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AAUW in Fox Chapel to host talk on history of region's amusement parks

Tawnya Panizzi
| Thursday, Aug. 31, 2017, 11:30 a.m.
Fox Chapel Area alum Michael Bonavita and Erin Butkovic, high school teacher and director of student activities/government, at Noah's Ark grand reopening festivities at Kennywood.
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Fox Chapel Area alum Michael Bonavita and Erin Butkovic, high school teacher and director of student activities/government, at Noah's Ark grand reopening festivities at Kennywood.

The Fox Chapel branch of the American Association of University Women will host a program that highlights Pittsburgh's rich history of amusement parks.

“Kennywood versus Luna: Pittsburgh's Amusement Park Rivalry” will begin at 9:30 a.m. Sept. 12 at the Fox Chapel Presbyterian Church at the corner Fox Chapel and Field Club roads.

Guest speaker is Brian Butko, director of publications for the Senator John Heinz History Center.

Butko said “as the 19th century ended, people had more money, more free time, and more ways to spend both.

“Kennywood arose from rough and tumble Kenny's Grove and was outfitted with rides by Frederick Ingersoll, Pittsburgh's leading showman. Five years later, Ingersoll built his own park, Luna, in North Oakland, but it was more like a World's Fair than a picnic grove.”

Long gone, Luna's legacy endures as the Lost Kennywood section of Kennywood.

This event is free to the public.

AAUW advances equity for women and girls through advocacy, education and philanthropy. The local branch was founded in 1958 and is one of 46 in the state.

Tawnya Panizzi is a staff writer for the Tribune-Review. Reach her at 412-782-2121, ext. 2, tpanizzi@tribweb.com or @tawnyatrib.

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