On Friday and Saturday, the National Hockey League will host its annual Entry Draft in the city of Pittsburgh, PA. Once known primarily as a blue-collar, steel manufacturing-centric city, Pittsburgh has experienced a renaissance the last two decades and now boasts a robust economy centered on healthcare, education and technology.
The city itself is only about 60 square miles (compared to almost 400 sq. mi for Dallas), and has a population just north of 300,000 (Dallas is 1.2 million). It is home to the NFL’s Steelers, MLB’s Pirates and of course, the NHL’s Penguins.
Here are some other interesting facts about the ‘Burgh':
- Pittsburgh is the 23rd largest TV market in the country behind Portland, OR (22nd) and in front ofCharlotte, NC (24th)
- The average high temperature in June is 79.1’F (Dallas is 91.6’F)
- The city is within 500 miles of more than half the population of the United States
- prestigious Carnegie-Mellon University in Pittsburgh was credited with the development of the first emoticon, by a computer scientist named Scott Fahlman
- The Big Mac was first introduced and tested in Pittsburgh – this happened the same year the Penguins were introduced as a franchise in the NHL (1967)
- Pittsburgh has more bridges than any other city in the world
- In 2010, Forbes named Pittsburgh as the “most livable city in the U.S.” for its low crime rate, low unemployment, low cost of living and high quality of life
- The city was named after Sir William Pitt, a British Secretary of State
- From 1890-1911, Pittsburgh was spelled without a ‘h’ at the end. This was done in an effort to streamline names of similar U.S. cities - it was later protested by citizens of Pittsburgh, and the name wasfinally restored in 1911
- The most famous sandwich shop in Pittsburgh, Primanti Brothers, features a sandwich with capicola, cheese, French fries,cole slaw and tomatoes. It’s over 750 calories and 30 grams of fat. The average person would have to run seven miles to burn that off!
- CONSOL Energy Center, home of the Pittsburgh Penguins and this year’s Draft, opened in 2012 and seats 18,387 for hockey