Rooftop Shindigs give summer guests music, views and movies

Photo by Robert Berger
Sports, Art and Entertainment management freshman, Kyle Kuhn, dances with new friend and Pittsburgh native Will, Milner.

Written By Georgia Fowkes

The final monthly Rooftop Shindig of the summer downtown engaged all ages around the city to not only bring their dancing shoes, but also popcorn and a blanket.

The annual Downtown Rooftop Shindig was presented by Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership (PDP), an organization devoted to making the city a place for all yinzers to crawl to when they need a day or evening filled with fun.

The free event is held in the summer months at the top of Theater Square Garage with the goal of giving people a fun weeknight out. The PDP began Rooftop Shindigs two years ago and partnered with the Re:NEW Festival, in its inaugural year, for the September event.

The night began with a musical performance by The Commonheart, a local folk rock band, followed by a screening of “Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior.” The event was catered by Meat & Potatoes, a restaurant located Downtown, and also included family games such as cornhole and a four foot connect four game.

“It has this really cool weeknight kind of feel in a good way. It’s relaxing. Everyone’s super nice. There’s really good energy,” said Clinton Clegg, lead singer of The Commonheart.

The Commonheart’s performance opened up with their songs “Hold my Hand” and “Cannonball,” both of which invoked energy throughout the crowd. Clegg couldn’t be happier with the event.

“It’s different, just the vibe of being on a rooftop is spiritual… it physically feels a lot different than playing a club and the view speaks for itself, I’m speechless,” Clegg said.

Ellie Gordon, a Pittsburgh-based freelance graphic designer, enjoys what the Rooftop Shindig events have to offer and enjoyed the appearance from The Commonheart.

“The band is great. I like the free whiskey shots, it’s fun to be outside and I like the weird, cool movies. These events in the city are always a lot of fun,” Gordon said.

The Rooftop Shindig began about two years ago in conjunction with the Re:NEW Festival, focusing on creative reuse, sustainability and transformation. As the years progressed, the attendance kept increasing, so they decided to  hold more of them.

Intern with the PDP and senior sports, arts and entertainment major, Colten Gill, works on achieving the Pittsburgh motto of liveliness through these events.

“Pittsburgh has gotten itself back in the public eye on a local, state and national level through all of the great things we have going on,” Gill said. “With a vibrant college community, an incredible start-up atmosphere for businesses and the innovations happening in technology, culture and other areas, people are rediscovering their love for the city.”

Gill wants to ensure that Downtown becomes a vital center for the city by expanding these types of events and involving the community. He hopes to accomplish this through both the events the PDP hosts in addition to the economic initiatives that assist in the growth of businesses in Downtown.

“We want to help people rediscover their love for Downtown,” Gill said. “It really is the place that all Pittsburghers have in common, and events like the Rooftop Shindig and the Re:NEW Festival put us at the forefront of that.”

The Re:NEW Festival runs through Oct. 9.