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December 4, 2017

Christmas at Buhl Planetarium and its Miniature Railroad

Every December, back in the 1970s, my family made its annual trip to Buhl Planetarium to visit the Miniature Railroad & Village. We had a model railroad that filled our basement too, but we marveled at the size and moving figures at the Buhl. It was always crowded and noisy, and sometimes the line wound outside, but when we made it down the final few steps, it was worth the wintry wait.

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September 8, 2017

Remembering the Island Queen

The fiery end of the Island Queen became part of Pittsburgh lore, one of the most dramatic moments in the city’s history. But lost in the pathos of that day was the Island Queen’s larger story, a history that linked the boat to the earliest days of western river steamboats and Pittsburgh’s own riverine heritage.

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September 6, 2017

Last Ride of Summer: West View Park and the Nostalgia for Lost Amusement Parks

In September 1977, West View Park closed for the last time. What is it about lost amusement parks that evokes such nostalgia?

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