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Lakemont Park reopening coasters, attractions

Lakemont Park is reopening the Skyliner and Leap-the-Dips roller coasters, alongside various other attractions, on Friday.

“It’s a local favorite. Leap-the-Dips has been a part of this community for people’s entire lives — more than 100 years — so being able to let everyone come back and ride this historic landmark just feels right. It’s a big part of summer life in Altoona,” said park President Andrea Cohen in a statement.

Built in 1902, Leap-the-Dips — then known as Gravity Railroad — was one of nearly 400 figure-eight style coasters that would be built in the U.S. and today is the world’s oldest wooden roller coaster. It’s survived some close calls with demolition, but each time has been saved by enthusiasts and the local community, before finally being designated a National Historic Landmark in 1996.

Also opening Friday are Lake Monster paddle boats, C.P. Huntington train, Tin Lizzy antique autos, 4×4 monster trucks and the Lil’ Leaper kids coaster. These attractions will be operating Thursday through Sunday from noon to 9 p.m. The Treehouse Waterpark will remain closed for the summer due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Go-Karts, batting cages and two mini-golf courses and the new Lakeside Cafe will be open daily from noon to 9 p.m.

Lakemont Park will celebrate from noon to 7 p.m. July 4, although its signature fireworks show will be notably absent.

“We’re sad not to be able to put on a show for the community, but we hope people will still come out and have some fun with us. We think it’ll be a great chance to enjoy the day,” Cohen said.

The park is bolstering its food offerings with a weekly salad option from the Lakeside Cafe, picnic baskets with Power House Subs for groups up to 30 people placing advance orders, and adult beverages alongside a restaurant-style menu at the C2 Trolley House from 4 to 9 p.m., Wednesday to Saturday. The park’s Motorway Cool-Off will also be open for tickets, bottled drinks and prepackaged snacks.

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