Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Thrills to Come Record-Setting Steel Curtain More Than Halfway There

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Thrills to Come Record-Setting Steel Curtain More Than Halfway There

Article excerpt

The Steel Curtain at Kennywood Park still is a couple of months from opening, but it's already the tallest roller coaster in Pennsylvania.

Crews last week lifted into place the highest point of track - 220 feet - on the black-and-yellow framework of the coaster, which, when it opens later this year, is to set two other records: the world's tallest coaster inversion - 197 feet - and the most inversions on a North American coaster -nine.

Officials at the West Mifflin amusement park Wednesday gave a "hard-hat tour" of the busy construction site, which includes Steelers Country, the first collaboration between an amusement park and professional sports franchise.

Kennywood spokesman Nick Paradise said the coaster and adjacent 3-acre area are 55 to 65 percent complete and predicted it would open by early summer, but not in time for the opening days for season pass holders (April 27) and the public (May 4).

"We're working to get everything done as fast as possible," he said. "But we're not going to rush."

Those on the tour got a look at what will be the End Zone Cafe, being built in the framework of one of the park's vintage pavilions. When the eatery is finished, park visitors will be able to order tailgate-style fare with a twist - burgers stuffed with cheese and bacon, wings, pierogies - to eat inside or outside in the adjacent tailgating area.

Rising nearby is a multistory metal structure that will become the Steelers Experience, in which people will be able to compete at football-themed games involving running, throwing footballs, tackling an obstacle course, even climbing a "Terrible Towel" structure.

But first they'll have to make it through the gift shop, which is where the coaster will let them off.

The new coaster and themed area are in the northeast corner of the park, where the Log Jammer used to be, between the pavilions - most of which have been removed - and the Racer wooden roller coaster. …

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