Yo! Rocky statue closed off to visitors yet again

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Yo! Rocky statue closed off to visitors yet again. Dann Cuellar reports during Action News at 11 p.m. on May 29, 2017. (WPVI)

Once again the Rocky statue, one of Philadelphia's biggest tourist attractions, will be briefly closed to the public.

Beginning Tuesday, the statue will be inaccessible for at least two weeks for renovations of the grounds in and around the sculpture.

Each day, a steady stream of movie fans line up at the statue in front of the Art Museum in Center City for their chance to pose for pictures.

"We watched the movie and we love it. It's my favorite movie," young Jacob Tsypis of Holland, Pa. said.

"We just love the Rocky movies so since we're here, we got to see it and then run up the steps," Ryan Ashley of Albuquerque, New Mexico said.

Running up the 72 steps to the top of the Art Museum is part of the tradition ever since Sylvester Stallone did so in his iconic 1976 movie, 'Rocky,' a film about an underdog boxer - and the six sequels - with so many powerful messages that have left their mark on so many.

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January 20, 2015: Tourists meet Rocky on the Rocky steps.



"Just watching the movies with my dad," Kayla Albano of Queensbury, New York said.

The bronze statue, commissioned by Stallone himself, was originally placed atop the Art Museum steps, but it has been moved several times over the years because officials thought it was not art, but an ugly movie prop.

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It was once moved to the steps outside the former Spectrum sports arena.

It eventually made its way back to the Art Museum, but this time on a corner in front of the museum.

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November 6, 2015: It's been nearly 40 years since the first Rocky movie hit theaters and put Philadelphia in the national spotlight.



But then last month, the statue and steps were inaccessible to fans during the month-long set up and take down for the NFL Draft.

Most people, some who came from faraway places, had no idea and felt lucky they got to see it on Memorial Day - before the area closed.

Visitors will still be able to run up and down the Art Museum steps. They will still be open while the grounds around the Rocky statue are being renovated.

And in a few weeks, the Rocky statue will be back, because you can't keep Rocky down for long.

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newsphiladelphia newsrockysylvester stallonephiladelphia museum of artCenter City Philadelphia
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