History Behind the Holiday: Hanukkah

History Behind the Holiday: Hanukkah

Hanukkah is the Jewish festival of lights. Beginning on the 25th day of the Jewish month of Kislev, the festival is observed for eight nights. While Hanukkah is now one of the most well-known Jewish celebrations in North America, it is considered a very minor holiday in the Jewish religion. Popular Pittsburgh has put together a brief history behind the holiday and how it came

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Sue’s Whimsical Pittsburgh

Sue's Whimsical Pittsburgh

Most of the time when you see a product for sale, you only think about if you want it or not and don’t give much consideration as to how the product came into existence. Sometimes, like in the story I’m about to tell you, the most interesting and meaningful part is how a design was created. A Pittsburgh Artist Sue Douglas was a Pittsburgh artist.

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Benedum and Trees: Oil Tycoons

Benedum and Trees: Oil Tycoons

If you’ve spent time of the campus of the University of Pittsburgh, the names Trees and Benedum are quite familiar. Joseph C. Trees Hall is located in the University’s upper campus. The hall serves as a multipurpose recreational facility for students, faculty, and staff. A few streets down, sits Michael L. Benedum Hall of Engineering. This landmark academic building is home to the Swanson School

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The Rolling Stones in Pittsburgh

The Rolling Stones in Pittsburgh

Often called the world’s greatest rock and roll band, The Rolling Stones formed in 1962 in London. The first year of “the Rollin’ Stones” consisted of members coming and going; the first stable line-up debuted Mick Jagger, Brian Jones, Keith Richards, Bill Wyman and Charlie Watts in January 1963. The group started out playing covers with roots in blues and early rock and roll. Back

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Randy Pausch and the Last Lecture

Randy Pausch and the Last Lecture

What would you say if you were tasked with giving a final speech? Carnegie Mellon University professor, Randy Pausch, had the opportunity to give one final lecture before his death. Randy Pausch was a professor little-known outside of his field of Computer Science and Human-Computer Interaction. But he was beloved by his students and colleagues. On September 18, 2007, Pausch gave a speech to an

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History Behind the Holiday: Day of the Dead

History Behind the Holiday: Day of the Dead

Dia de los Muertos—or Day of the Dead—is an often misunderstood holiday in the United States. Many believe this Mexican celebration is related to Halloween. While there are similarities, the two holidays originate from different sources. Our History of Halloween article, explains how Samhain—an ancient Celtic festival—evolved over thousands of years into the costumes and trick-or-treating we participate in today. Dia de los Muetos ,

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History Behind the Holiday: Halloween

History Behind the Holiday: Halloween

People have been celebrating Halloween—or some version of it—for more than 2,000 years. Today, many mistakenly associate this Americanized holiday with Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead). However, that is not quite true. The roots of Halloween reach much farther back, to Western Europe B.C.E. The Original Halloween Halloween originates from the Celtic New Year festival, Samhain (sow-in). The Celts, who lived during

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The Kelly Strayhorn Theater: A Place of Inspiration and Artistic Incubation

The Kelly Strayhorn Theater: A Place of Inspiration and Artistic Incubation

The Kelly Strayhorn Theater in East Liberty is named for two hometown legends: Gene Kelly and Billy Strayhorn. Gene Kelly—singer, dancer, actor, filmmaker, and choreographer—is best known for his role in Singin’ in the Rain (1952) and many other films. Billy Strayhorn was an American jazz composer, pianist, lyricist, and arranger who collaborated with the likes of Duke Ellington. Both called Pittsburgh home during their

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A Rash of Murders in 1977

A Rash of Murders in 1977

This Is Not For The Faint Of Heart In 1977, I was a senior in high school when Southwestern Pennsylvania experienced a series of brutal murders that left everyone in the area on edge. Gun sales soared, hardware stores couldn’t keep locks on the shelves, teens traveled in packs for safety, and women were afraid to go out alone. It didn’t much matter who you

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Prominent Civic Associations in Pittsburgh

Prominent Civic Associations in Pittsburgh

  Civic Associations have a distinctive and vital role in a democratic society. These organizations work with the goal of improving communities. Many serve the important function of providing a collective voice to issues that affect the community. Pittsburgh is home to many civic associations whose missions are to enhance the Greater Pittsburgh area for residents and visitors. Below are some of the most notable.

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