Kennywood has revealed that it is hoping to open its Sky Rocket rollercoaster on June 29, 2010, with a charity auction for the chance to be the first to ride now open for bids.
The new date represents another slight delay for Sky Rocket, with Kennywood having previously announced the week of June 21 as its target for opening the ride. Kennywood's website currently lists June 29 as the target date, although it cautions that further delays are possible.
The park's message reads: "Sky Rocket isn't quite ready, but we're getting close! Work is progressing nicely on commissioning the ride. We are currently projecting opening Sky Rocket on June 29 as long as there are no unexpected delays. June 29 is subject to change without notice."
Kennywood is offering coaster fans a chance to bid in a charity auction for a place on one of the first rides on Sky Rocket. A total of 200 seats on the first trains around the circuit are available, with the highest bidders getting a chance to ride on the very first train. All proceeds go to the Greater Pittsburgh Food Bank, with winners also receiving a single-day pass for Kennywood and a souvenir "goodie" bag. Bids must be a minimum of $50, with the leading bid being $100 at the time of writing. Bids can be made through Kennywood's Sky Rocket auction website until midnight on Sunday, June 27.
Sky Rocket, manufactured by Premier Rides, was originally due to open in May but was delayed due to severe weather conditions over the winter. The coaster will launch riders from 0 to 50 miles per hour within three seconds, before they soar round a circuit featuring a 90-degree drop, a barrel roll and a "top hat" inversion. It will stand on the site of the Turnpike attraction which was removed in August.
The coaster is based on a standard design from Premier Rides, but has been re-worked in order to fit into the limited space available at the park. Although Sky Rocket will feature several inversions, it will follow the recent trend of avoiding over-the-shoulder restraints and will instead hold riders in placing using lap bars.
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