Pittsburgh Zoo & Aquarium
Photo courtesy of the Pittsburgh Zoo & Aquarium.

What’s going on this week in Pittsburgh, April 17-23? Find out here. Visit each organization’s website and social media for Covid protocols. Know of a cool event? Email us.

Monday, April 17: Hanif Abdurraqib at Carnegie Music Hall
7:30 p.m.

For its next Ten Evenings events, Pittsburgh Arts & Lectures welcomes MacArthur genius grant recipient Hanif Abdurraqib. Hailing from Columbus, Ohio, the award-winning writer and cultural critic will read from and discuss his book, “A Little Devil in America,” which features essays on Aretha Franklin, Michael Jackson, the Wu-Tang Clan, Dave Chappelle and many others. Winner of the Andrew Carnegie Medal and a National Book Award finalist, the book is called a “sweeping masterpiece exploring Black art, music and culture.” Buy tickets.

“Rain — A Tribute to the Beatles.” Photo courtesy of the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust.

Wednesday, April 19: “Rain – A Tribute to the Beatles” at the Benedum Center
8 p.m.

The British Invasion is coming … again! Fans of the Fab Four can’t miss this one-night-only chance to sing along to iconic songs. Featuring Steve Landes Paul Curatolo, Alastar McNeil and Aaron Chiazza, along with special guests, the note-for-note theatrical event will have you fall hard for Beatlemania all over again. Buy tickets.

Thursday, April 20: Gledaj! The Gaze of Maxo Vanka at the Bost Building
5-8 p.m.

Maxo Vanka’s breathtaking “Gift to America” murals, created by the Croatian immigrant for St. Nicholas Croatian Catholic Church in Millvale, are among Pittsburgh’s most outstanding cultural gems. Now viewers can check out never before seen works by Vanka that demonstrate his creative process and explore his inspirations. Co-presented by the Society to Preserve the Millvale Murals of Maxo Vanka and Rivers of Steel, the exhibit in Homestead showcases a “treasure trove of original sketches and drawings completed during the artist’s visits to Pittsburgh in 1935 and 1937” on loan from the artist’s granddaughter, Marya Halderman.

“Matchmaking” film still courtesy of JFilm Pittsburgh.

Thursday, April 20: JFILM Festival Opening Night
7-9:30 p.m.

Tonight’s JFilm opening soirée is the place to be for local cinephiles. Attendees will be the first in Pittsburgh to see Erez Tadmor’s 2022 Israeli film, “Matchmaking,” exploring love and tolerance. Featuring an award-winning cast, the box office hit is called an “Orthodox twist on Romeo and Juliet.” Afterward, join the 30th-anniversary festivities at Bravo! Italian Kitchen for appetizers, drinks and dessert. Spanning 11 days of dynamic programming, the esteemed festival features 23 independent films at three venues. Augmenting the films are Q&As, virtual offerings, a bagel brunch and Film Schmooze chats. View a schedule and buy tickets.

Thursday, April 20: Jazz Appreciation Month at the Pump House
7-9 p.m.

Join the Battle of Homestead Foundation to celebrate Jazz Appreciation Month at the historic Munhall site. “Jazz and Working-Class Experience” will spotlight events and people with Pittsburgh ties. The celebration features readings by children’s book author Nicole McCandless and poet Fred Shaw and live music from the Stepping Stone Jazz Quartet. Register for free.

Friday, April 21: The Refillery’s Earth Day Celebration at Goodlander Cocktail Brewery
4-7 p.m.

Pittsburgh’s only zero-waste retailer is spearheading this one-of-a-kind eco-experience in Homewood. Mingle with sustainable leaders and keynote speakers across a variety of sectors — culinary, culture, education, government, culture, business and tech — to help solve pressing environmental issues. Sip cocktails and seltzers, take a tour of Goodlander and enjoy Mexican street food from El Colibri. Play networking bingo, check out music by Sunny Daze & The Weathermen and snag a reusable tote bag. Buy tickets.

Saturday, April 22: Record Store Day at local record shops
Various times

According to the Recording Industry Association of America, vinyl records made up 70% of physical music sales in 2022, bringing in a staggering revenue of $1.2 billion. It’s always a good idea to support our city’s fantastic independent record shops, but Record Store Day is a chance to mingle with wax fanatics at an event that’s gone global. Limited-edition releases pressed specifically for the event are available at participating shops. In the 412, crate diggers will converge at the Attic, Jerry’s, Government Center, Vinyl Remains and more. Before you go, consult our guides to Pittsburgh’s coolest record shops.

Photo courtesy of Pittsburgh Zoo & Aquarium.

Saturday, April 22: Wild Earth Day at Pittsburgh Zoo & Aquarium
9:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m.

Every day is a great day to help protect our planet, but Earth Day is extra wild over in Highland Park. Go wild with zoo-wide activities and learn impactful conservation tips. Check out the animals and plants during educational programs happening all day long.

Photo courtesy of Humane Animal Rescue of Pittsburgh.

Saturday, April 22: Wildlife Baby Shower at Humane Animal Rescue of Pittsburgh
10 a.m.-12 p.m.

Did you know that hundreds of baby wildlife, some injured and abandoned, arrive at the Wildlife Rehabilitation Center every spring? Celebrate Earth Day, enjoy animal encounters, crafts and snacks — and help the center prepare for these cute new arrivals. Just like a human one, the wildlife baby shower would not be complete without presents — and that’s where you come in to help stock up on the vital supplies needed via the event’s registry.

Saturday, April 22: Soup Contest in the South Side
12-3 p.m.

Soup is on! On the South Side, that is. The Brashear Association and South Side Chamber of Commerce team up to showcase the neighborhood, give local businesses a boost and serve up nourishing soup. Pop into mom-and-pop businesses along the “soup route” to savor recipes created and donated by 20 South Side chefs. After tasting the contenders, text your votes in different contest categories and watch as trophies are hand delivered to the winners. Buy tickets.

Photo courtesy of The Uprooted Band featuring Michael Glabicki of Rusted Root.

Saturday, April 22: Earth Day in Downtown Pittsburgh
11 a.m.-8:30 p.m.

As one of 23 cities in the 2030 Districts Network, Pittsburgh has pledged to reduce built environment emissions by 50-65% by 2030 and reach zero emissions by 2040. One of the best ways to support our progress is during Pittsburgh Earth Day. Saturday’s Tailgate Tour animates the Hill District, Market Square and PNC Park with community experiences highlighting sustainability. The Energy Innovation Center’s Powered Up celebration features mouth-watering tailgate treats from chef Claudy Pierre and renewable energy workshops. In Market Square, the free Music, Art and Culture Festival is a hub teeming with eco-activity booths, local businesses and a green wellness area. There will be live music, artwork by The Chalking Dad and libations from Creatives Drink. The day wraps up on the North Shore with the Pittsburgh Pirates’ Salute to Sustainability and the game against Cincinnati. See our complete guide to Earth Day activities.

Saturday, April 22: Shake Your Booties Gala at Acrisure Stadium
6-11 p.m.

Get down — and get your groove on — to support one of the Burgh’s vital nonprofits. Enjoy The Children’s Home & Lemieux Family Center’s benefit bash supports the health and well-being of infants and children through critical services and programs that strengthen families. Emceed by Aditi Kinkhabwala of CBS Sports, the night will be filled with far-out entertainment by Dancing Queen, live and silent auctions, raffles and mystery bags, a wine toss and more. This year’s signature gala recognizes community partners Zachary’s Mission and Jameson’s Army. Buy tickets.

Photo courtesy of Rivers of Steel.

Sunday, April 23: Hardest Working River Tour on the Explorer Riverboat
10 a.m.-1 p.m.

Spring is the ideal time to hop aboard Rivers of Steel’s Explorer Riverboat. Journey along the “hardest working river in the world” — aka the mighty Mon — to explore the waterway’s central role in Pittsburgh’s early commercial and industrial success. Starting at the confluence of Pittsburgh’s three rivers, the craft travels to destinations upriver, with views of the epic Carrie Blast Furnaces and Edgar Thomson Works. Along the way, you’ll hear the stories of our region’s commercial and industrial heritage while taking in breathtaking views of spring in view throughout the river valley. Buy tickets.

Sunday, April 23: Penny Arcade at Arcade Comedy Theater
11 a.m. & 3 p.m.

Comedy is not just for adults. After a three-year hiatus, Arcade Comedy Theater is reviving its kids’ comedy show with even more interactive fun. Designed to inspire children ages 4-10 to be silly using improv comedy, the unique show features high-energy improvised games, audience participation and a group performance where everyone in the theater has the opportunity to play. Buy tickets.

Photo courtesy of Kennywood.

Sunday, April 23: Opening Weekend at Kennywood
11 a.m.-7 p.m.

Kennywood’s open! Thrill seekers can finally flock to West Mifflin for the landmark park’s quintessential quasquicentennial. And there’s a lot to celebrate, with new rides, experiences and amenities. For its milestone 125th anniversary, Kennywood‘s opening weekend includes the launch of a new series paying tribute to distinct eras from the park’s past through the decades from 1898 through 1969, via nostalgic photo opps, music by the Boilermaker Jazz Band and Brass Staff, retro foods and commemorative merchandise. Buy tickets.

Twyla Tharp. Photo by Richard Avedon courtesy of The Richard Avedon Foundation.

Sunday, April 23: An Evening with Twyla Tharp at the Pittsburgh Playhouse
7 p.m.

The name Twyla Tharp is synonymous with modern dance. Tonight is a rare chance to hear firsthand from the celebrated choreographer when she visits the Pittsburgh Playhouse for a collaborative audience talk. Held in conjunction with the Point Park Conservatory Dance Company’s production of “Sweet Fields,” Tharp will share her remarkable “knowledge, creativity and wisdom.” Tharp has choreographed a staggering 160 works, including dances, TV specials, movies, Broadway shows and even figure skating routines. Buy tickets.

Find more things to do in Pittsburgh, including public events, live music and family activities, here.

Jennifer BaronEvents & Jobs Editor

Jennifer has worked at the Mattress Factory, Brooklyn Museum of Art and Dahesh Museum of Art and is co-author of Pittsburgh Signs Project: 250 Signs of Western Pennsylvania. She also is co-coordinator of Handmade Arcade. Musically, she is in a band called The Garment District and is a founding member of Brooklyn's The Ladybug Transistor.