A Timeless Tradition
Established in 1898, Kennywood is a historic amusement park that’s built a reputation for providing timeless fun and one-of-a-kind experiences for generations of Pittsburghers. Over the decades, the park has continued to grow and change, but the affinity for this hometown entertainment destination has never wavered…except when a beloved flying coaster, the Kangaroo, was removed from the park in 2020. This iconic attraction was introduced to the park circa 1962 and served as a rite of passage for younger guests looking for next-level thrills. If you grew up going to Kennywood, Kangaroo was a must-ride attraction. It had no minimum height requirement, making it the perfect transitional ride for families. So when this historic ride hopped away, it left a kangaroo-shaped hole in a lot of hearts.
A Punch In The Pouch
Kangaroo was the last ride of its kind in existence, making it an endangered amusement park species. Over time, the ability to find parts and high maintenance costs to keep it hopping became burdensome, and the park was forced to make a tough business decision during the pandemic.
No matter how financially sound the reasons, the removal of Kangaroo was viewed as treason among the Kennywood faithful. Queue the inevitable social media weeping and gnashing of teeth by thousands of loyal guests and passionate pass holders. This was a PR roadblock that needed to be hurdled…and fast.
You Can't Stop The Hop
Credit to the Kennywood leadership team for listening to their audience and responding in kind. Little did Kennywood guests know at the time, but Kangaroo was not gone forever…it was merely on hiatus for a complete refurbishment from head to tail. Kennywood asked us to create new (yet retro) branding for Kangaroo and develop a multi-channel marketing campaign to ensure the news of Kangaroo’s return was sufficiently epic.
We jumped at the chance to develop two distinct visual identities and renderings of the ride, which would be voted on via Kennywood’s social media channels and website. Next, we fleshed out the brand with a supporting tagline, “Can’t Stop The Hop,” and messaging to surprise and delight Kennywood fans. Last but certainly not least, we rounded out the campaign with a series of outdoor billboards, social graphics, and a teaser video to build excitement and anticipation with the Kennywood faithful.