When summer rolls around, many people shift their focus at least slightly from work and school to entertainment and outdoor activities. In Pittsburgh, Pa., there are tons of outdoor activities you and your family or friends can dig into, no matter the season. As the meeting point of three rivers — the Monongahela, Allegheny and Ohio — Pittsburgh is well-known for its waterfront nature areas and other outdoor offerings.
On top of all this, the city’s restaurant scene is booming. From pierogies covered in onions and tons of other toppings to sandwiches stuffed with meat, cheese, french fries and cole slaw, a nice meal isn’t hard to find in the ‘Burgh — neither is a messy one.
With all the good times to be had in Pittsburgh over the summer, cleaning the house is the last thing you want to do. But, it’s a bit of a catch-22, because the more time you spend outside with the elements, the messier your home is likely to get. Whether your day out has led to an unclean house or severely stained and potentially ruined clothing, here are five fun things in Pittsburgh that could get a bit messy — as well as what you can do to rectify any situation.
1. Going out to Eat
This guide to Pittsburgh would be sorely lacking if it didn’t include Primanti Brothers. As one of the oldest and most famous local culinary offerings in the Steel City, Primanti Bros. has been serving up “almost-famous” sandwiches since the Great Depression era. These bad boys are loaded with your typical meat and cheese, stuffed with crispy french fries and then topped with a massive serving of coleslaw.
There has been some debate on the exact origin of the Primanti Bros. sandwich. Some say it came about as a way for rushed steel mill workers to have their entire lunch in one sandwich. The real story, however, according to Primanti Brothers’ Ryan Wilkinson, has to do with the produce terminals and docks throughout the city’s Strip District. In the early 1900s, the Strip was a bustling part of the city, where locals could come to find the freshest produce, meats, cheeses and more. In fact, the sandwich shop was only open from 11 p.m. to 11 a.m., so it wasn’t even serving sandwiches during lunchtime — it was more of a late-night meal for the truck drivers who traveled the country to deliver fresh produce to the Strip.
As you can imagine, these iconic sandwiches can get messy pretty quickly. The most likely situation is that you’ll end up with coleslaw dripping down your shirt. Or, if you’ve taken your sandwich to go, it’s easy to let some slaw drip onto your carpets accidentally.
Cleaning Primanti Bros. slaw may sound tricky, but it’s as simple as picking and dabbing up as much of the mess as possible, soaking with carpet cleaner, letting it sit and then dabbing the remaining juices up after about an hour. Then, rinse the area with a glass of room-temperature water to flush away any leftover slaw residue. As long as you tackle the spill quickly, your carpets should be good to go!
Here are a few other Pittsburgh eateries that may leave you or your home a bit messy.
- Burgatory: It’ll be like you died and got pretty darn close to burger heaven — at least that’s the theme at this make-your-own burger joint. The patties at Burgatory are all-fresh, never-frozen beef from local farmers, as are the rest of the ingredients the popular chain uses. Burgatory is also famous for its unbelievably creamy milkshakes to go with that delicious burger and fries. We’re sure you can see how this meal could quickly get messy.
- Peppi’s: Around since the early ’80s, Peppi’s is proud to serve one of the messiest subs in Pittsburgh — the Santucci. They pile their hot Italian sub high with extra meat and cheese, along with grilled hot peppers, mushrooms and onions. You can only imagine the kind of stains these bad boys will leave on your clothes or carpets unless you tackle it quickly.
- Smallman Galley: Though it’s a bit less laid-back than Burgatory and Peppi’s, Smallman Galley is still a casual spot to enjoy pizza, international cuisine and more. However, pizza can almost always get messy. That cheesy, gooey goodness and warm marinara sauce don’t look nearly as good as they taste when they land on your white shirt.
2. After a Day of Family Fun
Pittsburgh has so many options for family fun, it’ll take you a while to get through them all. But, the first place you should start is Kennywood, Pittsburgh’s best amusement park.
Dubbed America’s Finest Traditional Amusement Park, this spot is an adventure you and your family won’t want to miss. With a 14-ride Kiddieland and six roller coasters, you won’t be bored for a moment. Though the park has been around since 1898, it’s undergone several renovations since then.
However, it can be easy to find yourself with messy kids at Kennywood. From sticky cotton candy to muddy shoes if it happens to rain, it will be a miracle if your kiddos come back from the park looking as clean as they did when they got there. When you need to clean dirty sneakers after a day of play at Kennywood, follow these steps:
- Knock off as much dirt as you can by clapping the sneakers together, then use a toothbrush to remove any leftover dry dirt.
- Dip the toothbrush into a solution of water mixed with laundry detergent, then scrub the fabric, rubber or mesh areas of the shoe, along with the laces.
- Wipe the bubbles off with a wet sponge.
- Let the shoes dry.
For white sneakers, use a cotton ball soaked in vinegar or nail polish to remove any stains. If using bleach, be sure to mix in at least five parts water to one part bleach to avoid discoloration. Scrub with the toothbrush, then rinse the shoes with warm water and let dry.
Check out a few other exciting spots your family will likely visit — and potentially bring home a mess.
- The National Aviary: As the only indoor, independent nonprofit zoo in the country, the National Aviary has a collection of more than 500 birds you and your kids will love to see and learn about. From endangered species education to bird breeding programs, this downtown Pittsburgh treasure is jam-packed with all sorts of fun activities to take part in.
- Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium: If your kids got excited about the birds at the National Aviary, can you imagine their faces when they see all the wild animals at the Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium? Tigers, cheetahs, flamingos, black rhinoceroses, pigs, polar bears and giraffes are just a handful of the animals you’ll get an up-close, in-person view of.
- The Carnegie Science Center: Located on Pittsburgh’s North Shore, the Carnegie Science Center is the perfect rainy-day activity for your family. The museum’s goal is to connect technology and science discoveries with everyday life as a way to educate people and provide exciting, valuable experiences.
3. After a Sporting Event
If there’s one thing Pittsburghers have in common, it’s that they love their sports teams. As one of the only cities whose major-league teams share the same colors — black and gold — the fans of the Pittsburgh Pirates, Penguins, Steelers and even the Panthers seem to be one big family.
When you and your friends decide to head to PNC Park for a Pirates game, PPG Paints Arena to watch the Penguins slap the puck around or Heinz Field to cheer on the Steelers, it’s safe to say things could get messy. Even if you take your kids, the chances of them spilling half their sodas down their shirt and somehow getting covered in cotton candy from head to toe are pretty good.
Prepare for these situations and more by taking some wet wipes along, and get ready to clean those shoes when you get home — they’ll surely be dirty from a long day of walking around the city and whatever sports stadium you choose.
4. After Taking a City Brew Tour
Downtown Pittsburgh certainly has no shortage of breweries, bars and other alcohol-centered destinations for you and your friends to check out. Maybe you’ll pregame at a buddy’s house, then head to South Side — home to many of the city’s most beloved bars — once it starts to get late.
If you’re looking for a tour of the city’s breweries, a popular one is City Brew Tours. You have a few different tour options available to choose from, but they all include samples of some delicious beers — some of which were even brewed right in Pittsburgh!
Or, maybe you’re looking for a fun place to go barhopping. You can’t go wrong with Carson Street on the South Side, which is where you’ll find some of the most popular bars in the city. This street is affectionately nicknamed Pittsburgh’s Bourbon Street, as it’s the street with the most concentrated amount of pubs. If you’re in the mood for a bar crawl, there’s no better place than Carson Street.
Cleaning up after a night out certainly isn’t as fun as the night, especially if you or one of your friends had a little too much to drink. Whether they spilled food or drink on your carpet or got sick and failed to make it to the bathroom, cleaning it up instantly with the appropriate product is the only way to avoid a stain.
5. After Spending Time Outside
Even though it’s the second-largest city in Pennsylvania, Pittsburgh still has plenty of outdoor activities involving nature, wildlife and more for residents to enjoy. From paddle-boating along one of the three rivers to enjoying a picnic along the waterfront, the opportunities for outdoor fun are seemingly endless.
Of course, anytime you’re hanging out among all the elements, you’re bound to get a bit dirty. Whether your clothes or shoes are in need of some TLC when you return, it will be well worth the enjoyment of getting outdoors and soaking up that much-needed Vitamin D.
Just be sure you have some laundry detergent for your clothes, bleach if you’re planning to wear something white — which we wouldn’t recommend — and a toothbrush in case your shoes need some attention after your adventure, too.
You and your family are sure to love these outdoor destinations.
- Point State Park: Marked with a massive fountain, Point State Park is literally a point on the edge of Pittsburgh that represents the meeting of the Ohio, Allegheny and Monongahela rivers. The landmark was influential during the French and Indian War, which took place between the years 1754 and 1763. Today, you and your family can enjoy walking through the park along the riverfront, relaxing by the fountain or having a picnic somewhere in the shade. This national park is a historical and prominent piece of Pittsburgh — and American — history.
- Mount Washington: If you’re afraid of heights, this activity might not be for you. There are several inclines you can ride up to the top of Mount Washington, which features several high-end restaurants and elegant bars that have a spectacular view of the city. It’s named after the young George Washington, who once mapped out the rivers and land below what is now Grandview Avenue. The two most notable inclines — the Duquesne Incline and the Monongahela Incline — charge a small fee to take residents and visitors alike up and down the mountain. Enjoy the view, but don’t look down!
- Schenley Park: Designed by heiress Mary Schenley in 1889, Schenley Park consists of 456 acres of woods, trails and attractions. From business executives to university students and lovers of the outdoors, this park is a frequent destination for all kinds of Pittsburghers. In fact, the park is home to several annual events, including the Pittsburgh Race for the Cure and the Vintage Grand Prix. Your family is sure to have some fun, work up a sweat and maybe get a bit dirty while you laugh and play at Schenley Park.
Contact Mr. Maid Today for Housecleaning Services in Pittsburgh, Pa.
We hope you’ve enjoyed this guide to Pittsburgh activities, as well as how you can clean up after them. Did you know the average American adult spends about 13 hours a week cleaning house? Imagine all you could get done with that extra time.
If you find your Pittsburgh home seems to need a bit more work than usual, it may be time to invest in regular services from a reliable, trustworthy cleaning service. Whether you’re sick of vacuuming, dusting or cleaning the windowsills, our team is the one to call.
Mr. Maid has been serving the residents of the Pittsburgh area with professional cleaning services for more than 13 years. You can trust our experienced team members to sanitize every nook and cranny in your house, leaving you and your family impressed. Even better, your guests will take notice and appreciate the care you put into your home. Plus, we always take our time. In fact, our cleaners always follow a 37-point checklist to ensure your satisfaction after every visit.
Ready to put away the vacuum for good and start spending more time doing what you love, with the ones you love? Let Mr. Maid take over cleaning your home for good. Contact us today to learn more — we’ll be happy to provide you with a free estimate based on your home and preferences.