Frick Park Bridge bus merch flies into Pittsburgh shops | Arts + Entertainment | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Frick Park Bridge bus merch flies into Pittsburgh shops

click to enlarge Frick Park Bridge bus merch flies into Pittsburgh shops (2)
Frick Park Bridge merch from CommonWealth Press and Curated Flame
Items inspired by Pittsburgh’s infrastructure failures are becoming as collectible as those bearing the city’s sports teams. After a Port Authority bus fell into a sinkhole on 10th Street in Downtown Pittsburgh, Sinkhole Bus merchandise quickly became popular. Most notably, artist Toby Fraley released his Sinkhole Bus Commemorative Ornament, and followed it up with his 2020 Repaired Sinkhole Ornament, after the massive hole was finally filled in and repaved.

Now another bus casualty is being memorialized, specifically that of the articulated Port Authority bus that fell, along with other vehicles, when the Fern Hollow Bridge in Frick Park collapsed.

Pittsburgh-based union screenprinting shop CommonWealth Press created a $25 “What The Frick!?!” T-shirt featuring an illustration of the nearly 60-foot-long red PAT bus being lifted by a crane from the wreckage. According to CWPress owner Dan Rugh, the “WHAT THE FRICK!?!” expression coming out of the bus’ front window in a voice bubble is courtesy of Susie Waldo, a friend of the shop.
Over in Millvale, Black-owned smokeshop Curated Flame is selling a “Frick Park Bridge Bus” T-shirt in collaboration with artist Kira Moon. Also priced at $25, the black shirt features an illustration of the bus being dangled over a broken bridge with strings from a hand as if the vehicle were a marionette. The catch? Curated Flame’s shirt is only available for pre-order for 72 hours. “We won’t be ‘dropping’ this shirt again,” writes the shop online.

As for Fraley? He’s sitting this one out since people were injured. (No one was hurt in the sinkhole bus fall, but 10 people suffered non-life-threatening injuries in the recent bridge collapse.)

However, CWPress is donating a part of the proceeds from T-shirt sales to fundraising efforts for those injured.

“When the images of the bus being lifted started making their way online, people began messaging us to make something,” says Rugh. “We considered doing a design and donating to the parks or something but once we saw some folks had been injured, it seemed like a way to do some good and fill the obvious demand.”

Rugh says some proceeds will go to a GoFundMe for a couple who were injured, and they’re looking for others as well.
The shop also has a prototype on their Instagram page of a steel bus ornament. Rugh says he hasn’t made the ornaments yet, but “if Pittsburgh wants them, we can make ‘em and do the same with the proceeds."
CommonWealth Press.
Curated Flame.

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