National Aviary Hosts a Night in the Tropics

Make your July even hotter with tiki torches and umbrella drinks.

"Wookie," the National Aviary's two-toed sloth. photo by chuck beard


The word tropical gets tossed around a lot, but it takes more than tiki torches and umbrella drinks to get your mindset close to the equator. After all, they wouldn’t be the tropics if it weren’t for one thing: the heat. Fitting, then, that fire is the theme of this year’s Night in the Tropics at the National Aviary.

Don your finest red, yellow and orange attire for the annual benefit, which will feature fire performers from Steel Town Fire, a steel drum band and food samples from more than 20 area restaurants and bakeries (you’ll have a chance to vote on your favorites). Need a Mai Tai to cool off? Crews at the open bars will be slinging beer, wine and specialty cocktails throughout the evening. Live music from Jimbo and the Soupbones will help you work up a sweat, and yes — plenty of feathered friends will be on hand. Birds know how to party, too.

(National Aviary, 700 Arch St., North Side; Saturday, VIP 6-11 p.m., general admission 7-11 p.m.; VIP tickets $125, general admission tickets $65; more info and tickets here)

A tranquil, former country estate with greenhouses, flowering plants and some of the most eco-friendly construction in the world seems like a fine place for a tranquil stroll. And it is; Chatham University’s Eden Hall campus is an idyllic slice of western Pennsylvania, and the work being done there may well redefine how we think about energy and conservation in the future. But why bother just wandering and reflecting? Let’s have some fun. Through the summer, Eden Hall offers movies, music, theater and more as part of its Summer Series; get a rundown of upcoming events in this week’s edition of After Dark!

On Feb. 24, Market Square restaurants NOLA on the Square and Perle were damaged in a kitchen fire, forcing a temporary closing and remodeling. The teams behind NOLA were hardly idle through the first half of 2014, though, appearing at foodie events and parties across the city. Now, a revamped and expanded NOLA on the Square is throwing the doors open once again for Creole and Cajun cuisine, live jazz and — in true New Orleans fashion — good times. NOLA will open to the public Tuesday, kicking off with JazzFest Week; 19 performances are scheduled between Tuesday and Saturday, Aug. 2. Mark your calendars for the spicy cooking throwdown “Battle Hot Sauce” on July 30. When you visit, be sure to check out NOLA’s new Speakeasy space, open Fridays and Saturdays from 8 p.m. until 2 a.m.
(24 Market Square; hours, menus and info here)

IN THEATERS: It’s one of the most unusual summer blockbusters ever released, but “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes” almost certainly will be this weekend’s box-office champ. In this sequel, hyper-intelligent chimp Caesar (Andy Serkis) tries to keep the peace with a group of humans led by Gary Oldman; it’s a bleak sci-fi parable, undoubtedly well-made but very hard to take. Elsewhere, film festival darling “As High as the Sky,” starring Pittsburgh native Caroline Fogarty, plays at the Hollywood Theater in Dormont; Fogarty is scheduled to attend a 7 p.m. screening Saturday.

Paul “The Pittsburgh Kid” Spadafora climbs into the ring tomorrow night with Hector Velazquez at Rivers Casino’s outdoor amphitheatre. Tickets for Rivers Rumble IV are available here.

More than 90 bands, including 28 North, The Hawkeyes, Meeting of Important People and Bastard Bearded Irishmen, will take part in Saturday’s 2014 Deutschtown Music Festival. More info here

Categories: Things To Do