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Summer Guide: Go Outside

Starling Marte Photo by Jake Mysliwczyk

It’s a beautiful city, so go out and enjoy it. Here are some ideas and events to get you out into the sunshine.

The Pittsburgh Pirates (pirates.com), are already in full swing at PNC Park and, knocking wood, they’re not as terrible as usual. But, past struggles means you can walk up to the gate on any given night and get a great seat with a great view. And that’s not the only baseball on offer. About 30 minute south in Washington, PA., we have the Washington Wild Things (wasingtonwildthings.com), an independent minor league team. As an added bonus, closer Zach Stecker has been growing a beard that makes him look like Kenny Powers from Eastbound and Down.

But baseball isn’t the only pro sport going on this summer. The Pittsburgh Riverhounds, the city’s professional soccer team, has a challenging, robust schedule that goes until October. The team plays at Highmark Stadium, which has some pretty good views in its own right (riverhounds.com). If you like a sport where you’re allowed to use your hands, the Pittsburgh Thunderbirds is the city’s professional Ultimate Frisbee team. Home games are played at J.C. Stone Field in North Park (theaudl.com/thunderbirds).

And although we’re still months away from kickoff, the Pittsburgh Steelers will head to training camp at St. Vincent’s College in Latrobe in Late July.

Maybe you’re more of a player than a spectator. Regardless of your game, the Pittsburgh Sports League (pittsburghsportsleague.leaguelab.com) has probably got a league for you. The City of Pittsburgh’s Citiparks department also has plenty of outdoor rec sites ready for your game. Additional information can be found at citiparks.net, but most popular are the tennis courts located in Allegheny Commons, Arsenal, Frick, Highland, Moore, Schenley and Washington’s Landing parks. If you’re looking for competition, the city runs three summer tennis tournaments. The Bob O’Connor Summer Tennis Classic, Paul G. Sullivan Championships and the Frick Park Red Clay Junior Open. Speaking of O’Connor, golfers can always play a round at the only course in city limits, The Bob O’Connor Golf Course at Schenley Park. The 18-hole walking course (thebobgc.com), offers nice long fairways and some great views of the city.

If you are looking for some alternative recreation, check out Pittsburgh’s City of Play. This organization has been providing alt-rec options for years including dodgeball leagues and a whole host of original activities, including Circle Rules Football (cityofplay.org).

Skating enthusiasts  can play dek hockey in six local parks–Banksville, Bloomfield, Brookline, Marmaduke Playground, McBride and Ormsby. There are also skate parks in Beltzhoover, Polish Hill and Sheraden. Again, for more information go to citiparks.net.

If cycling is more your thing, the folks over at Bikepgh.org, have all the maps, routes and trails info that you’ll need. If water is more your thing, head on over to Venture Outdoors. The local nonprofit exists to get Pittsburghers out and using the city’s natural resources, including kayaking on the three rivers.

Runners and walkers love Pittsburgh and summer is full of races and walks for eager feet. Former Steelers and best-bros-for-life Tunch Ilkin and Craig Wolfley sponsor a Walk for the Homeless on May 25 (tinyurl.com/tunchwolf). If you like to learn while you burn, Pittsburgh Running Tours offers a whole host of runs/sightseeing adventures (pittsburghrunningtours.com). The City of Pittsburgh Footrace Series is pittsburghpa.gov/events/footraces an annual six-race series that culminates at the end of September with the Richard S. Caliguiri Great Race. But the whole thing gets going June 2 with the awesomely named Greenfield Glide (greenfieldglide.com). The challenging course weaves through the hilly terrain of Schenley Park.

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