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Friday, August 16, 2019

Which hot dog cooking method are you? Take our quiz to find out!

Posted By on Fri, Aug 16, 2019 at 1:50 PM

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Summer might be winding down, but we're still in the thick of hot dog season. Whether you grill, fry, or boil your hot dogs, it's just as tasty ... actually, scratch that. How you cook a hot dog says a lot about your personality. Screw astrology, it's hot dog o'clock.

Tuesday, July 30, 2019

Under the Big Top: Rising superstar Benji. to headline CP's carnival-themed Best of Pittsburgh party

Posted By on Tue, Jul 30, 2019 at 6:00 PM

Performers for the Best of Pittsburgh party will include members from Iron City Circus Arts and Pittsburgh Circus Arts Collaborative. - CP PHOTO: JARED MURPHY
  • CP photo: Jared Murphy
  • Performers for the Best of Pittsburgh party will include members from Iron City Circus Arts and Pittsburgh Circus Arts Collaborative.
Celebrate Pittsburgh's finest with carnival food, cocktails, circus performers, and some of the city's biggest names in entertainment as Pittsburgh City Paper's Best of Pittsburgh party returns to Nova Place on Thu., Aug. 8.

Best of Pittsburgh is City Paper's annual readers' poll when the public chooses the winners from a wide range of categories including arts, food, music, and culture. This year, a record-breaking 204,897 votes were cast by 29,507 Pittsburghers.

"It never ceases to amaze me how passionate and proud Pittsburgh is of the businesses, artists, people, and places that make this such a wonderful town," says CP Associate Publisher Justin Matase. "We are beyond excited to host this premier Best of Pittsburgh event to celebrate their contributions.”

Benji. - CP PHOTO: JARED WICKERHAM
  • CP photo: Jared Wickerham
  • Benji.
To celebrate the issue and winners, City Paper hosts an annual Best of Pittsburgh party to coincide with the issue, growing from a small invitation-only affair to one of Pittsburgh's most anticipated events.

This year's party, "Under the Big Top," inspired by the issue's carnival theme, will be the biggest it’s ever been. An entertainment showcase will feature rising local superstars Benji., DJ Femi, Smokestack Lightning, DJ TJ Harris, and DJ Breis. The incredible Iron City Circus Arts and Pittsburgh Circus Arts Collaborative, including aerialists and fire breathers, will also perform.

And this year for the first time, more people will be able to participate in the festivities. Multi-tiered ticket pricing is being offered, allowing more people to come and partake in the fun. "Pittsburgh City Paper represents all of Pittsburgh, and we wanted our event to be inclusive to all of Pittsburgh,” says Matase.


Tickets range from a $20 Just Dance ticket for guests who are only interested in the entertainment portion of the night, to a $75 VIP ticket which includes an open bar and early entry.

“Celebrating with the Best of Pittsburgh shouldn’t be limited to those who can afford an expensive ticket," adds Bryer Blumenschein, CP events and sponsorship coordinator. "Our goal is to turn this evening into an immersive, unforgettable experience rather than just another event.”

Those who purchase general admission or VIP tickets will also have access to a Tasting Tent, featuring more than 20 food and beverage vendors including Nicky’s Thai Kitchen, Umami, DiAnoia’s Eatery, and Franktuary. The Flaherty and O’Hara bars will be curated by Round Corner Cantina, serving up craft cocktails and drinks from Iron City Brewing.

Guests are encouraged to come to the party decked out in their finest red, white, and black circus attire.

"This year's Best of Pittsburgh is the most fun I've ever worked on," says CP Editor-in-Chief Lisa Cunningham, who chose this year's theme after becoming inspired by vintage circus advertisements and sideshow posters. "I can't wait for everyone to pick up the issue next week and see the amazing artwork designer Abbie Adams and photographer Jared Wickerham have been working on."

The Best of Pittsburgh issue, revealing all of the winners selected by the readers, will be on stands Wed., Aug. 7.

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

What type of pickle are you?

Posted By on Wed, Jul 24, 2019 at 1:13 PM

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If you've always wanted to know what kind of pickled food you would be based on your personality, take this quiz to find out! 

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Monday, July 15, 2019

Photos: Circus Arts at the Friday Night Market

Posted By on Mon, Jul 15, 2019 at 5:30 PM

Members of Iron City Circus Arts and Pittsburgh Circus Arts Collaborative performed in Market Square on Fri., July 12. - CP PHOTO: JARED WICKERHAM
  • CP Photo: Jared Wickerham
  • Members of Iron City Circus Arts and Pittsburgh Circus Arts Collaborative performed in Market Square on Fri., July 12.
Our friends at Iron City Circus Arts and the Pittsburgh Circus Arts Collaborative, who will be performing at Pittsburgh City Paper's Best of Pittsburgh party on Thu., Aug. 8 at Nova Place, gave us a little taste of their talents during the Friday Night Market in Downtown's Market Square. Aerialists, jugglers, stilt-walkers, and fire-breathers showed off for a great crowd.

It's impossible to make a bad photo of these performers, but here's my visual interpretation of the evening.

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Wednesday, July 3, 2019

How much do you know about the Fourth of July?

Posted By on Wed, Jul 3, 2019 at 6:20 PM

How well do you know your facts about the Fourth of July? Maybe not as well as you think! Take this quiz to find the incorrect fact in each question.

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Meet Rhythm, the 25-year-old furry from Carnegie

Posted By on Wed, Jul 3, 2019 at 12:39 PM

This week’s cover model: Rhythm the Mouse - CP PHOTO: JARED WICKERHAM
  • CP photo: Jared Wickerham
  • This week’s cover model: Rhythm the Mouse

We decided to combine one of the city’s most anticipated events with some of the best summer treats in town and invite a local furry to pose as our cover model in honor of Anthrocon, the annual furry convention coming to town this week. 

April, a 25-year-old from Carnegie, answered our call to bravely pose in her yellow mouse fursuit while holding an ice cream cone outside Klavon’s Ice Cream Parlor in the Strip District during a hot June weekend. 

Tell me about your fursona.

Rhythm is a happy, yellow mouse who loves to groove! I usually carry around a speaker in my backpack and play electronic dance music, and I love to dance while wearing her! I designed Rhythm to reflect myself — someone who’s small, bubbly, and loves music as much as I do.

What's your favorite part about the convention? 

Shopping! There’s a large room called the “Dealer’s Room” and “Artist Alley,” where artists and vendors sell artwork, plushies, T-shirts, fursuit accessories, and more. It’s always a blast to walk around and buy cool stuff.

Who made your fursuit? 

My mom and I made most of my fursuit. The foam skeleton of my fursuit head (called a foam base) was made by Splinter Fox Productions and my mom and I finished the rest. We finished the head, and we made the tail, body, and handpaws. My feet were made by Lemonbrat.

How long have you been a furry?

I’ve been a furry for six years. I discovered furries through a friend when I was in college. I thought furries were a little unusual at first, but my friend told me to come down to Anthrocon and give it a chance, so I did, and I loved it! I love the artwork and costume creation so much. Plus, I’ve met so many awesome people through this community through the years, and I’ve made lifelong friends.

Do you dress up year-round or just during Anthrocon? 

Year-round! We have a lot of local Pittsburgh furry events where we all get together and hang out. Some of us dress up in fursuits and some [don't]. Sometimes I’ll wear my fursuit, but most of the time I’ll just go as a person and hang out with my friends. We have a monthly meetup at the Mount Lebanon AMF bowling alley where we sometimes have more than 30 fursuiters and more than 100 people! We also have a not-as-well-known, local furry convention called WPAFW (Western PA Furry Weekend) in autumn where we’ll all get together in North Park, with an attendance of more than 300 people. It’s awesome to be a furry in Pittsburgh!

What do you wish more people in Pittsburgh knew about furries?

Furries are just people who love art, cartoons, movies, games, costumes, and having fun!

What's your favorite flavor of ice cream?

Cookies and cream! Or if it’s available, Cinnamon Bun. Yum!

Monday, June 10, 2019

Photos: People's Pride Parade

Posted By on Mon, Jun 10, 2019 at 5:25 PM

Mayor Bill Peduto walks with the People's Pride march. - CP PHOTO: JARED WICKERHAM
  • CP Photo: Jared Wickerham
  • Mayor Bill Peduto walks with the People's Pride march.
Pittsburgh City Paper staff photographer Jared Wickerham documented the People's Pride parade as they marched from Freedom Corner in Uptown all the way to Allegheny Commons Park in the North Side in unity with all LGBTQ+ groups.

Continue reading »

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Photos: Pittsburgh Pride Equality March

Posted By on Mon, Jun 10, 2019 at 5:23 PM

The 2019 Pittsburgh Pride Equality March takes place in downtown. - CP PHOTO: JARED MURPHY
  • CP Photo: Jared Murphy
  • The 2019 Pittsburgh Pride Equality March takes place in downtown.
Pittsburgh City Paper photo intern Jared Murphy took to the streets to photograph the 2019 Pittsburgh Pride Equality March that made its way through Downtown Pittsburgh on Sun., June 9.

Continue reading »

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Thursday, May 30, 2019

Pittsburgh City Paper wins three honors at 2019 Golden Quill awards, including best-in-show for photography

Posted By on Thu, May 30, 2019 at 8:09 PM

Pittsburgh City Paper 2019 Golden Quill award winners Tereneh Idia and Jared Wickerham - CP PHOTO: LISA CUNNINGHAM
  • CP photo: Lisa Cunningham
  • Pittsburgh City Paper 2019 Golden Quill award winners Tereneh Idia and Jared Wickerham
Last July, Jared Wickerham approached our editorial team with the idea of photographing the Pittsburgh Pirates with a Polaroid camera soon after he was hired as Pittsburgh City Paper's full-time staff photographer. It turned out to be an award-winning idea.

On Wed., May 29, he was awarded with two Golden Quill awards from the Press Club of Western Pennsylvania for his work: one for Craft Achievement – Photo Essay and the best-in-show Ed Romano Memorial Award: Photography, selected from all of this year's winners in photography categories.

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A seasoned local sports photographer, Wickerham wanted a new way to capture the baseball games so many others have documented over the years. Every Sunday home game, the Pirates wore retro uniforms like the team wore in the 1970s. Wickerham decided to join them in that theme, armed with a vintage Polaroid SX-70 Model 1.

The players themselves were as excited to see the images as the rest of us. "Starling Marte, a guy who has undoubtedly been photographed a million times by hundreds of photographers, wanted to make sure he could get a copy of the Polaroid," wrote Wickerham in his intro to his essay.

You can see his award-winning photo essay here: Sunday Afternoons at PNC Park.

Another big winner from the evening was City Paper contributing writer Tereneh Idia, who took home the award for Excellence in Written Journalism, Daily – Columns/Blogs for her important columns on topics like race and adversity. Idia recently reached her first anniversary as the writer of City Paper's weekly Voices column, crediting popular Pittsburgh Post-Gazette columnist Tony Norman as the one for first encouraging her to start a column.

Read one of Idia's columns that helped earn her the award here: Who Gets to Be the (S)hero?

This was the first year that City Paper competed in the daily category against larger publications like Post-Gazette and Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. In previous years, CP competed in the non-daily category but was bumped up for producing original content at least five days a week.

City Paper also had three Golden Quill finalists:

• News writer Ryan Deto in Excellence in Written Journalism, Daily – Business/Technology/Consumer for his story: Is the Pittsburgh Airport Building up a Flight Bubble?

• Music writer Jordan Snowden in Excellence in Written Journalism, Daily – Arts/Entertainment for her story: What Was It About Mac Miller That Connected With Pittsburghers?

• And, contributing writer Jessie Sage in Excellence in Written Journalism, Daily – Columns/Blogs for her column: Peepshow, a sex and social-justice column

For a full list of the winners and nominees, visit westernpapressclub.org.

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

Meet the staff: Senior writer Amanda Waltz gets spooky (and sexy) on Ghoul on Ghoul podcast

Posted By on Tue, May 7, 2019 at 11:53 AM

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Several months after Amanda Waltz came on board as our senior A&E writer at Pittsburgh City Paper, and just a few days after I was named editor, she came to my desk and confided a secret, whispering the words Generation X bosses overseeing millennial staffs are most fearful of: "I have a podcast."

I soon realized why she hadn't confessed this to our former male editor. It wasn't just any podcast, she explained. It was about ghosts ... and sex. Ghoul on Ghoul, which Amanda records each week with her co-host, Sarah, promotes itself as "a supernatural sex-positive horror comedy podcast featuring first-person encounters with the paranormal."

It wasn't totally a shock. While Amanda is talented at writing both heavily reported news stories or diving head first into a multifaceted art review, she's also become known as the office deviate — the kind of person who will say anything on her mind without thinking twice. I mean that quite affectionately. She's refreshingly honest and also unashamed to have serious conversations about her sexuality. In the realms that an office environment allows, of course, though I'll admit that an alt-weekly newsroom is probably much more lax than others.

My first response when she told me about her podcast was to beg her to let me promote it. We've been aiming to increase diversity at the paper over the past year, introducing sex and social justice columnist Jessie Sage to our pages, and including even more feminist and social justice causes in our news coverage. Showing our readers that our senior writer also is a sex-positive horror junky is good press! But while she's talked openly about it in the office since, Amanda asked me to keep it a secret to the public, wanting to keep her personal life separate from her professional life.

But months later, after immersing herself more and more in the local arts and nightlife scenes as a reporter, she realized it was getting harder not to mention it when asked, so I now officially have permission to out her as a Ghoul.
The podcast itself is more charming than shocking. Yes, it's NSFW unless you're wearing headphones — or working at an alt-weekly, and the women swear. A lot. A fucking lot. But listening to the podcast is largely like eavesdropping on a conversation between two girlfriends sharing a large bottle of wine.

They laugh frequently at themselves and each other, share secrets about their own sex lives, and both have a tendency to break into voices and impressions, from Björk to Bon Jovi. Basically, they're not afraid to sound like giant dorks.

Each podcast is nearly an hour, and guests keep the show interesting. They've had on everyone from CP's own Jessie Sage to Tobin Seastedt of Crickets to Betsy, who brought on mealworms and grasshoppers for the hosts to eat on air before talking about all-natural lube. If transitioning from discussing the crunch of a bug leg in a cookie to an admission that it's harder to get wet as you age sounds weird, just trust me. They make it work.

Ghoul on Ghoul also specializes in ghost stories and local horror folklore; serial killers and cults; true crime and hauntings. And sometimes, it combines both. There's at least one episode where the women discuss sex with ghosts, and on the episode with Sage, they discuss ovipositors, a sex toy that allows women to deposit an egg inside their vaginas so they can experience the joy of giving birth to an alien.

Tonight, Amanda and Sarah celebrate their first anniversary with the Rate / Review / Subscribe / Imbide: A PGH Podcast Party at Spirit in Lawrenceville. The night includes DJ MB from the In Bed by Ten dance party and tarot readings. In addition to Ghoul on Ghoul, the pair have also invited other local podcasts to join the fun. Guests are encouraged to subscribe to any of the podcasts — Give Me Murder or Give Me Death, Neon Brainiacs, THRIFTY Podcast, Start The Beats w/SIKES, and Werewolf Ambulance — for a chance to win prizes.

The event is free and starts at 7 p.m., with the live show recording starting at 9 p.m.

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