Worth the Drive

Secrets of Oakmont

With the gaslights along the brick-​paved Allegheny River Boulevard, the small, independent shops and the 1889 Carnegie Library, visiting Oakmont can feel like a welcome trip back in time.

Cleaner to the Stars

It’s time to don your best apparel for holiday parties, dinners and events. And then, of course, you’ll need to have those clothes cleaned. There are countless options, but Jerry Montesano’s Shadyside Valet is a standout.

Now Entering “Happy Valley”

The Pennsylvania State University has more than 645,000 living alums. Obviously, they know about “Happy Valley,” as do the throngs who attend football games each fall. But if you’ve never visited Penn State, State College or Centre County, it’s well worth exploring, especially on a quieter, non-​football weekend.

Exploring the Maridon

Most people do not associate Asian art with Butler, Pa. However, the only museum dedicated to ancient and contemporary Chinese and Japanese art and culture in western Pennsylvania is tucked away on a residential street in this city of around 14,000 — epitomizing the concept of “hidden gem.”

Boom, bust and disaster

Located at a horseshoe bend of the Monongahela River in Washington County — the heart of today’s Rust Belt — what would become Donora, Pa.was a farming community of 12 people in 1900. Within one year, it exploded to 4,000 — as hordes of workers built and manned numerous factories. Its population topped 14,000 by 1920,…

The shrine on Troy Hill

The story of how St. Anthony Chapel in Troy Hill came to house the largest collection of Christian relics outside of the Vatican begins in the 1850s with a young man from a wealthy Belgian family.

Having a great time in Beaver, Pa.

Rudyard Kipling visited Beaver, Pa, during the summer of 1889 and referred to it fondly in “Sea to Sea: Letters of Travel.” Spend a day or two there, and you’ll understand why.

Days of Wine and Music

There are few things more enjoyable during beautiful weather than sitting outside with family or friends, listening to live music while sipping on wine. Fortunately, there is a charming, local, Tuscan-​themed venue where one can do just that.

Remembering the Great One

Walking into The Clemente Museum at Engine House No. 25 in Lawrenceville, one word comes to mind: passion. The athletic passion of one of baseball’s greatest players, his passion for helping the less fortunate and making the world better for his and all children, and the passion of the man…

Giddy up, let’s go!

Horse-​drawn sleigh rides. These icons of old-​fashioned winter are lauded in carols and featured in Currier and Ives lithographs. And a great one is available just northeast of Kittanning, in Cowansville. Denise and Flavius Brinsfield grew up with a love of horses. Denise enjoyed an equine way of life, both…

Chagrin Falls

Sometimes it’s nice to escape to a place with a slower, more relaxed pace — a quaint community that isn’t teeming with chain stores and traffic, where kids ride their bikes into town to have a cone and hang out with friends. There is a town, just this side of Cleveland, that…

North by northwest

Summer has finally arrived, and there is no better time for a weekend (or mid-​week) getaway. McKean County is a few hours from Pittsburgh and a great area to explore, play, relax and have fun. Whether your interests are historic, outdoorsy, culinary or sporty, you will find no lack of…

Bon appétit!

Who wouldn’t love to spend April in Paris? However, if France isn’t in your immediate future, you can still enjoy its delectable treats right here in Pittsburgh. These three patisseries are like children; you love them all, but each has its own special talent.

A cookware quest

Forget about Black Friday. If you’re interested in top-​quality cookware at great prices, you can sleep off that Thanksgiving meal and make the drive to Washington County on Dec. 67 for the All-​Clad Factory Outlet Sale in Canonsburg.

Autumn Weekend

There are all sorts of iconic American highways that appear in song and lore — Route 66, the Pacific Coast Highway and the Blue Ridge Parkway, to name a few. But, according to National Geographic, “one of America’s most scenic drives” is right here in Pennsylvania: U.S. Route 6.
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Kimpton Hotel Monaco Pittsburgh is a fantastic revival of the beautiful James H. Reed building, originally erected in 1903. The classic building in Downtown Pittsburgh serves as a captivating destination for both leisure and business travelers journeying to the Steel City. The stunning Beaux Arts-​style of the building is perfectly matched with the locally inspired interior of the hotel, which is both vibrant and whimsical. The Commoner, adjacent to Kimpton Hotel Monaco Pittsburgh, is an 120-​seat gastropub serving breakfast, lunch, brunch and dinner, helmed by executive chef Wyatt Lash. The restaurant’s menu showcases approachable, seasonal favorites, an expansive beer program and cocktails that lean toward the classics with an original twist.

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