Turbosonics at DMF.

Turbosonics at DMF.

This year, two main stages will set up shop in Allegheny Commons Park and off of Foreland St. Venues peppered throughout the Northside are all within walking distance, and include everything from clubs and bars, to cafes and art spaces. From Chet Vincent & The Big Bend at Wigle Whiskey Barrelhouse and Cello Fury at Allegheny Elks Lodge, to Weird Paul Rock Band at Modern Cafe and André Costello & The Cool Minors at Penn Brewery—attendees can take a bona fide tour of Pittsburgh’s vibrant music scene in less than 24 hours.

Augmenting the daytime portion will be family-friendly programs, hands-on children’s activities, an artists’ market and a food truck roundup. Festival-goers can also pop into Artists Image Resource to print tattoos and posters, purchase original artwork and watch the Mobile Sculpture Workshop in action.

Need a lift? Two free shuttles will make multiple stops on the Northside and North Shore. Run by a dedicated group of volunteers, the festival was launched to showcase and support Pittsburgh’s vibrant live music scene, while also fostering economic and community development throughout the central Northside. View a complete Deutschtown Music Festival schedule.

Courtesy of The National Aviary.

Courtesy of The National Aviary.

7. Night in the Tropics at The National Aviary: July 11

You don’t have to head to Colombia or the Congo to experience the tropics. For one steamy July evening, The National Aviary invites bird lovers to gather for its Night in the Tropics Feathered Fiesta gala. The organization’s signature annual fundraiser, Night in the Tropics is expected to draw some 1,200 avid avian fans to the Northside for a celebration of flavor, festivities and flight. The Latin-tinged bash will feature programming throughout The Aviary and its scenic rose garden, including entertainment, an open bar and fare from 30 of Pittsburgh’s top eateries, bakeries and breweries.

Courtesy of The National Aviary.

Courtesy of The National Aviary.

Groove to live music by Noël Quintana and The Latin Crew and DJ Loyal, enjoy dancing demos led by Salsa412 and be serenaded by a roaming mariachi band. Attendees will get to meet stunning feathered friends during up-close interactions with birds not regularly on exhibit.

You’ll be partying with a purpose since all proceeds support The National Aviary’s education, avian medicine and conservation programs. VIP ticketholders will be treated to an exclusive pre-party starting at 6 p.m. Be sure to purchase your tickets before July 3 to vie for the chance to win a private encounter with Happy the African Penguin, the event’s “co-chair!” Purchase tickets.

8. A New Kind of Fallout at the Twentieth Century Club: July 18, 24 & 26

It’s been 53 years since the publication of Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring, but the themes and insights of her seminal book remain as relevant and as powerful today. A new eco-opera making its world premiere in Pittsburgh is bringing Carson’s pioneering work to life in powerful ways.

Photo by Amy Crawford.

Photo by Amy Crawford.

Running for just three nights, A New Kind of Fallout follows a Pittsburgh “everyfamily” as their lives are turned upside down by the environmental warnings issued in Carson’s prescient text. Theater-goers will be transported to a fictional Pittsburgh suburb in the year 1962, where newly pregnant homemaker Alice Front (Lara Lynn Cottrill) evolves into an enlightened environmental activist after her neighborhood is sprayed with a “miracle compound” used to eradicate insects. As Alice’s concerns for her environment, home and unborn child grow severe, she finds herself at odds with her husband Jack (Christopher Scott), an ad exec on the rise at the very chemical company manufacturing the pesticide.

Part of Opera Theater of Pittsburgh‘s 2015 SummerFest Season, the poignant eco-opera features music by NYC-based composer Gilda Lyons and a libretto by acclaimed Pittsburgh playwright Tammy Ryan. Inspired by the life and works of Carson—a Springdale native who helped launch the environmental movement—Fallout explores themes of environmental stewardship, social and personal responsibility and global connectivity. The opera’s unique yearlong development process included public workshops held at Carrie Furnace, Phipps Conservatory, Pittsburgh Botanic Garden and Carson’s own alma mater Chatham University.

Opening night on July 18 features a post-show party with the cast and crew, cocktails and cabaret performances. Purchase tickets.

Photo by Leslie Clague.

Photo by Leslie Clague.

9. Polish Hill Arts Festival: July 19

Polish Hill might be geographically small but it’s huge in terms of neighborhood character. One of the best ways to get to know this vibrant hub located smack dab in the middle of Pittsburgh—and see firsthand how it’s experiencing a burst of community arts engagement—is at the Polish Hill Arts Festival.