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Hersheypark Announces Fahrenheit!

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Here's a look back at all that has happened up to tomorrow's opening. Part 1 includes the rumors up to the announcement. Part 2 will have everything from the construction up to it's opening. Enjoy!


Fahrenheit: The Ride that Heated Up the Coaster Industry (Pt. 1)

4 years after Hersheypark announces their new coaster, Fahrenheit, the world’s steepest coaster gets ready to invade the park and make its mark as one of the best coasters for 2008. A year earlier Maverick, it’s sister coaster opens at The Roller Coaster Capital of the World and became a worldwide hit as being named as the World’s Best New Ride for 2007 by Amusement Today Magazine. But will Fahrenheit carry on that title for 2008? You are about to find out what it took to get to today’s opening from the first rumor, to the Nantimi Campaign, all the way up to opening day.


-Rumor Roulette-

Since the park already added a new $20 million dollar waterpark for the 2007 season, most of the coaster enthusiast community figured the park won’t anything big for the 2008 season. It was considered either a few new water rides will be added for the Boardwalk or a new flat ride or kiddie ride. But there were a few coaster rumors flying around; screams cape.com, some saying of a new spinning wild mouse coaster going in the space near Sidewinder or where Western Chute Out is, a new B&M going at the Aquatheater’s spot or starting at Western Chute Out and flying over Canyon River Rapids, but those were either new rumors or impossible to happen. During July 2007, some interesting surveying markers have been popping up around the park from the area around Chute Out, over to the Claw, around Canyon River Rapids and even out to Minetown. This made the fore sighting even harder since it was a gigantic space for a coaster or ride and the markers were each a different type, but we soon found out that next year’s project was going to be bigger than we imagined and keep us guessing for more.

-The Flame is Ignited…

The first hint of Hersheypark’s new coaster came from the park’s announcement saying, “What’s Better Than A Perfect 10?” in August 2007. On a past article from the park announcing Storm Runner they said that it brought the coaster count up to a perfect 10. This kind of “kicked the enthusiast hive” and got us ready for the 2008 season. But there was some confusion regarding this; did it mean an 11 inversion coaster or the park’s 11th coaster? Soon after this announcement, a banner was put up on Chute Out’s Slide Tower saying, “Hersheypark 2008, Wait time from this point: approximately 10 months.” Usually only coasters have signs saying the queue time, but the “H” in Hersheypark looked like it was either an arrow or thermometer. On August 21, 2007, the Coaster Community discovered something so controversial that it kept everyone guessing for over 1 month.

-The Nantimi Initiative

Nantimi.com was a website that possed as a publishing company that was going to help design the webpage for the new $12.1 million attraction. The company was actually an anagram for the coaster company, Intamin. Coaster fans immediately wrote the site off as a fake or a site created by a insane Hersheypark fan boy. After a little investigating, the website actually wasn’t located in Harrisburg Pa. But at a farm just outside of Annville Pa. But some things weren’t adding up. The client login one day had the password and username already added in. Inside was 3 logos referring to a ride named Tsunami and a letter written by a person named Luke to Kate (a.k.a. Public Relations Kate Burrows) about the logo and Boardwalk tie-in.

As days went by, we started to learn more news about the company’ “news” of working with the park. Almost each update brought along a new hint to the new ride from its color, to a blurry layout, and an early release date. As September 27 came closer, the teaser on Hersheypark’s website was updated to say, “It’s a BURNING question . . . one that's just TOO HOT TO HANDLE. We've been getting the third-DEGREE about our plans, and some people think we have COLD feet about announcing them to the world. But now it's time to EXTINGUISH all the rumors. Check back here for HOT news to share on Thursday, September 27 at noon (the hottest part of the day, of course!). But to top it all off, a guy named Donan Michael (part of Nantimi) sent out puzzle pieces to 11 coaster fans on various coaster fansites. When they were all assembled, it gave a clear understanding that this will be not a normal coaster. A few days later, the big day came. At about 45 minutes to midnight, the 11 people who got the puzzle pieces were treated to a preview of the brand new coaster, Fahrenheit. But the next question was how will it be built and when will it start to be built?


Part 2 coming tomorrow.


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Some breaking news for you guys.

Appearently according to a member who is at the park today said that during testing today, Fahrenheit valleyed in the cobra roll and the opening didn't really happen today. If this is true, then this is a bad day for the park and the ride. Hopefully everything will be corrected by next week.

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CONFIRMED--------Fahrenheit did indeed valley in the cobra roll. As of 3 pm they were still in the process of pulling the train through the cobra with a crane. They had hoped to open the ride by this evening. Even though the ride was not operating, the guys at Hershey (JB, Marty) still gave us the opportunity (Nantimi 11) to talk to to one of the park engineers about the ride and then gave us ERT on storm runner. They also allowed to keep the tickets that they had originally gave us to get in, so we could come back another day to ride Fahrenheit.


More to come later

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Wow that's crappy. I was totally planning on coming out today for the opening but something came up which stopped me. I guess that I didn't miss much by not coming though I'm kind of sad it didn't open. Hopefully this little delay isn't a preview of what Fahrenheit's life is going to be like...

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I'm starting to wonder if there could *POTENTIALLY* be a larger issue with Fahrenheit.


Oh well, I might post a TR later from today, I didn't take many pictures. It was fun though even though we didnt get to ride Fahrenheit. The maintanance guy we got to talk to said they were going to try to get it open later today, but I can't see that happening until they are sure this thing isn't going to valley with guests on.


I hope we aren't seeing a larger Maverick type incident!


Thanks again to everyone at Hershey for today if you are lurking!

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I just got off the phone with natatomic!


Fahrenheit IS running! They got the coaster running some time around 7. She got to ride and she explained it as a smooth transitioning coaster that flew through the elements. I'm sure she'll post more later.

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As a park employee, I can verify that:


-Fahrenheit valleyed (pics to be posted)

-Maintenance cleared the coaster by 3 PM

-Maintenance was personally test riding the coaster as of 3:30 PM

-The ride was officially opened by 8 PM (as of my last break)


Sorry to hear that the Nantimi 11 didn't get to ride. As for the coaster, hopefully they figure out why it won't run empty. (Wheels not greased enough? That's my guess)


I will be posting a test video from Friday as well as my pics from today as soon as I transfer all of them to my computer.

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As for the coaster, hopefully they figure out why it won't run empty. (Wheels not greased enough? That's my guess)


Just the opposite, most likely. Too much grease/a large amount of grease, combined with the brisk weather this time of year, can cause these things to happen.


Maverick valleyed in its roll the other day, too. It just happens. It's not just an Intamin thing, either. B&Ms do it, too.


It's even worse when they're new, or have been sitting idle all winter.



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Further clarification.


The valleyed train was, um retrieved just before 3:00 PM. (You missed it by about 10-15 minutes, knowit). The first train with people went out at around 4:15, give or take a few minutes. (Yep, I witnessed it. Pretty darn fast turnaround.)


I ran into two of the guys from the Nantimi group who said they were going to wait in line and asked if I were interested in joining them. Although I wasn't planning on staying that long, I figured the line probably wouldn't be much shorter any other time this year, so I said sure. We got into line around 4:40. We were told the wait would be around 2 hours.


There was one minor breakdown-- they temporarily had the people in the train waiting to dispatch disembark. But maybe 10 minutes later, everything was back up and running. And after that, things appeared to run pretty smoothly. There appeared to be some gaps in dispatching trains, but I would attribute that more to loading procedures than to anything mechanical. It took just about 2 hours, but we did get our ride in.


People watching it are saying it looks slow, but I never felt that way on the ride. There was one little rumble entering the cobra, but other than that it is smooth as Reese's PB. I didn't think the >90 degrees would be a big deal, but it is. And the Norwegian loop, or whatever they're calling it-- totally awesome element. Just before you rotate each time, there's a quick kick in the opposite direction. After the overbank turn there's a little bunny hop that doesn't look like much, but it gives some nice airtime. I rode in the 3rd seat-- would be nice to hear from people who rode in other seats how their ride was.


Before I forget... it was great meeting the other folks from this site who were part of the Nantimi 11. Too bad we didn't get to ride together, and that some of you didn't get to ride at all today. Hopefully all of you will soon. IMO, it's well worth the wait. And thanks to Jason, Gary and Martin from HP for taking the time from their busy schedules to meet with us today.

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I may have left about 2:45. (Not totally sure) It was completely upside down in the cobra when was stitting on the bench. There seemed to be a lag in retrival activity, and I had a concert to perform in, so I left. I still had to get to my van and that took about 15 minuets. As I drove by the coaster on Hersheypark Drive it was still upside down in the cobra. (30-35 minutes after I departed the boardwalk area) Thanks for the clarifying.


To all Nantimi folk:


It was nice to meet you all. I got to spend some time with Nat and her mom and Joe. I had a great time and hopefully we can (big dream here) all get to ride it together someday...as it should have been so!


Also, Thanks again to HP Staff (JB, Marty, Gary) for being gracious and answering all of our coaster geek questions.






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Wow.. that is a crazy good turn around time from a valleyed train to having people ride! Awesome!


If anyone heads up to Hershey again in the near future let me know! If I'm not working it would be fun to meet up again. After seeing the overflowing queue for the Comet my g/f and I decided to head to the Harrisburg Arts Fest instead. Should've stayed apparently!


Oh well! I really wished I would've thought to ask the Gary about Turbulence! Would've been cool to hear the inside scoop.

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Nice to meet you all, definitely keep me posted if you're planning on using our bonus ticket at some point in the future. I ended up getting about the 8th public ride on Fahrenheit (courtesy of a sharp pair of eyes, hoard-of-people navigating skills, and a bit of luck), stayed till the park closed, watched the fireworks display, and ended up back in Pittsburgh by 3. So it was a 23 hour day. Even my non-enthusiast friends agreed that it was worth the trip though, so props to Hershey for putting together such a quality park! I'm writing a longer TR, which should be up later tonight or tomorrow, but the short version is that Hershey was amazing, Fahrenheit is excellent, and I'll definitely be making another stop before the summer's out!

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So BB, looks like you were the first of the N-11 to get a ride. Good job!


Those comp tickets have to be used sometime, right? My work schedule gives me every other Friday off-- plus I can usually exchange that for another day if I have to-- as long as I give a week or so notice and get my time in.


Hershey is definitely better to deal with in the middle of the week as opposed to a weekend. Although Sundays late afternoon and evenings are usually less crowded too.

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I'll definitely be out there again, whether on a weekday or not will depend on my work hours once all that gets finalized (still sorting out the details with a few different companies). I have to say though, for a holiday weekend, I didn't think the crowds at Hershey were bad at all... I think my longest wait of the day was about 45 minutes for Great Bear around noon. Granted, I got a bit lucky to wait 15 minutes for a front seat Fahrenheit spin, but all things considered it was a great day at the park. Keep us all posted about future Hershey trips, I could use an excuse to get out there again.

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