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Dorney Park & Wildwater Kingdom's Thunderhawk wooden roller coaster turns 100

Thunderhawk coaster 100th anniversary
Dorney Park & Wildwater Kingdom
Thunderhawk, Dorney Park & Wildwater Kingdom's original wooden roller coaster, turns 100 today.

SOUTH WHITEHALL TOWNSHIP, Pa.– There’s a new centenarian in town.

Exactly 100 years ago, on March 30, Dorney Park & Wildwater Kingdom’s wooden roller coaster, Thunderhawk, opened to the public.

Next month, the park will introduce Iron Menace, the Northeast’s first dive roller coaster. But first, let the celebrations for the park’s oldest coaster begin.

"Thunderhawk is a national landmark and an integral part of our park’s history."
Jessica Naderman, Dorney Park's President and General Manager

“Thunderhawk is a national landmark and an integral part of our park’s history,” said Dorney Park Vice President and General Manager Jessica Naderman. “We are proud of the generations of men and women who have preserved this roller coaster over the years, and we’re excited to celebrate its centennial.”

Thunderhawk turns 100

Originally, the then-named ‘Coaster’ was built as an out-and-back roller coaster featuring little more than a drop and return. Over the years it has been renamed and reconfigured into the ride guests are still enjoying today.

Thunderhawk’s trains were overhauled and refurbished this offseason by Philadelphia Toboggan Coasters, Inc. out of Hatfield, Pennsylvania. The same company that manufactured the ‘Coaster’ back in 1923.

“We’re glad that Dorney Park is recognizing Thunderhawk’s 100th anniversary,” said President of Philadelphia Toboggan Coasters, Inc Thomas Rebbie. “It means a lot when you reach a milestone like this. We are proud to help preserve this amazing piece of history.”

In addition to the refurbished trains, Thunderhawk will also feature some special decals for the 100th celebration.

This season the park plans to recognize the centennial with updated signage, new merchandise, and a celebratory event.

To ride Thunderhawk all season long guests are encouraged to purchase silver passes, now available online for unlimited access to the park, Wildwater Kingdom, live shows and events. For more ticket information or to see the full event and entertainment schedule, visit dorneypark.com.