Kennywood Amusement Park

March 16, 2024

The amusement park in West Mifflin, Pennsylvania opened on May 30, 1898. The first three years were a struggle for the park due to steep competition from other trolley parks. During this time the park added an artificial lake, another dance pavilion, and picnic groves.

In 1900, Kennywood began to evolve as a more diversified park and introduced its first dark ride. The Old Mill ride placed riders in boats as they journeyed on a stream through a haunted factory. The next year the park built its first roller coaster, a wooden coaster named The Figure Eight that traveled eight to ten miles per hour—speedy by that period’s standards.

By the time of the first World’s Fair, Kennywood had a full array of rides and attractions. It also had a carousel, casino building, and a large dance pavilion to draw in the crowds.

A storm swept through Kennywood on Friday night, leaving one person dead in its wake. The severe storm, also known as a microburst, produced winds of up to 80 mph and caused the roof over a ride to collapse. The victim has been identified as Monroeville resident, 30-year-old Stephanie Wilkerson.

During the summer months Kennywood has several different rides to appeal to all ages. There is also a food court and a number of restaurants to visit. A favorite of many is the Primanti Bros., which features a Pittsburgh classic—their famous sandwiches! For thrill-seekers there is Steel Phantom, which is the fastest and tallest steel roller coaster in North America. This record-breaking coaster boasts a maximum height of 220 feet and has nine inversions.


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