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NOV. 25-DEC. 2, 2020 VOLUME 29 + ISSUE 48 Editor-In-Chief LISA CUNNINGHAM Director of Advertising JASMINE HUGHES Director of Operations KEVIN SHEPHERD News Editor RYAN DETO Senior Writer AMANDA WALTZ Staff Writers HANNAH LYNN, JORDAN SNOWDEN Photographer/Videographer JARED WICKERHAM Editorial Designer ABBIE ADAMS Graphic Designers JOSIE NORTON, JEFF SCHRECKENGOST Senior Account Executive KAITLIN OLIVER Sales Representative ZACK DURKIN Operations Coordinator MAGGIE WEAVER Circulation Manager JEFF ENGBARTH Featured Contributors REGE BEHE, LYNN CULLEN, TERENEH IDIA, CHARLES ROSENBLUM Interns NARDOS HAILE, LAKE LEWIS, KYLIE THOMAS National Advertising Representative VMG ADVERTISING 1.888.278.9866 OR 1.212.475.2529 Publisher EAGLE MEDIA CORP. In memory of ALEX GORDON 1987-2020


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AST WEEK, AFTER BOTH the county and state hit their highest number of COVID-19 cases, the Allegheny County Department of Health advised residents to stay home for the holidays to help slow the spread. It seems like common sense, right? Stay home this year to help ensure that your family and friends live to see the holidays next year. Yet, despite safety warnings against traveling, news reports still show airports are becoming crowded with Americans flying for Thanksgiving. Locally, neighborhood message groups show residents looking for places to get coronavirus tests before traveling to see family, despite having no symptoms, leaving fewer tests available for those who are actually sick. But staying home doesn’t have to be a negative thing. Here, we’ve compiled a list of 10 ways you can make the most out of staying home during this Thanksgiving break.



1. Eat well from local restaurants Who needs a huge home-cooked meal when you live in a city with so many fantastic restaurants still serving delicious takeout options? On our website last week, we featured a list of restaurants offering small takeout Thanksgiving options, including stuffed acorn squash from Sprezzatura in Millvale and lamb shank from Khalil’s in Bloomfield. If you missed the cut-off for ordering a meal on Thanksgiving Day, be sure to check out their offerings for the weekend. Local restaurants deserve our support more than ever during these times, and so do their employees. Don’t forget to tip well, even when getting takeout. Bonus: If you live alone and want to eat an entire pie yourself, there’s no one to judge you. And less dishes to wash!

2. Free art projects online for kids The Pittsburgh Children’s Museum has launched a virtual version of its annual Tough Art program

just in time to keep your kids from getting bored this Thanksgiving break. Five artists have created activities for kids to try at home for Tough Art @ Home 2020, including illustrating cartoon animals, painting with light, and creating a shadow puppet theater. Links to the Vimeo streams and materials needed can be found at pittsburghkidsdesign.org/ tough-art-home-2020-artists.

3. Motown all-day If your Thanksgiving had a soundtrack, what would it sound like? We’re going to be toasting our cranberry cocktails to the sweet sounds of Motown, playing all day long on local independent radio station 91.3FM WYEP. Stay home and listen to the station starting at 6 a.m. when DJs Brian Siewiorek and The Soul Show’s Mike Canton (who also has a monthly Pittsburgh City Paper column) curate iconic hitmakers from the Motor City, including The Supremes and Marvin Gaye. “Let’s get it on,” Pittsburgh. Turkey, that is.

MAKING HOLIDAYS GREAT AGAIN Local comedians offer one-liners for surviving a Zoom Thanksgiving with MAGA-loving relatives



Stuffed acorn squash from Sprezzatura

4. Ice Skating Downtown The rink at PPG Place has reopened for the season, marking one of the official signs of the holiday season in Pittsburgh. This year may look different than others, but they’ve been able to find a way to make it safe, and the fun holiday tradition continues. COVID-19 protocols include socialdistance requirements while waiting in line, temperature checks, masks required at all times, and limited admission sizes. All ticketing is required to be prepaid online. Sunday-Thursday, 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Friday-Saturday, 11 a.m.-midnight. PPG Place, Downtown. $8-11. $5, skate rental. ppgplace.com/directory/ the-rink

5. 40 Years of Holiday Parades For the past 40 years, local high school marching bands, mascots, and celebrities have marched through Downtown Pittsburgh in WPXI’s Holiday Parade on Thanksgiving weekend. While this year’s parade had to be canceled because of the pandemic, the station is going to instead air a two-hour special with highlights from the past two decades. Make a BINGO game of it, and play with your family and friends over Zoom. Here are a few ideas to get you started: Rick Sebak, synchronized dancers, the Pirates Parrot, An American Idol contestant, Santa Claus. 9-11 a.m. Sat., Nov. 28. WPXI-TV. wpxi.com

6. Shop Small, Locally and Online Since you’re choosing to keep your family safe by staying home for Thanksgiving, take it a step further and cancel Black Friday shopping at large, crowded shopping malls too. Instead, start hunting online from local artists and from local shops. We recommend checking out love, Pittsburgh (lovepittsburghshop.com; Downtown and Mount Washington) and Wildcard (wildcardpgh.com; Lawrenceville), two stores that both offer wares from local artists and curbside pick-up. If you have the weekend off, Small Business Saturday is this weekend, and Downtown Pittsburgh stores (downtownpittsburgh.com/ shopopoly) are offering discounts from 11 a.m.-4 p.m.

7. Enjoy a show at home Skip the drama at a family gathering, arguing over the last dinner roll, or with stubborn relatives who refuse to put masks over their nose. Instead, save the theatrics for the pros. Here are four streaming performances worth your time this week, and if you’re quarantined with a partner, why not make a date night of it? If you’re missing the theater, dress up at home and set up a candlelight by your laptop. Tales from a Safe Distance, a four-part opera presented by Decameron Opera Coalition, is a partnership between nine U.S. companies including

OU’VE SUFFERED through four years of your

conservative uncle talking about building the wall and locking her up. Now that Trump has lost the election — yes, he really did lose, people! — it’s time for liberals to finally enjoy their meals in peace. We asked local comedians to help give us some one-liners and jokes for you to throw back at your MAGA-loving relatives if they try to bring up any right-wing nonsense during your family Zoom calls this Thanksgiving.

“Dad, the turkey you’re about to carve has a better chance of being pardoned than Trump.” — Abby Fudor Member of Frankly Scarlett and Arcade Comedy Theater facebook.com/franklyscarlettcomedy arcadecomedytheater.com

“Why is Uncle Cleetus going through the garbage? I told him we were out of beer. He’s demanding a recount.”

“Uncle Steve you better hold back on the turkey. That tryptophan is gonna make you look like your arch enemy: ‘Sleepy Joe.’” — Ben Dietels Co-Host, Neon Brainiacs podcast neonbrainiacs.libsyn.com CONTINUES ON PG. 6





“Sorry Aunt Karen, we aren’t serving Pumpkin Pie this holiday because it lost the popular vote. Everyone knows Pecan Pie is far more qualified than that orange monstrosity to lead the holiday dessert table.”

“Thanksgiving dinner is like Medicare for All, there’s enough to go around. Just because you hate your cousin Gary, doesn’t mean he shouldn’t be allowed to have the mashed potatoes you made.” — Amanda Averell Co-Owner, Burning Bridges Comedy Club amandaaverell.com burningbridgescomedyclub.com

“I told my conservative side of the family this year Thanksgiving will be hosted at the Downtown Fairmont … Downtown Fairmont in West Virginia.”


A Steelers fan holds up a sign during a home game on Sun., Nov. 15, 2020.

“My cousin constantly posts that both the election and COVID were hoaxes. This is coming from a guy who believed Santa was real until 11th Grade and only recently found out that BLM has nothing to do with BLTs.” — Derek Minto derekminto.com

“You’re a sad old bag If you’re waving Trump’s flag How much of that Kool Aid did you drink? Your dude lost the race And stomps in place All he needs to do is concede! Make him pack a box To distract from Fox Just get out! It is time to go! After Inauguration, slap on those cuffs! Cell block T is your new home!!” — Arla White The Comedy of Arla White @lala0386

“Is this turkey free range or was it locked up like Trump will be after he leaves office?”

“Oh sure, Aunt Karen, you want mail-in ballots thrown out but you still have leftover turkey from last year in your fridge.” — Gregg Harrington Co-Host, Neon Brainiacs podcast neonbrainiacs.libsyn.com

Pittsburgh’s Resonance Works. Each company produced four episodes of one-act operas, based on a classic Italian story, The Decameron, a tale of 10 people quarantined together. Continues through Dec. 31. $15. resonanceworks.org Immersive theater company Quantum Theatre is presenting an encore presentation of Wild, a dark comic play based on the case of Edward Snowden. Nov. 27-Dec. 13. quantumtheatre.com. Alumni Theater Company brings Sharon G. Flake’s coming-of-age novel The Skin I’m In to the virtual stage, tackling colorism and self-worth. Nov. 27-Nov. 29. alumnitheatercompany.org Hershey Felder, a pianist, actor, and playwright, has portrayed Irving Berlin, George Gershwin, and Leonard Berstein on stage. In an exclusive online event, Pittsburgh Public Theater brings Hershey Felder Presents: Backstory, with stories and music from his years working closely with family members of the three American artists. $40. Continues through Nov. 29. ppt.org

8. Here We Go, Steelers So, I hear we have a pretty good football team this year. The Pittsburgh Steelers are currently the only undefeated team left in the NFL. (Can you picture the entire city singing that relentless “Here we go Stillers, here we go, Pittsburgh’s going to the Super Bowl” song through blackand-gold masks yet?) This Thanksgiving, you can watch the game at 8:20 p.m. on NBC at home, just as you could anywhere else you’d normally be for the holidays. But since you smartly chose to stay at home, you don’t have to listen to any of your out-of-town relatives rooting for Baltimore.

And if you don’t like football, then hey — you can change the channel! You’re home! You hold the remote! You are in control!

9. Giving Back Did you save money on a plane ticket because you’re not traveling this year? Turnpike and gas? Decide that you don’t really need all those extra Thanksgiving sides and desserts since you’re just having a laid-back holiday at home with yourself or the few people in your household? Sweet. Look how much money you saved! If you’re one of the lucky people who’s still employed during the pandemic, how about donating the cash you saved to the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank (pittsburghfoodbank.org) to help provide meals for families for the next holiday? Because I can’t think of a greater reason to stay home than to help keep our neighbors safe and healthy.

10. There’s Always Next Year And that’s the end goal: to keep everyone safe and healthy to make sure that we’re all still here next year. So let’s call our loved ones and have a video chat over Zoom instead of seeing them in person this year for the holidays. Sure, there’s no way to predict the future, but, come on — we’ll have a real president then, so at least things can’t be worse next year than they are now, right? In the meantime, relax, throw on a pair of your most comfortable pajama pants — make ’em extra baggy if you’re having pie — and, if you’re going outside to pick up a six-pack of pumpkin beer before your holiday weekend, please don’t forget your mask.

Follow editor in chief Lisa Cunningham on Twitter @trashyleesuh







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Downtown Zelienople


OP-ED: THE FORGOTTEN COUNTY If we want to undo Trumpism in Butler County, we have to reckon with class BY BRITTANY BORGHI INFO@PGHCITYPAPER.COM




ESPITE KNOWING THAT facts don’t change people’s minds, I still use

them all the time, especially when I’m talking to my family about politics: “Joe Biden is a Catholic, not a Scientologist,” or “The government isn’t hoarding a secret coronavirus vaccine,” knowing full well that my claims are not persuasive. Mostly, this is OK. Except this election year, when I wanted to persuade my working-class, Western Pennsylvania family to vote for Joe Biden. My mom and her husband own their own small business, and the two of them have worked their already disabled bodies into calluses, remodeling homes for wealthy clients in the Pittsburgh exurbs. Talking with my mom one day, I tried, midstream, to dig at some of our shared values. “But Mom, tax cuts for rich people don’t actually help you. You have grandkids who go to public school. We need people in office to fund those schools. Rich people don’t have to worry about shit like that. We have so much wealth in this country. Wouldn’t it be nice to spread it around?”

My mother, an intelligent woman, paused. “Yeah,” she scoffed, “but there have to be rich people.” My mom’s immediate answer to “Why?” was that if there weren’t rich people, we’d have socialism. Her comment illuminated something to me about what it meant to be a person who lives where I was born. What she meant is this: there have to be rich people so that she could someday also be rich, so that she can keep believing that all the back-breaking work she does will eventually pay off. Communism, as they say in the movie Clue, is just a red herring. The love of Trump is deeply personal. The people at the top, the highest earners in this country, are the people we need to hold accountable if we’re in the same place four years from now. I’m tired of blaming my family. I grew up in Zelienople. After President Trump’s pre-election rally at the Butler County Airport, much of the national news painted the citizens of my home county as people who follow Trump blindly into the fog of his charisma because they don’t truly understand the state of the world. Trump is a “stern, but all-knowing father.” This, without elaboration, leads to only further obscurity among liberals who have never met a small-town conservative or a person from a place like Butler. Rob Gleason, former chair of the Pa. Republican Party, once said in The New York Times of Western Pennsylvania Trump supporters: “The people here still feel forgotten.” And while that sentiment is very true, it falls short. What the national coverage about my home county fails to acknowledge is the heart of the matter: forgotten places breed forgottenness into their cultures. Forgotten places teach you that you aren’t worthwhile. Forgotten places surrounded by so many other beautiful, bright, shining, better places absolutely suck to be from. And if you find yourself one of the lucky idiots who is from a forgotten place, you learn quickly to believe that you are forgettable, too. Worthless. Inconsequential. Trashy. And this is what power struc-

tures demand of the working class: that they stay in their places — and that they do so willingly. Punishment is more elaborate and expensive than store-brand self-loathing. But I grew up in that kind of a place, and I can tell you just how hard it is to shake those notions of worthlessness. And let me be clear: I love my hometown. Zelienople is a charming hills-and-valleys little hamlet full of other people who barely believe in themselves, just like me. And that’s a nice feeling, isn’t it? To be surrounded by people who understand you?

these people want a fight? Ignoring this phenomenon means that those who stand to profit from the discord will only continue to profit from it, and those of us who stand to lose will really lose. So what do we do? Die-hard Trumpers hate Biden, and the knee-jerk reaction to politicize every decision in this country leaves public officials inert. At the same moment that this country has a reckoning with race, it can have a reckoning with class. The top earners in this country can start modeling behaviors that exhibit respect for their fellow citizens. People who make more

FACTS DON’T CHANGE PEOPLE’S MINDS, AND THAT’S OK, BECAUSE WHAT WE NEED NOW IS DIRECT ACTION: A RADICAL SHIFT IN THE WAY WE VIEW ONE ANOTHER AND THE WAY WE DEMONSTRATE OUR CARE AS CITIZENS. This is what Trump offers to voters in places like Butler County. This is why, when Trump goes to Erie and says things like, “I wasn’t gonna come here, Erie ...” they laugh and love him, much to liberal consternation. It’s a coping mechanism: when you don’t have control anywhere else, you can still laugh at your own trashiness. Trump is a trashy guy who wasn’t going to let anyone else take his power or wealth away. Trump, to so many Butler County citizens, is a trailblazer for exactly what they would like to do because conventional paths to success are still blocked to them by privilege and status. And until the gatekeeping class learns to understand what it feels like to be told — not with words, but with actions, which are worse — that you and the place you are from are worthless, ritualistically and forever, then we will be back here again, four years from now, eight years from now, sixteen years from now. Butler County doesn’t give a shit about how wellheeled you are. It cares, in a world that has shown itself to be ruthless, about staying alive. Doesn’t it make sense that

than $400,000 need to start saying publicly, and to the right audiences, that they are excited to start paying their fair share, that “tax” isn’t a dirty word, and that they’d like for their taxes to improve schools, towns, and infrastructure outside of their property tax district. Corporations that rely on fossil fuels can shift to renewables and start getting honest about the true cost of their goods and profits. University presidents and Never Trump legislators can slash bloated salaries at state universities and refund desiccated coffers, lowering tuition and reinvigorating faith in this most essential public good. Facts don’t change people’s minds, and that’s OK, because what we need now is direct action: a radical shift in the way we view one another and the way we demonstrate our care as citizens. If you want right-wing protesters to put down their military-style rifles, then drop your own violent mechanisms, too: the ones that allow you to hoard, to withhold, and to keep hard working people at arm’s length. Our ability to actually heal over the next four years depends on it.

Brittany Borghi is a Zelionple native and 2018 graduate of the Nonfiction Writing Program at the University of Iowa, where she currently teaches. She is working on a memoir about growing up in Western Pennsylvania.

A screencap from Sean Parnell’s appearance on FOX News, included as part of a campaign video on seanforcongress.co


On Nov. 21, a group of eight Republicans sued Gov. Tom Wolf, Secretary of State Kathy Boockvar, and the Pennsylvania legislature (which is controlled by other Republicans), claiming the state’s mail-in voting law is unconstitutional. Act 77 was passed in 2019 with overwhelming support from Republicans, and it established several election changes, including allowing no-excuse mail-in voting. One of the Republicans in the suit is congressional candidate Sean Parnell (R-Ohio Township) who lost his race against U.S. Rep. Conor Lamb (D-Mt. Lebanon) in Pennsylvania’s 17th Congressional District in suburban Pittsburgh. Ironically, Parnell is suing the commonwealth’s mail-in voting law, even though he endorsed mail-in voting in April. Parnell and other Republicans argue in the suit that Act 77 is an illegal attempt to override limitations on absentee voting, and those changes needed to go through a constitutional amendment first. It passed through the state House 138-61, with more support from Republicans than Democrats, and it passed the state Senate 30-20. If successful, the lawsuit would invalidate more than 2.6 million ballots. In a tweet in April, Parnell praised the state’s mail-in process. “PA already has a bipartisan system in place for early & mail in voting that can safeguard public health & protect the voting process. Use it!,” tweeted Parnell on April 13. Despite his past support for the mail-in voting in the primary election, Parnell has apparently flip flopped. On Nov. 22, he tweeted that there were an “amount of irregularities we saw in the Nov election” without providing any evidence. He added later that the lawsuit is about “protecting the PA Constitution & the rule of law.” Lamb campaign manager Abby NassifMurphy said in a response to Parnell’s inclusion on the Republican lawsuit, that Parnell just “does what Trump tells him to do” and that Parnell is embarrassing himself. “Sean Parnell lost — decisively. He praised vote by mail in April, now wants millions of votes thrown out because he lost — decisively,” said Nassif-Murphy. “His word means nothing, he believes in nothing, and this absurd lawsuit will amount to nothing.” •




Tammy Thompson, Executive Director for Circles of Greater Pittsburgh



Anti-poverty group Circles is getting a new start, channeling focus to boosting Black homeownership and entrepreneurship BY NARDOS HAILE // INFO@PGHCITYPAPER.COM



is a longstanding organization that has been fighting poverty throughout the city for years. This hasn’t been easy, as the poverty rate within the city of Pittsburgh is over 21%, according to 2019 U.S. Census data. And in Black neighborhoods, it’s even worse. In Pittsburgh, there are white neighborhoods that face high levels of poverty, but there is little comparison to the poverty in Black neighborhoods. According to 2017 U.S. Census data, about 14% of white people live in high poverty neighborhoods in comparison to a staggering 59% of Black people. “I think it’s a combination of things.



I think we’re still looking at the residual effects of the loss of an industrial city,” says Tammy Thompson, Executive Director of Circles. “Many families in this city fed their families from bluecollar steel mill jobs. When they left, there was nothing as stable to replace it. You also have to factor in racism, lots and lots of Pittsburgh racism. I think it would be irresponsible to not acknowledge it.” Now, the organization is looking to implement new strategies it thinks can help tackle that disparity head-on. This means that Circles places focus on helping increase homeownership opportunities for Black and Brown people, who historically have been shut out of

building and generating generational wealth through homeownership. Also, it wants to help people build wealth through entrepreneurship and small business ventures. This also means a rebranding of the longtime anti-poverty group, which is part of a national movement that works with families in the Pittsburgh area to address the psychology of poverty and how they got there in order to move forward and build a plan to help foster economic growth and financial security. Once the new year begins, Circles will undergo a name change and a new messaging campaign. “One of the things that we are going

to be doing during that reorganization is developing a policy department. Where we are working to highlight and educate and advocate for systems and policies to change that is directly impacting folks in poverty,” says Thompson. A new horizon is ahead for Circles, and Thompson and her team are hoping to raise awareness of just how serious the issue of Black poverty in Pittsburgh is, and then actually do something about it. Thompson says that a wide majority of people in Pittsburgh don’t see the intersection between class, race, and poverty. And those same people hold positions of power, while the minority continue to fight an uphill battle for

Thompson organizes books that will be included with care packages going out to residents.

economic and racial justice. “The folks in positions of power are either gaslighting us or just flat out ignoring that it’s happening or even worse saying that they want to do something but then do nothing,” says Thompson. To break the cycle of inaction, Thompson believes there needs to be more political education and engagement. “We also have this issue with political education. I think people aren’t really aware. I think that’s been intentional over the years, that the less we understand about our systems, the less we can hold people accountable,” Thompson says. “So I think it’s important for us to figure this out and learn how to hold people accountable and how to articulate what our needs are in our communities in a way that systems and policies change.” But increased political engagement is just one strategy. Thompson says in order for Circles to combat this systemic poverty, it must create intentional opportunities for people. “I think you have to be really intentional about creating these opportunities. It is not just going to happen because we say it,” says Thompson. “What we are trying to do is be very intentional about looking up spaces where folks are being disenfranchised. Where are these economic gaps? Because we focus mostly on economic justice.” Circles will be focusing on amending and ending policies that perpetuate poverty like mass incineration and poor education in the city. Currently, the group has two specific initiatives for homeownership and entrepreneurship.

The programs help people gain the basic tools of being a homeowner, and then keep them as homeowners. Homeownership has long been a tool to help families climb out of poverty, but for decades, America’s policies have been catered primarily to white and wealthy homeowners. Black Americans have consistent higher rates of entrepreneurship compared to their white counterparts, and Circles wants to capitalize on that spirit. Their Catapult program provides entrepreneurs with technical guidance. Thompson adds that Circles has a retail incubator program called the Gallery on Penn, a place where people who have products can come through the program to learn more about retail management and operation, and then run their business in the gallery. For the last handful of months, Circles has been serving about 1,200 people during the pandemic by delivering basic needs to families, waiving rent, and giving small grants to businesses. It’s all about helping people maintain, so they can shine when the pandemic ends. “What we’ve been focusing on is telling people to take care of themselves, to give themselves grace. We’ve been focused more on the human. What do you need to get through [the pandemic] with your mental state intact?” says Thompson. “How can we support you so that all the things you’ve been working towards don’t all get flushed down the toilet? That’s been pretty much our major priority, making sure people are OK and then trying to fill in the gaps and spaces where they’re not.”



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AST WEEK, SPAK Brothers Pizza in Garfield brought their pickle pizza out of retirement. Pickle pizzas have been around for ages, but blew up when the internet discovered (and immediately hated) the dill-ridden slices, making pickle pies almost as divisive as the ongoing pineapple pizza debate. The now-infamous pies typically swap red sauce for a garlicky base, topping the crust off with pickles, cheese, and a dusting of dill. Spak’s iteration, which first appeared as early as 2019, was dressed similarly. Their pies boasted a creamy ranch base, dill pickle slices, havarti cheese, and a heavy sprinkle of dill. There were two things I knew going into my first-ever pickle pie. First, that I loved all things pickled and fermented. That part of the pie was not going to be a problem. Second, I never had a bad meal from Spak. In the past few years, I managed to hit a wide range of Spak’s menu,

from their vegan seitan cheesesteak — hands down one of my favorite vegan sandwiches — to their heavily-topped specialty pies. Everything has always been fantastic. I was pretty confident that the pickle pie was going to be a winner.

SPAK BROTHERS PIZZA 5107 Penn Ave., Garfield. spakbrothers.com

I was right. Though before biting into my first slice, I was a bit concerned about the power of the pickles; walking from Spak’s takeout window to my car, I could smell the dill through the box. But the cheese and ranch kept the pickles mellow. The pie was reminiscent of grilled cheese stuffed with pickles, my midnight go-to meal. Havarti cheese was the perfect match for the lush, creamy ranch, adding a

subtle sharpness that kept the pie from being overly rich. The pickles started out a bit too soft from the oven, but as the pie cooled down, they regained their typical crunch. They had just enough briney, sour taste to make my mouth pucker, which was welcome after the layers of ranch and cheese. I could go on for days about Spak’s ranch. I am a shameless dip-my-pizza-inranch person, and Spak crafts a ranch that surpasses most. It’s not too runny like a salad dressing. The ranch is a bit thicker and creamier, an ideal texture for crust dipping. There’s a great balance of herbs. It’s not too dill forward, which makes it an even better match for the pickle pie. By a happy accident, Spak made me a pizza that was two sizes too big — I’m not complaining. And while I’m eating slice after slice of pickle pie for the next few days, I’ll be waiting for the next picklethemed food to take off. Call me when they make pickle ice cream.

Follow staff writer Maggie Weaver on Twitter @magweav






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Charles Grey, 2nd Earl Grey enjoying a London Fog latte

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OR PITTSBURGH CITY PAPER staffers Jordan Snowden and Abbie Adams, nothing says cozy winter like the sweet and gentle taste of a London Fog latte. A London Fog is simply a fancy name for an Earl Grey tea latte, but it’s the perfect pick-me-up on a dreary Pittsburgh day, of which there are so many. Typically, the warm drink is made with Earl Grey tea, frothed milk, sugar or a sweetener, and, if the barista is feeling fancy, vanilla. But then Starbucks added London Fogs to their menu, and with it came another ingredient — lavender. The fragrant flower can now be found in many London Fog recipes, adding a relaxing element to the already warm and pleasant drink. Either way, they are oh so delicious. CP compiled a list of places where London Fogs can be found in Pittsburgh. This list is nowhere all-encompassing, but it’s a good place to start.

Creative Coffee & Supply 309 SMITHFIELD ST., DOWNTOWN

This spot offers a London Fog with lavender, but also has a Pittsburgh Fog opinion, in which they add a shot of espresso.


This coffee bar uses a lavender Earl Grey to make their London Fog, available iced or hot.

Gasoline Street Coffee Company 643 FIRST AVE., DOWNTOWN

Instead of sugar, this Downtown spot uses honey to sweeten their floral tea latte.

The Abbey on Butler Street 4635 BUTLER ST., LAWRENCEVILLE

Called London After Midnight, their frothy version includes lavender.


This cafe uses Earl Grey tea from a local tea shop just up the hill, Gryphon’s Tea.


When in a pinch, grab a London Fog iced or hot from this national chain, which uses Italian bergamot blends with subtle hints of lavender, instead of the classic Earl Grey tea.

Bonus: De Fer Coffee & Tea 2002 SMALLMAN ST., STRIP DISTRICT.

Bantha Tea Bar 5002 PENN AVE., BLOOMFIELD

Bantha updates their menu seasonally, and their winter menu includes a London Fog with lavender, but the cafe aptly named it Bloomfield Fog.

While De Fer does not offer a London Fog beverage, they have an Earl Grey Tea Cake, described as “Somewhere between bread and cake, this is a perfect anytime snack. Served with butter and lemon zest.”

Follow staff writer Jordan Snowden on Twitter @snowden_jordan





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OMPARED TO MANY groups, arts

nonprofits and organizations face more difficulties finding the time and money to dedicate to marketing and communications. Emily Willson and Jackie Baker, the co-founders of Workhorse Collaborative, a local boutique consulting firm specializing in marketing and organizational strategy for the arts, are more than aware of these challenges. The two women have an extensive background in working for arts nonprofits, most recently for the immersive theater company Bricolage. After being excused from their positions there in the spring, they decided to embark on creating a company that would combine their knowledge and experience to help local arts professionals promote themselves. “We pretty much do it all,” says Willson, who, in addition to being the head of marketing for four years at

Bricolage, also worked with the Carnegie Museum of Art. She explains that their services range from helping on a project-by-project basis to creating a long-term marketing strategy that better communicates an organization’s mission and goals. Clients can also decide if Workhorse will take on the bulk of the work, such as creating social media posts and marketing materials, or if they will implement a plan in-house, using their own staff. “A lot of our clients come to us sometimes not even knowing exactly what they need,” says Willson. “We sit down with them and figure out how can we best help you.” Since launching in August, the company has started working with local organizations like the arts market Handmade Arcade and the Kelly Strayhorn Theater (KST) community performance space in East Liberty, as well as individual artists.

Baker, who was the managing director of Bricolage and, prior to that, development manager at KST, says the ability to be flexible benefits many clients, especially in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. She adds that, in her experience, theaters and other spaces used to creating their performance seasons ahead of time, often years in advance, are now uncertain how to proceed as the pandemic drags on and live events have to remain canceled. She says the situation has forced arts organizations and nonprofits to be “more short-sighted and more immediate,” and to react quickly should something fall through. “It’s much more focused on what we do over the next three months as opposed to the next three years,” says Baker. It has also made them realize the importance of digital advertising, something Baker believes had been ignored

for too long prior to the pandemic. “This is a new territory for many folks, especially arts organizations who often have print-heavy budgets for marketing,” says Baker, adding that Workhorse is equipped to help clients build a digital marketing strategy. “Their old tricks weren’t going to be effective in this climate.” Willson says that, as opposed to a business, arts marketing is different, as it focuses more on communicating a mission than trying to generate sales or make money. “It’s a little more nuanced, and, for me, it’s a lot more exciting and more interesting,” says Willson. “Marketing and advertising can feel a little like you’re trying to convince someone or being manipulative, but when you’re doing it for an organization that’s trying to improve the world, it feels a lot better.” Baker gives an example of this by describing how Workhorse has been working with KST executive director Joseph Hall to develop an organizational strategy. “It’s resulted in us exploring with him what it means to be an anti-racist organization and how to challenge

WORKHORSE COLLABORATIVE workhorsecollaborative.com

traditional hierarchies in work environments together — ultimately moving toward a collaborative work model, not

just in theory but in structure of the organization itself,” says Baker. Willson points out that because they

depend on grant money or other philanthropic funding, arts nonprofits have a limited budget with which to work. “With arts organizations and nonprofits, the main factor I usually find is budget,” says Willson. “They just have a much smaller budget and have to be extremely strategic with where and how they’re spending that money.” Workhorse accommodates this by offering free, 30-minute consultations to see if they’re a good fit, not having set fees, and basing rates on a projectby-project basis, as well as allowing clients more time to pay. While the COVID-19 pandemic has put everyone in a difficult position, Baker hopes Workhorse can be part of helping Pittsburgh arts groups and individuals keep going and prepare for life after the crisis. “I wonder how they will learn from this and find ways to become more nimble and adaptive past COVID-19,” says Baker. “For all the things that are scary and uncertain about this time, there is always this really interesting and exciting opportunity for a rebirth after something like this, to come back in a strong, more resilient way.”

Follow senior writer Amanda Waltz on Twitter @AWaltzCP



SEVEN DAYS IN PITTSBURGH THU., NOV. 26 ART • IRL Multimedia artist Gavin Benjamin combines his own photography with everything from paint to Swarovski crystals to make eye-catching collages of regal figures and local legends like Roberto Clemente and Josh Gibson. His exhibit Heads of State is now on display at Boxheart Gallery. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Continues through Fri., Jan. 1. Free. 4523 Liberty Ave., Bloomfield. boxheartgallery.com

FRI., NOV. 27 MUSIC • IRL + VIRTUAL Whether you want to enjoy live music from a venue or the comfort of your home (COVID numbers are rising, remember), Crafthouse Stage & Grill and Drusky Entertainment are offering patrons the option to do either with their Pittsburgh Live!Stream. Performing live from the Whitehall venue is rock band SuperMonkey, headlining with special guests Brian Genovesi & A Common Crown. 8 p.m. 5024 Curry Road, Whitehall. $15-20. crafthousepgh.com

SAT., NOV. 28 VIRTUAL MARKET • VIRTUAL If you’re going to do your holiday shopping online anyway, you might as well support local artists and makers through two events, Shop Holiday Handmade and the Handmade Arcade Virtual Marketplace. From Nov. 28-29, Shop Holiday Handmade will feature over 150 artisans as part of a virtual event presented through a partnership between the Pittsburgh I Made It! Market and markets in Cleveland and Akron, Ohio. From Nov. 28-Dec. 6, the Handmade Arcade Virtual Marketplace will give shoppers access to a wide variety of handcrafted goods from over 130 artists and makers. Find Shop Holiday Handmade at shopholidayhandmade.com and Handmade Arcade Virtual Marketplace at handmadearcade.org

FILM • VIRTUAL Yinz need a vacation. So why not join Hollywood stars Chevy Chase and Beverly D’Angelo and reminisce about one of your favorite holiday films with A (Virtual) Christmas Vacation with the Griswolds. This live virtual event put on by the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust includes both Chase and D’Angelo sharing clips from the movie, revealing memories from filming, and answering audience questions. VIP upgrade includes a one-on-one video chat with Chase and D’Angelo. 8 p.m. $25-150. trustarts.org


^ Gavin Benjamin’s Heads of State at Boxheart Gallery




Searching for an apartment? Mozart Management has you covered


^ Charan Singh, They Called it Love, But Was it Love?, 2020. Commissioned by Visual AIDS for Day With(out) Art 2020

SUN., NOV. 29 LIT • VIRTUAL Ahead of the release of her newest book, Mediocre: The Dangerous Legacy of White Male America, Ijeoma Oluo, author of So You Want to Talk About Race, will be in a virtual conversation with Pittsburgh author and native, Damon Young, author of What Doesn’t Kill You Makes You Blacker. Along with access to the conversation, hosted by local Black-owned The Tiny Bookstore, there are different ticket tier options which include copies of the authors’ books. 7 p.m. $28-60. tinybooksonline.com

MON., NOV. 30 FILM • VIRTUAL Video artists from all over the world will explore the global impact of HIV and AIDS with Day With(out) Art 2020: TRANSMISSIONS, an online program presented by The Andy Warhol Museum and Visual AIDS. The Visual AIDS website says videos portray the “erasure of women living with HIV in South America, neocolonial public health campaigns in India, and the realities of stigma and disclosure for young people in Uganda.” The program is presented in honor of Thomas Sokolowski, the late former Warhol director who helped pioneer using art to address the AIDS crisis. 6-8 p.m. Mon., Nov. 30. Free. warhol.org/events/daywithout-art-2020-transmissions

LIT • VIRTUAL Reporters Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey exposed Harvey Weinstein’s decades of

abuse with their historic New York Times investigation. Their 2019 book She Said recounts the investigation, which Kantor will discuss during a virtual event with Pittsburgh Arts and Lectures. 7 p.m. Video of discussion available for one week. $10. pittsburghlectures.org

TUE., DEC. 1 CHARITY • VIRTUAL You probably don’t need more mass-produced stuff, so skip Black Friday and instead participate in Giving Tuesday 2020. The nationwide philanthropic movement is being facilitated locally by Give Big Pittsburgh. The 24-hour event is hosted by Pittsburgh Magazine, and money raised will go to local nonprofits. All day. givebigpittsburgh.com and givingtuesday.org

WED., DEC. 2 GAMING • IRL A teenage dream is coming true for Pittsburgh video game enthusiasts. The Oaks Theater is hosting an event where players will compete on the big screen. At Gamer Day, players can bring their own games and are encouraged to bring their own Nintendo Switch controllers. It’s casual play, no serious tournaments. Adult happy hour follows all ages play. 4-8 p.m. $1 to pick game and players for a round. 310 Allegheny River Blvd., Oakmont. theoakstheater.com •

If you’re searching for a new apartment, Mozart Management is the place to look. Mozart Management has been providing Pittsburghers with top-notch apartments for over 50 years, putting their roots down in Shadyside in 1964. Since the ‘60s, the management company has expanded, but only locally; now, managing complexes can be found in Highland Park, North Oakland, Frick Park, and Squirrel Hill. They are a family-owned business, which comes with obvious perks. Offices are open seven days a week, with maintenance available 24 hours a day, every day. They are experts on the East End, and have stayed connected to their community. Shadyside — a neighborhood voted one of “America’s Best Places to Live” by Money Magazine in 2019 — remains their point-of-operation, the Arlington building on Centre Avenue built in 1910. The classic building features apartments ranging from studios to three-bedroom, is pet friendly, provides easy access to nearby universities, and has off-street parking. Arlington is one of eight complexes managed by Mozart in Shadyside. Mozart Management has been providing Pittsburghers with top-notch apartments for over 50 years Other neighborhoods boast the same amenities: a range of apartment sizes, pet friendliness, on-site laundry, and close proximity to the vibrant East End neighborhood. Frick Park, located near the expansive park, hosts an even wider range of options, from townhouses to the standard one-bedroom. If you’re unsure about your long-term plans, Mozart Management also offers flexible lease options to help fit your needs. To discover what Mozart Management has to offer and make your apartment search as simple as possible, visit mozartrents.com. As they say, “Whether you are looking for a comfy studio, or searching for a roomy duplex to call home — we have you covered!”

Mozart Management. 515 S. Aiken Ave., Shadyside. mozartrents.com PITTSBURGH CITY PAPER NOVEMBER 25 - DECEMBER 2, 2020





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Peter Reichl Rachael Hopkins Rachel Belloma Bonnet Rachel Busch Rachel Dalton Rachel Tiche Rachelle Haynik Rainy Sinclair Randall Baumann Randy Gowat Randy Sargent Raymond Leech Raymond Martin Rebecca Boyer Rebecca Ciez Rebecca Seibel Regina Yankie Rich Lord Richard Kress Richelle Meer Rick D’Loss Rob Rossi Robert & Erin Blussick Robert Baird Robert Davis Robert Jauquet Robert Lang Robert McKnight Robert Nishikawa Robert Raczka Robert Sage Robin Bolea Ron Vodenichar Rosemary Mendel Ross Reilly Rossilynne Culgan Ruth Craig Ryan Rydzewski Ryan Warsing Samantha Ritzer Samantha Wire Sam Barrett Samuel Boswell Samuel Gordon Sara Innamorato Sara Simon Sara Zullo Sarah Birmingham Sarah Cassella Sarah Hamm Sarah Paul Sarah Pearman Sarah Peterson Sarah Sewall Sarah Sprague Sarah Vernau Sarah Wiggin Scott Bricker Sean Bailey Sean Collier Sean ODonnell Selene Wartell Shanna Carrick Shannon Kelly Sharee Stout Shawn Cooke Shawn Melvin Sherri Suppa Shirlie Mae Choe Siena Kane Slava Starikov Smitha Prasadh Stacey Campbell Stacey Federoff Stephanie Sedor Stephanie Wein Stephen Riccardi Stephen Wagner Steve Felix Steve Holz Steven Haines Stuart Strickland Sue Kerr Susan Caplan Susan Hawkins Susan Jackson Susan Rogers Susan Smith Susan Speicher Suzanne Kafantaris Tammy Schuey Tara Spence Tara Zeigler Tasha Eakin Ted Schroeder Tereneh Idia Terry Bicehouse Terry Peters Tina Shackleford Tobin Seastedt Todd Derr Tom Samuel Toni Haraldsen Tracy Travaglio Travis Hefner Trenton Tabor Trevor Baumel Trey Mason Tyler Bickford Tyler McAndrew Uwe Stender Valerie Moore Vicki Cunningham Victoria Donahoe Virginia Alvino Young Will Bernstein Will Halim Will Simmons William Doran William Fulmer William J Schoy IV William Lovas William Maruca William O’Driscoll Yonatan Bisk Zack Tanner


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1. ___ young age 4. Golfer Creamer nicknamed “The Pink Panther” 9. Sly guy? 14. Oily deposit 15. Double-___ (like some eggs with a little extra) 16. More authentic 17. Thing that makes you go boom 18. Hors d’oeuvre: cheese that puts you in a food coma? 20. Prot. denomination 22. Yucky sludge 23. Delivery men? 24. Soup course: Irish delicacy that puts you in a food coma? 28. Future music 30. “Stick around!” 31. Post someone’s home address on social media, e.g. 32. Deviate from a course 34. Nursery school attendee 35. Slanted 38. Yellowish colour 40. Entrée: sausage that puts you in a food coma? 44. Sound that comes from a food coma 45. Three-horse sleigh 46. Out of the box 47. Hefty Cinch ___ 50. Christmas character 51. Thundercat’s instrument 55. Necklaces with petals

57. Side dish: vegetable that puts you in a food coma? 60. “While we’re on the topic,” briefly 61. Brian who coined the term “ambient music” 62. Really weird 63. Dessert: pastries that ... wait, you’re already in a food coma? 68. Panhandle st. 69. Where a sock might stop 70. Pope with a vowel-heavy name and number 71. Conclusion 72. J. ___ Band 73. A pyramid has six 74. Tofurkey ingredient


1. Tenochtitlan residents 2. Like some dictators 3. 1971 prison riot locale 4. Luau bowlful 5. Swiss peak 6. Luau entertainment, for short 7. Cliffhanger spot? 8. Words on a campaign 9. Line on Strava: Abbr. 10. Passion 11. Smelly spa treatments 12. “Go along with me” 13. Only airman to successfully escape in Catch-22 15. Rec. center that

would be hard to do the hand gestures had the Village People did this song instead 19. Georgetown hoopster 21. Candy with four different pieces 25. Badlands National Park st. 26. Come up short 27. Put forth 29. Office park abbr. 33. Herman who won the Pulitzer for The Caine Mutiny 36. Finishes, as a cake 37. Dancing With the Stars judge Hough 39. Goyle’s buddy in the Potterverse 40. Patella 41. First European to win the NBA MVP

42. Sugar substitute 43. Woman with a ring 44. Show that has banned Rage Against the Machine, briefly 48. Take down ___ 49. E-book reader 52. Tern’s homes 53. Rejected 54. Cool, calm, and collected 56. Hog’s slop 58. Made bird noises 59. Like some Indian culture 63. Statesman Hammarskjöld 64. Castlevania platform, for short 65. Drink that’s in season starting tomorrow 66. Wrong turn correction maneuver 67. “Aye” LAST WEEK’S ANSWERS



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IN The Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania: No. GD-20-011117. In re petition of Adaezeh Ezeh for change of name to Ada Ezeh-Hill. To all persons interested: Notice is hereby given that an order of said Court authorized the filing of said petition and fixed the 8th day of January, 2021, at 9:30 a.m., as the time and the Motions Room, City-County Building, Pittsburgh, PA, as the place for a hearing, when and where all persons may show cause, if any they have, why said name should not be changed as prayed for

IN The Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania: No. GD-20-3837. In re petition of Narbada Darjee and Nishan Darjee for change of name to Narbada Pariyar and Nishan Pariyar. To all persons interested: Notice is hereby given that an order of said Court authorized the filing of said petition and fixed the 4th day of January, 2021, at 9:30 a.m., as the time and the Motions Room, City-County Building, Pittsburgh, PA, as the place for a hearing, when and where all persons may show cause, if any they have, why said name should not be changed as prayed for

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November 25, 2020 - Pittsburgh City Paper  

Pittsburgh's leading arts and entertainment newsweekly featuring 10 Reasons to stay home this Thanksgiving, local comedians offering tips on...

November 25, 2020 - Pittsburgh City Paper  

Pittsburgh's leading arts and entertainment newsweekly featuring 10 Reasons to stay home this Thanksgiving, local comedians offering tips on...