Open Streets PGH festival to bring bundle of energy Downtown
Pittsburghers will be dancing in the street on Sunday — at least, on one street Downtown.
Organizers of the inaugural Open Streets PGH festival plan to offer dance lessons, Zumba sessions, rock wall climbing and snowboarding from 8 a.m. to noon on Sixth Street, which will be closed to vehicle traffic for a half-mile stretch from Market Square to PNC Park.
Eve Picker, head of the Open Streets PGH committee, said the festival is a pilot event, which could grow next year.
“This started in Bogota, Colombia, decades ago, where they started closing streets (for festivals). This idea has been adopted all over the world — you take a street in an urban place and close it for a short period and turn it into a linear park,” Picker said. “This year is really a snapshot of what we want to do.”
Other events and activities include exercise-bike spinning in Market Square, tai chi and juggling. Seven Springs Mountain Resort is sponsoring snowboarding for children on the Roberto Clemente Bridge.
“Bike Pittsburgh and our partners want people to experience the streets in a new way by taking part in healthy lifestyle activities,” said Ngani Ndimbie, spokeswoman for the nonprofit Bike Pittsburgh, which is helping to coordinate the event. “The kids programming will be phenomenal.”
Grants and donations from several companies, organizations and foundations are covering the approximately $40,000 cost of the event, which is free to the public.
Picker said organizers are hoping next year’s event will take place in multiple neighborhoods.
Bobby Kerlik is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7886 or [email protected].