Pittsburgh is a city that is not just easy to fall in love with, but just as easy to fall in love in. Here are some of my favorite date night activities in the Steel City:
- Take in Some Tunes
Summer is the season for outdoor music. Whether it be a larger concert at some of the city's well known music venues such as First Niagara Pavilion, Stage AE, or smaller stages like Mr. Smalls, there's nothing like getting to experience live music with someone else. What's even more exciting are the many music festivals taking place this summer around the city - from Jam on Walnut, WYEP Summer Music Festival, to Feed More Festival, there are quite a few to say the least. Also from my experience, chances are if you step foot in one of Pittsburgh's city parks on an evening summer night, you're likely to run across live music of some sort.
- Check out the Breweries
When moving back to Pittsburgh, I was pleasantly surprised and excited by the number of breweries popping up all over the city. Some of my favorites are Voodoo, Full Pint, Roundabout, East End, and Rivertowne. The Voodoo Homestead location allows you to enjoy an open garage-door style spot complete with board games and eclectic art all around you. Both Full Pint and Roundabout are in the booming neighborhood of Lawrenceville where even if you want to stray away from breweries for shopping, dining, etc. you're in good hands with many options all around you.
- Escape the City, in the City
The only thing better than BYOB, is BYOB + BYOM (meat), am I right? Bayardstown Social Club in the Strip boasts a private outdoor space, pavilion, picnic tables, concert stage, grills and a fire pit for its patrons to enjoy. It is members-only, but with a spot like this in the middle of the Strip, you can bet Bayardstown is a sure win for an out-of-the-box date night spot. They also do happy hours every Friday with live music, food trucks and more that non-members can partake in for $5. I'd recommend checking it out on nights you're looking lose the "city" feel without having to travel far.
- A Day in the Strip
While this is more of a day-date favorite of mine, I would be kicking myself if I didn't mention it. Nothing beats a Saturday morning walking past the produce stands and Wholey's Fish market, taking in the sounds and smells of one of Pittsburgh's most iconic neighborhoods. After sampling some of the fresh fruit, check out the Allegheny Coffee and Tea Exchange where you can get a cold brew coffee growler to go, or Pittsburgh Popcorn to fill up on all the kettle corn your heart desires. And lastly, if taking it all in makes you thirsty, you can stop in BeerHive - one of my favorite bars my boyfriend ironically introduced to me on one of our first dates. Clearly he knows the way to my heart because I haven't been able to visit the Strip without stopping in since.
- Go Out to the Ball Game
There's a reason PNC Park is ranked as one of the best ballparks in the country - I mean, have you seen that view? You don't have to be a baseball fan to appreciate a night out here with your other half. Stop in Beer Head Bar across from PNC Park to grab a beer from their wide selection before the game to get in the buccos spirit. And although I personally feel like any night at PNC Park is hard to top, summer firework nights definitely add a little somethin' to make your date night a tad more romantic.
- Catch a Flick...Outdoors
Yes, going to the movies is a pretty standard date night option...but if you want to step up your game, check out one of the many movie showings in one of Pittsburgh's parks (or even on top of a parking garage). Viewing locations include, but are not limited to: Rooftop Shindig at Theater Square Garage, Schenley Park, Arsenal Park, and my favorite for a view: Grandview Park on top of Mt. Washington.
- Get Crafty
In a world where DIY and reclaimed anything and everything are all the rage, why not take a night to roll up your sleeves together? With drinks in hand, of course. I'm talking about Pop Craft - somewhat like a paint & wine night only craftier. Guys can feel extra manly building things - sometimes of reclaimed wood - and girls get to live out all of their Pinterest dreams.
- Ice Cream
As an ice cream lover, this usually ends up being added into any of my nights out in the city. If you're looking for a homemade, small-shop feeling (complete with a blast-from-the-past candy selection that will truly make you feel like a kid in a candy store), Klavon's is your place. My other favorite I was recently introduced to is Dream Cream on Liberty Ave. If you or your date is worried about feeling guilty about indulging in this sweet treat, Dream Cream can help take some of the guilt away as each scoop goes to helping various charities and causes.
- Class It Up
If you're looking for a more formal or classy date night, hitting up the Cultural District is your best bet. The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust is a great resource to learn about upcoming shows at the Benedum Center and the Byham Theater and help guide you to where to find ballet, symphony, and other events in the area. And for those who want to feel classy but the idea of Broadway isn't exactly your thing, don't worry - there are a lot of different options out there.
- Take in Art & Science After Dark
Even if museums aren't normally your go-to, experiencing them at night is an experience unlike anything else. After Dark at the Carnegie Museum of Natural History has awesome evening events for adults, as does the 21+ night at the Carnegie Science Center. The Carnegie Science Center events make me especially happy as it used to be a frequent field trip destination when I was growing up and I love getting to re-experience it as an adult. One of their upcoming events include the Science of Beer - I mean, what more could you ask for?