The Pittsburgh blogosphere is a world unto itself, filled with tremendous variety and talent. From the subject matter to the format to the content, there’s a blog to suit everyone.

So as a blogger, what’s my favorite kind of blog? The practical kind. I enjoy reading Pittsburgh-focused blogs that can help answer my everyday questions about life in the city, such as “Where should I eat tonight?” and  “What should I do this weekend?” and “What’s with these crazy Pittsburgh roads?” In this article, I have highlighted the blogs that I find immensely useful on a day-to-day basis.

Where should we eat tonight?

Pittsburgh’s food blogging scene spans the spectrum, from the growing and distributing to the cooking and consuming. I tend to use local food blogs for their restaurant reviews because they answer my frequent question, “Where should we eat tonight?”

Although many local food blogs include restaurant reviews, I particularly enjoy the work of Heidi G. Balas of The Steel Trap who understands that eating out is a holistic experience. “Each element of the experience, from the atmosphere to the drinks to the food to the service, is important for people to know,” says Heidi. With her excellent storytelling skills, she captures the unique vibe of a restaurant and guides readers not only to restaurants with great food, but also to those that offer an appealing environment.

Other local food blogs with restaurant reviews include Yum, Yum Pittsburgh, Friendly Pittsburgh Foodie, Cooks and Eats and Eat PGH. Interested in global cuisine right here in Pittsburgh? Check out The Red Headed Traveler. Gluten-free? There’s a blog for you, too, at the Pittsburgh Gluten Free Blogger.

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Christine Smith of Treading Art

What’s going on in Pittsburgh this weekend?

Ever get tired of scrolling through difficult-to-navigate event calendars to find a weekend’s entertainment? I do. For this reason, I enjoy Pittsburgh blogs that can help answer my eternal question, “What’s going on in Pittsburgh this weekend?”

Christine Smith, author of Treading Art, understands the frustration of those who don’t have the time to research the large number of events that occur in our region each weekend. She took this problem to heart, creating a curated listing of approximately 20 events called Weekend Treadings on her blog in May of 2012. “Culturally-oriented events are my focus. According to my definition, this means anything ranging from food, art, music, wine, spoken word, community welfare events–and anything that gets Pittsburghers outside and active.”

Although she took a brief hiatus over the summer, her “Weekend Treadings” began again in early August. You can subscribe to get it delivered in newsletter format to your email here.

Interested in other ways to find out about weekend events in the city? Check out NEXTpittsburgh’s own curated Events section, right on the home page, easy to navigate. Also, I put together a listing of family-friendly events in the city each weekend on the Pittsburgh Mommy Blog.

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Kelly Hughes of Pgh Momtourage

Where can I meet other families?

As every parent knows, the need for a supportive community increases exponentially after having children. Unfortunately, it can be difficult to find with our busy schedules and our increasing distance from extended family.

Kelly Hughes, author of the Pgh Momtourage, understands this problem firsthand. Her family moved to Pittsburgh five years ago and they knew only a handful of other people in the city at the time. “I really wanted to meet and connect with other parents,” says Kelly. “I started organizing play dates with families I met at the library, the park, the museums and my church.” Eventually, she had so many interested parents that she created her blog and its Playdate Calendar to help organize them. “Now we run two play dates for Pittsburgh families per month at a variety of venues including local museums, beaches and playgrounds.”

Kelly expressly aims to make these playdates accessible to all families, “They are open to all caregivers, are generally free or very affordable and happen throughout the city. There is no formal joining process to become a part of the Momtourage. You can just RSVP for each event on my blog’s Facebook page.”

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Jason Cercone of Breaking Brews

What’s on tap?

As evidenced by the explosion of new breweries over the past few years, it’s a whole new world for Pittsburgh craft beer. Same goes for the blogging of it. I reference local craft beer blogs about 50 seconds after I sidle up to a stool at a local bar and ask the bartender, “What’s on tap?”