Summer’s not done with us yet: September has festivals galore (don’t miss Thrival, for one), dogs on a bridge, beers on a lake, molten metals, an epic museum party, and much more.
1. Festival of Combustion at Carrie Furnaces: September 3
Carrie Furnaces may have closed in 1982 but the molten metal returns to the historic Rankin landmark during the multi-sensory Festival of Combustion. Highlighting all things hot—from artmaking and glass flame-working to Raku ceramics and aluminum casting—the unique festival invites visitors of all ages to experience the magical alchemy of fire arts. See artists from Carbon Arts @ Carrie cast molten metal, check out live flame-working demos and glass workshops with Pittsburgh Glass Center, and watch Rivers of Steel Arts pour molten iron and aluminum. Roll up your sleeves to fire and glaze your own ceramic piece with Ton Pottery, have your own design cast in solid iron or aluminum. Don’t miss TechShop’s fire piano and Mobile Sculpture Workshop’s live welding and metal fabrication demonstrations. Free to ages 18 and under, the six-hour event also features food trucks, live music by The Bessemers, and tours of Carrie Furnaces.
2. Britsburgh Festival: September 6 – 11
After rocking the Olympics, the Brits will invade local soil, so to speak, for a one-of-a-kind, citywide festival. Celebrating all things Brit—from Dr. Who to Shakespeare to Earl Grey—the annual six-day affair showcases long-standing synergies between the SWPA region and the U.K. during 62 events at 55 venues. Get a taste—quite literally—of Britain via music, art, film, tea, discussions, beer, readings, walking tours, and much more. From Scotch tastings and a Jane Austen film discussion to a Tweed ride and a Downton Abbey-themed tea. From Hartwood Acres to Heinz Chapel, Anglophiles can tour British-style mansions and gardens, rock out at British Invasion concerts, and nosh on fine chocolate, cheese and tea. The diverse, whimsical and quirky edition to the city’s summer festival circuit kicks off with a festive opening celebration and keg tapping led by East End Brewing. View a schedule.
3. Allegheny County Parks Foundation’s Pour at the Park: September 9
Pittsburgh just topped Redfin’s list of “15 Best Cities for Beer Lovers,” and in January, Saveur called us a “beer and spirits destination.” The newest event on Pittsburgh’s vibrant craft beer scene is landing on the scenic shores of North Park Lake. Craft brewers, food purveyors and environmental advocates are teaming up to host the inaugural Pour at the Park, a festival-style beer tasting benefiting the Allegheny County Parks Foundation. Drink up for a great cause, with proceeds helping to restore our nine Allegheny County parks. Featured brewers include East End, Full Pint, Shubrew, North Country, War Streets, Hofbräuhaus, and many others. Sip creatively crafted—and monikered—beers such as Pizza Boy and Evil Twin, rock out to live music by Rino Calandra, Two Tall Twins and Cisco Kid, and fuel up with fare from OTB, Pig Iron Public House, City Fresh Pasta, Nakama, Popsburgh, and more. This eco-minded beer lovers bash is the only other area brew fest that is part of Construction Junction’s Big Pour Week. Buy tickets.
4. NIGHTIME at Carnegie Museum of Art: September 9
Nighttime is the right time for light, art and one epic museum bash. Spend 9 multi-sensory hours in and around Carnegie Museum of Art when it unveils its latest Hillman Photography Initiative. Spanning early evening to the wee morning hours, NIGHTIME reimagines the museum as a public canvas for immersive happenings crafted by diverse community collaborators—including VIA, Hot Mass, 1Hood Media and Britsburgh. Nightimers can rock around the clock at dance parties in the spacious foyer, catch live shows in the music hall and courtyard, grab munchies at the food truck roundup, and join artist-led gallery tours. Nighttime boasts fun for all ages. DJ Kelly Mom will lead a rockin’ Family Dance Party in the grand staircase, while the Teen Lounge will host art projects and scavenger hunts. Featured performers and DJs include Metacara, EYE JAY, Naeem b2b Jwan Allen, Shawn Rudiman, Tony Fairchild, Cosmic Attack Blues Band, and many others. The night marks the debut of LIGHTIME, featuring specially commissioned, photography-based work by artists Andrea Polli, Alisha Wormsley, DIS, and Bradford Young. Buy tickets.
5. Next Three Days Garfield: September 9, 10, 11
The best way to get to know Garfield is at Next 3 Days, a community-based series showcasing under-the-radar neighborhoods. From the bustling Penn Avenue Arts District—Pittsburgh’s oldest east-west thoroughfare—to lively Garfield Heights, meet the people, places and projects making Garfield shine. The fun kicks off with an all-ages block party at Alloy Studios, featuring Garfield Gators tailgate festivities, performances by 1 Hood, LevelUp and Rhythm + Steel, local cuisine, neighborhood photography, City of Play games, and more. Next, hop on the free shuttle to the Gators Alumni Charity Football game at Fort Pitt Field, followed by the official after-party at Mixtape. Day 2 revs up with the N3D Festival and Penn-Ave-Anew Celebration, featuring live music, a community bake-off hosted by Rick Sebak, a 21+ area presented by Mixtape and The Livermore, and more. Get your Garfield game on with City of Play, hop into a Green Gears Pedicab for a free tour, shop for local art and wares, and grab lunch from area restaurants. The celebration will feature a special Penn Ave. ribbon-cutting, interactive art projects for all ages, homebuyer resources and more. Looking to move to Garfield? Don’t miss the home tours on Sunday. Learn more about N3D.
6. Re:NEW Festival: September 9 – October 9
Creativity with a (re)purpose will be unleashed during Pittsburgh’s newest arts festival. See a massive sculpture of a baby ingesting hand-me-down toys, hear a talk by #1 New York Times Bestseller Sebastian Junger, savor delicious meals made from rescued produce, and cheer on teams competing to make art from Goodwill donations. Celebrating creative reuse, sustainability and transformation, Re:NEW debuts with international art exhibitions, film screenings, family and school workshops, public art, live music, markets, and large-scale installations. A centerpiece will be the highly anticipated U.S. premiere of Barcelona-based Drap-Art—the planet’s leading international festival of recycling art—bringing 80 outstanding works to Philip Johnson’s iconic PPG Wintergarden. Also not to miss? The juried exhibition of 31 works by 20 regional artists in a vacant storefront at 623 Smithfield St., Ian Brill’s mesmerizing light installation inside a hollow wall next to US Steel Tower Plaza, and Brooklyn-based artist Matthias Neumann’s functional bench constructed from sustainably sourced wood in Deutschtown. View a schedule.