One of the most unique vantage points in Mount Vernon, Ohio is the Rastin Observation Tower at Ariel-Foundation Park. As a significant feature of The Ruins, the tower offers guests a beautiful, unique view of Mount Vernon. It is located next to the Urton Clock House on Pittsburgh Ave.

The observation tower is a steel, spiral staircase that coils around the tallest structure in Knox County, PPG’s industrial smoke stack built in 1951. The historical chimney served PPG from 1951 until its closing in 1979 and was constructed of reinforced concrete by the slip form method. The tower is a remarkable 280 feet high, with the observation deck at 140 feet above 224 steps.

Ted Schnormeier, the park project director, along with Custom Cutters of Mount Vernon, designed the tower’s concept. This tower was made possible through a generous donation by Tom Rastin.

Learn more about being a Tower, Footbridge, and/or Viaduct Lighting Partner.



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The highest view of beautiful Knox County available!



Park Info



 Ariel-Foundation Park, located in Mount Vernon, Ohio, is a 250-acre civic park that offers a one-of-a-kind experience for visitors of all ages.

Visiting Hours

Ariel-Foundation Park is officially open April 1 through November 15. Some areas of the park are accessible to pedestrians year-round. Daily hours of operation are 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. There are no admissions or parking fees. The Rastin Observation Tower, park museum, picnic pavillions, trails and other park features are free and open to the public. The Rastin Observation Tower is open during winter months, as long as weather allows.

Contact Us

Foundation Park Conservancy
P.O. Box 644, Mount Vernon, OH 43050
[email protected]

Mount Vernon City Parks Department
1700 Old Delaware Road, Mount Vernon, OH 43050
[email protected]

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