After the coronavirus pandemic closed amusement parks in Pennsylvania for more than three months, Hershey Entertainment and Resort was allowed to reopen its amusement park to the general public in early July 2020. Hersheypark’s much-anticipated 15th roller coaster (the park counts Breakers Edge Water Coaster as a coaster credit, according to the official park website; ACEers, however may count Lightning Racer as two) debuted on June 29 and 30 to King Size season pass-holders. The park opened to all levels of season pass-holders on July 1 and 2 and to the general public on July 3.
Candymonium, a one-of-a-kind Bolliger and Mabillard (B&M) hypercoaster, spans seven acres in the all-new region, Hershey’s Candymonium. According to the park’s website, the out-and-back roller coaster is the tallest, fastest and longest in the park.
Candymonium rises above Hersheypark’s new entrance.
Photo: Mike Matscherz. View full-sized image.
Visitors may enjoy looking at the colorful decorations of Hershey’s candies on some walls, ceilings and hallways while walking through the queue inside the station. “Social distance” signs are on the ground and indicate procedures visitors have to follow to comply with the state and federal guidelines under Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Impressively, the state-of-the-art walls around the queue on the ground level reduce the effects of a heat wave because they block the sunshine from outside. Before entering the queue inside the station, riders are offered self-serve lockers (free for the first two hours) if they are carrying any big items such as backpacks or shopping bags.
Riding on the 4,636-foot milk chocolate-colored track, each one of three differently colored trains represents one of the world-renowned Hershey brand names. For example, the orange and yellow train denotes Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. The red and blue second train symbolizes Twizzlers Twists. Lastly, the blue and white train symbolizes Hershey’s Kisses. Each individual row has a traditional B&M four-seat configuration with clamshell lap restraints and seat belts. It’s all done in chocolate brown.
The first drop is taken from a height of 210 feet.
Photo: Mike Matscherz. View full-sized image.
Immediately after leaving the station, the traditional chain lift carries the 28-seat train to the top of the 210-foot lift hill. Candymonium boasts the tallest in-the-park claim by just 10 feet over Skyrush, the Intamin hypercoaster that opened in 2012. After a split-second view at the top of the lift, the first drop plummets down at a 77.3-degree angle with a maximum speed of 76 mph. Once again, Candymonium barely broke the park’s record by just one mile per hour faster than Skyrush. After traveling on the 169-foot camelback hill with a 64-degree angle of the second drop, it races through the beautiful 123-degree hammerhead turn standing at 125 feet. On the return, riders climb beyond 100 feet once again as they rise into a 156-foot camelback hill with a 55-degree angle on the third drop. Without further ado, the train dashes over a high-speed airtime hill before entering the upward helix. At the top of the helix, a unique feature of the design is that the track slightly tilts to the left for a short time before swooping down and zipping into another airtime hill. The final feature is a panoramic banked curve around the new, iconic Kisses fountain before going through two camelback hills and hitting the brake run. Returning to the station, ACE members will applaud the ride’s pacing.
Even wearing masks, riders cheer upon their return to the station.
Photo: Ron Jiu. View full-sized image.
According to the local media news and previous reports in late 2019, the information stated that Candymonium and Skyrush were supposed to cross paths with each other. Unfortunately in that regard, the park built the new Candymonium separately from the Skyrush structure. However, if a rider is able to pay attention and count how many times Candymonium crosses over Spring Creek, the actual number is 10.
According to the park, Candymonium is “the world’s sweetest coaster.” It should have a broad appeal to the whole family, provided riders are 54 inches or taller.
Great article. My nephew and I were just at Hershey yesterday, 7/23. This coaster is amazing, the airtime lasted so long it felt like flying, transitions into the different elements of the ride were so smooth. A truly enjoyable ride. A definite contender against my all time favorite, Great Bear. Currently reservations are required to enter the park, I love this. We walked onto nearly every ride, the only time we encountered a short wait time was after 3pm in the queues for front row seats. Of the 7 hours we were there all of the guests complied with the face mask rule without complaint, except for one loud individual on the Wildcat. There was none of the usual congestion on the walkways or in the food courts. It was a very pleasant day.