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park supporters sell-out first-ever 'picnic in your park'

On Saturday, September 26 many of our closest friends joined us for our newly imagined 2020 PNC Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy Hat Luncheon: Picnic in Your Park event, where we celebrated the power of parks in a safe, socially distant fashion. This year’s event was especially important as we honored our cherished parks and green spaces, which continue serving as essential amenities during the COVID-19 pandemic.   
 
Event attendees enjoyed a one-of-a-kind, gourmet picnic basket filled with scrumptious picnic fare that they enjoyed at home or in the park. Baskets were prepared by local caterer, the Common Plea. 
  
This year's event raised $512,000 in revenue for the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy, which will support ongoing free educational programs for people of all ages, increased maintenance for various park sites, and general operating costs to continue the mission of restoring Pittsburgh's park system to excellence.  
 
Not only did this year's event further support the parks that you know and love but it will also support children experiencing food insecurity. For every Picnic in Your Park basket purchased, in addition to supporting our mission, a meal donation will be made to the City of Pittsburgh’s Grab and Go meal distribution program. 
 
The Grab and Go meal distribution program is a product of the City of Pittsburgh's response to the COVID-19 pandemic. In late March, when schools began to close county-wide to keep students and educators safe from the virus, the City of Pittsburgh developed a program to ensure that all local children continued receiving their essential meals that are typically provided during the school day.  
 
We're sending our sincere thanks to all who generously supported this year's newly imagined event!

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a family favorite returns | bump in the night 2020

The fall season and nighttime both unveil new wonders in your parks! Experience Frick Park in a whole new light by joining us at the annual ‘Bump in the Night’ family-friendly fall celebration. Every October, kids and adults love to discover what goes 'bump' in the night in Frick Park! Designed for kids ages three to nine and their adults, guests will enjoy a hike in Frick Park and will also meet Parks Conservancy naturalist educators along the way to further explore the wonders of nature! 
 
We're thrilled to offer this beloved fall activity that families can do together in a safe, physically distant manner.
 
Click here to learn more and to purchase tickets to this year's event! Hurry - reservations are limited!  
 
Special thanks to Giant Eagle for generously donating 200 pumpkins to Bump in the Night 2020.

fascinating fall fungi webinar 

Join Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy Naturalist Educator, Stephen Bucklin on Wednesday, October 7 from 6:00 P.M. - 7:00 P.M. as he explores the fascinating world of fungi! With the weather cooling and fall underway, an amazing diversity of mushrooms can be found decorating our landscapes. Learn about the incredible diversity of fungi that can be found in a park near you!
 
Click here to learn more and register for the upcoming webinar. 

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free programs in the parks

Want to practice Trap Yoga on the lawn in Allegheny Commons or show off your best (physically distant) dance moves under the Schenley Plaza tent? We're thrilled to offer a variety of free health and wellness programs in your parks.
 
Click here to learn more and to register for a free fitness program!
 
Please note, the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy is responding to COVID-19 concerns by following guidelines and precautions, including asking for a health history review from all guests and attendees. Prior to attending public park events and programs, please read our entire COVID-19 safety waiver.

celebrating national disability awareness month

The Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy and Oakland for All are hosting a safe, physically distant event that will showcase Oakland and regional organizations or agencies that provide employment and/or services benefiting the disabled community.
 
The event will take place at the Schenley Plaza Tent in Oakland on Wednesday, October 14 from 11:00 A.M. - 1:00 P.M. The event is free and open to the public. 

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take part in the emerald view park master plan 

The Department of City Planning is leading a planning process for Emerald View Regional Park!
You can get involved today by learning more here or attending the virtual meeting on Thursday, October 22.
 
*Photo credit: The City of Pittsburgh Department of City Planning* 

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then and now: riverview park chapel shelter

Parks and green spaces are essential parts of the lives of all Pittsburghers. Throughout the past several months, we’ve recognized the importance of parks in helping the community cope and heal during the crisis. This has allowed us to reflect upon our long-standing partnership with the City of Pittsburgh and the work we have accomplished together to restore Pittsburgh's park system to excellence.

Read below to learn more about the Riverview Park Chapel Shelter, one of the many restoration projects of the City of Pittsburgh and Parks Conservancy.

The restoration of the Riverview Park Chapel Shelter, now the most requested shelter in the city parks, was completed in June 2008. The building, which had been closed to the public and slated for demolition in 2005, was completely refurbished to make it accessible and enjoyable for park users.
 
Restoration improvements included new flooring, an updated kitchen, handicap-accessible restrooms, the recreation of the historic steeple and dormers, and a return to the historically-inspired design. The landscape was also restored, with a new trail connection, removal of invasive species, and the creation of new garden beds.

The Parks Conservancy is honored to work alongside the City of Pittsburgh, local community members, and to have friends like you to support our neighborhood and park improvement projects year-round!

join the park champion clean up effort 

Parks and green spaces have meant so much to so many throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Did you know that local park use increased by 135% over baseline in August? The human impact on parks is more significant than ever.

Parks are here for us during unprecedented times. Now, it's time for us to give back to them. Consider giving back to one of Pittsburgh's many parks through a unique volunteer clean up effort. Not only are you helping to care for the parks that you know and love, but you also have the chance to explore a new park or trail at the same time!
 
Interested in joining the clean up effort? Click here to get started. Volunteers will focus on litter picking and debris removal. Volunteers do not need to be part of the Park Champion network to participate.

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freaky fungi  

When many of us think about soil, we are quick to associate it with little (or big) plants growing up out of its brown earthy goodness. But plants are not the only organisms living in soil, which is filled with a large amount of biodiversity, including insects, micro-invertebrates, bacteria, and of course, fungi!
Fungi are incredibly fascinating and I’m always excited when I see them growing alongside the plants in the parks. Not only is it another cool thing to appreciate out in nature, but fungi are often an indicator of healthy soil! Although mushrooms can be truly stunning, these are just the fruiting bodies of fungi. The majority of the life and biomass of a fungus is spent underground and out of sight!
Click here to continue reading.

forgingPGH

On September 1, Mayor Peduto announced the launch of the City’s first-ever citywide comprehensive land use plan, ForgingPGH.  The Department of City Planning is leading this effort to set a vision and plan for the next 20 years. The project team is looking forward to working with you to help shape all 90 neighborhoods and the City for decades to come. Visit ForgingPGH.org today to learn more. 

covid-19: life reimagined  

What we've learned during this unprecedented time of quarantines, public masking, and months of home schooling is that public parks and green spaces have never been more important for our physical and mental well-being.
 
We can’t underestimate the power of parks. They’re here for us during times of uncertainty when little else is available. They are sanctuaries in the center of chaos. They serve as a place of peace and comfort for our minds and spirits. They keep us healthy and active with endless trails for hiking and biking and wide green spaces to throw a frisbee, kick a ball, or dance like nobody’s watching.
 
Click here to explore The Parks Pack, a guide to safely exploring Pittsburgh's parks during the COVID-19 global health emergency or click here to visit our COVID-19 response page. 
 
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follow us on social media

To access unique photos from your fellow park lovers and the latest information on park projects, follow the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. You can also follow the Schenley Plaza and Frick Environmental Center pages on Facebook. Have a photo you'd love to share with us? Tag @pittsburghparks or use #pittsburghparks.