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Rock climbing, pierogies and beer highlight Pittsburgh's weekend

JoAnne Klimovich Harrop
| Friday, Sept. 21, 2018, 11:03 a.m.
Ascend Pittsburgh, a premiere climbing, fitness and yoga facility will host the city’s first professional climbing competition Steel Town Throw Down Sept. 21-22 at 2141 Mary St. on the South Side.
COURTEST ASCEND PITTSBURGH
Ascend Pittsburgh, a premiere climbing, fitness and yoga facility will host the city’s first professional climbing competition Steel Town Throw Down Sept. 21-22 at 2141 Mary St. on the South Side.
The Thrival Innovation + Music Festival celebrates Pittsburgh’s growing innovation ecosystem and create a community gathering to share in the energy and creativity of arts and music. The event culminates Sept. 21 with Thrival Music X Arts event which begins at 4 through 11 p.m. and features outdoor, life music at Highmark Stadium on the South Side.
TONY PISCITELLI
The Thrival Innovation + Music Festival celebrates Pittsburgh’s growing innovation ecosystem and create a community gathering to share in the energy and creativity of arts and music. The event culminates Sept. 21 with Thrival Music X Arts event which begins at 4 through 11 p.m. and features outdoor, life music at Highmark Stadium on the South Side.
Pierogis served in many delicious, and perhaps some unexpected, ways will be available as the Pittsburgh Pierogi Festival returns to Kennywood on Sept. 23. More than two dozen pierogi vendors will offer their variations on the traditional favorite Polish — and Pittsburgh — comfort food.
pittsburghpierogifestival.com
Pierogis served in many delicious, and perhaps some unexpected, ways will be available as the Pittsburgh Pierogi Festival returns to Kennywood on Sept. 23. More than two dozen pierogi vendors will offer their variations on the traditional favorite Polish — and Pittsburgh — comfort food.
This year’s Pittsburgh International Festival of Firsts promises to be bigger and better than ever. The festival opens Sept. 21 and runs through Nov. 11. It has doubled in length and will have triple the attractions throughout Pittsburgh such as Manifold, projection mapping by Philip Roca.  Hosted by the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust, the opening of this expanded showcase coincides with the trust’s Gallery Crawl which takes place on Sept. 21.
COURTESY PITTSBURGH CULTURAL TRUST
This year’s Pittsburgh International Festival of Firsts promises to be bigger and better than ever. The festival opens Sept. 21 and runs through Nov. 11. It has doubled in length and will have triple the attractions throughout Pittsburgh such as Manifold, projection mapping by Philip Roca. Hosted by the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust, the opening of this expanded showcase coincides with the trust’s Gallery Crawl which takes place on Sept. 21.
Get your Lederhosen ready, Penn Brewery on the North Side is bringing back its classic Oktoberfest celebration from 5 p.m. to midnight on Sept. 21 and 22 and noon to 10 p.m. on Sept. 23 as well as next weekend Sept. 28-30.
COURTESY PENN BREWERY
Get your Lederhosen ready, Penn Brewery on the North Side is bringing back its classic Oktoberfest celebration from 5 p.m. to midnight on Sept. 21 and 22 and noon to 10 p.m. on Sept. 23 as well as next weekend Sept. 28-30.

For the first weekend of fall, Pittsburgh has a lot to offer in terms of outside activities, before the weather turns.

Kennywood officially closed for the season last weekend but is open with limited rides for the pierogi festival Sunday.

It's the kickoff weekend for the Pittsburgh International Festival of Firsts, hosted by the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust. The festival coincides with the cultural trust's quarterly gallery crawl Friday.

Ascend Pittsburgh is bringing a professional climbing competition Friday and Saturday to the South Side, where the Thrival X Music Festival will take place Saturday at Highmark Stadium.

For beer lovers, Penn Brewery on the North Side is hosting its annual Oktoberfest through Sunday.

Ascend it

Ascend Pittsburgh, a premiere climbing, fitness and yoga facility will host the city's first professional climbing competition Steel Town Throw Down Sept. 21-22 at 2141 Mary St. on the South Side. This event will attract climbers of all ages who will compete for a $10,000 purse. It's the first of four USA Climbing 2018 National Cup Series contests. Rock climbers will be visible throughout the facility climbing on Ascend's three 16-foot-tall boulders. During this type of competition, participants often make dramatic, gymnastic moves between climbing holds. The qualifying round begins at 6 p.m. Sept. 21, with more events starting at 8 a.m. Sept. 22. The Steel Town Throw Down begins at noon on Sept. 22, where there will also be food trucks and other vendors.

Spectators are free, but must complete an online waver before entering.

Details: 412-745-2141 or ascendpgh.com


Thrival

This event began as a community block party in 2013. Ascender founded the Thrival Innovation + Music Festival to celebrate Pittsburgh's growing innovation ecosystem and create a community gathering to share in the energy and creativity of arts and music. Thrival is a platform that explores the relationship between humans, technology and creativity through multimedia, curated programs and an annual arts and innovation festival.

The event culminates Sept. 21 with Thrival Music X Arts event which begins at 4 p.m and runs through 11 p.m. It features outdoor, live music at Highmark Stadium on the South Side. Mars Jackson is the opening performance, with Dillon Francis closing the show. Since its inception has welcomed over 35,000 people to the Steel City.

Details: thrivalfestival.com


Festival time

This year's Pittsburgh International Festival of Firsts promises to be bigger and better than ever. The festival opens Sept. 21 and runs through Nov. 11. It has doubled in length and will have triple the attractions throughout Pittsburgh. Hosted by the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust, the opening of this expanded showcase coincides with the trust's Gallery Crawl which takes place on Sept. 21.

The crawl happens throughout the city's cultural district and is a free, quarterly, multi-venue showcase of downtown's dynamic art and entertainment scene. Dozens of galleries, stages, storefronts, and unique public spaces dot each installment's 14-block map of destinations, hosting U.S. premieres of international multimedia artists, regional visual art exhibitions, live music, theater and dance performances, film screenings, hands-on creative activities and special crawl after dark attractions.

The festival includes 30 companies and artists from more than 20 countries and 500-plus performing and visual arts events never before seen in the country, continent and world.

Over the course of eight weeks, Pittsburgh's cultural district will become a hub of the U.S., North American and world premieres. These works by renowned, globally minded artists will feature a full range of arts disciplines — theater, dance, music, visual art, pieces that defy category — and take place in both traditional and unexpected spaces.

Details: trustarts.org/pct_home/festivals/pittsburgh-international-festival-of-firsts-2018


On tap

Get your Lederhosen ready, Penn Brewery on the North Side is bringing back its classic Oktoberfest celebration from 5 p.m. to midnight on Sept. 21 and 22 and noon to 10 p.m. on Sept. 23 as well as next weekend Sept. 28-30. The biergarten will have cold bier such as Oktoberfest, Penn Pilsner, Dark, Weizen, Kaiser Pils, IPA, Tangerine Swirl, Pumpkin Roll Ale, Cheater Juice New England IPA and a few specialty brews. Food choices include pierogies, pickled red cabbage salad, a sausage platter of spicy kielbasa, Penn Pilsner bratwursts, and rustic chicken sausage as well as mini apfelstrudel with caramel and cinnamon cream. There will Bavarian music by entertainers Autobahn, Kevin Solecki and Madel Jager.

Details: pennbrew.com


Pierogi time

The pierogi possibilities are endless at this year's Pittsburgh Pierogi Festival from 1 to 6 p.m. on Sept. 23 at Kennywood Park in West Mifflin where more than two dozen pierogi vendors will offer their variations on the traditional favorite Polish — and Pittsburgh — comfort food.

There will be Latin-inspired deep-fried Chica pierogies topped with fresh chunky salsa, sour cream and avocado cilantro sauce, as well as Buffalo pierogi, fruit pierogi and Thanksgiving-themed Gobblerogi with turkey breast, gravy and cranberry.

Cheddar, jalapeño and beer pierogies will be on the menu along with vegan choices. One of the offerings comes topped with beef brisket and chipotle sauce and another has bacon and haluski. There will also be a deep-fried fruit-filled pierogi stuffed with lemon, blueberry, apple and cherry, and a potato/sauerkraut and potato/cheddar pierogi.

The festival also will host the first Pierogi Pinching Contest sponsored by The Pittsburgh Bakery Society, in which 40 preregistered contestants will compete for prizes by assembling pierogi in a timed competition.

There will be live musical entertainment. Kennywood rides open during the festival will include the Merry-Go-Round, Thunderbolt, Jack Rabbit, Racer, Turtle and Noah's Ark.

More than 6,000 visitors attended last year's festival.

Details: kennywood.com

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