Rediscover Pittsburgh with Heather

Spending the perfect Saturday exploring the city with friends is high on my list when I think about what I want to do to Rediscover Pittsburgh.

The pandemic has been particularly hard on people like me, who are at higher risk – I’ve had to take staying at home very seriously. This means that for me, to protect my health, I’ll be staying at home a bit longer still. But it also means that I’ve had lots of time to think about what I’m most looking forward to when I can go out again! Spending the perfect Saturday exploring the city with friends is high on my list when I think about what I want to do to Rediscover Pittsburgh.

I tend to plan all of my perfect days around food and coffee. I’ve really missed going out to my favorite restaurants for a great meal – one of the restaurants that I can’t wait to visit again is The Whitfield. It is one of the best brunches in Pittsburgh, and it’s the perfect place to start a Saturday. As a bonus – if you’re looking for somewhere to stay, The Whitfield is in the Ace Hotel, so all you’d have to do is head downstairs for a delicious meal. Not really a brunch person? Not a problem – just stop by the coffee bar in the lobby. I tend to order a cappuccino with brunch, and then pick another one up to-go on my way out!

These past few months have taught me how much I love just spending time with my friends – catching up with each other, sharing stories and laughs…. In person, rather than over a Zoom screen. And they’ve also taught me how much I crave spending time outside! So once we’ve had our fill at brunch, we’d head to my personal happy spot – Schenley Plaza in Oakland. It’s the place I go to relax, to read at one of the little tables set up – it’s the perfect meet up spot. Plus, you’re so close to so many Pittsburgh gems – the iconic Dave & Andy’s ice cream is just a few blocks away, as is the new Milkshake Factory (I recommend a chocolate peanut butter milkshake, classic but doesn’t disappoint. If you’re like me, and constantly in search of more caffeine, Redhawk Coffee is also only a few minutes away. Their cold brew comes in bottles, which I think is so fun. They also have a portable wheelchair ramp, which means that I can actually get in – I always note places that are aware of accessibility. Flagstaff Hill in Schenley Park is another of my go-to green spaces in the city – as a CMU undergrad, it was basically my backyard for my four years on campus, and it holds a special place in my heart!

The other thing that I’ve come to realize that I really miss is live music! I cannot wait to spend an evening at The BenedumHeinz Hall, or Stage AE, catching a live show or concert with friends. There’s something about live music that just really makes you feel connected to the people that you’re with – it’s a shared experience, and always makes me feel like my night ends on such a high! I can’t wait to have that again.