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Local singer and songwriter advances on NBC's The Voice

Chris Jamison, a 20-year-old Ross Township native, is advancing through the rounds of competition on the NBC TV show The Voice.

Jamison chose Maroon 5 frontman Adam Levine as his show coach.

“Though his background is in musical theatre, Chris is currently the lead singer of a rock band,” according to his bio on The Voice website. “He’s hoping The Voice can launch him from college gigs to national stardom.”

Meet Jamison via a video from The Voice here.
 

Mapsburgh memorializes whimsical city on Etsy, Tumblr

Ever imagine Pittsburgh’s most iconic neighborhoods as places of whimsy and wonder? A Hill of Squirrels, perhaps, or a View of Beeches? Whether you hail from the the Line of Brook or the Land of Oak, your fiefdom is now memorialized in an Etsy shop, thanks to a series of whimsical maps from artist Stentor Danielson.

Danielson, a Slippery Rock University geology professor and amateur cartographer, creates whimsical, fanstastical maps of familiar places, like Sewickley and Cleveland, with a heaping dose of influence from J.R.R. Tolkien. His map of Pittsburgh, for example, depicts the city as a fantasy land of castles and dragons.

“The Domain of Pittsburgh in the Realm of Pennsylvania” even includes the former site of the Civic Arena is there, labeled as “Desolation of Civic.” Danielson says his pen-and-ink geographical drawings are inspired by epic fantasy novels like Tolkien’s “Lord of the Rings.”

A bit twee? OK. But a time-honored spin on the idea of place-making, for sure.

To crawl inside the mind of Stetson, visit Mapsburgh, his Tumblr blog.
 

Travel + Leisure magazine lauds city's passionate sports fans

Pittsburgh landed first in Travel + Leisure magazine’s new list of cities with the most passionate sports fans.

The ranking appeared in America’s Favorite Cities 2014, an annual feature for the magazine to award cities based on dozens of categories including people, quality of life, culture and shopping. Pittsburgh came in #4 for this year’s most affordable city.

Travel + Leisure editors chose the 38 U.S. cities to survey based on reader feedback and tourism statistics.

To see the winners in all categories, click here.
 

Local fisherman wins Today Show prize

Dale Ortmann, who lives near the Allegheny River in Manorville, Armstrong County, recently received $50,000 for his efforts to make fishing a viable pastime for interested kids.

NBC’s Today Show honored Ortmann with its Small Changes, Big Impact prize in recognition of his charitable work. Ortmann repairs discarded fishing rods to make them usable again, then distributes them to local kids and teaches them about fishing and water safety.

Ortmann’s wife, Shannon, nominated him for the Small Changes, Big Impact prize.

Watch the Today Show segment here.
 

A Luxury Travel Blog shares Pittsburgh's top five treasures

Looking for the lap of luxury in Pittsburgh? The finest elegance in the City of Steel can be found in five exquisite places, according to A Luxury Travel Blog.

Among the treasures: the Grand Concourse Restaurant, The Frick Art & Historical Center, Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, the Fairmont Pittsburgh hotel, and Wigle Whiskey.

“A beautiful city of contrasts full of grand historic sites mixed with modern dynamic sites firmly rooted in the future,” writes blogger Jennifer Berg.

Travelers with a taste for the finer things in life would do well to explore Pittsburgh’s luxurious offerings, Berg says.

Read the full blog post here.
 

CMU professor receives national medal

Mary Shaw, the Alan J. Perliss University professor of computer science at Carnegie Mellon University, was recently honored by President Obama. Shaw was one of eight recipients of the National Medal of Technology and Innovation, the nation’s highest honor for achievement in the field of technology, innovation and invention.

“These scholars and innovators have expanded our understanding of the world, made invaluable contributions to their fields, and helped improve countless lives,” President Obama said. “Our nation has been enriched by their achievements and by all the scientists and technologists across America dedicated to discovery, inquiry, and invention.”

Read more about Shaw’s honor here.

The Cathedral of Learning in LEGO bricks

LEGO lovers and Pitt alumni can show their support for making the Cathedral of Learning into a new LEGO set.

The 42-story Late Gothic Revival building is the cornerstone of the University of Pittsburgh’s Oakland campus. Blogger Josh Hall originally created the LEGO version of the cathedral for a competition at toy store S.W. Randall in Squirrel Hill.

“It’s such a clean geometric building, it just begs to be recreated in LEGO bricks,” Hall writes on his blog.

Show your support for production of the set here.
 

Smithsonian Magazine celebrates History Center exhibit

“Pittsburgh: A Tradition of Innovation” at the Senator John Heinz History Center caught the eye of Smithsonian Magazine this week.

The publication noted the many contributions Pittsburgh has made to the city throughout it’s 16,000-year history, including introducing the world to the first emoticons, banana splits, ground coffee, ketchup and Big Macs.

“The city has continually reinvented itself,” Smithsonian journalist Max Kutner writes. “At the turn of the 20th century, Pittsburgh was home to thriving glassblowing and iron industries. Over time, that money stayed local, but found its way into other types of business.”

Read the full story and watch a video detailing Pittsburgh’s many firsts hhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/celebrating-pittsburgh-city-behind-pro-football-big-macs-and-polio-vaccine-180952839/ere.
 

The cool place for tech start-ups

Pittsburgh’s giving Silicon Valley a run for its money when it comes to nurturing the next generation of technology innovators.

Pointing to the educational opportunities, low cost of living and new technology hubs scattered throughout the city, Network World Magazine calls Pittsburgh a “thriving and mutually supportive tech community.” For entrepreneurs looking to launch and grow a high-tech start, Pittsburgh is where it’s at.

“This tech-oriented renaissance is no accident,” writes columnist Linda Musthaler. “State and local community leaders have developed a strong ecosystem to support new companies from the conception phase through startup funding and mentorship to larger growth.”

Read all about it here.
 

Yinzer accent makes late night

Actor Patrick Wilson, an alum of Carnegie Mellon University’s theater department, shared his best Pittsburgh impersonation with Seth Myers on NBC last week.

Myers, whose father holds a degree from CMU as well, talked Stillers, Gullifty’s and the Original Hot Dog shop with Wilson, who appeared on Late Night with Seth Myers to promote his movie Space Station 76.

“It’s an accent that exists just at the confluence of the three rivers,” Myers quipped.

Watch the stars swap their yinzer accents here.
 

Sports museum among top 5 for travelers

The Western Pennsylvania Sports Museum, on the second and third floors of the Senator John Heinz History Museum, is a sanctuary for sports lovers, both near and far.

Artifacts, memorabilia and a mix of audio and visual exhibitions capture some of sports’ most mind-boggling moments of sports, according to TravelPulse.com.

“Whether hitting a home run or celebrating runners going for the gold, the city’s love for sports continuously prevails in the Western Pennsylvania Sports Museum,” the travel site says.

See the full list here.
 

Pittsburgh Canning Exchange gets Epicurious seal of approval

Foodies the world over are getting a taste of how sweet life is in the City of Bridges, thanks to a Q & A with a local canning expert on the Epicurious.com blog.

In an interview on the gourmet site, Sara Blumenstein of the Pittsburgh Canning Exchange talks local harvests, the city’s creative community and of course, her recommendations for making the most of the Pittsburgh food scene.

“Pittsburgh is an exciting place to eat these days!” Blumenstein tells Epicurious.com. “In my neighborhood, Bloomfield, I’m particularly excited about Bread and Salt, a new bakery; DJ’s Butcher Block, a fantastic local butcher; and Fukuda, which I think does the best sushi anywhere.”

Read the full interview here.

The Milk Shake Factory gets finalist nod from Martha Stewart American Made

South Side sweet spot The Milk Shake Factory is a 2014 Food Finalist for the Martha Stewart American Made program. The awards in categories including crafts, design, food and style honors the next generation of great American makers.

The family business has become an iconic Pittsburgh landmark, tempting tourists and locals alike with 55 different flavors of milkshakes, plus specialty sundaes and gourmet chocolates.

Owners Christian Edwards, Dana Edwards and Mark Edwards attribute their success to ambitious ancestors who opened a small chocolate shop and soda fountain in Lawrenceville 100 years ago.

“In 1914, our story began with two young Greek immigrants who heard stories of an America that opened its arms to many who hungered for success,” the owners write on their voting page.

Vote for The Milk Shake Factory hehttp://www.marthastewart.com/americanmade/nominee/92001/food/the-milk-shake-factoryre.
 

Bicycling magazine names Pittsburgh No. 21 in bike-friendly cities

Pittsburgh gained some traction among the editors at Bicycling magazine, going from No. 35 in 2012 to No. 21 in 2014 in the publication’s ranking of bike-friendly cities in the United States.

The rise in rank is due in part to Pittsburgh’s new “runnels,” those tracks along Pittsburgh’s 712 city staircases that help cyclists more easily roll bikes up steps.

The magazine also recommends the monthly Pittsburgh Underwear Ride as a fun nighttime ride that promotes biking and positive body image.

Get more scoop on the best biking in the ‘Burgh hhttp://www.bicycling.com/ride-maps/featured-rides/21-pittsburghere.
 

One last shot of summerís supermoon

An almost supernatural photo of the September supermoon looming over PPG Place, shot by Pittsburgh photographer Dave Dicello, made a chilling appearance when it was featured on Time.com earlier this month.

“I knew that the moon would make its way over the city about an hour after it rose, giving me time to get to Point State Park, where this photo was made,” DiCello said. “With the moon sitting in the spires above the PPG Building and using a 70-200 lens and a 2X teleconverter, I was able to capture a haunting scene of the harvest moon over the Steel City.”

When the full moon hits its closest point in Earth’s orbit, the result is a larger and brighter-than-average natural phenomenon. When it hangs amid clouds over an illuminated PPG Place, the result is something close to a larger-than-life Gotham City.

See the stunning photo here.
 
1201 Articles | Page: | Show All
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