Snow Shovel Riding Championship and other Pittsburgh Happenings

Snow Shovel Whaaaaaat?
If it’s January, then it must be time for the Beaver County Snow Shovel Riding Championship. That’s right, this annual one-of-a-kind event will celebrate its 51st year today. Regular and “modified” snow shovel riders compete for the fastest time as they slide down a 160-foot slope in Old Economy Park.

That’s It, Fort Pitt
If you’re familiar with Pittsburgh, you may know the expression: “That’s it, Fort Pitt.” But you may not know that the Fort Pitt Block House will celebrate its 250th anniversary in 2014. The building – owned by the Fort Pitt Society, which is part of the Daughters of the American Revolution – is the oldest surviving building in Pittsburgh. It recently underwent a 10-month preservation and restoration project. And, a garden is being planted next to it to honor the Fort Pitt Society’s early members who successfully halted plans by industrialist Henry Clay Frick and the Pennsylvania Railroad to move the building elsewhere. Admission is free.

M’m good!
Soup’s on at the South Side Midwinter Soup Contest, Feb. 22. It’s three hours of sampling soups from some of the best local restaurants while enjoying the funky South Side. Local chefs will compete for the honor of South Side's "Best Soup" at the 10th annual event. Awards also will be given for "Best Vegetarian" and "Most Unique." Started in 2004, the South Side Soup Contest is a benefit that supports a local food pantry.

The Mattress Factory
As the Mattress Factory celebrates its 35th anniversary, the contemporary art museum recalls the edgy creativity and entrepreneurial spirit at play during its founding with the presentation of new works by a half-dozen Detroit-based artists. While each is connected by their environment, the reactions these artists have to the swift socioeconomic changes happening in Detroit are vastly different and intensely powerful in “Detroit: Artists in Residence.” Runs through May 25.

In Case You Missed It
In 2013, Pittsburgh was named one of the “best world-wide destinations,” by, a travel site which provides expert knowledge and deals on great vacations… named Pittsburgh as “one of the 10 unexpectedly romantic cities in the world”…, the world’s largest travel site, ranked PNC Park as the “best ballpark in the United States”… Pittsburgh was #5 of top 15 rising star destinations by, a social travel site… Pittsburgh was named No. 10 on’s annual list of “most well-read” U.S. cities.

One More Thing
Spinach and ricotta ravioli… White ivory salmon with pumpkin risotto... Chocolate Oreo torte... Foodies get their fill of delectable dishes like these at Pittsburgh Restaurant Week, a twice annual city-wide event. During the week of Jan. 13-19, 2014, diners can expect to dine at more than 50 participating restaurants across the city and choose from discounted three-course (or more) fixed-price meals or $20.14 specials. Participating restaurants – both large and small – are located throughout the region; and dining deals can be found for both dinner and lunch.