Nightlife: Salsa Dancing for Dummies

Plus, join a hula-hoop spin session, laugh spontaneously at Steel City Improv or catch this generation's unintentional "Rocky Horror."

Like most Pittsburghers, you probably: A.) made a New Year’s resolution to be more active and B.) decided to “beat the cold” during western Pennsylvania’s darker months. We know how easy it is to fall into a routine of Netflix and nightcaps—but remember: An early dusk doesn’t always mean you need to hibernate. January is packed with cool classes and other activities—some of which will help you shed the holiday weight.

Seven steps — that’s all it takes to learn basic salsa. But once you fall into that Afro-Latin rhythm, the variations are endless. And thanks to Salsa Pittsburgh, an online hub, you can find a dance floor for almost any night of the week. From DJ Oso at Whiskey Hollows Grill to Guaracha at the Shadow Lounge, you’ll never want for high-energy good times. Instructors are welcoming, classes are cheap and sometimes the music can play all night.


If you’ve ever attended a hippie concert or urban craft fair, you may have stumbled into a hula-hoop aficionado. Thus, you know that there’s a lot more to hula than a plastic ring and some hip-shaking. Experts can twirl their hoops around torsos, wrists, ankles, elbows and necks fluidly. Want to find out how? The Steel City Hoop Union gathers every Tuesday for a one-hour spin session. And on the first Tuesday of the month, you can combine hooping with a Zumba class, thanks to instructor Gwen Tucker. Hoops and dizzying good company provided.

(Union Project, corner of Stanton and Negley avenues, Highland Park; Tues., 6:30-7:30 p.m.; $5;

Every comedian knows that Second City is the reigning champion of improv comedy, which makes Chicago the mecca of comic instruction. But thanks to the Steel City Improv Theater, you don’t have to schlep across the Midwest for some serious adlib education. This plucky little operation offers classes for newbies, house teams for veterans and even internships—plus, regular shows in the group’s black-box performance space. A four-week crash course introduces aspiring comics to the world of improv. With its warm, welcoming atmosphere, Steel City will help any eager student find his or her funny bone.

(808 Tripoli St., North Side;

The Room
Jan. 14
Is The Room the worst movie ever made? You can decide any second Saturday of the month, when The Oaks Theater screens this cinematic train-wreck. Tommy Wiseau directed and starred in this 2003 “drama,” a film about a nice guy with an implacable accent; his crazy, cheating girlfriend; and a host of oddball characters. The Room is a perfect storm of atrocious acting, terrible dialogue, glaring plot-holes and more unintended humor than a Godzilla sequel. Join the rowdy fans and see why The Room has become this generation’s Rocky Horror.

(310 Allegheny River Blvd., Oakmont; 10 p.m.; $6; BYOB; 412/828-6311,

Categories: Things To Do