Best (and Worst) of Pittsburgh




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Arts, Entertainment & Leisure

Best Reopening: Dormont's Hollywood Theatre, which was treated to $300,000 in renovations in 2006, is now under the management of Motion Picture Heritage Corp. (MPH), a group based in Indianapolis that operates, and seems to truly appreciate, classic cinemas. According to Bill Dever of MPH, the art-deco-style single-screen theater, built in the 1920s, will host classic films, "B-movies," independent films, current releases, family matinees, film festivals, theme nights (including Rocky Horror Picture Show) and live music. The venue reopened this August, and future plans for the 298-seat venue include a cafe and lounge. 1449 Potomac Ave., Dormont; hollywooddormont.com. - J.W.

Best Clubhouse: When it comes to battling cancer, medical care is only the half of it. Gilda's Club Western Pennsylvania offers a program of social and emotional support for anyone living with cancer - men, women, teens and children along with their friends and families. The club organizes social activities and in-house lectures and workshops such as yoga and meditation, nutritious cooking and stress reduction, and includes a state-of-the-art kitchen, a children's playroom and a media room. Membership is free; donations support Gilda's Club. 2816 Smallman St., Strip District; 412/338-1919, gildasclubwesternpa.org. - C.H.

Best Re-Invention of a Pittsburgh Radio Legend:
What a year Lynn Cullen's had. One of Pittsburgh's favorite broadcasters, the self-proclaimed "Lone Liberal" of daily talk fell victim not once but twice to radio station format changes in '09. But who needs "old media"? Cullen now entertains loyal listeners here and around the world via online streaming on City Paper's Web site. Her show airs live from 10 to 11 a.m. every weekday, with previous broadcasts archived for download from the site at any time. "I'm thrilled to be back with my audience again," Cullen says, "annoying right-wingers 24 hours a day." "Lynn Cullen Live" can be heard at pghcitypaper.com. - J.W.

Best Neighborhood Artwork:
The Pittsburgh region is a bastion of local pride. You'll see a glimpse of it as you cross the Rankin Bridge to enter the borough of Braddock and are greeted by a stunning 10-by-12-foot mosaic mural, which spells out the words, "Welcome to Historic Braddock," in bits of sparkling mirror, tile, stone and stained glass. Uptown sculptor James Simon unveiled the mosaic in the summer of 2007 as part of Braddock's Community Day festivities, and it continues to inspire residents: This summer, planning began for a 10-panel mural to be mounted on the facade of a new housing development for senior citizens on struggling Braddock Avenue. - Melissa Rayworth

Best Reason to Go Into the Woods at Night: Relax - we're not talking about spying on your neighbors. We're talking about the "Star Parties" thrown by the Amateur Astronomers Association of Pittsburgh. Scheduled throughout the year at both Wagman Observatory (Deer Lakes Regional Park, Allegheny County) and Mingo Creek Park Observatory (Mingo Creek County Park, Washington County), the parties are free-of-charge (though donations are always welcome). AAAP members arrive just before sunset and set up their personal telescopes, sharing the celestial view with anyone who wishes to take a peek. 3ap.org. - M.R.

Best Ballroom Dance Lessons:
Whether you have two left feet and you're trying to avoid looking like a fool at your wedding, or you're an advanced dancer who lives to perform, Absolute Ballroom Dance Center of Pittsburgh is sure to teach you some fun new moves. With ballroom classes for all skill levels, students learn to waltz, swing and foxtrot. And if you're looking for a challenge, the center also specializes in African dance, West Coast swing, Argentine tango and other spirited styles. 6617 Hamilton Ave., East Liberty; 412/441-1461, absoluteballroompgh.com. - C.H.

Readers Poll: Arts, Entertainment & Leisure

Best Music Venue, Classical:
Heinz Hall
Sixth Street, downtown
412/392-4900, pittsburghsymphony.org

Best Music Venue, Jazz: (tie):
Manchester Craftsmen's Guild
1815 Metropolitan St., North Shore
412/323-4000, mcgjazz.org

Firehouse Lounge "Thursdays with Etta Cox"
2216 Penn Ave., Strip District
412/434-1230, firehouse-lounge.com

Best Performing Arts Venue:
Benedum Center for the Performing Arts
Seventh Street, downtown
412/456-6666, pgharts.org

Best Theater Company:
City Theater Co.
1300 Bingham St., South Side
412/431-2489, citytheatrecompany.org

Best Movie Theater:
A.M.C. Loews Waterfront 22
300 Waterfront Drive, West Homestead
412/462-6923, amctheatres.com

Best Library:
Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh Main
4400 Forbes Ave., Oakland
412/622-3114, clpgh.org/locations/main

Best Music Venue, Pop: (tie):
Mr. Smalls Theatre
400 Lincoln Ave., Millvale
412/821-4447, mrsmalls.com

Post-Gazette Pavilion
665 Route 18, Hanover Township, Washington County
724/947-7400, livenation.com

Best Place for People-Watching: (tie):
South Side
southsidepgh.com

Kennywood Park
4800 Kennywood Blvd., West Mifflin
412/461-0500, kennywood.com

Best Fitness Club:
Club One
club1pittsburgh.com

Best Local Dance Company:
Bodiography Contemporary Ballet Co.
5824 Forbes Ave., Squirrel Hill
412/521-6094, 412/425-3766, bodiographybc.com

Best Weekend Trip:
Washington, D.C.
washington.org

Best Camp Site:
Cook Forest State Park
River Road and Route 36, Clarion, Forest and Jefferson counties
814/744-8407, cookforest.com

Best Walking Trail:

Frick Park
2005 Beechwood Blvd., Squirrel Hill
412/422-6538, pittsburghparks.org

Best Fitness Class:
Hot Yoga at Amazing Yoga
amazingyoga.net

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Hot Reads

Top 10 Things to Do in Pittsburgh in September

Top 10 Things to Do in Pittsburgh in September

This month's best bets in The 'Burgh.
Chuck Noll: A Man for All Seasons

Chuck Noll: A Man for All Seasons

Two years after Chuck Noll’s death, University of Pittsburgh Press prepares to publish the first definitive biography of the legendary Pittsburgh Steelers coach. Pittsburgh Magazine is proud to share an interview with author Michael MacCambridge and an exclusive excerpt of “Chuck Noll: His Life’s Work,” scheduled for release in October.
The Changing Face of Campus in Pittsburgh

The Changing Face of Campus in Pittsburgh

Renovation is under way at nearly all of our area colleges and universities. For students heading back to school this fall — and their parents — we offer this crash course on the highlights of these projects and their projected benefits.
Fall Fashion: In the Black

Fall Fashion: In the Black

The little black dress, and shirt, and pants, never go out of style. Add mystery to your wardrobe with these easy-to-accent autumn staples.
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The 412

Buzz over to Phipps Conservatory’s New Beehive

Buzz over to Phipps Conservatory’s New Beehive

See how Pittsburgh’s newest bee colony is educating the next generation.
Casting Call: ‘A Long Day But You Will Be Fed Like a King’

Casting Call: ‘A Long Day But You Will Be Fed Like a King’

A new Netflix series filming in the Pittsburgh area is looking for thousands of extras.
Turning on the Tap: You Now Can Buy Beer at Pitt Home Games

Turning on the Tap: You Now Can Buy Beer at Pitt Home Games

It’s the first time beer will be sold stadium-wide at University of Pittsburgh games at Heinz Field.
Southwest Airlines Planning More Flights from Pittsburgh

Southwest Airlines Planning More Flights from Pittsburgh

The Allegheny County Airport Authority has been lobbying for more direct service from Pittsburgh to the West Coast.

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Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Hot Reads

Top 10 Things to Do in Pittsburgh in September

Top 10 Things to Do in Pittsburgh in September

This month's best bets in The 'Burgh.
Chuck Noll: A Man for All Seasons

Chuck Noll: A Man for All Seasons

Two years after Chuck Noll’s death, University of Pittsburgh Press prepares to publish the first definitive biography of the legendary Pittsburgh Steelers coach. Pittsburgh Magazine is proud to share an interview with author Michael MacCambridge and an exclusive excerpt of “Chuck Noll: His Life’s Work,” scheduled for release in October.
The Changing Face of Campus in Pittsburgh

The Changing Face of Campus in Pittsburgh

Renovation is under way at nearly all of our area colleges and universities. For students heading back to school this fall — and their parents — we offer this crash course on the highlights of these projects and their projected benefits.
Fall Fashion: In the Black

Fall Fashion: In the Black

The little black dress, and shirt, and pants, never go out of style. Add mystery to your wardrobe with these easy-to-accent autumn staples.
Apteka: A Taste of Home

Apteka: A Taste of Home

Kate Lasky and Tomasz Skowronski bring top-notch vegan, eastern European cuisine to Bloomfield.
Talk of The Tahn: City of Beer

Talk of The Tahn: City of Beer

There are plans afoot for a international museum of beer to be built and staffed right here in Pittsburgh.
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On the Blogs


Buzz over to Phipps Conservatory’s New Beehive

Buzz over to Phipps Conservatory’s New Beehive

See how Pittsburgh’s newest bee colony is educating the next generation.

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Pittsburgh, only cooler
PittGirl: How You Should Grade A Squishy Tongue

PittGirl: How You Should Grade A Squishy Tongue

Kennywood Park opens soon and new this season is the return of the famed whale at the entrance of Noah’s Ark. In the name of science, PittGirl paid an early visit to test the squishiness quotient of the whale's all-important tongue.

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All the foodie news that's fit to blog
Where to Go at the Three Day Blow

Where to Go at the Three Day Blow

Our dining critic (and Three Day Blow organizing committee member) has a roundup of some open to the public events.

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Not just good stuff. Great stuff.
The 5 Best Comic Shops in Pittsburgh

The 5 Best Comic Shops in Pittsburgh

These comic book shops offer more than just your casual Batman or Spider-Man choices.

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I'm Starting to Really Miss Malls

I'm Starting to Really Miss Malls

The decline of the big suburban shopping mall was inevitable, but we're losing something valuable in the process.

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Mike Prisuta's Sports Section

A weekly look at the games people are playing and the people who are playing them.
Kaepernick Got It Wrong While Exercising His Constitutional Right

Kaepernick Got It Wrong While Exercising His Constitutional Right

The 49ers' quarterback has already apparently forgotten what Steelers left tackle and former U.S. Army Captain and Afghanistan veteran Alejandro Villanueva has vowed never to forget.

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Style. Design. Goods. Hide your credit card.
Work It

Work It

A new handbag from Sandra Cadavid’s is perfect for work — or play.

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Sean Collier's Popcorn for Dinner

The movies that are playing in Pittsburgh –– and, more importantly, whether or not they're worth your time.
'Hands of Stone' Keeps the Boxing Movie Genre Strong

'Hands of Stone' Keeps the Boxing Movie Genre Strong

Reviews of "Hands of Stone" and "Don't Breathe," plus local movie news and notes.

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Everything you need to know about getting married in Pittsburgh today.
Not Your Typical Bachelorette Party, This One Had a Purpose

Not Your Typical Bachelorette Party, This One Had a Purpose

Bride-to-be Jessika Baldwin didn’t want a traditional bachelorette party — so she hosted a day out that benefited women other than herself.

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The latest tips and trends to refresh your home.
West End Welcomes Antique Store

West End Welcomes Antique Store

What was old becomes new again at the recently opened Vintage 73 antique store in Crafton Heights.

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The hottest topics in higher education
Two Events Planned for Prospective Waynesburg Students

Two Events Planned for Prospective Waynesburg Students

A fall visitation day and a Saturday information session aim to allow interested students a look into life at the university.

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