side panels of each car for an out-of-this-world look. The star is now featured prominently blazing across the track, leaving a sparkling ion tail in its wake. The new trains will also boast gold trim and diamond plate details.
A Guest Favorite For More Than 75 Years
Located in The Hollow region of Hersheypark, Comet continues to delight generations of riders 42" and taller (Reese's height category and above) during Spring weekends, summer and Hersheypark Halloween. It is one of 15 coasters in an iconic collection at Hersheypark.
The modified double out-and-back classic wood coaster has two, 24 passenger trains aptly named "Mork's Comet" and "Halley's Comet." The ride experience begins as soon as the train leaves the station and immediately climbs 96 feet up the chain lift hill. The coaster then rumbles down the first 47-degree drop and flies back up the next hill to make a swooping 180-degree turn that reveals a stunning view of The Hollow. Comet dips back down towards Spring Creek and sends riders on a series of twisting turns and hair-raising hills. A handful of airtime-filled bunny hills give riders a final thrill before arriving back at the station. Comet reaches a top speed of 50 miles per hour during its 3,360-foot journey that lasts 1 minute 45 seconds.
Fun Facts About Comet
- A total of 248,919 feet of lumber was used to build the double out-and-back coaster. (Source: Hershey Archives)
- When first constructed, Comet was originally painted green, as Milton S. Hershey preferred his rides that color to blend into the scenery and atmosphere of the Park. It was eventually painted white and given lights to allow riders to see the next turn.
- Behind the door at the base of the current queue ramp are some random slabs of concrete under the Comet station. That concrete is the old foundation from the bathhouse that was never removed.
- The ride opened with stationary grab bars. A new set of trains was purchased in 1978. Those trains had moving lap bars.
- Comet crosses Spring Creek twice during its 3,360-foot ride. (Source: Hershey Archives)
- At night, Comet is illuminated by more than 6,500 chaser lights to provide an out-of-this-world, shooting star experience as you soar through The Hollow region.
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- Comet Coaster Station
- Comet Queue Line
- Comet Over Spring Creek
- Comet POV 1
- Comet POV 2
- Comet Track 3
The new Comet trains will arrive later this month at Hersheypark and will be available to guests to see and experience when the coaster begins spring operations. We hope to see you for a ride on Comet in 2024!