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Ross Photographer's Out of This World Picture To Be On Postage Stamp

The stunning photo of a star trail around Mt. Rainier took two hours to shoot.

photo by Matthew Dieterich


Using his camera as a painter would use a brush, photographer Matthew Dieterich captured a time-lapse picture so stunning, it has earned its way onto a U.S. Postage stamp.

Dieterich, a 2009 graduate of North Hills High School and a native of Ross Township, worked as an intern last summer with the National Park Service Geoscientist-in-the-Parks program to educate the public on dramatic views of the stars and the effect of light pollution near highly populated areas. On June 22, 2015, he noticed there was an aurora and decided to drive to Reflection Lake below the mountain to capture it. 

“The location was perfect as it contained a view of Mount Rainier and water for reflections,” he says. “To create this star trails image, I took 200 photos in a two-hour window between 2 a.m. and 4 a.m. with my Nikon D750 and 24mm lens set at F/1.4 and ISO 5000. Since the Earth is rotating, each 8-second exposure shows stars at slightly different locations. When the photos are combined into one image the stars create a circular pattern around the North Star, which is just out of view at the top of the image. The pink aurora spread throughout the background sky. Mountaineers can be seen with their white headlamps climbing Mount Rainier on the right side of the volcano.”

Dieterich submitted the photo to the U.S. Postal Service, which chose it as one of 16 Forever Stamp images selected to celebrate the National Park Services's 100th anniversary this year.

Dieterich earned a bachelor's degree in environmental science from Robert Morris University and a master's degree in geology from the University of Pittsburgh. His goal, through his photos, is to inspire others to enjoy the night sky, especially children who have grown up in large cities. Dieterich believes that viewing the night sky away from city lights is a powerful human experience that helps children dream.

You can see more of his work at mdieterichphoto.com


photo by lauralei kraski


#BigPayoff: Pay-By-Plate Parking Meters

Back in 2011, the Pittsburgh Parking Authority collected $5.5 million from the old, coin-fed parking meters. Then came the transition to 950 pay-by-plate meters. The result has been an increase in parking revenue to $17.1 million in 2015.

“We anticipated an uptick in revenue, but this is a little higher than we anticipated,” Pittsburgh Parking Authority Executive Director Dave Onorato told WPXI-TV.

Onorato admits there have been some rate increases along the way, but he credits the increase primarily to the use of credit cards.

“Some of our rates where high enough where people didn't have the quarters. They were willing to pay, but the old meters you needed 27 quarters. Nobody carried that,” Onorato told the TV station.

In case you are wondering where that $17.1 million goes – $6.6 million goes to the parking authority with the rest into the city's general fund.


photo by matt dayak


#In Bed By Ten: 1 Year Anniversary Bash

For the past year, organizers of the In Bed by Ten Dance Parties have been trying to accomplish two things. One – prove that people can enjoy a nightlife that doesn't begin at 1 a.m. — and two – raise money for a variety of charities.

It's safe to say founders Matthew Buchholz and Kelly Beall have achieved both goals many times over.

In Bed by Ten celebrates its one-year anniversary from 6-10 p.m. Friday at Spirit Hall in Lawrenceville [242 51st St.]. Cost is a $5 donation with all profits going to Girls Rock! Pittsburgh, which works to empower young women through music.

Interested in dancing the night away, as long as the night ends at 10? Head to the website for more info. 


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