Friday, January 22, 2016

Friday Five #6 : Why I love Pittsburgh

I didn't grow up in Pittsburgh. I grew up in the "South". A term used loosely because my hometown is all of 5 minutes from the KY // OH border. But it was an important distinction to my southern raised Mother. So my Father conceded.

I moved to Pittsburgh in 2008 when I started studying at Duquesne University (pronounced Do-Kane, just in case you planned to try to say that Duke-wes-knee) I came here because it was new, it was exciting & it was just enough like the good parts of my hometown that I felt at home immediately. It took a year or three of learning backroads and street names & neighborhood names, but I feel now that this is home.

Pittsburgh is the proudest city I've come across. Sure, other citizens are quick to tell you what city they live in, but not always quick to tout how wonderful their city is. Pittsburgh on the other hand is proud & they want you to know it.


So, I'm linking up with MarCynthia & Courtney for their Friday 5 to share my five favorite things about Pittsburgh.

1. The people are friendly
I grew up in Kentucky, just south of Cincinnati. It's a friendly area. People hold open doors, say please & thank you, make eye contact & make room for you to pass on the sidewalk. It's the feeling I miss in a lot of big cities. NYC, DC, Boston? No one gives it a second thought. They're all too busy to be friendly.

2. Each neighborhood has their gems & something special to offer
Bloomfield is Little Italy, Polish Hill is Polish (duh), Mt. Washington offers our famous city views, the Northside has history, the Mexican War Streets, and the Southside has beautiful old row houses & B&B's tucked behind Carson Street full of bars & tattoo shops. Each nook & cranny of the city has flavor, it's own personality & it's own people who are proud to tell you what part of the city they're from.

And as a whole, as the NY Times stated...we're the only city with an entrance. How could I forget to tell you about the view.

Source : http://www.t2buck.com/arch13e.htm

3. The Rivers...3 of them!
I spent my high school years on the rowing team & it's what finally brought me to Pittsburgh, a rowing scholarship. They run through the heart of the city yet are a peaceful respite in the middle of the hustle. So whether it's a 4AM wake up call for an eventual city sunrise, or a afternoon on a speed boat with the wind in your face & the cheer of the Pirates stadium behind you. If it weren't for the rivers we wouldn't be the City of Bridges after all. We have more than Venice, Italy. 446 bridges to be exact.


4. Low cost of living
While groceries are the exception (seriously, so expensive, as shown by Kayla here), Pittsburgh enjoys a pretty low cost of living for a city this size. Rent is cheap, houses are cheap, gas is fairly cheap. Case in point...while I don't live in a hip area of downtown (because I have no desire to) my rent sets me back $350 every month, which includes water, sewage & Internet. And this happens to be the most expensive place I've lived in years. This allows me to put the rest of what would be rent $$$ towards things like travel, retirement & wine.

5. Driving distance to lots of big cities
DC (even BIKING distance via the GAP trail), NYC, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Philly, Baltimore, Chicago. All are within a (short) days drive. It means easy access to more big races, museums, weekend getaways & visits with // from friends.


Pittsburgh, I'm proud to call you home.


Have you ever been to Pittsburgh?
Tell me something you love about your city!
Any exciting weekend plans? 

16 comments:

  1. I looked at UPitt for grad school and got to spend a weekend there checking out the city. One of the big things I remember was low cost of living and accessibility. One of my dear friends from college is from Pittsburgh and I've been a few times to visit her. Definitely a great place to live as a young adult for many of the reasons you stated. -C

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    1. Definitely a great place for young adults. Thanks for stopping by!

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  2. Love that you feel like Pittsburgh is home! I'm from here, so I definitely have that pride you mention at the beginning. Two jobs ago I worked for community development in the Lawrenceville neighborhood (and helped to make it as awesome as it is now!) and part of my job was leading tour groups and travel writers through the neighborhoods, which was really cool. The only thing is that Pittsburgh has gotten A LOT more expensive if you want to live in the city. I bought my house 12 years ago, and all the homes were super affordable. Now, I'm not sure I could find a place in the city at any decent price...which is the reason we will probably never move! It's a good and bad thing--more people are living in the city, which is the reason it's become really vibrant, but at the same time housing has gone up exponentially. For example, houses on my street are selling for three times more than what we bought our house for--a good thing for us since our house value has gone up so much though.

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    1. That's so neat about the work you did in Lawrenceville & leading tour groups. Lawrenceville really is a great neighborhood now.

      Wow. No moving for you! I'm sure as bits and pieces of the city get revitalized their home prices jump. Both a good & bad thing I suppose.

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  3. Ahhhhh I'm from Pittsburgh so this post makes me so happy :) I went to Duquesne too...started in 2010 so we were probably on campus at the same time! I take for granted how awesome Pittsburgh really is because I don't know anything else. I'm in DC now post-grad but I'll be back in Pittsburgh for good at some point :) Stopping by from the link up!

    kyliemcgraw.wordpress.com

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    1. YAY! We were definitely on campus at the same time. It's so easy to see a city differently if you spend your whole life growing up there. I know I'm that way about my home town. Hope you'll stop back by!

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  4. I've never been to Pittsburgh and now all of a sudden, I can't wait to go! I love the city I live in too, but probably not as articulately as you love Pittsburgh. :)

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    1. There really is a lot to do here. Doesn't seem like it's anywhere close to you in SoCal, but definitely worth a trip if you find yourself on the East Coast.

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  5. I have only been to Pittsburgh a few times but haven't really gotten to experience the city. My good friend lives there and is debating to move to Philly for a job. I think the reason he continues to live there is bc the cost of living. Definitely a city I need to check out!

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    1. Oh man, I'm definitely biased, but Pittsburgh > Philly any day!

      Definitely worth a trip back to do some more exploring!

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  6. Stopping by from Kylie's blog… as a fellow Pittsburgh girl myself I love this post! :) You definitely need to head to Sewickley if you want to explore a cute little town.. one of my favorites! :) https://randitionsbyrandi.wordpress.com

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    1. Thanks for stopping by Randi! I actually spent a year living in Sewickley. I LOVED it! Such a great community & so nice to be walking distance to almost everything.

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  7. I love Pittsburgh. My wife went to school at Pitt, and I've spent a bit of time there. It really is a great city. Great post.

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    1. Thanks John, I appreciate your kind words. :)

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  8. I've been a few times and always enjoyed it. I have to say though, that I find that people in DC can be quite friendly! :)

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    1. I must not be heading to the right parts of DC!

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