Neighborhoods full of eclectic old buildings that are home to hundreds of old businesses and many new ones, too. A skyline populated by a glass castle and a giant granite needle. A dialect that falls somewhere between upstate New York and Wisconsin. And a Downtown community bustling with new ideas, new business, and new life.
These local touches and more are reasons why Pittsburgh is a city with character unlike any other.
Pittsburgh is a city of diverse tastes and nationalities, dating back to the days of the steel mills, where workers from all parts of the country and the world came to work and started families. Today, the city is a patchwork of distinct styles and flavors, from Deutschtown to Polish Hill, Mount Lebanon to the Strip District. The stores and restaurants depict a Pittsburgh that's more in tune with the needs of a mid-size metropolis than ever before, and on any given night you can find a coffee shop, a used bookstore, an all-night diner or a four-star restaurant where you can relax, look around, and enjoy.
The North Shore is studded with two brand new spectacular structures that serve as home for the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Pittsburgh Pirates. The North Side is also where you'll find the Carnegie Science Center, The Mattress Factory, and The Andy Warhol Museum, all designed to open your mind. The South Side is an endless trek of novelty shops, coffeehouses and bars, with live music pouring out of clubs every night of the week and street musicians to fill the gaps in between.
Downtown Pittsburgh is a jigsaw puzzle of old and new architecture, waiting to be captured by sketchpad or camera. And on the fringe of the downtown area is the Strip District, home to a wealth of ethnic grocers and streetside cafés, where you can buy fresh hummus or chai tea, nosh on a bagel, or knock back a Primanti Bros.' sandwich steeped with coleslaw and french fries. The Strip is also home to several of Pittsburgh's wildest dance clubs and concert venues, as well as some of the finest restaurants in town.
Oakland, Squirrel Hill, and Shadyside are the stomping grounds of thousands of students attending one of the many colleges and universities that have made Pittsburgh one of the top education destinations in the nation. Take a walk up Forbes Avenue at any hour of the day and you can mingle, shop for rare music or homemade ice cream, or grab a brew and a movie at the Beehive. Try a hotdog and fries at the "O," and smile defiantly as your cholesterol level hits four figures. Or try to understand the never-ending maze of one-way streets that defy all logic.
Want to catch a flick? Why not be in one? Not only is Pittsburgh home to several large and small movie houses, showing all the latest blockbusters and the best independent and foreign films, but it's also home to film itself, with Hollywood hits like Dogma, Wonder Boys, and Inspector Gadget having been filmed here.
And, of course, "Pittsburgh" is synonymous with "Steelers," not to mention the Pirates and Penguins. On game day, the city is flooded in waves of black and gold, sports bars are overflowing with team jerseys and "Terrible Towels." And when Sidney Crosby scores a goal, you'll know about it whether you're in traffic or in line at the supermarket. For a city as diverse as Pittsburgh, we're all black and gold for at least a few hours a day.