Happy New Year, PGH! NYE 2012 was one of our favorites in recent history. We’re going to ring in the new year with a list of things we want to do this year, but haven’t yet. Whether the place is new to the city, something we’ve never done but always wanted to, or has a reputation for being a prime destination in the PGH, the following places are on our to-do list for the upcoming year. Have a place you’d like to suggest for our bucket list? Leave a comment!
1. Bicycle Heaven – located in the R.J. Casey Industrial Park (near the Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild on Metropolitan Street) in Manchester, this bicycle museum/shop is a treat for bike riders and lovers in the area. Opening in 2011, Bicycle Heaven displays a deep catalog of bicycles, from rare finds such as fiberglass Bowden Spacelanders, to vintage head badges, to 150 years of design evolution in lights, pedals, seats, mirrors and more. The brainchild of self-proclaimed bike hoarder Craig Morrow, this place is a must for any bicycle enthusiast in the PGH. You can also rent bikes here for $25 a day and cruise some of the beautiful trails the North Side has to offer. Otherwise, admission is free and the place is open from 9AM to 9PM seven days a week.
2. Fallingwater – Although not quite close enough to be considered Pittsburgh, Fallingwater is a tourist staple for anyone who resides in Western PA or simply loves architecture. One of Frank Lloyd Wright’s most widely acclaimed works, it was designed for the family of Pittsburgh department store owner Edgar J. Kaufmann in 1935, so there’s your PGH connection! Built over a waterfall, Fallingwater exemplifies Wright’s concept of organic architecture, something PGH can certainly get behind, as our city’s landscape and architecture create some of the most breathtaking views in the U.S.. With a regular and winter season, be sure to check their website before you visit. Tickets are $20 in advance and feature brunch and tour packages as well.
3. Mr. Roboto Project – This all-ages, DIY concert space re-opened in 2011 in its new location of Garfield, a burgeoning arts district located along Penn Avenue in the East End. We frequently attend the Unblurred crawls here on the first Friday of each month, and have visited the new space, but have yet to see a show at Mr. Roboto. One can only hope the space possesses the same underground, grungy feel that the old space in Wilkinsburg had. Regardless, as avid music fans, coming here for a show is an absolute must in 2012.
4. OUTrageous Bingo – This LGBT-friendly bingo series takes place at the GLCC at 4905 Fifth Avenue. Reservations are required and admission is only $12. For table reservations so you can sit with your friends, you must also call 412-422-0114 or email OUTrageous@glccpgh.org . We couldn’t find much information about this event, but the general consensus in the community is that it’s an outrageous time! Har-har.
5. Steel City Derby Demons – Pittsburgh’s only all-female flat track roller derby league is one bad ass group of women. The sport has been gaining popularity and visibility over the past few years, growing from 30 to over 100 leagues worldwide. The governing philosophy is â€œby the skaters, for the skaters.â€ Female skaters are primary owners, managers, and operators of each member league and of the association. All Home bouts are held at Romp N Roll, 1661 E. Sutter Rd. in Glenshaw, PA. Come support the Steel City Derby Demons!
6. Laser show at Carnegie Science Center – No matter what genre of music you prefer, there’s a laser show for you. Presented most Friday and Saturday nights, as well as daily matinees, the shows vary from “Laser Gaga” to “The Beatles Anthology” to “Laser Michael Jackson” and many more. At just $2 a pop for members and $8 for non-members, it’s an inexpensive way to spend an evening. Whether you take kids, your significant other or your friend Mary Jane, laser shows are a visual treat.
7. Drive-in movie – I grew up going to drive-ins and believe it to be a true shame they’re becoming so scarce as of recent. What happened to the days you could roll up with a packed car with pizza to watch a double feature? Luckily here in the Pgh, nothing! We have not one but two drive-ins a short distance away – the first being Dependable Drive In in Coraopolis and another in McKees Rocks, Twin Hi-Way. Dependable seems to be open even during the winter months, if you’re itching to hit up a drive-in before the spring/summer months.
8. National Aviary – Located at 700 Arch Street in the North Side, this place is for the birds, literally! Did you know it’s America’s only independent indoor nonprofit aviary. It is also the largest aviary, and the only accorded honorary “National” status by the United States Congress. Although some of the birds must be fed in private, almost all feedings are scheduled to be viewable by visitors. This place has consistently topped 100K visitors each year and is one of the many tourist hot spots on the North Side/North Shore. It’s open 10AM to 5PM daily and is only $13 for adults.
9. The Steel City Big Pour – This event pops off every year at Construction Junction and sold out in record time in 2011. At $65 dollars a ticket, this is for serious beer drinkers only! Sample craft beers from the region, food, and enjoy live art & music at this fantastic to-do. You can choose to attend an afternoon or evening session, but pace yourself and brace your liver!
10. Urban Hike – One of the only things on this list I’ve actually done before, I can attest to the fact that this is an absolute blast. The concept alone is brilliant – get in your exercise while getting to know your city and exploring the intricacies of each neighborhood. I had the pleasure of doing the Lawrenceville Urban Hike and it was both eye-opening and challenging. We ended things off at a bar, which was exactly what I needed after a long day of following clues and traversing the hood I used to live in. I learned more about Lawrenceville that day than I did after living there for a year. Held at various locations each month, though not always scavenger hunt style, this is a highly recommended hap!
Stay tuned for our next batch of adventures in 2012. If this is any indication of what we’ll be up to, we’re in for a wild year!