ALTOONA, Pa. (WTAJ) — Roller coaster enthusiasts from around the world have come to Central Pennsylvania to see and experience the oldest coaster on earth, Leap The Dips located inside Lakemont Park in Altoona, Pennsylvania.
The one-of-a-kind coaster was built in 1902 by the Federal Construction Company and designed by E. Joy Morris. Leap The Dips is listed as a National Historic Landmark. Lakemont Park has been a staple of Altoona and Blair County since its opening in 1894.
“It is the oldest operated wooden roller coaster in the entire world, it’s the last side friction coaster,” Lakemont Park General Manager Melanie Shildt said. “Every year we have people traveling all over the world just to see this coaster and ride this coaster. We had a gentleman here from Germany this past weekend. They were on a tour through the country for coasters and everyone always makes a stop here at Lakemont.”
Because of its rich history and uniqueness, Leap The Dips is a must-see destination in Pennsylvania. If coasters are your thing, taking part in a historic ride is a must-do in Altoona.
Lakemont Park also features a second roller coaster, The Skyliner. This coaster famously overlooks neighboring Peoples Natural Gas Field and has remained in operation since it first opened in the 1980s.
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Aside from the historic roller coasters, the park is home to numerous attractions such as an antique car ride, a miniature train ride, paddle boats, go-carts, a waterpark and other recreational entertainment.
One long-standing tradition at the park is Lights on the Lake which is a big draw for the region during the holidays.