Category Archives: Pittsburgh

What to Do in #Pittsburgh on #MLK Jr. Day

Looking for something to do in the Burgh this holiday weekend on a budget?

Look no further. On Monday,  you can gather up the kiddos and head on over to the Mattress Factory without worrying about how much cash you have on hand.

Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Celebration at The Mattress Factory

martin luther king day mlk day mattress factory

When: Monday, January 20, 2019
Where: The Mattress Factory
Time: 1p-5p

Every year, the Mattress Factory hosts a party for MLK Jr. Day. This year, there’s going to be a lot of really cool all-ages activities going on. The education department at the museum does a really great job with its events.

For example, this celebration will feature hands-on activities for all ages, including an I Have a Dream-scape collaborative mixed-media mural. Guests can also write a letter to someone who has inspired them at our Appreciation Station; enjoy a snack at the cookie table and hot chocolate bar; and dance to the music of local DJ group Wavy Bunch Sound.

Wavy Bunch Sound is comprised of duo DJ Flipwave and DJ African Wolf, coming from Ghana and Haiti respectively. In past years WBS has introduced Pittsburgh to the heritage of Afro-Caribbean culture with events like Ghana@62 and All White Affair: Rep Your Flag. These events give guests background and history through music, allowing people to enjoy and experience the black diaspora that is Afro-Caribbean via Soca, Zouk, Reggae, Dancehall, Afro-Beats, Hip-Hop/Rap and R&B/Soul of the past and present day.

If you’re a regular of the Mattress Factory, you’ll know that they’re not typically open on Mondays. But in honor of the holiday, not only will they be hosting the party, but the museum’s galleries at 500 Sampsonia Way, 516 Sampsonia Way and 1414 Monterey Street will be open for visitors.

If you haven’t been to the Mattress Factory yet, go. I lived here a total of 15 nonconsecutive years before I visited, and man, do I wish I had done it sooner. One of the coolest museums in the city–and that’s saying something in a museum-rich metro like Pittsburgh.

Celebrating a man so full of love, a penchant for peace and a desire for justice isn’t a bad way to spend any day, but Monday in particular will be something special.

The Frugality Family Adventures with Dinosaurs

You know how the holiday break is wonderful, but simultaneously draining as you try to entertain your children for two straight weeks?

I definitely in that headspace a couple weeks ago. Which is why I was more grateful than usual that we had something to do, courtesy of free tickets to Dinosaur Adventure.

What is Dinosaur Adventure?

Dinosaur Adventure is this crazy cool touring kids’ festival. When you first get there, you walk through all the different ages of dinosaurs. The dinos were automatons (dinomatons?) and extremely lifelike — I didn’t think this was possible, but it truly felt like they were right there! Better than some museum displays I’ve seen.

In the most recent age of dinosaurs, you can also ride dinosaurs! The kids also enjoyed digging up “fossils” and taking advantage of different cute photo ops set up around the room, too.

In the next room there were a bunch of different dino-themed bouncy houses set up. We also had opportunities to create our own fossils, play mini golf, watch an educational performance and get faces painted.

The Kids’ Favorites at Dinosaur Adventure

So we did a lot. At the end of the day, riding dinosaurs and running through the dinosaur-themed bouncy obstacle course took the cake, though. Everything we did was awesome, but those were the two the littles couldn’t stop talking about. I was pretty grateful for that obstacle course, too; they slept real well that night!

Tour & Pricing

Dinosaur Adventure has come and gone through the Pittsburgh region for this season, but they’ve still got lots of tour dates across the country. Here are a few cities they’re visiting coming up:

  • Chicago
  • Columbus
  • Atlanta
  • Charlotte

I’m not going to lie; tickets aren’t cheap. But if you’re looking for a way to get the kiddos out of the house for a solid day with no shortage of super fun and memorable activities, Dinosaur Adventure is a ton of fun. This event would likely take up your family entertainment budget for the month. But it’s a day your kids are likely to talk about for a while.

An Elephant in the Garden: #Pittsburgh Ticket #Giveaway

This post is in collaboration with the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust.

It’s that time again! While The Magic School Bus: Lost in Space will be touring the Pittsburgh region over the next week, we’ll be ramping up the next ticket giveaway for Pittsburgh Cultural Trust’s Chidren’s Theater series.

And what a giveaway it will be! This time, we’re giving away tickets to An Elephant in the Garden.

An Elephant in the Garden comes to Pittsburgh

An Elephant in the Garden will be here in the Burgh on January 17 & 18. The show on the 17th will be at 7p and the show on the 18th will start at 2p. There will be an ASL interpreter at the show on the 17th. All the shows will be at the Byham Theater.

Here’s what you can expect:

1945. Dresden, Germany. Two children and their mother flee falling bombs during World War II. They aren’t alone, though. An adorable elephant from the zoo named Marlene becomes an unlikely family member. Along the way, this extraordinary quartet of refugees meet a Canadian officer cowering in a barn, a school choir on the run and their Countess savior who is harboring them from the Nazis.

This story of family, elephant, friends and enemy-turned-ally illustrates the importance of love, resolve, and hope in wartime and anytime. Partly based on a true story, An Elephant in the Garden is an adaptation from the best-selling novel by Michael Morpurgo, author of over 100 books including War Horse, Private Peaceful and Kensuke’s Kingdom.

Here’s the ticketing page–they start at $12!

Win tickets to An Elephant in the Garden

Or, you can enter to win four (4) tickets using the widget below! You can earn entries through 11:59p on January 11, 2020. Please check you inbox religiously on the 12th as we will have to coordinate your tickets quickly!

If you win, you will get to choose which showing you go to. Best of luck to all!

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Ms. Frizzle Comes to The Burgh: Holiday Ticket Giveaway!

This post is brought to you in partnership with the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust.

Who else grew up with Ms. Frizzle and her class on PBS — ironically right around when you got home from school?

All kids love the idea of baking soda volcanoes and raising caterpillars into butterflies. But I distinctly remember the Magic School Bus traveling into the human blood stream, rocketing out toward Pluto and submerging deep into the sea.

I was fortunate to have mostly wonderful teachers as I made my way through K-12. But I definitely learned a lot of extra cool stuff about science through watching that show and reading those books. I did real well on that portion of the ACT.

Thanks, Ms. Frizzle.

Next Gen Magic School Bus Lovers

Netflix just happens to have the Magic School Bus available, along with their own revamp. I’ve gotten to watch (and read) some of my classic faves with my own kids. I’ve gotten to enjoy the new series with them for the first time.

It’s a cool thing.

I’m super excited because now we’re going to enjoy the Magic School Bus experience in a whole new medium: theater.

The Magic School Bus: Lost in the Solar System comes to Pittsburgh

Okay, remember the episode where they’re hurtling towards Pluto?

This is it! On stage!

This is such a great classic to bring to the stage and everyone in our house is super psyched for it.

There are nine different showings at various venues in Southwestern Pennsylvania starting January 5, 2020 through January 12, 2020. Here are the details.

Holiday Ticket Giveaway!

Such great news, right?!

We’re giving away four (4) tickets to The Magic School Bus show. The giveaway starts today and runs through 11:59p on December 19, 2019. The goal is to have the winner be able to deliver the news to their family as a gift on whatever winter holiday they celebrate!

You’ll be able to select the date/time/location of your choice should you win. Enter using the widget below, and keep in mind that you can come back to claim many of them everyday for extra entries!

Happy holidays, and best of luck!

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Income Goal Updates, PF by Women Member Feature & Cool Things Happening in Pennsylvania

I’m a little late with my income goal update this month. I apologize!

Sort of.

I was in Japan recently for one of my longest and best friend’s wedding. I took my time while I was there, which resulted in this update coming a little later than usual.

I’ll tell you all about my most recent Japan adventures soon. You can check out tips from my last trip by browsing the travel section. Or, if you just can’t wait, I maaaaayyyyy already be sharing some pics on Instagram.

But right now I want to catch you up on how my charts have been working.

Today I’m icy but I’m praying for some more snow.

Inspired by Nicki Minaj and Queen Bey, October’s income chart definitely helped me get inspired to pursue more work. And to do so ever-so-close to successfully!

I had some banking issues while I was abroad — which I’ll also cover in a future post — so my personal finances don’t look as good as my business income this month. But I’m still anticipating payment for some of the work lined up on this income chart, and I’m so fortunate to know my money woes are something I am reasonably capable of fixing.

Just watch my wildest dreams come true…

November’s chart is inspired by Paramore. I did lower my income goal this month. I want to be sure I’m stretching myself, but also that I’m setting achievable goals.

With the travel and some paperwork responsibilities I have this month just to keep my household running, I knew that I would not be able to dedicate the time necessary to keep my goal as high as it has been.

Don’t worry. It’ll be going back up again in December.

I am decently happy with how quickly this smaller chart is filling up, though. The chart has filled in a tiny bit more since I took this pic, and I’m close enough that I’m super motivated to hustle. Should I happen to beat my goal, that’s all the better!

Check out past income goal charts:

Personal Finance by Women

Thank you everyone for all of your support of Personal Finance by Women! The effort launched a couple months ago, and we’ve already gotten a lot done. We’ve completed a service project using financial literacy to fight the opioid epidemic, generated income-earning opportunities for our membership and have another service project on its way in the Spring.

On top of all this, on Friday we had some exciting news go live.

Business Insider — whose editorial team values diverse writers — featured PF by Women member Charis Hill’s story of home ownership on Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). Please check out more of the deets — it’s such a well-written and eye-opening story!

Black Friday Family Day at the Mattress Factory

installation art pittsburgh

To my readers in Pittsburgh:

I’m so excited to let you know about a really fun event at the Mattress Factory on Black Friday! Rather than going out and spending hoards of money on things, they’re offering families an opportunity to build memories at a great event.

Great events are the only type of events the Mattress Factory does.

You can skip the lines at the mall and stop by the Mattress Factory on Friday, November 29, from 1-5 PM, for a day of family-friendly, hands-on activities and three buildings of installation art.

Family Day activities have something for everyone and will include zine making, face painting by Rikki, early learner explorations, teen activities, a hot chocolate bar and music courtesy of DJ Dave Zak.

The event is free with regular museum admission which is:

  • $20 for adults
  • $15 for students and seniors
  • $10 for veterans
  • $1 per person in a family with an ACCESS card (up to 4 tickets)
  • Children under 6 free

Aside from a fun way to spend the day after Thanksgiving, Family Day also gives guests the opportunity to learn more about the Mattress Factory’s regular educational programming.

Dinosaur Adventure

If you’re looking for something to do over the winter holiday break with the kiddos, you might want to head to the Monroeville Convention Center.

On December 27-29, 2019, the Convention Center will be hosting Dinosaur Adventure, and it looks sick.

Dinosaur Adventure is an all-new, one of a kind exhibit featuring realistic, life-sized dinosaurs that come alive with their life-like movement and roars. Learn about the most popular dinosaurs — Tyrannosaurus, Triceratops, Diplodocus, Velociraptor — and explore recent finds with exciting discoveries!

As part of Dinosaur Adventure, children of all ages will enjoy a variety of activities: fossil crafting, Jurassic jeeps, themed obstacle courses, riding their favorite dinosaur, and more! The whole family will also be amused by our live entertainment featuring a walking dinosaur show, and a baby dinosaur meet & greet.

Best part? Because you’re a reader of this blog, you can save $3 on your ticket using code: FLASH3

You don’t have to be in the Pittsburgh area to attend! This is touring the country, and Pittsburgh is actually the last stop. Find out if your city is on the list.

Crayola Experience Easton

If you live a little further east in PA, you can check out Crayola Experience on the regular. As a Pittsburgher, I prefer to make the trek out east in the warmer months.

But either way, I just found out the Crayola Experience in Easton offers annual passes for just $29.99. ALSO, if you purchase a pass between now and November 30, you get 13 months of membership instead of the usual 12. These deals are exclusively offered to you as one of my readers.

So if you’re looking for something to put under the tree…

I’m really excited to head out that way once the weather starts turning!