“People around here eat, breathe and drink the Steelers,” says Jerome Gibas, general manager of Kennywood, a traditional amusement park just outside Pittsburgh. His statement may sound hyperbolic, but if anything, it might understate the fanaticism that the franchise engenders in the football-crazy city.
“I’ll be honest,” Gibas adds. “People feel the same way about Kennywood.”
So what do you get when you combine two of Pittsburgh’s most beloved icons? You get Steel Curtain, a wild, record-breaking, Pittsburgh Steelers-themed roller coaster that recently opened at the park. With nine upside-down inversions — more than any other coaster in North America — it’s safe to say you’ll flip for the ride.
With its bold gold and black colors and football-shaped and adorned seat backs, it’s pretty hard to miss the ride’s gridiron connection. Any doubt is erased, however, when visitors encounter the huge “Steelers Country” sign that welcomes them to the new land in which the coaster resides.
A bit taller than Phantom’s Revenge, the hypercoaster that sits at the other end of the property, the two rides dominate Kennywood’s skyline. The long and linear Steel Curtain, known as an “out and back” coaster, cuts a swath over the midway and the park’s lagoon. Rising 220 feet, the sight of the ride’s imposing structure gets pulses racing and palms sweaty even before the sounds of its passengers’ shrieks and screams reverberate in the park.
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