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The Chill Issue: 100 suggestions to keep you busy in Pittsburgh this winter

By January 22, 2019 No Comments

Penguin Parade at the Pittsburgh Zoo and PPG Aquarium. (Current Photo by Jake Mysliwczyk)

 

By Charlie Deitch, Haley Frederick and Margaret Welsh
Pittsburgh Current Staff Writers
info@pittsburghcurrent.com

 

Yes, winter can suck if you let it. But it doesn’t have to because of all of the activities going on between now and the end of March. Here’s our list of exactly 100 things to do to help you Chill Out this winter. And here’s a bonus tip: Stop freaking out about snow! This isn’t Miami!

Glory Denied

Take in some opera: Pittsburgh Opera has three shows on deck to help warm you up with the power of music. Afterwards: Mozart’s Idomeneo Reimagined (Jan. 26, 29 and Feb. 1, 3) is a condensed version of this modern opera. The story of Col. Jim Thompson, the longest-held U.S. Prisoner of War is told in Glory Denied (Feb. 23, 26; March 1, 3). Finally there is Puccini’s classic La Boheme (March 30, April 2,5,7). pittsburghopera .org

Hit the Ice: The Pittsburgh Penguins are heading into the home stretch before the NHL playoffs. Check out a home game before the season ends at PPG Paints Arena (pittsburghpenguins.com) And read NHL Radio’s Brian Metzer’s Penguins column each Thursday at pittsburghcurrent.com.

Pittsburgh Racial Justice Summit. This annual meeting features discussions and workshops to help attendees learn, connect, and act on behalf of racial justice.  Jan. 26-27. Pittsburgh Theological Seminary, Highland Park. Price is on a sliding scale and tickets can be found here.

NFL Play 60 Training Camp. A free event for kids under age 17 at the Heinz History Center. Go through a mini training camp, meet local pro athletes and maybe win some prizes. 10 a.m. Sat. Jan. 26. Free for those under 17. heinzhistorycenter.org

Where Did We Sit on the Bus?: Brian Quijada stages a hip-hop autobiography about falling in love with performance, the power of family and growing up Latinx in a world that categorizes everyone in black and white. Runs through Feb. 25 at the City Theater, South Side. $29-35. citytheatrecompany.org

Shaggy 2 Dope. Jan.29

Shaggy 2 Dope: It’s one half of the Insane Clown Posse out on a solo tour with some new tunes. Why did it make the list? What’s more chill than a juggalo? 6 p.m., Tue. Jan. 29. Cattivo, Lawrenceville. $21-25. druskyentertainment.com

In the Heights: If you’re in a panic and wondering how to get over the post-Hamilton doldrums when it exits town Jan. 27, Pittsburgh Musical Theater has you covered. Before Lin Manuel Miranda hit with his current smash, he made a name for himself with In the Heights. Jan. 21-27 and Jan. 31-Feb. 3. Gargaro Theater, West End. $40. pittsburghmusicals.com

Rickey Laurentiis and Terrance Hayes book signing, reading and conversation: It would be difficult to imagine a stage with two more talented and decorated poets on it than the one at Heinz Memorial Chapel on Thursday, Jan. 24, sponsored by the Center for African American Poetry and Poetics at the University of Pittsburgh. Laurentiis has received a Cave Canem Poetry Prize, a Thom Gunn Award for Gay Poetry as well as fellowships from the National Endowment of the Arts, the Whiting Foundation and others. Hayes is a recipient of a MacArthur Fellowship (genius grant) and is former poetry editor for New York Times Magazine. 7 p.m., Thu. Jan. 24. Heinz Chapel, Oakland. heinzchapel.pitt.edu

George Lopez. Jan. 25

George Lopez: The World Wall Tour: The Latino comedian doesn’t mince words and the title of this tour let’s you know what his main target will be. Lopez is no fan of the wall or the president. Last fall at a New Mexico Hooters, Lopez got into an altercation with a Trump supporter who had been harassing the comedian all evening. Buckle Up. 7 p.m. Fri. Jan. 25. Carnegie of Homestead Music Hall. $44.81-250. librarymusichall.com

Gallery Crawl in the Cultural District: Check out the diverse artistic offerings throughout the Downtown Cultural District in this free event on Fri., Jan. 25. culturaldistrict.org

Honky-Tonk JukeBox Dance Party: This awesome new monthly music program benefits the Deutschtown Music Festival. The event is hosted by Job Bindley of Bindley Hardware Co. and features other well-known Pittsburgh artists like Molly Alphabet and Chet Vincent. 7:30 p.m. Fri. Jan. 25. Allegheny Elks, North Side. $10. tinyurl.com/honkytonkjukebox

Jessica Lang Dance: Since its inception in 2011, this international dance company has performed worldwide. Alas, this is JLD’s final season and possibly your last chance to view their stunning performance. 8 p.m. Sat. Jan. 26. Byham Theater, Downtown. $10-65. culturaldistrict.org

Pittsburgh RV Show: Always wonder how spacious your neighbor’s RV is, but you don’t want to take a trip with them to find out? Come to the Pittsburgh RV show and take a tour of this nine-acre event that would make Cousin Eddie foam at the mouth. Runs through  Jan. 27. $5-1$12. pittrvshow.com

The Tempest: We’ve written about this elsewhere in the issue, but we’re mentioning it again, because you need to see this all-women retelling of Shakespeare’s classic. 8 p.m. Jan. 24 through Feb. 24. Pittsburgh Public Theater at the O’Reilly Theater.  412-316-1600 or www.ppt.org

Peter Pan: For most children, this is the story that taught them that dreams can come true. The Gemini Children’s Theater presents this classic tale Saturdays and Sundays at 1 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. through Feb. 3. $12. 520 Chartiers Ave., McKees Rocks. geminitheater.org

Get your laugh on: Individual shows will be highlighted throughout this list, but check out these locations that run shows on a weekly basis, some multiple nights a week. Arcade Comedy Theater, Downtown, is your go-to for fresh improv across the city (arcadecomedytheater.com). Hambones has always been a friendly place for comics, but now it’s even more so with the addition of the Burning Bridges Comedy Club upstairs. There’s live comedy every Saturday and Sunday at this Lawrenceville spot (burningbridgescomedyclub.com). And if you like old school, you can always hit up the Pittsburgh’s branch of the Improv Comedy Club, which has been newly refurbished. (improv.com/pittsburgh).

Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium Penguins on Parade: It’s a little bit of magic that you only get to see during the winter. Every Saturday and Sunday at 11:30 a.m. sharp (as long as it’s below 45 degrees), the Zoo’s penguins come outside for a stroll and a little frolicking in the snow. It’s Ok to fall in love, but don’t try to disguise one as your child and take them home. pittsburghzoo.org

Wigle Whiskey’s Winter Drinking Buddies: Wigle Whiskey buddies up with La Palapa for a unique food and drink pairing. Wigle will mix up a special cocktail for this lunchtime event to compliment La Palapa’s fresh, Mexican flavors. 11 a.m. Sun., Jan. 27. Wigle Whiskey Distillery, Strip District. wiglewhiskey.com

Rube Day: The Pittsburgh Children’s Museum is celebrating its newest exhibition,  “Rube Goldberg: The World of Hilarious Invention!” through themed activities throughout the Museum to discover the legacy of Rube Goldberg. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sun., Jan. 27. $16 for adults, $14 for kids. pittsburghkids.org

Charlie ad the Chocolate Factory. Jan. 29-Feb. 3

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory: PNC on Broadway brings Roald Dahl’s classic tale to the Benedum Center. Charlie, Veruca and the whole gang should be waiting. Tue. Jan. 29-Sun. Feb. 3 (times vary). Benedum Center, Downtown. $45-125. culturaldistrict.com

Keystone Progress Summit: Progressives from around the state will gather at the IBEW Hall on the South Side Feb.1-2 to discuss issues that should be part of all future progressive legislative agendas. Speakers include Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto. There will be breakout workshop sessions and opportunities to network. Register at paprogressivesummit.net

Ice skate Downtown: Most people think the ice rink at PPG Plaza is a Christmas-only event, but it’s actually open until March 3. It’s $9 for kids, $10 for adults (plus $4 skate rental) and they even have several themed skates where you can wear costumes. There’s the Princes Skate on Jan. 27, the Super Hero Skate on Feb. 9 and the Valentine’s skate on Feb. 14. ppgplace.com

Lunar New Year Banquet: Hosted by the Organization of Chinese Americans (OCA), this Lunar New Year celebration is in its 32nd year here in Pittsburgh. Attendees will have a traditional Mandarin-style multi-course dinner and see  stunning cultural performances as they ring in the Year of the Earth Pig. 5 p.m. Sat., Feb. 2. Heinz History Center, Strip District. $58-$88. ocapghpa.org

Imbibe North Side: There will be plenty of music, food and local libations like War Streets Brewery at this Feb. 2 event at the Mattress Factory, 505 Jacksonia St. For $40 you get a special glass, unlimited tastings and access to the gallery’s exhibits. Food trucks will be on hand selling their wares. tinyurl.com/2019imbibenorthside

Place a legal wager on the Super Bowl: No need to use your shady bookie or try to get your credit card approved at an offshore website. You can just go down to the Rivers Casino and make that bet for free. It will get you ready for those big money baseball parlays this summer.

Women in Sound ’Zine Release: Need some winter reading? Grab issue six of the Women in Sound zine, a collection of interviews with women, non-binary and trans people working in the music industry. In partnership with the girlFx collective’s monthly In the Weeds residency, the evening features a mastering workshop, an electronic instrument petting zoo and tunes from DJ Aunt Buck. 7:30 p.m. Monday, Feb. 4. Ace Hotel, East Liberty. Free. acehotel.com/pittsburgh

Catch a reading or show at City of Asylum at Alphabet City: They have one of the most robust events calendars of just about anyplace in the city. From musical performances to group discussions to book and poetry readings, there has to be something for everybody. For the full schedule check out alphabetcity.org. But here are a few we recommend: On Feb.1 is Beyond Borders: An Evening of Immigrant Fiction with authors Crystal Hana Kim, Naima Coster, Wayetu Moore, Shobha Rao and Cristina Garcia; Julian Randall, a queer, black poet from Chicago will share work from his latest, Refuse; Feb. 19 and 20 bring a two-night celebration of legendary jazz saxophonist, Ornette Coleman, including a first-night concert by drummer David Throckmorton and Space Exchange.

An Evening with Nellie McKay. Feb. 15

Andy Warhol Museum Sound Series: Andy Warhol loved music, so it made sense when the museum named in his honor and curated in his spirit, started a concert program. The Museum’s Sound Series is in its 15th year and is meant to “blur genres of contemporary independent music.” The lineup through March 30: Da Capo Chamber Players, 8 p.m., Feb. 2; An Evening with Nellie McKay, 8 p.m., Feb.15; Jonathan Wilson, 8 p.m., Feb. 25; Princess, 8 p.m., March 1; Rafiq Bhatia, 8 p.m., March 7; Turning Jewels into Water, 8 p.m., March 16; serpentwithfeet, 8 p.m., March 20; Joe McPhee, Claire Chase and Peter Evans, 8 p.m., March 23; Mdou Moctar, 8 p.m., March 28; Instruments of Happiness, 8 p.m., March 30. warhol.org

Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra presents The Music of Queen: The release of the film Bohemian Rhapsody, has everyone giving Freddie Mercury’s music a reexamination. The symphony, conducted by Brent Havens, will be fronted by vocalist Brody Dolyniuk and a full rock band for one night only. 8 p.m. Sat. Feb. 2. Heinz Hall, Downtown. $25-90. pittsburghsymphony.org

Jazz at the Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild: This North Side fixture has a winter full of fantastic performances. On Sat., Feb. 2, at 6 p.m. and 8:30 p.m., there will be two top jazz acts on the stage. The Alfredo Rodriguez & Pedrito Martinez Duo, featuring the pianist and percussionist, respectively.  Then, the audience will be treated to Edmar Castaneda & Grégoire Maret: Harp vs. Harp. The show features Castaneda on the string variety and Maret on the wind instrument. On Feb. 23, jazz vocalist René Marie is joined by trombonist, Delfeayo Marsalis. $51.50. Manchester Craftsman Guild, Manchester.

Tell a story: Do you love live storytelling either as a speaker or a listener? The Moth Storyslam will hold two events in February and March. On Tues., Feb. 5, storytellers will weave five minute tales under the topic, “Love Hurts.” On Tues., March 5, the topic will be “Blame.” Both events begin at 7 p.m. at the Rex Theater on the South Side. themoth.org

Get a hot local beverage: We all have our coffee habits, but when you’re trying to stay warm out there with hot coffee, tea or cocoa, make sure to share some love with local businesses.

Liberty Magic (Current Photo b Jake Mysliwczyk)

Have a magical evening: If you’re a fan of magic and sleight-of-hand, Liberty Magic is going to be your new favorite place. The 70-seat performance space at 811 Liberty Ave., Downtown open Feb. 6 with a six-week residence by magician Eric Jones and his new show, Impossible. There are multiple shows weekly from Wednesday to Sunday through March 17. $40-65. BYOB with a $5 corkage fee. trustarts.org

You Can Call Me Al: This show from artist and educator Ali Hoefnagel “is a long-form story about growing up, getting gay, coming out, living with mental illness and uncovering family secrets.” The show is part of the New Hazlett Theater’s Community-Supported Art Performance series. 7 p.m. Feb. 7-8. New Hazlett Theater, North Side. $25. newhazletttheater.org

Pittsburgh Improv Jam: Hosted by Pittsburgh Improv group, Well Known Strangers, the event features Improv performers of all talent levels choosing teams and performing based on audience suggestions. After the Feb. 7 show, the Improv Jam will be weekly starting Thu. March 7. All shows at 10 p.m. The Jam is free for performers. Signups begin at 9:30 p.m. $3 for audience members. Greer Cabaret Theater, Downtown. trustarts.org

The Gun Show (Can we talk about this?): This one-person show from immersive theater group, Quantum Theatre, is based on one playwright E.M. Lewis’ complicated history with gun culture. The show plays at different times and venues between Feb. 8 and March 23. $45. quantumtheatre.com

The Great Gatsby with the Pittsburgh Ballet Theater Orchestra. Rediscover the revelry and recklessness of the Roaring ‘20s in Jorden Morris’ poignant restaging of The Great Gatsby,” PBT’s description reads. Fri. Feb. 8-Sun. Feb. 17. Benedum Center, Downtown. $28-112. 

Catch some preseason Riverhounds soccer: These guys don’t head south to train, the stay right here and they’re playing eight warm up games at Highmark Stadium beginning Feb. 8. Check out Riverhounds.com for more information.

John Maus: John Maus brings a lot to the table. His lo-fi, vintage synth-based music is at once emotionally distant and deeply earnest, brainy (he’s a former philosophy teacher and holds a PhD in political science) and viscerally embodied. Whether or not we’re living on the edge of apocalypse, Maus gives us all something to dance to. 8 p.m. Friday, Feb. 8. Spirit, Lawrenceville. $20. www.spiritpgh.com

You Can Call me Al. Feb. 7

See a film at the Carnegie Science Center’s Rangos Giant Cinema: There’s always plenty of awesome educational films, but it’s also a good spot for blockbusters like the Lego Movie 2 on Fri. Feb. 8 and Captain Marvel on Fri. March 8. Carnegie Science Center, North Side. $11.95-$13.95. carnegiesciencecenter.org

Monster Jam: No description is necessary. We’ve all heard the commercials since we were kids. This event is about bad-ass trucks and the noise they make. Let’s rock. Fri. Feb. 8-Sun. Feb. 10. 7 p.m. Friday, 1 p.m. and 7 p.m. Saturday and 1 p.m. Sunday. $15-$60. ppgpaintsarena.com

Snow tubing, snowboarding or skiing at Boyce Park: Sure our most recent snowstorm was a Class-A bust, but the snow will come and when it does this Allegheny County Park will be ready for you. tinyurl.com/boyceparkwinter

OUTRageous Bingo: If you claim not to like OUTRageous then you have outed yourself as a real stick in the mud. It’s the best Bingo in town and there’s even a halftime drag show. There are games Feb. 9 and March 2. outrageousbingopgh.org

90s Bar Crawl: Whether you were born in the 90s or you remember them all too well, you can revisit the decade with this nostalgic bar crawl. Celebrate the music and fashion of the 90s as you bounce from bar to bar in South Side to get the best of the night’s drink specials and 90s souvenirs. 3 p.m., Sat., Feb. 9. South Side. $30-$40. 90sbarcrawl.com

Taco Trail: a Tour of Pittsburgh’s Best Tacos and Margaritas: This tour put on by Shadyside Funhouse will take participants around to four different taco purveyors around the city to sample their fare. At each stop, you’ll a get a taco or two and a margarita to try and then rate on a scorecard. 1 p.m. Sat., Feb. 9. Mad Mex, Shadyside.$64-$94. facebook.com/shadysidefunhouse

Valentine’s Day Cookie Baking Class: Threadbare Cider House gives you the opportunity to learn to bake with your sweetheart. Pastry Chef Elise Miranda will guide participants through how to bake three types of cookies and Valentine treats. The class includes cookie baking, cookies to take home, a glass of Threadbare cider, light snacks and a tour of the cider house. 6 p.m. Feb., 11. Threadbare Cider House, Spring Garden. $40. Threadbarecider.com

The Cooper Family: Led by 1997 Tony-Award winner Chuck Cooper, the Cooper Family (which also includes his kids, Lilli and Eddie) brings its stage presence and musical abilities to Downtown’s Greer Cabaret Theater. 7 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. Mon. Feb. 11. $45. trustarts.org

Jeff Goldblum and the Mildred Snitzer Orchestra

Jeff Goldblum and the Mildred Snitzer Orchestra: Before he was an actor and musician, Jeff Goldblum was a kid from West Homestead. On Feb. 14, he returns to Homestead with his band to do two special Valentine’s Day shows at the Carnegie of Homestead Music Hall in Munhall at 7 p.m. and 9:45 p.m. $53.50-128. librarymusichall.com

Let My People Go: A Spiritual Journey Along The Underground Railroad: The Mendelssohn Choir of Pittsburgh presents this dramatic work composed by Donald McCullough that “interweaves 14 Negro Spirituals with a dramatic historically based script” that’s been called “moving,” “haunting,” and “spine-tingling.” 7:30 p.m. Fri. Feb. 15. Ebenezer Baptist Church, Hill District. $10-35. themendelssohn.org

An Evening with Jackie Evancho to benefit homeless LGBTQIA youth: The local singer who made it big when she won America’s Got Talent, is giving back to a cause very near and dear to her. The event will benefit The Brave Heart Foundation, provide a safe, enriching, and affirmative place for homeless LGBTQ young adults ages 18-26, that will provide the emotional support and overall care needed for a healthy transition into adulthood. Evancho has been a very vocal supporter of Trans rights and has always supported her trans sister, Juliet. 7 p.m. Fri. Feb. 15. August Wilson Center, Downtown. $75-15,000. tinyurl.com/evanchofundraiser

75th Annual Pittsburgh International Auto Show: Just because you can’t afford a Lamborghini doesn’t mean you can’t sit in one, or sniff one, or whatever else you can get away with before security comes. 10 a.m. Feb. 15-18. $6-12. pittautoshow.com

Da Vinci The Exhibition: Take a deep dive into the innovation, science and creativity of Renaissance Man, Leonardo Da Vinci. This exhibit features 60 fully built inventions, 20 pieces of fine art and other items that “examine the complex beginnings and lifetime achievements of Da Vinci through his discoveries in art, engineering, flight, hydraulics, music, light, and more.”  Opens Sat. Feb. 16 at the CSC’s PPG Science Pavilion, North Side. $15.95-29.90. carnegiesciencecenter.org

Three Dog Night: From 1967-1976, Three Dog Night was a pretty big deal. They had 12 gold records and charted 21 straight Billboard Top 40 hits, three of which hit number one. Most people know them for Joy to the World, but songs like One and Mama Told Me not to Come, are pretty legit. 7 p.m., Sat. Feb. 16. Carnegie of Homestead Music Hall, Munhall. $67-95. librarymusichall.com

Cupid’s Undie Run: Cupid’s Undie Run is a “brief” fun run that takes place in the middle of a big party. Undies are encouraged but not required, and it’s all to find a cure to neurofibromatosis, a genetic disorder that affects one in every 3,000 children born. 12 p.m. Sat., Feb. 16. McFadden’s, North Shore. $40. my.cupids.org

Build a snowman at Point State Park: The Point is a year-round destination, and all that snow and space should be put to good use.

Bitters and Sweets: This 21+ event at the Pittsburgh Botanic Garden promises to be a lovely evening of sipping cocktails, enjoying food and entertainment and even completing a nature-based craft. Dessert and drinks will be available from local vendors like Wigle Whiskey and Helicon Brewing. 7 p.m. Sat, Feb. 16. Pittsburgh Botanic Garden, Oakdale. $30-50. pittsburghbotanicgarden.org

 

Gregory Porter: This multifaceted, grammy-winning vocalist, has a velvet smooth sound that’s a sweet mixture of jazz, soul and gospel all stirred together. 8 p.m., Sun. Feb. 17. August Wilson Center, Downtown. $58.75. aacc-awc.org

Gang of Four: Since forming in 1977, Gang of Four has held fast in the hearts of music geeks, influencing bands that would go on to be much more commercially successful: Nirvana, Red Hot Chili Peppers and R.E.M. all acknowledged massive debts to Gang of Four’s stoic, stripped down approach to dance-punk. Greil Marcus wrote in ’79 that the magic lay in the drama of their music and the way they held the stage, and that holds true still. 8 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 17. Mr. Smalls Theater, Millvale. $28-30. clubcafelive.com

Bob Mould Band: In the 1980s there was a kick-ass alt-rock band called Husker-Du. In the 1990s, there was a kick-ass alt-rock band called Sugar. Why do we bring this up? Because Bob Mould fronted both of them and Bob Mould is really freaking talented. So carry your ass out to Mr. Smalls at 7 p.m. on Tue. Feb. 19 and ask Mr. Mould if he’ll play “The Slim” or “Good Idea” from Copper Blue. $25. Mr. Smalls Theater, Millvale. mrsmalls.com

Tubman: This one-woman show was written by New York-based writer Lacresha Berry. Her story reimagines Tubman as a young woman growing up in Harlem. She places the same woman with the same spirit into a different time but one that still battles the mistreatment of African Americans. The first show is at 1 p.m., Feb. 20 with the second coming Feb. 21 at 8 p.m. $23.75-33.75. aacc-awc.org

Lacresha Berry in Tubman. (Photo Courtesy of Hi-Arts)

Disturbed: As arena metal goes, these guys are still doing it at a high level. David Draiman’s voice is bad-ass and if you don’t love the song, “Stupify,” we think there’s no hope for you. 7:30 p.m. Wed. Feb.20. PPG Paints Arena, Uptown. $48-79. ppgpaintsarena.com

The Phantom of the Opera: Sometimes it seems like this play makes its rounds every six weeks, but the tour coming through town from Feb. 20-March 3 is apparently the largest tour of Phantom making the rounds today, with 52 actors and orchestra members. That plus enhanced effects is supposed to breathe new life into this old standard. Benedum Center, Downtown. $45-150. culturaltrust.org

Nikki Glaser. Feb. 21-23 (Photo: Comedy Central)

 

Comedian Nikki Glaser: She’s a horrible dancer (once eliminated first from Dancing With the Stars), but Glaser is a brilliant, funny, brazen comic. She once told Conan O’Brien that her vagina looked like a “hastily packed suitcase,” and at the 2018 roast of Bruce Willis she said of the action star, “You’re very involved in the Make-A-Wish Foundation where sick kids get to meet you so dying doesn’t seem so terrible.” She’ll do five shows Feb. 21-23 at the Pittsburgh Improv, Homestead. $25. improv.com/pittsburgh

Pittsburgh Fermentation Festival: Where else could you learn how to make your own Sauerkraut, play carnival games and see a “Mold Pageant” other than the fourth ever Pittsburgh Fermentation Festival? Whether you’re new to the fermentation funk or an expert, this festival is sure to teach you something new. 11 a.m. Fri., Feb. 22. Spirit, Lawrenceville. Free. fermentpittsburgh.com

Paul Taylor Dance Company: In addition to a classic Paul Taylor work, the troupe will dance a new work, Continuum by former company dancer Lila York. 8 p.m. Sat., Feb. 23. Byham Theater, Downtown, $20-65, trustarts.org

A Night at the Oscars: Hollywood Epics: Get into the Oscar spirit with this show from the Pittsburgh Symphony. Fri., Feb 22-Sun., Feb. 24 (begins at 8 p.m. except for Sunday 2:30 matinee). Heinz Hall, Downtown. $22-99. pittsburghsymphony.org

North Side Mardi Gras: It’s not Bourbon Street, but it’s the only neighborhood-wide Mardi Gras celebration in the city. More than 35 restaurants, pubs and businesses will be offering specials from Feb. 22 all the way up until Fat Tuesday, March 5. pittsburghnorthside.com

Black Bottom Film Festival: According to the August Wilson Center, “From age-old classics to contemporary work, the third annual Black Bottom Film Festival illuminates and celebrates African American cinema and unique black people. The festival showcases movies that focus on the themes of spirituality, race, family conflict, honor, duty and working-class struggle, themes ever-present in August Wilson’s The Pittsburgh Cycle plays.” Join them to celebrate African American filmmaking pioneers of recent decades, and examine how these filmmakers have influenced American culture. Writing and acting workshops will also be offered. Feb. 22-34. August Wilson Center, Downtown. aacc-awc.org

Pittsburgh Winter Beer Fest: The perfect event for any beer fanatic, the Pittsburgh Winter Beer Fest returns this season, offering attendees access to hundreds of craft beers from more than 125 breweries. Enjoy live music as you sample all the beers your heart desires on either Friday or Saturday this weekend. 6:30 p.m. Fri., Feb. 22; 12  p.m. and 6:30 p.m. Sat., Feb. 23. David L. Lawrence Convention Center, Downtown. $60-$90. pittsburghbeerfest.com

Ride the Incline after a good snowfall: Yes, our skyline is awesome and when it’s covered in fresh powder with a little ice on the river, it’s even more so. duquesneincline.org

Duquesne Incline (Current Photo by Jake Mysliwczyk)

FEAST at the Carnegie International: This is the final culinary experience of the International, which began last fall. According to the Carnegie Museum of Art: “FEAST celebrates art through culinary adventures. Each FEAST takes its cues from art on view at the museum for a completely unique, one-night-only immersive cultural experience.” Patrons will get access to the galleries and also a movie from the Cinematheque Film Series, paired especially for the meal. The final dinner will be cooked by Chef Keyla Nogueira Cook of Cafe Brasil and the theme will be “Sound.” 4 p.m. Sat. Feb. 23. Carnegie Museum of Art, Oakland. $100. cmoa.org

Pittsburgh Pirates Spring Training: Very little of baseball’s preseason actually takes place in the spring. The best way to chill out is head south to the greater-Bradenton, Fla. area and watch baseball in the sunshine. The first game is Feb. 23. pirates.com

The Pittsburgh Plunge: Be a Polar Bear and take a dip in frigid waters to raise money for Special Olympics. 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Sat. Feb. 23. Heinz Field. North Side. specialolympicspa.org/about-pittsburgh-plunge

Le Butcherettes: As a teenager in Guadalajara, Mexico, Teri Gender Bender and her band Le Butcherettes railed against the patriarchy using fake blood and, infamously, a real pig’s head. Bender and co. have since found audiences beyond punk-house basements: last time they were in Pittsburgh, they opened for the Flaming Lips. The band’s new record, bi/MENTAL comes out February 1 and the glammy, garage-y single “father/ELOHIM” showcases Bender’s swagger: Despite some arena-ready polish, she remains firmly in touch with her defiant roots. 8 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 24. Rex Theater, South Side. $15-18. rextheater.net

An Evening with Ina Garten: The Emmy and James Beard award-winning author and Barefoot Contessa host stops in Pittsburgh on her tour to promote her newest cookbook, Cook Like a Pro. 7:30 p.m. Tues., Feb. 26. Heinz Hall, Downtown. $55-$105. pittsburghsymphony.org

Black History Month Lecture: The African American Program of the Heinz History Center is hosting the fifth annual Black History Month Lecture featuring Leonard Moore, Ph.D., who will speak on the topic of black power and black politics of the 1960s and ’70s. 6 p.m. Thurs., Feb. 28. Heinz History Center, Strip District. Free. heinzhistorycenter.org

Sebastian Maniscalco: The Chicago-born Italian comic is one of those guys that seems to appear out of nowhere already super famous with a rabid following. Think Dane Cook, except that Maniscalco is really talented. His comedy specials are frenetic and physical and it’s hard to find a break in the laughter. He’s got two shows at 7 p.m. and  9:30 p.m. at Heinz Hall on Fri. March 1. Tickets are $5-65 but act fast because they are moving out of the box office. See, what’d we tell you? culturaldistrict.org.

Charenée Wade Quintet: The powerhouse jazz vocalist and her band will perform songs from her 2013 insta-classic record, Offering: The Music of Gil Scott-Herron and Brian Jackson. The show is sponsored by the Kente Arts Alliance. 8 p.m. Sat. March 2. Kelly Strayhorn Theater, East Liberty. $35. kentearts.org

Charenée Wade. March 2.

 

Juicy Brews Late Night: Hop Culture Magazine is throwing a shindig at the new Cinderlands Beer Co. production facility that promises to be a “juicy evening.” They’ll have unlimited pours from some of the country’s best breweries, as well as music and a killer menu of late night-inspired bites. Sessions begin at 4 p.m. Sat., March 2. Cinderlands Beer Co., Strip District. $60-$90. hopculture.com

Wiz Khalifa & Curren$y: As if you needed an excuse to see Wiz again, New Orleans rapper Curren$y comes along to sweeten the deal. The two have been friends and collaborators for a decade, but this year – in addition to touring together – they’ll release the joint studio album they’ve been teasing for nearly four years. Could it be the solidification of one of hip-hop history’s great duos? Don’t miss your chance to find out.  7:30 p.m. Saturday, March 2. Stage AE, North Side. stageae.com

Wiz Khalifa. (Current Photo by Jake Mysliwczyk)

 

The Roommate: If you missed Homestead native Tamara Tunie in The Tempest, you’ll get another shot as she co-stars in playwright Jen Silverman’s The Roommate. $15-6. March 2-23. City Theater South Side. citytheatrecompany.org.

Mac-N-Cheese Cook-off: Do you have a winning mac-n-cheese recipe? Why keep it to yourself? Compete in the Mac-N-Cheese Cook-off at Double L. Or, if you’re more of an expert eater, you can come taste all of the entries and cast your vote. 1 p.m. Sun., March 3. Double L Pub, Millvale. $10. tinyurl.com/pghmaccheese

A Doll’s House Part 2: Nora was decades ahead of the curve when she walked out on her family in Ibsen’s 1879 A Doll’s House. The sequel (written in 2017) has Nora returning home 15 years later as she negotiates a return to her old life under new conditions. Pittsburgh Public Theater brings this production to the O’Reilly Theater from Thu. March 7- Sun. April 7. $30-70. ppt.org

Chingy: What’s Chingy been up to, you ask? The rapper, responsible for such bangers as “Right Thurr” and “Holidae In,” has a new single, “On Go,” which some might argue is better than it has a right to be. He’s also touring, and will appear in Pittsburgh along with some other hit-makers of the early-aughts: B2K, Omarion, Pretty Ricky, Lloyd and Ying Yang Twins. 8 p.m. Friday, March 8. Petersen Events Center, Oakland. $45.50-99.50. peterseneventscenter.com

Food Truck A Palooza: If you think you can’t enjoy your favorite food trucks during a Pittsburgh winter, you’re wrong. Food Truck A Palooza gathers all the best food trucks, along with crafters, vendors, live music and games in one location. 12 p.m. Sat., March 9. Monroeville Convention Center, Monroeville. goodtastepittsburgh.com

Don’t abandon your bike just because of the cold weather: You can still commute on two wheels, you just have to make some adjustments. Here are a few tips from BikePGH’s website: Layer your clothing, put on tires with heavier tread, and if the weather gets too bad, walk or take the bus.

Camille A. Brown and Dancers: Brown is a gifted, “prolific black female choreographer whose work examines the cultural narrative of African American identity. A Jacob’s Pillow Dance Award-winner and Guggenheim Fellowship-recipient, her bold work taps into both ancestral stories and contemporary culture to capture a range of deeply personal experiences.” 8 p.m. Sat., March 9-10. August Wilson Center, Downtown. Trustarts.org

Comedian Mo Alexander: Performing since 1996, Alexander has made a name for himself both on the road and by working with some of comedy’s biggest names. He’s opened for Keenan Ivory Wayans. In 2003 he headlined his own show at Casino Royale in Las Vegas. 8 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. Sat., March 9. Burning Bridges Comedy Club, Lawrenceville. $10. burningbridgescomedyclub.com

Lords of Acid: There’s no better cure for the winter doldrums than a bit of soul-warming hedonism. And how better to indulge than to the drug-fueled sounds of Lords of Acid? With Belgium’s Praga Khan at the helm, the band has undergone various lineup changes over the past couple decades. But–along with a new record, last year’s Pretty in Kink–the band (via press release) promises to bring us “a new crew of deviants, dilettantes and sonically transmitted diseases.” 5:30 p.m. Sunday, March 10. Rex Theater, South Side. $23.50-26. rextheater.net

WWE Raw Live. March 11 (Photo: WWE.com)

WWE Raw Live: The stars of the WWE’s red brand role into town less than a month out from Wrestlemania. These are the shows that set up the WWE’s biggest event of the year and PPG Paints Arena is host to one. See stars like Dan Ambrose, Seth Rollins, Rhonda Rousey and Braun Strohman. 7:30 p.m. Mon., March 11. $30-500. ppgpaintsarena.com

Valeria Luiselli – Novelist & Essayist Presented by Pittsburgh Arts & Lectures: If we are going to have meaningful conversations about the effects of American policies on immigrant children, people like Mexican author Valeria Luiselli should be leading it. Her latest, Tell Me How It Ends: An Essay in Forty Questions, has reached critical acclaim. The forty questions were asked of undocumented Latinx children facing deportation. This presentation is part of the Ten Evenings Speakers’ Series from Pittsburgh Arts and Lectures. 7:30 p.m. Mon. March 11. Carnegie Music Hall, Oakland. $15-35. pittsburghlectures.org

Golden Heart Gala: This gala brings a “wee bit o’ Ireland” to LeMont to benefit the Vincentian Senior Communities. Raise a glass, raise a paddle and raise merriment on St. Patrick’s Eve as you enjoy a cocktail reception, silent auction, sit-down dinner party and more. 6 p.m. Sat., March 16. LeMont, Mt. Washington. facebook.com/VCSCare

The Very Hungry Caterpillar: Eric Carle’s most famous children’s books as well as four others will delight young viewers and their parents at this giant puppet show. 11 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. Sat., March 16. Byham Theater, Downtown. $25. trustarts.org

Mariah Carey: Joining in on an internet fad, Mariah Carey recently tweeted two identical, side-by-side selfies. “I don’t get this 10 year challenge,” she wrote. “[T]ime is not something I acknowledge.” In other words, it’s Mariah’s time-space continuum, we’re just living in it. Just one of many reasons not to miss the pop goddess when she brings her Caution World Tour to town. 8 p.m. Monday, March 18. Benedum Center, Downtown. $64.95-499.95. trustarts.org

Irish Genealogy Workshop: Want to learn more about your Irish roots? Join Irish genealogy experts Fintan Mullan and Gillian Hunt from the Ulster Historical Foundation in Belfast for the fifth annual Irish Genealogy Workshop featuring new topics on the rich genealogical sources found in Ireland. 9 a.m. Mon., March 18. Heinz History Center, Strip District. heinzhistorycenter.org

Dale Watson and Kinky Friedman, Lonestar Legends: These two Texas Troubadors have been through Pittsburgh many times, but this is the first time they’ve come through together on a tour called: Long Tales and Short Songs. Watson is the traditional honky-tonker and keeper of the flame for the sound that used to be called country music. Friedman is an author, singer, songwriter and possibly the lone Jewish Cowboy in the world. 8 p.m., Fri. March 22. Hard Rock Cafe, Station Square. $18. druskyentertainment.com

Dale Watson. March 22.

 

Vintage Pittsburgh 2019: Do you have a passion for thrifting or all things antique? Shop ‘til you drop at the seventh annual Vintage Pittsburgh retro fair, presented by the Heinz History Center and The Neighborhood Flea. You’ll find clothes, accessories, home decor, records and many other treasures. 10 a.m. Sat., March 23. Heinz History Center, Strip District. Free. heinzhistorycenter.org

Martha Redbone Roots Project Quartet: Martha Redbone is the real deal when it comes to Americana Roots music. She grew up in Appalachia before moving to Brooklyn and her story comes through in her music. The show is Presented by Calliope House at Carnegie Lecture Hall, Oakland. 7:30 p.m. Sat. March 23. $20-$45. calliopehouse.org

Disney in Concert: The Pittsburgh Symphony plays all of your favorite Disney classics led by conductor Andrés Franco. Fri. March 29-Sun. March 31. Heinz Hall, Downtown. $22-99. Pittsburghsymphony.org

Scream at your favorite meteorologist through social media after you bought three ton of rock salt based on their forecasts!

 

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