806 Western Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15233

The Taming: A Reading by A.M. Rycroft at City Books

Location: City Books, 908 Galveston Avenue
Date: Monday, July 25th
Time: 7-8:30pm
Event Link: HERE

A dark fantasy tale, The Taming follows the brash Thystle Moran, sword for hire. Only one job has ever bothered her, one that promised to be easy money, but ended in the death of her friend. Now, an imp with questionable motives says her friend’s death was no accident. Thystle seeks retribution as her world spirals out of control. She faces off against her dark past, a betrayal, feelings for a young woman, and the interests of a shadowy group known only as the Immortals. Can she ever just catch a break?

Allegheny UU Church: Stoopendous

Location: Allegheny UU Church 416 W North Avenue
Date: Friday, July 22nd
Time: 5:30-7:30pm
Event Link: HERE

Our Summer Stoop Sits are an opportunity for friendship, conversation and refreshments with interesting folks from the church and neighborhood. Come to hang with old friends or to meet some new ones. Talk about what’s going on in the world and listen to the perspectives of others. Share what’s on your mind or in your heart. Enjoy the beauty and charm of the Mexican War Streets and West Park on a warm summer evening. Bring snacks, drinks or just yourself. All are welcome!

Begins at 5:30pm at Unitarian House behind Allegheny UU Church, W North & Resaca, Northside.

Good News: Western Avenue Project

The much-anticipated next phase of relocating electric services for 806-816 Western Avenue has already begun!

Duquesne Light recently addressed the necessary vegetation pruning and bungeeing in order to bring power down Brighton Road from W North Avenue. The PA One Call has been placed and pole and equipment installation could start any day! This work will take 4-6 weeks and, once completed, will allow us to finish the electric service relocations at 806-816 Western Avenue. We aim to coordinate the relocation of Verizon infrastructure at the same time to minimize impact on the property owners.

If you have any questions, please feel free to email me, Gloria Rayman, at Thank you for your continued patience!

Summer on Sampsonia: Jazz Wednesday, Victim, Yoga and More!

Summer on Sampsonia

Listen, Watch, Dance!

Summer is a great time to expand one’s horizons and broaden one’s mind.

This week, engage in a discussion about the events and politics of the Arab Spring with the World Affairs Council of Pittsburgh. Screen the groundbreaking classic film, Victim, as part of City of Asylum’s Silent Film Series. Get on your dancing shoes and learn some new moves with 1Hood at Get Down Day, a full day of dance and community building workshops here under the Alphabet City Tent.

Friday, July 22nd: The Image Catcher*

Join us for an exhibition of photographs from the accomplished Eugene Mebane Jr. – The Image Catcher.

Free Event (Organizer: City of Asylum)

Sunday, July 24th Sunday Morning Yoga

Join Paco Mahone Sunday for a soulful yoga class under the Alphabet City Tent.

Free Event (Organizer: Paco Mahone)

Monday, July 25th: The Arab Spring: Where are we today?
(Book Signing & Discussion)

Join the World Affairs Council of Pittsburgh for a conversation surrounding Shelly Culbertson’s new book, The Fires of Spring, and on the shifting dynamics within the New Middle East in the wake of the Arab Spring.
5:30- 8:00pm

$15 for World Affairs Council members, $20 for non-members
(Organizer: World Affairs Council of Pittsburgh)

Wednesday, July 27th: Jazz Wednesdays

Join us Wednesday evenings for a series of free jazz concerts with Pittsburgh icon Roger Humphries and RH Factor. As this event grows throughout the summer, be sure to register for each event to make sure you reserve a seat! BYOB!

Free Event (Organizer: City of Asylum)

Thursday, July 28th: Silenced Film: Victim

Victim, a 1961 British suspense film directed by Basil Dearden, follows the story of a closeted gay lawyer who risks exposure by confronting a blackmail conspiracy targeting gay men. It was refused a seal of approval from the American Motion Picture Production Code for challenging taboos about homosexuality.

Free Event (Organizer: City of Asylum, Curator: The Jacob Burns Film Center)

Saturday, July 30th: Get Down Day with 1Hood
(Dance & Workshops)

Join 1Hood for Get Down Day, a full day of community building through Hip Hop. 1Hood is offering a full day of FREE dance workshops followed by an exhibition and dance battle later that that evening. Connect with your community through dance. All experience levels welcome!
Noon – 8:00pm

Free Event (Organizer: 1Hood)

Download the Full Summer Calendar Here

Sprout’s Joining the Pittsburgh My Brother’s Keeper Initiative. (You can, too.)

Sprout Update

Two Requests for Proposals Issued to Support Project

As a community, Pittsburgh is facing a staggering opportunity gap that keeps a large portion of young people of color from taking part in our city’s ongoing transformation. To reduce Pittsburgh’s opportunity gap and make our city liveable for all residents, we must take concrete steps to prepare young people of color for rewarding careers in growing fields.

Through the generous support of the Heinz Endowments, Sprout is honored to join the City of Pittsburgh and Allegheny County in the next phase of the ongoing My Brother’s Keeper initiative.

My Brother's Keeper

How It Will Work

Throughout the fall of 2016, community stakeholders will meet to identify needs and gaps in out-of-school educational programming and make recommendations for specific programs for youth, the training necessary to build the capacity of educators and mentors, and capital improvements necessary to better equip youth centers.

Sprout will then make grants totaling $100,000 to fund pilot projects that advance these recommendations to provide high-quality learning experiences in technology, digital literacy, and workforce readiness for young people of color during the first six months of 2017.

Throughout the entire process, a new project manager will work with My Brother’s Keeper committee members and partner organizations to create measurable objectives, create an evaluation plan, and issue an annual report to the community.

Read The Announcement in Full at

Requests for Proposals

To build the team that will support this work over the next year, Sprout has issued two Requests for Proposals:

Community & Stakeholder Planning Consultant to design and lead the community and stakeholder planning process and to prepare the initial recommendations that result from these discussions.

Project Manager to provide the ongoing project management for the My Brother’s Keeper initiative and act as a liaison between and coordinator of participating organizations, including the City of Pittsburgh and Allegheny County.

Proposals are due Friday, August 5, 2016 by 5:00 pm (EDT)

See the Full Details at

Summer on Sampsonia: Daisies, The Image Catcher and More!

Summer on Sampsonia

Alphabet City Update!

There is a golden sparkle to the air here at Sampsonia Way!

The glitter is flying as volunteers from all over Pittsburgh help to fabricate the ceiling artwork (designed by Diane Samuels) for the new City of Asylum @ Alphabet City space. Each golden ceiling tile is handcrafted by this team of hard-working City of Asylum supporters and will feature letters from alphabets around the world.

Alphabet City Tiles

Alphabet City opens on September 10th. Our opening ceremonies will feature a talk by the 2015 Nobel Laureate in Literature, Svetlana Alexievich, who will also engage in a public conversation with New Yorker writer Philip Gourevitch.

The opening will be followed by a full month of FREE Jazz Poetry!

Sunday, July 17th: Sunday Morning Yoga

Join Paco Mahone Sunday for a soulful yoga class under the Alphabet City Tent.

Free Event (Organizer: Paco Mahone)

Wednesday, July 20th: Jazz Wednesday

Join us Wednesday evenings for a series of free jazz concerts with Pittsburgh icon Roger Humphries and RH Factor. As this event grows throughout the summer, be sure to register for each event to make sure you reserve a seat! BYOB!

Free Event (Organizer: City of Asylum)

Thursday, July 21st: Silenced Film: Daisies

Daisies is a 1966 Czechoslovak comedy-drama film written and directed by Věra Chytilová. The story follows two teenage girls, both named Marie, who engage in strange pranks.

Free Event (Organizer: City of Asylum)

Friday, July 22nd: The Image Catcher

Join us for an exhibition of photographs from the accomplished Eugene Mebane Jr.–The Image Catcher.

Free Event (Organizer: City of Asylum)

Download the Full Summer Calendar Here

Letter from the President – July 2016

Come early to the Tuesday membership meeting if you’d like to hear more details about the final report for the Buhl Foundation. We’ve made some refinements to the report that was presented a few months ago, but to go over all of them during the regular meeting would make an already long (hot) meeting even longer. So we’re setting up some time before the meeting starts for the folks who really get into the nitty gritty details some time for discussion. We’ll be posting the (60+ page!) report online on as soon as I can figure out how to multiple sets of passwords reconfigured. (Just as an aside: was the victim of some pretty intense hacking recently and Gene and Nick spent a huge amount of time reconfiguring everything and locking stuff down. Why can’t people just be nice?)

I’ll send out an email blast this weekend with the proposed wording of the motions we’d like to make around the plans for: the Mary Cassatt garden; traffic calming on W. North and Brighton w/ additional parking; replacing lighting where need and an incredibly ambitious plan for replacing trees and sidewalks throughout the neighborhood. We’re especially interested in folks who are willing to serve on a working group to get some of these plans enacted; so if you’re interested please try and come at 7:00 pm. Some of these plans are controversial, so I want to make sure we have time to discuss them in more detail without totally overwhelming an already crowded agenda. (But ask Executive Committee how quickly we blasted through a huge agenda last Tuesday: someone’s spouse complained their partner wanted more time out of the house and was disappointed!)

We’ll also make sure there are hard copies of the report available in the office (M/F 12:00–3:00) or you can call me at (412) 418-2027 and I can arrange to get you a copy if you can’t go over to Western during office hours. I’m super excited about this: it’s the culmination of months of work and we can’t wait to share it with all of you.

Catherine Serventi
President, AWCC

AWCC Membership Meeting Agenda – July 12, 2016

Calvary United Methodist Church, 971 Beech Ave
Tuesday, July 12th at 7:30pm (pre-session at 7:00pm)

  • 7:00 – 7:30 – Jim Pashek
  • Visitor: Carnegie Science Center
  • Visitor: Finalize Buhl Grant Outcomes/Next Steps
  • New Neighbors
  • Minutes
  • Treasurer’s Report & Finalize Budget
  • Housing and Planning Updates
    • Western Ave
    • Light of Light
    • CCAC
  • AWDC Updates: 928 Western
  • Property: 806 Western Improvements
  • Ways and Means
    • Final report about the Wine Tour
    • Christmas Tour
  • Friends
    • Cleanups!
    • Babb volunteer day: July 14, all welcome
  • Membership Events
    • Corn roast in September
    • Mixer: Friday, July 15 at the Modern Cafe
    • 50 Anniversary: Alleys, Axles and Ales
  • Committee Q&A

Volunteers Needed for Babb Clean Up

Location: Parklet at Western Avenue & Brighton Road
Date: Thursday, July 14th
Time: 9:00 am – 12:00 pm
Contact: Michael Shealy

Volunteers Needed for Babb Clean Up and Gardening Day on Thursday, July 14th

On Thursday, July 14th from 9:00 to 12:00, Babb Insurance will have 10 employee volunteers working to clean up and to garden in AW as part of an annual give-back-to-the community day. 3-4 volunteers from AW are needed to work with and to assist in the coordination of the Babb volunteers. This is an opportunity to work with people who are our neighbors only during the work day, but nevertheless, want to make a contribution to our neighborhood. Let’s say “Thank you.” in the best way possible by getting out and working with them. Meet at the parklet and work as long or as little as you like. If you wish to participate, please contact Michael at or simply show up at the parklet. Lunch (pizza and drinks) will be provided.

$10 Tickets for Northsiders to Krapp’s Last Tape and Not I

Krapp's Last Tape and Not I

Presented by TACT
July 6 – 9 | 8PM

TACT is offering $10 cash-only tickets at the door when you show your ID with a Northside address! This offer is only available at the door.

Read the Preview

Martin Giles

Krapp’s Last Tape – Performed by Martin Giles

An aging man lives a lonely and shabby existence in a darkened room. At year’s end, he takes out a bottle of wine, a banana, and his tape recorder, and he listens to his own voice recount the glories and hopes of his youth. Krapp’s Last Tape is the most affectionate portrait of a character that Samuel Beckett has ever done. A tour-de-force of a one-man show.
Daina Michelle Griffith

Not I – Performed by Daina Michelle Griffith

An empty stage save for a lone woman’s lips. The voice of a generation of women that were unable to speak and now cannot stop. Alone in an empty world, this tortured soul recounts her life in one long uninterrupted monologue. Even if she can’t be heard, she will still speak.