Kennywood plans to add sit-down restaurant to park
News got out last week that Kennywood amusement park in West Mifflin is adding a Johnny Rockets restaurant to its list of attractions this year.
The full-service sit-down restaurant featuring burgers, fries and shakes will be located in the park's venerable carousel building.
It will be the first franchise chain restaurant in the park's history.
Park spokesman Jeff Filicko said word of plans spread a little more quickly than he expected when he mentioned it at a gathering for roller coaster enthusiasts last week in Eastern Pennsylvania.
The idea was to generate a buzz in advance of making an official announcement next week.
“It's just kind of blown up from there,” said Filicko, who noted the mention quickly turned into a news item thanks to bloggers and other social media users who were at the event.
“It's a little different experience for our guests compared to what they're used to,” Filicko said.
He said Johnny Rockets will be the only eatery in the park with waiters and servers, unlike the Parkside Café, which has a cafeteria-style service.
The new restaurant will replace a food court in the carousel building, which dates to 1898 and originally housed a merry-go-round.
The park will own and operate the franchise.
Filicko said he thinks Johnny Rockets will be a good fit for the park because of its 1950s-style motif and entertaining atmosphere. It's standard practice for wait staff to periodically part from their regular duties to break into song and dance every half hour or so.
Johnny Rockets opened its first restaurant in Los Angeles in 1986 and is based in Aliso Viejo, Calif.
According to its corporate website, the chain has about 300 corporate and franchise-owned restaurants in 30 states and 16 countries, including Six Flags amusement parks and on Royal Caribbean cruise ships.
The company did not respond to a request for comment.
Kennywood hopes to have the restaurant open by the time the park begins its daily operation schedule in the spring.
Eric Slagle is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-664-9161 ext. 1966, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.