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171 ARW members enjoy Kennywood 2010

Sept. 25, 2010 --      Kennywood Military Appreciation Day kicked off Sep. 25 and allowed 171st Air Refueling Wing members as well as troops from other military branches to spend time with family and friends at their favorite park.
     Though the weather was forecasted to be cool, the day turned out to be sunny with clear skies and the temperature even reached the 70s. "I was amazed at how beautiful the weather turned out," said Col. Steven Painter, vice commander, 171 ARW. Painter was in Kiddy Land with his four-year-old son waiting to go on the Wacky Wheel ride.
     One reason why members wait for this day is avoiding the long awaited lines to go on their favorite rides such as Phantom's Revenge, Thunderbolt or Jack Rabbit that can last over an hour during the normal season. Family members were able to ride several times in amazement and fulfill their own enjoyment.
     "I couldn't believe there was hardly anyone in the lines," exclaimed 14-year-old Corey Novelli. "Though I'm hesitant riding big roller coasters, I rode the Phantom's Revenge screaming 'I believe,'' he continued laughing. "Then I rode it two more times."
     Even little ones had a chance to enjoy themselves at the park as they tugged at their parents' shirt to go on ride after ride. "Little Abbey is having a great time and was quite the driver," stated Tech. Sgt. James Stack, videographer, 171 ARW. Stack was getting off the Auto Race ride with is daughter and happily rushing to the next ride.
     Even couples young at heart got a chance to slow down and just enjoy the day with one another at the park as 171 ARW Command Chief Victor Guerra did with his wife who waiting for the history of Kennywood Train ride. "We didn't bring any children this time; we just wanted to enjoy the day together and with the weather turning out so nice, it became the perfect day."
     Pittsburghers remember growing up and having special moments at Kennywood. To have a day specific to military members especially those who were away from their families because of deployments or mission requirements allow for new moments to be created.
     Because of the G-20 Summit last year, several 171 ARW members and their sister units were unable to attend Kennywood. They couldn't wait for Kennywood 2010, which made it more appreciated and exciting.