806 Western Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15233

“Madonna Before Madonna, Prince Before Prince”

City of Asylum (2018)

Sembène – The Film & Art Festival Presents

Betty: They Say I’m Different

Monday, December 10th
7:00 pm

A songwriter from a small local steel town, Betty arrived on the 70’s scene to break boundaries for women with her daring personality, iconic fashion and outrageous funk music. She befriended Jimi Hendrix and Sly Stone, wrote songs for the Chambers Brothers and the Commodores, and married Miles Davis. Despite being banned and boycotted, went on to become the first black woman to perform, write and manage herself.

Betty: They Say I'm Different

Then suddenly – she vanished.

Creatively blending documentary and animation, Betty: They Say I’m Different traces the path of Betty’s life, how she grew from humble upbringings to become a fully self-realized black female pioneer the world failed to understand or appreciate. After years of trying, the elusive Betty, forever the free-spirited Black Power Goddess, finally allowed the filmmakers to creatively tell her story based on their conversations.


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Cowboys & Frenchman Post-Bop Jazz

City of Asylum (2018)

Cowboys & Frenchmen

Sunday, December 2nd
6:00 pm

NYC-based quintet Cowboys & Frenchmen returns to Alphabet City to present their unusual take on instrumentation, orchestration, and composition for the jazz quintet. Their front line of two alto saxophones plays loose with the role of horns, in an inclusive post-bop style that seamlessly crosses the classic American song book with blues and improvisation.

“jazz that is fresh and defies easy categorizing, and offers rewarding listening” — Cadence Magazine

Cowboys & Frenchmen

The band is comprised of five adventurous musicians: Owen Broder on alto sax, clarinet and bass clarinet, Ethan Helm on alto sax, flute and clarinet, Chris Ziemba on piano, Ethan O’Reilly on bass, and Matt Honor on drums.

The inspiration for the band’s quirky name is a short Western by David Lynch called “The Cowboy and The Frenchmen.” Like the film, this quintet’s music has one foot firmly planted in a genre, while the other foot is busy trying to kick down the genre’s door.


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We’re So Grateful for You

PPC Thank You
We couldn’t be more grateful for Pittsburgh’s wonderful greenspaces, and for park friends like you.

Are parks something that you’re thankful for this Thanksgiving? We invite you to take part in one of our favorite annual traditions – writing notes of thanks to parks!

Here are a few notes that we loved:

“Thank you for all the fun we had there year after year! You made our life so much better! :)” -Cheng C.

“Dear Frick Park, if it weren’t for you, I don’t know that I could live in the city. Thank you for your vast canopies, your burbling creeks, your soaring red-tailed hawks, your great horned owls in the winter dark. You are the best!” -Ryan W.

“I am giving thanks to Highland Park for the beautiful way it embraces all people and connects us to each other and the landscape we live in.” -Susan R.

Thank you for being a friend. Happy Thanksgiving from all of us at the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy!

Say Thanks to Your Favorite Park

Support Manchester Historic Society During GiveBig Pittsburgh

GiveBig Pgh

Manchester Historic Society needs your help! Please join us during GiveBig Pittsburgh on Novemeber 27th and help us get closer to our goal of restoring the Colonel James Anderson House in Manchester.

Starting at 12:00 am on November 27th, visit and make a donation to us and/or to any of the great participating nonprofit organizations in Pittsburgh. You will have 24 hours to make your donation, and all giving will end at 11:59 pm on November 27th/sup>.

Questions? If you have any questions or would like more information, let us know. You can contact MHS at or (412) 447-8692. Thank you in advance for your generosity to our organization!

Chinese Restaurants and the Asian American Identity

City of Asylum (2018)

Taste Makers:
Chinese Restaurants and the Asian American Identity

Monday, November 26th
5:30 pm

How is the growth of the Chinese community shaping Pittsburgh? Why has the Asian community grown so quickly among Pittsburgh’s universities, and what opportunities come with this growth? And how do the Trump Administration’s changes in immigration policies affect local businesses such as restaurants?

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reporter Melissa McCart follows up her Pulitzer Center research with a panel exploring how those originally from Taiwan and China are contributing to the changing dynamic of Pittsburgh.
Chinese Restaurant Event
This program will feature a panel discussion with restaurateur Mike Chen of Everyday Noodles in Squirrel Hill, community crusader Marian Lien (executive director of the Squirrel Hill Urban Coalition and commissioner on the Governor’s Advisory Commission on Asian and Pacific American Affairs in Pennsylvania) and Chris Briem (University of Pittsburgh regional economist and analyst of population trends).

There will be beer, wine and Chinese snacks.

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Stravinsky to Nirvana

City of Asylum (2018)

Adam Hopkins:

Wednesday, November 28th
7:00 pm

New York composer-bassist Adam Hopkins and his sextet celebrate the release of their new album, Crickets! This is a special treat for us–how often do we get to hear a sextet on tour?!

Adam Hopkins

“…compelling and unconventional jazz compositions juxtaposed with blowouts. This is a singular release and hopefully the first of many from Hopkins.” – Avant Music News

Crickets is a head-on collision of the various musical worlds influenced by Tim Berne, Henry Threadgill, Michael Formanek, and Igor Stravinsky. Crickets takes classic and jazz traditions with the bands of Adam’s youth like Nirvana, Pavement, and Fugazi.

Adam will be joined by Anna Webber (tenor saxophone), Ed Rosenberg (tenor saxophone), Josh Sinton (baritone saxophone/bass clarinet), Jonathan Goldberger (guitar), Devin Gray (drums) for this album release event.

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Letter from the President – November 2018

As this month we will be electing a new slate of officers to serve the AWCC in the coming year, it’s a good time to pay attention to the single most distinctive aspect of our small but mighty community organization. Among the City of Pittsburgh’s 88 neighborhoods, nearly all of them have a civic organization which attempts to serve the needs of those who live and work there. Allegheny West is distinguished by having one of the oldest, most effective, and most consistently stable of these.

When our Nominating Committee meets each year to assemble a proposed slate of officers and committee chairpersons for the following year, the task can be formidable. In some city neighborhoods, there are more than 10,000 residents – that’s a considerably larger pool of prospective volunteers than our tiny population of roughly 400. And yet, year after year, we not only have folks who are willing to serve – they routinely do so as if it were their full-time paying job. Donating their time and talent to their neighbors, they embrace the opportunity to continue moving us forward.

Many decades ago, AWCC created an organizational structure that includes two-year term limits for all offices. This creates challenges in finding volunteers of course, when every office has to turn over at least every other year. But it also prevents president-for-life-type dynasties that can often plague small groups. And most importantly, it forces AWCC to constantly be welcoming and developing new leadership from throughout the community. Most of our new officers for 2019 were not even in Allegheny West ten years ago; some not five years ago. That is a VERY healthy sign for any neighborhood organization.

At the same time, the core of our institutional memory is the large number of long-time members – many of whom have served as officers in the past – who show up for every meeting to make sure that we stay on track. The continued commitment of these active mentors makes it possible for new leadership to comfortably move ahead without fear of making critical missteps. These Members are a living blueprint of what we’re doing and why we’re doing it.

When folks from other community organizations look at Allegheny West and its many successes, they frequently ask how we manage to do this so well – year after year, decade after decade. The answer is anything but simple. We have been blessed for many decades with an amazing stream of volunteers who step up as newcomers, serve admirably and often in multiple positions across the years, and then remain committed to assuring that their successors have strong support and guidance. Our greatest blessing is a small but dedicated band of devoted neighbors who make their community a lifelong priority. Next time you see one of them, tell them “Thank You!”

John DeSantis
President, AWCC

AWCC Membership Meetings – October 9, 2018

Calvary United Methodist Church, 971 Beech Ave
Tuesday, November 13th at 7:30 pm

  • Visitors
    • Councilwoman Harris’s Office
    • Mayor Peduto’s Office
    • Representative Wheatley’s Office
    • Zone One Police
    • Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy
  • New Neighbors & Guests
  • Minutes
  • Treasurer’s Report
  • Membership
  • Ways and Means
    • 2018 Alleys, Axles & Ales (September 29) – Final Report
    • Christmas Candlelight House Tour (December 7-8)
  • Friends of Allegheny West
  • Property
  • Housing and Planning
    • Allegheny Commons Proposed Implementation Plan
    • CCAC New Building: Ridge at Brighton
    • Western Avenue Revitalization, Electric
    • Light of Life Ridge Avenue Project
    • Expansion of Historic District
    • Historic District Enforcement Issues (old cases)
    • Comprehensive Guidelines for New Construction on Vacant Sites
    • Airbnb Issues/Impacts on AW
    • Railroad Bridge Replacements, Double Stack Train Impacts
  • Northside Leadership Conference
  • Nominating Committee
    • Election of Officers for 2019
  • Other Business (Old & New)

Holiday Concert at Holmes Hall

The Renaissance City Winds return to Allegheny West on Saturday, November 24th, offering their annual presentation of beautiful music in the elegant ballroom of Holmes Hall on Brighton Road.

The program of classical chamber music, performed as intended in a setting much more intimate than a concert hall, will also include holiday selections and other pieces which paint musical pictures, surrounded by the art and architecture of Victorian America.

For more than forty years, the Renaissance City Winds have brought the world’s finest chamber music compositions to life in both live concerts and widely acclaimed recordings. Their annual performance at Holmes Hall is followed by an artists reception and special visit to the antique toy train museum on the upper floors of the mansion. This year’s event will also mark the 150th birthday of Holmes Hall itself, whose builder Letitia Caldwell Holmes purchased the property facing the Allegheny Commons in November of 1868.

The November 24th concert will begin at 8:00 pm, and tickets are available online at or by phone at (412) 681-7111. Regular concert prices are $20, seniors are $15 and students are $10.