Archive for December, 2010

Baby Pens play at the Consol Center

Warm ups before the second game of the doubleheader.

The baby Pens went on to lose 0-1.  I’ll have a post up later about the ridiculous escalator situation and the small girl that almost got trampled because of it.

Awesome dinner at The Green Mango

My first dinner at a Thai restaurant, and it was amazing!

We had the sweet and sour chicken (with pineapple and tomatoes!) and the Pad Thai, all highly recommended!

Merry Christmas from the Steelers


Winter Classic and public rink schedules

Festivities for the NHL Winter Classic begin today, here’s some highlights to enjoy the next week or so:

Friday, December 24

Public Skate at the community rink (parking lot between Heinz Field and State AE): 3-9 p.m.  Santa will be there between 4 and 6 p.m.

Saturday, December 25

Public Skate at the community rink: 12-9 p.m.

Sunday, December 26

PAHL Youth Hockey: 8:40 a.m. – 2:50 p.m.
Public Skate at the community rink: 7-8:20 p.m.

Monday, December 27

PAHL Youth Hockey and Hockey is for Everyone games: 9 a.m.-2:50 p.m.
Public Skate at the community rink: 3-4:20 p.m.
PIHL (High School) Hockey: 9:40-11:40 p.m.

Hockey Hall of Fame and Pittsburgh Penguins Trophy Display at the Carnegie Science Center and Sports Works (Through December 31, times vary)

Ice Carving Displays at North Shore Riverftont Park (Through December 30, dawn-dusk daily)

Brighton Heights Deck Hockey: 8 a.m.

Tuesday, December 28

Penguins vs. Thrashers: 7 p.m. at the Consol Energy Center

PAHL Youth Hockey: 12-1:20 p.m.
Public skate at the community rink: 3-4:20 and 6:30-7:50 p.m.
Pittsburgh Firefighters vs. Police: 8-9:20 p.m.
Pittsburgh Celebrity Game: 9:30-10:50 p.m.

Wednesday, December 29

Elite Tournaments: 1-5:30 p.m. at the Consol Energy Center

PAHL Youth Hockey: 7:30 a.m.-2:50 p.m.
Public Skate at the community rink: 3-4:20 and 6:30-7:50 p.m.
PIHL (High School) Hockey: 8 – 11:50 p.m.

Thursday, December 30

Riverftont Park: Installation of two life-sized ice sculptures: 2-5 p.m.

Robert Morris and The Baby Pens doubleheader at the Consol Energy Center: 3 p.m.

City of Pittsburgh Pep Rally: 12 p.m., Market Square

PAHL Youth Hockey: 8:30-9:50 a.m. and 8-11 p.m.
USA Hockey (Clinics): 10 a.m.-12:50 p.m.
Penguins Skating School: 1-2:45 p.m.
Public Skate at the community rink: 3-4:20 and 6:30-7:50 p.m.

Friday, December 31

Alumni Game at Heinz Field: 9:30-11 a.m.

Penguins open practice at Heinz Field (ticket from Alumni game required): 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

NHL Spectator Plaza (Art Rooney Way, outside Heinz Field): 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.

First Night Pittsburgh, Cultural District: 6 p.m.-midnight

The Art of Play Exhibit at the Warhol (time unknown, I’m guessing it will be presented all day and during the First Night festivities)

PAHL Youth Hockey: 8 a.m.-12:20 p.m.
Elite Tournament: 12:30-4:50 p.m.
Hockey is for Everyone Game: 5-6:20 p.m.
Public Skate at the community rink: 6:30-8, 8:10-9:30 and 9:40-midnight

Saturday, January 1

2011 NHL Winter Classic at Heinz Field: 1 p.m.

NHL Spectator Plaza (Art Rooney Way, outside Heinz Field): 9 a.m.-1 p.m.

Elite Tournament: 8-11 a.m.
PAHL Youth Hockey: 11:10 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Public Skating at the community rink: 4:10-5:40 and 6-7:30 p.m.
PAHL Youth Hockey: 9:10-11:10 p.m.

Sunday, January 2

PAHL Youth Hockey: 7:30-8:50 a.m. and 1:30-2:50 p.m.
Hockey if for Everyone Game: 9-10:20 a.m.
Elite Girls: 10:30-11:50 a.m.
PIHL (High School) Hockey: 12-1:20, 7-9 and 9:10-11:10 p.m.

Click here to get a 2 for 1 coupon from PNC for the public skating rink and click here for the fan guide to the Winter Classic (including fulls schedule and map).  Full details about each days events are available here.

The train at the science center

My boss at work was nice enough to take a bunch of us to see the train at the Science Center, which I haven’t seen in years.

We spent a while trying to find all the people fishing (I think we missed one).  We saw Fred Rogers and Mr. McFeely, the Westinghouse Castle and Fallingwater.  I loved the hot air balloons and the boats.

Fun fact, the boats move around by a magnet that is attached to the bottom of their hull which follows another magnet attached to a bike chain that moves around underneath the water.

There is a small display in the lobby of the Science Center, but the main train section is on the second floor (up the ramp one rotation), make sure to check it out.  There are four seasons displayed, and the lights cycle through day and night.

Winter Classic banners go up

Winter Classic banners have gone up around town. Seen here, is one outside of the Steel Building.

PATransit Tuesday: Free Rides for Winter Classic

I meant to post this yesterday, but wasn’t able to, but it is exciting news!

Pepsi MAX is sponsoring free rides on the Port Authority January 1 in celebration of the NHL Winter Classic!  Rides on the entire system will be free from 4 a.m. January 1 through 2 a.m. January 2.

That is a normal day for the Port Authority, service begins at 4 in the morning, and runs until 2 the next morning.

PAT will be running on a holiday schedule, so not all routes will be up (specifically, don’t look for commuter buses), but if you take the T, make sure to go to Steel Plaza or the Wood Street station to get free Pepsi MAX between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m.  Special routes for the Winter Classic will be in service though, those schedules can be found here.

New parking app

A new app was released today to help people downtown find a space to park.  Park Pittsburgh shows how many spaces are available in each lot, as well as showing the prices and nearby attractions to each parking garage.

I love that it came into existence out of the need of one man, and will now (hopefully as it spreads), benefit the entire city.

iPhone users can download the app, other smartphone users can go to a mobile site, or view the information via text message, call a number to listen to availability or view it through a web browser.  I’m guessing Mr. Benter uses an iPhone, but I am anxiously waiting for the Android app as well.

I went to the mobile site, and it’s pretty awesome.  The only addition I could think of, would be to add driving directions to the garage entrance using your phone’s GPS, although that may be a feature of the app, I don’t know.

Anyway, thanks, Mr. Benter (and your team of engineers and the Cultural Trust), for making it a little bit easier to park downtown, I can’t wait to see how this expands!

PATransit Tuesday: Moping about money

The state came through and is going to give PAT money!  Hooray!  And (even though I didn’t realize they needed to vote to accept it), they voted to accept that money!  Hooray!

Let’s stop that smile right there, mister.

In their latest blog post, PAT lays out what will happen, which of course, they don’t know many details of.  However, lest you think it would change, the fares will increase January 1.

Now, I’m actually not that upset about the fare increase.  It isn’t as big as I thought it would be, and really, prices go up.  Cost of living goes up.  Yeah, it sucks, but I can’t fault PAT for it.

However, before you think that their blog post is all kittens and rainbows, never fear, they are back and as mopey as always.  Some layoffs and service reductions are coming.  No details yet (they are being reworked in light of the new money), and no clues either.  And of course, don’t forget, this is the state’s fault, not PAT’s.

And again, I’m venting.  But when I’m constantly faced with sad, pessimistic writing of their blog posts/press releases (not to give them more work but the people that run @pghtransit, they get social media.  Maybe they could do some writing for the blog, make it more conversational, help riders interact with PAT more.  You know, since it’s social media), it gets tiring.

So at the end of the day, we’re back up in the air, but there is still lots of time before the service reductions and layoffs, so I’m not too worried about it.  There will most likely be a public comment time (isn’t there always?), before anything goes into affect, so we have that to look forward to.

Don’t drive near the Arena

Bedford Avenue (downhill side) between Crawford and Mario Lemieux Drive is closed, Mario Lemieux Drive is closed and tons of busses are parked all over the place. 

Drive elsewhere if you can!

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