Browsing: Sports

A Brief History On September 17, 1961, downtown Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania was the site of the first retractable roof arena in the world, although its purpose may surprise you! Digging Deeper The Civic Arena was built mainly as the home of the Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera, although it moved into the sporting world in a big way in 1967 when it became the home of the Pittsburgh Penguins NHL hockey team, until 2010, when it finally closed. Of course, the 17,000 seat arena also hosted many other sporting events, professional and amateur, including basketball, wrestling, boxing, soccer, figure skating, gymnastics, and…

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A Brief History On September 15, 1978, the self-proclaimed “Greatest” boxer, Muhammad Ali, won a decision on points against former US Marine, Leon Spinks, winning back the heavyweight boxing championship he had held twice before. Digging Deeper Ali became the first three-time heavyweight champion, having previously won the crown in a fight against Sonny Liston in 1964, defending his title nine times successfully before losing his crown during a dispute with the US government over military conscription in 1967. Ali returned to the ring in 1970, winning a pair of fights before challenging Joe Frazier for the title.  Ali lost…

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A Brief History On August 26, 1972, the XX Olympiad, Summer Games portion, opened in Munich, West Germany.  Historic for many reasons, this edition of the Olympics featured the first ever named mascot of an Olympic Games, a Dachshund named “Waldi.” Digging Deeper In 1932, a Scottish Terrier born in the Olympic Village in Los Angeles became an unofficial mascot, and in 1968, Mexico City gave us a Red Jaguar, although again, unofficially.  Many mascots have been depictions of fauna endemic to the country or area the Olympics were being held at, and of course the Dachshund is a dog…

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A Brief History On August 17, 1978, Ben Abruzzo, Maxie Anderson, and Larry Newman made ballooning history by becoming the first to pilot a manned balloon across the Atlantic Ocean, flying from Maine to France in the Double Eagle II, a Helium balloon.  Today, we take a look at a few momentous balloon flights. Digging Deeper On November 21, 1783, the first ever manned balloon flight took place in France, when Francois Pilatrê de Rozier and Francois Laurent took flight in a hot air balloon made by the Montgolfier brothers.  In 1785, Jean-Pierre Blanchard and American John Jeffries made history…

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A Brief History On August 9, 2012, Shannon Eastin became the first woman to referee an NFL football game.  Like many professional football officials, she started out as a referee in high school and then college football games. Digging Deeper Eastin got her big break when the NFL and the referee union had contract troubles and the regular refs were locked out in 2012.  Some sports writers and the NFL Referees Association objected to her employment by the NFL, especially since she had participated in the World Series of Poker, and pro sports are highly sensitive to anyone with ties…

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