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Heads Up

Monday, June 11, 2018

Advocacy group holding public forum to discuss Allegheny County criminalizing condom possession

Posted By on Mon, Jun 11, 2018 at 2:05 PM

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Last week, TribLive discovered police officers in Allegheny County have been designating condoms as "an instrument of crime" in more than a dozen prostitution cases last year. The revelation has drawn criticism from several social justice groups and local defense attorneys. Some jurisdictions, like New York City and California, have even outlawed or restricted the practice since it can encourage unsafe sex.

And today, Pittsburgh's branch of the Sex Workers Outreach Project, is hoping to educate people  about the potential issues of Allegheny County's condom-criminalization practices.

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Tuesday, May 15, 2018

New editorial leadership announced at Pittsburgh City Paper

Posted By on Tue, May 15, 2018 at 12:20 PM

Today we had to make the very difficult decision to part ways with our editor, Charlie Deitch.

Charlie has served Pittsburgh City Paper and the people of Pittsburgh incredibly well in his tenure here and oversaw many positive changes at City Paper, including our newest redesign.

We are very excited for the future of CP and feel like we have a team in place that will help to move CP into a future where we can encompass all of Pittsburgh, with a renewed focus on neighborhoods, the arts, food and drink, and of course, local news.

Change is always difficult, and this was a difficult day. We are committed to the employees of CP, who work hard every day to put together a publication that we can all be proud of.

We wish Charlie nothing but the best in his future endeavors.

We are excited to announce that Rob Rossi will now be joining us as Editor of City Paper. Rob has been a Pittsburgh media staple for years and brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the role. We look forward to Rob’s introduction to you in the next few days, and we are excited for you to all be a part of the City Paper’s bright future.

Vernon L. Wise III
President, Eagle Media Corp.

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Friday, April 20, 2018

Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy breaks ground on Allegheny Commons fountain project in North Side

Posted By on Fri, Apr 20, 2018 at 1:14 PM

Rendering of Allegheny Commons fountain project - IMAGE COURTESY OF PITTSBURGH PARKS CONSERVANCY
  • Image courtesy of Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy
  • Rendering of Allegheny Commons fountain project
Allegheny Commons in the North Side is the oldest park in Pittsburgh, and understandably, it’s a bit worse for wear.

But things are looking up for the park. On April 19, the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy broke ground on a new fountain project in the northeast corner of the park. According to a press release, “the new fountain will mirror its original 19th century design and will include a 50-foot circular stone basin, a one-foot rim of heavy cut stone, a large Grecian vase in the center, a tall principal [water] jet and 16 smaller [water] jets.”

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Thursday, March 8, 2018

You can now buy a bobblehead of Pittsburgh Steelers receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster on his bike

Posted By on Thu, Mar 8, 2018 at 12:09 PM

JuJu Smith-Schuster bike bobblehead - PHOTO COURTESY OF NATIONAL BOBBLEHEAD HALL OF FAME AND MUSEUM
  • Photo courtesy of National Bobblehead Hall of Fame and Museum
  • JuJu Smith-Schuster bike bobblehead
In October 2017, Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster tweeted out a picture of his beloved bike and informed his followers that it had been stolen. Pittsburgh social media exploded with calls for the thief to return Smith-Schuster’s bike, with the hashtag #TeamFindJujusBike. Fellow Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown even offered free tickets to a Steelers home game in exchange for the bike.

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Friday, February 16, 2018

Former border-patrol guard Francisco Cantú to visit Pittsburgh to share immigrant stories

Posted By on Fri, Feb 16, 2018 at 11:25 AM

Francisco Cantú - PHOTO COURTESY OF BEOWULF SHEEHAN
  • Photo courtesy of Beowulf Sheehan
  • Francisco Cantú
There’s a lot of misinformation being thrown around about undocumented immigrants. Some people equate being undocumented with being a criminal, even though people’s first immigration violation is a civil, not criminal, offense. Many also believe that undocumented immigrants don’t speak English. But, according to the nonpartisan Migration Policy Institute report, 62 percent of undocumented immigrants in Pennsylvania either only speak English or speak English well.

No one understands the difference between immigration myths and facts better than author Francisco Cantú. Cantú worked as a U.S. Customs and Border Protection agent from 2008 to 2012. He patrolled the U.S.-Mexico border, and also grew up near the border while his mother worked at National Parks in the Southwest.

He wrote a memoir about his experience as a border-patrol agent called The Line Becomes a River. Cantú studied international relations in college, and he describes in the book how he wanted to join the border patrol so he could experience the actual border, instead of just studying theory in the classroom.

The book has received praise from critics across the country for its authentic portrayal of law-enforcement officers and undocumented immigrants. Cantú will be at the City of Asylum bookstore at Alphabet City, in the North Side, on Feb. 17 for a free reading of his new book.


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Monday, January 8, 2018

Pittsburgh’s frozen rivers will stick around despite warming temperatures

Posted By on Mon, Jan 8, 2018 at 2:21 PM

The frozen Allegheny River near PNC Park in Pittsburgh - CP PHOTO BY JAKE MYSLIWCZYK
  • CP photo by Jake Mysliwczyk
  • The frozen Allegheny River near PNC Park in Pittsburgh
It takes a lot of cold to freeze one river, let alone three. But the frigid temperatures that have hung over Pittsburgh for the last couple weeks have accomplished just that. Many sections of the Allegheny, Monongahela and Ohio rivers have accumulated inches of ice. (Check out this week's City Paper out Jan. 10 for more spectacular images of our iced-over rivers.)

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Wednesday, October 11, 2017

New Mexican restaurant in Beechview seeking crowd-sourced loan funds

Posted By on Wed, Oct 11, 2017 at 5:06 PM

Demetrio Aragon (right) and his family inside the La Catrina kitchen - PHOTO COURTESY OF DEMTRIO ARAGON
  • Photo courtesy of Demtrio Aragon
  • Demetrio Aragon (right) and his family inside the La Catrina kitchen
In May 2016, City Paper reported about the economic revitalization of Pittsburgh’s Beechview neighborhood and the role Latino residents were playing. The South Hills neighborhood had been marked by several vacancies in its business district for decades, but over the last few years, Latino entrepreneurs have been opening up restaurants and other businesses, bringing vitality back to the neighborhood.

Recently, La Catrina, a new Mexican restaurant joined the ranks, and the owners are looking for a little help so they can improve their operations and offerings. Demetrio Aragon and his family have lived in the Pittsburgh area since 2000. Aragon worked in Japanese restaurants until one day his wife convinced him that the family should open up a restaurant to serve the traditional Mexican dishes they had trouble finding in Pittsburgh.

“My wife, it was her idea,” says Aragon. “She saw the Hispanic population growing, and that there was a need for real food. We serve sopes, and tamales, but not like some I see here that are served unwrapped. We wrap ours up [in a corn husk]. That is the way it is supposed to be done.”

Aragon says the restaurant, which occupies a space across the street from the IGA/Las Palmas grocery store on Broadway Avenue, has been open for more than three months, but the place still needs a griddle, refrigerator and mixer to become fully functional. Aragon, with help from the Beechview-based Pittsburgh Hispanic Development Corporation, is trying to secure a crowd-sourced loan through kiva.org. As of print, La Catrina’s loan is 94 percent funded with only $550 left to reach its $10,000 goal, with only three days remaining to contribute.

“We just need some equipment,” says Aragon. “It’s just me and my wife and daughters. We don’t have investors.”

Ashleigh Deemer, chief of staff to Pittsburgh City Councilor Natalia Rudiak, wrote in an email to CP that La Catrina deserves a little support, so that Beechview can continue to grow economically. "Beechview has been a hidden gem for years, but Broadway Avenue's small-business culture is really taking off, and La Catrina is a perfect destination for anyone who wants to visit and see all Beechview has to offer," she wrote.

Aragon and his family live in Dormont, but choose Beechview to cater to the neighborhood’s growing Latino population. Aragon is from the Álvaro Obregón district of Mexico City (the same district as deported immigrant-rights activist Martín Esquivel-Hernandez), and he says there is a big opportunity in Pittsburgh for ultra-authentic Mexican food because there aren’t many authentic Mexican restaurants.

La Catrina specializes in many hard-to-find Mexican recipes, all crafted by Aragon’s wife, Angelica. La Catrina offers chilaquiles (deep-fried tortillas bathed in chili sauce), lamb barbacoa (and a soup made from all the lamb’s juices), and sopes (a corn masa dumpling typically topped with slow-cooked meats, lettuce and avocado).

Aragon says that all of La Catrina's traditional Mexican recipes are made from scratch, including all of the chili sauces that covers most dishes. La Catrina offers Tex-Mex food as well, but not all of those items are scratch-made.

Aragon says that La Catrina's clientele has mostly been Latinos looking for a taste of home, but many native-born Americans have also eaten there. He hopes that La Catrina will be a restaurant welcoming to everyone.

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Monday, June 12, 2017

Pittsburgh Penguins announce Stanley Cup victory parade route

Posted By on Mon, Jun 12, 2017 at 4:25 PM

Pittsburgh Penguins Stanley Cup championship parade, 2016. - CP PHOTO BY LUKE THOR TRAVIS
  • CP photo by Luke Thor Travis
  • Pittsburgh Penguins Stanley Cup championship parade, 2016.
There were catfish on the ice, an alleged claim of halitosis and some up-and-down goal keeping, but the Pittsburgh Penguins still emerged victorious in the Stanley Cup Finals. On June 11, the Pens defeated the somewhat stupidly named Nashville Predators by a score of 2-0, winning the series in six games.

This is the second straight Stanley Cup for the Penguins, and city and Allegheny County officials want to celebrate with you Downtown. Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto's office sent a press release indicating the Pens championship parade will be held on Wednesday, June 14 at 11 a.m. in Downtown.

The parade route will begin at the intersection of Grant Street and Liberty Avenue, traveling down Grant Street to Boulevard of the Allies. From there, the route will head down Boulevard of the Allies toward Point State Park, where it will terminate. A stage will be set up on Point State Park's lawn (the one closest to the city streets), where Penguins personnel and players will give celebratory remarks.

City of Pittsburgh Public Works employees will be setting up barriers beginning Tue., June 13, in the evening and during the following morning. Road closures will being at 9 a.m. on Wed., June 14.  

Pittsburgh officials advise parade watchers to wear warm-weather, waterproof attire and bring plenty of water, as Wednesday's forecast predicts a high of 84 degrees, high humidity and possible thunderstorms.

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Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Bike-advocacy group encourages Pittsburghers to ride bikes to work on Friday

Posted By on Wed, May 17, 2017 at 4:58 PM

PHOTO COURTESY OF BIKE PITTSBURGH
  • Photo courtesy of Bike Pittsburgh
Cyclists in and around the city must feel a little vindicated. In a Pittsburgh mayoral race in which candidates blamed bike lanes (which account for a minuscule fraction of the city budget) for the city’s lead-water-pipe problems, public-safety issues, and a shortage of affordable housing, the one candidate who was pro-bike-lane, Mayor Bill Peduto, emerged victorious, with about 69 percent of the vote.

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Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Author discusses "sex between straight white men" tomorrow at the University of Pittsburgh

Posted By on Wed, Mar 15, 2017 at 4:17 PM

Jane Ward - UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, RIVERSIDE
  • University of California, Riverside
  • Jane Ward

University of California, Riverside Professor Jane Ward visits Pitt tomorrow to discuss her highly controversial book Not Gay: Sex Between Straight White Men.

Almost 70 years after Alfred Kinsey and his Institute gave us the Kinsey Scale, Ward’s 2015 book sheds light on how straight-identified men explain the reality of their sexual fluidity. It turns out that for a lot of the men Ward interviewed, it’s not "gay" if the gay sex you’re having reaffirms rather than challenges your masculine identity.


Tomorrow, Ward gives a lecture on her research, titled "The Tragedy of Heterosexuality," from 4-5 p.m. in the Cathedral of Learning. The lecture is presented by Pitt's Gender and Sexuality Program and is free and open to the public.

The talk takes place in Room 602. The Cathedral of Learning is located at 4200 Fifth Ave., Oakland.




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