What’s going on this week in Pittsburgh, May 23-29?
Friday, May 27: Concert Series at Allegheny RiverTrail Park
The banks of the Allegheny will be activated by live music when this free summer concert series returns to Aspinwall. Kicking off summer on Octave Hill will be Beauty Slap with their danceable “brass thunder funk sound” blending horns, keyboards and electronics. Park-goers can buy dinner and hop in a kayak at the new 3 Rivers Outdoors Co. outpost. Future concerts will feature Let’s Groove Tonight, Joe Grushecky and the Houserockers and The Clarks.
Monday, May 23: 1-4-3 Day in Pennsylvania
If Any Warhol is the King of Pop Art, then Fred Rogers is the King of Kindness. Since we could all use a lot more kindness, let’s give thanks for 1-4-3 Day — May 23 in PA — established in honor of the Pittsburgh icon. Throughout his life and on his beloved TV program, Rogers used 1-4-3 as a way of saying I-Love-You. Continue his legacy by showing kindness to yourself and to others, contributing your good deeds to the state’s “Kindness Generator” or strolling along the Fred Rogers Trail with stops in Pittsburgh and Latrobe.
Monday, May 23 through Wednesday, May 25: Jazz Poetry Month at Alphabet City
City of Asylum’s Jazz Poetry Month is underway with 30 artists from 15 countries in eight productions. Using creative expression to fight oppression, the unprecedented free exchange of music, language and ideas is more relevant than ever, with participants from Ukraine, Russia and Eastern Europe. Tonight, don’t miss Romanian jazz pianist Lucian Ban, who will perform his album, “Ways of Disappearing.” On May 24, the Mara Rosenbloom Trio will present “Bone Labyrinth” with poetry by Adrienne Rich and Erykah Badu. Wrapping up the fest May 25 is the James Brandon Lewis Trio with its gritty mix of jazz, hip-hop and punk rock. View a schedule and register for free.
Wednesday, May 25: A Man of No Importance at the New Hazlett Theater
Be transported to Dublin in the 1960s to experience a “tender and timely story of family, friendship, love and acceptance.” Blending drama, lyricism and comedy, the Front Porch Theatricals premiere marks a collaboration between Tony Award-winners Terrence McNally, Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty. Buy tickets.
Thursday, May 26: Crypto-Energy Summit at Rivers Casino
7 a.m.-6:30 p.m.
What does the future hold for energy and currency? Explore this timely question at the first-ever summit bringing together innovators and disruptors who are transforming the energy and financial industries. Sessions will delve into energy independence, the environmental impact of crypto mining, fossil fuel divestment, intellectual property law, NFTs, decentralized finance and more. Attendees will learn about opportunities and challenges in the fossil fuel, renewable energy and crypto space and meet with industry pioneers during a happy hour. Buy tickets.
Thursday, May 26: Bites and Pints Food & Drink Festival at Kennywood
Kennywood is back and looking better than ever thanks to park-wide improvements, upgrades and offerings. In between braving the iconic rides, thrill-seekers can take a break to imbibe and nosh at this tasty festival featuring rotating global cuisine menus along with daily live entertainment. Buy tickets.
Thursday, May 26: Rita Williams-Garcia at Carnegie Library Lecture Hall
Next up for Pittsburgh Arts & Lectures’ Words & Pictures series is Rita Williams-Garcia, an award-winning author of novels for children and young adults. Her newest essential work takes riders to Louisiana in 1860 for the story of a white family and the enslaved people who work for them on a plantation in antebellum America. Buy tickets.
Thursday, May 26: Women & Nonbinary Mountain Bike Meetup at Boyce Park
Calling all women, non-binary, trans male and gender variant mountain bikers! Join Venture Outdoors volunteer Sara Khalil to learn new skills and gain practice on the paths through scenic Boyce Park. The BYOBike beginner-friendly event kicks off a monthly series exploring the region’s outstanding mountain bike trails. Buy tickets.
Friday, May 27: Future Roots Concert a the Homewood-Brushton YMCA
Celebrate the young talents of Homewood during this free community festival. Held outdoors, the event will feature performances by teen DJs, artists and musicians in the YMCA’s Lighthouse Project — which nurtures creativity in youth through media and music technology. The celebration will also showcase professional artists, food trucks and vendors.
Friday, May 27: ZooBrew: Spring Hops at Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium
Where can you sip craft brews, spiked slushees and hard seltzers while getting friendly with a Canadian lynx? Party animals of the human kind are invited to bond with creatures big and small, hop into summer and experience one of the region’s top destinations after-hours. The extensive beer lineup includes Evil Genius, Sobel’s Obscure Brewing and Helltown. Beyond brew, there will be spirits, ciders, sangria and even hard coffee. While sipping suds, zoo-goers will be treated to live music and exclusive animal exhibits. Buy tickets.
Friday, May 27: “Radioactive Practice” at Kelly Strayhorn Theater
An exciting range of movement traditions — from hip-hop, post-modern dance, contemporary African forms, tap and even synchronized swimming, soccer and martial arts — will be highlighted in this genre-bending premiere. Created and choreographed by Abby Zbikowski in collaboration with Senegalese dance artist Momar Ndiaye, the contemporary dance production “experiments with survival instincts and the boundaries of physicality in relation to living.” Buy tickets.
Saturday, May 28: Nature’s Amazing Machines at Carnegie Museum of Natural History
10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Shrimp that can break glass? Spider webs stronger than steel? See why nature rules and how “every living thing is a machine built to survive, move and discover.” Exploring marvels of natural engineering, the immersive exhibit features scientific specimens, interactive experiences and eye-popping videos. Attempt to fly as you study the ways creatures jump, gallop, slither and swim — and see technological breakthroughs like Velcro, wind turbines and chainsaws that are all inspired by nature. Buy tickets.
Saturday, May 28: Future Vision — Women of Visions at Carnegie Museum of Art
10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Don’t miss this milestone culminating art exhibition celebrating the 40th anniversary of Women of Visions — the oldest organization of its kind in the country. Organized by members of Women of Visions, the showcase features new work and perspectives from the collective’s next generation of makers. In addition to exhibitions, the historic collective of African American women artists presents education, mentorship and professional development opportunities. Buy tickets.
Saturday, May 28: “Endgame” at WQED
2 p.m. & 7:30 p.m.
You have two more opportunities to catch Samuel Beckett’s Irish theatre masterpiece in Oakland. What will transpire when “four characters take shelter from an impending catastrophe outside and not only find themselves stuck in one room, but stuck with each other?” Directed by PICT’s Artistic and Executive Director Alan Stanford, the witty and insightful “exploration of ending” celebrates the company’s 25th anniversary. Buy tickets.
Saturday, May 28: SouthShore Riverwalk & Chalk Fest at SouthSide Works
During the pandemic, the chalk art craze swept the city, with artists of all ages adding imaginative flair to their sidewalks, porches, stoops and patios. The art form will reach new heights when this first-of-kind festival hits the South Side. Over Memorial Day weekend, 21 prolific artists hailing from 13 states will create eye-popping scenes for all to admire. Look out for participatory pieces like Sandy Forseth’s chalk mandala and a 3-D tableau by Kumpa Tawornprom. Pittsburgh’s own “The Chalking Dad” Erik Greenawalt — featured in NEXT — will rep our city. The free festivities boast food trucks, breweries, pop-up performances and hands-on activities. Selfie alert: Artists will start their murals May 27 and onlookers are invited to observe!
Saturday, May 28: “The Double V” at Trust Arts Education Center
You have two more days to catch this Pittsburgh premiere penned by Carole Eglash-Kosoff. Produced by Pittsburgh Playwrights Theatre Co., the compelling story takes audiences to 1942, when “African-American soldiers fought for our country while struggling for equality at home, and our own Pittsburgh Courier played a crucial part in the history of the Double V campaign.” Directed by Mani Bahia, the work explores the newspaper’s call for a victory over aggression, slavery, tyranny and racial inequality. Buy tickets.
Sunday, May 29: OpenStreetsPGH Downtown and the South Side
10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Is there anything more liberating than feeling the breeze buzz by as you walk, run, skate or dance in the middle of a city street? Tapping into the spirit of car-free fun as a “vehicle” for community building, this beloved BikePGH event invites you to get an entirely new perspective on urban existence. If you’ve ever wanted to traverse through the mysterious Armstrong Tunnel or cross the Tenth Street Bridge on foot, now’s your chance. Stretching from Downtown to the Southside, the 2-mile route includes activity hubs, fitness classes, performances, food trucks and special promotions.
Sunday, May 29: Choderwood: A Secret City Riverfront Oasis at 7665 Lock Way West
11 a.m., 12 p.m., 1 p.m.
Have you ever driven past Choderwood and wondered what lies beyond? Step through the gates during this Doors Open tour to discover what inspired the site’s owners to create this hidden oasis along the Allegheny in Highland Park. Wander through the riverside paradise to see lush gardens, koi ponds, fire pits, a greenhouse enclosed swimming pool, chickens and ducks, and a meditation hut. Buy tickets.
Sunday, May 29: Made + Found Summer Market at Spirit
11 a.m.-5 p.m.
Kick off the summer shopping season at this market featuring 30 of the region’s top vintage dealers, makers and artists. There’s so much to love about this thoughtfully curated selection, from edgy accessories, indie jewelry, gender-neutral fashions and vintage home goods, to woven wearables, pet gear and woodcut prints. Weather permitting the market will be located outdoors in Spirit’s garden.
Sunday, May 29: Taste of Harvie at East End Brewing Company
Enjoy the fresh flavors of summer at this outdoor market showcasing a variety of Harvie producers and growers along with East End brews. Shop seasonal produce and grab a beer while learning about where local food comes from. Tickets are available for an add-on beer and cheese pairing benefiting 412 Food Rescue.