2022 was our first full year of special events and pop-ups in our newly renovated development. From themed trivia to playing a part in Pittsburgh's first-ever Festival of Books, to an Urban Pumpkin Patch on the lawn that could rival Halloweentown itself. We have loved hosting these events and want to thank you for welcoming us into your community and turning our Square into East Libs living room. Scroll through a little timeline of our events this past year.
Every January through February, we host our clothing drive. New year- new closet! We collected new and gently used clothing to benefit Thriftique. Thriftique operates a retail store that provides a platform for member volunteerism, community service projects, internships, and employment opportunities for at-risk women moving towards self-sufficiency and young adults with special needs. We've just begun the process of this again this year! You can find all the details here.
To keep the community's mind off of all of the snow on the ground in March, we kicked off our first Spring of events in our completed Conservatory. We hosted the incredibly talented dancers at Bell’s School of Irish Dance for a pop-up performance on St. Patrick’s Day. They taught us some Irish history and the origins of the holiday and showed off their skills in the Conservatory! After that, we held an all-green tie-dye party and headed to Galley- Bakery Square for some St. Patrick’s Day-themed trivia! We were also so lucky to host the first of many wonderful pop-ups with Stories Like Me.
The weather finally broke a little bit and we began hosting more events! Egg decorating in the conservatory kicked off the month in the Easter spirit! We also hosted an Earth Day pop-up by recommitting ourselves to doing better for the earth. We invited chalk artist Erik Greenwalt on-site to do some environmentally friendly chalk art and asked our community members to do the same and write down their Earth Day resolutions on our chalkboard. We yinzers take being yinzers pretty seriously, you know? The whole parking chair, french fries on your salad, 'slippy' saying thing? Culture. So we did 412 Day (4/12) the best we know how. We invited some local shops to pop up in the Conservatory, passed out free Pittsburgh Popcorn Company, and hosted Pittsburgh-themed trivia to a crowd of sold-out ride or die 412-lovin’ folks at Galley- Bakery Square.
May was an insane month for us here at the Square. Kicking it off, we hosted Star Wars day on 4/4 (May the 4th be With You). We brought the action straight from the galaxy far, far away by binging the movies outside, lightsaber fights, and hosting some pretty tough Star Wars trivia. Our favorite home-spun event this May was our Spring Tea Party with Mary Poppins & Burt! The event was practically perfect and we were so lucky to see so many community members interested in our events. Last but most certainly not least, we were able to play host to a small part of the first ever Greater Pittsburgh Festival of Books!
June was probably our busiest summer month this year. We broke ground on Dahlem Place behind Bakery Square. The train tracks separating the communities of Larimer and Homewood were ripped up, a symbolic and physical barrier. We have begun the slow process of connecting Dahlem Place in Bakery Square to McPherson Boulevard and Fifth Avenue making transit between the communities significantly easier. Curtis Reavesdebuted his new art installation on the side of our Conservatory. His work, titled i see YOU, had him work with 80 local 4th and 5th grade students from Lincoln Elementary and Urban Academy to conceptualize and create his piece. Our Juneteenth market was an incredible success, bringing together over 15 Black, local artists and makers to sell their work and showcase their incredible talent. We wrapped up the month with our first annual Pride celebration, called We OUT Here. A celebration of acceptance, love, and freedom. Hosted by the talented prominent local drag queen, Dixie Surewood, this event brought the community out to the Square and let them fly their flags high and proud. The perfect bow on this month was yoga on the lawn every Saturday morning, incredible trivia hosted every Thursday at Galley- Bakery Square, and more of our signature events.
July was as easy and breezy as it gets. Great weather, great food, and great entertainment. We continued our live music every weekend is presented by our partners at Dollar Bank and Keystone Artist Connect. Every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday they bring us the best of the best Pittsburgh talent right to our lawn. We also continued our highly rated weekly cornhole, brought to you by PUMP and the Pittsburgh Sports League. Keeping active is really important to us here at Bakery Square so we partnered again with the minds at Shape Training to present a one-day-only Bootcamp. Focusing on strength and endurance, they popped up on Sally’s path with some other local vendors to encourage a healthy lifestyle. We also continued our weekly yoga on the lawn with the instructor, Katelyn!
This month's events had a singular focus: community. We kicked off the month with our annual school supply drive for Lincoln Elementary School with Grow with Walnut. This drive is always a huge success thanks to our in-person donations and our virtual donations through GoFundMe. We also continued our outdoor yoga program and we kept it moving with our friends at Keystone Artist Connect. This month we continued to show that Bakery Square is a place to gather for good food, good shopping, and good family-friendly activities like bi-weekly trivia. We also got to have some extra special events like a family fun day benefiting the Ryan Shazier Foundation for spinal cord injuries!
We really savored our September, to say the least. We continued all of our signature events including yoga, cornhole, and live local music. Our trivia started to catch on too and began selling out every. single. weekend. Sadly, with the end of this month meant the end of all of our outdoor activities for the season including our Outdoor Movie Nights. But don't worry, we learned so much this past year and we can't wait to bring all of these back next Summer and do them bigger and better!
It's official- Fall is the best season at Bakery Square. The food and the drinks are to die for. Plus all of our fall events. We kicked off October with the return of our hometown heroes, the Steelers! Steely McBeam was on site to cheer on the black and gold as we started another year of highs and lows with our team. We also finally brought the sweet back to Bakery, with the opening of our newest tenant, Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams! The smell of warm waffle cones filled the Conservatory in October and we'll never be the same after. Of course, we can't do fall events without talking about or killer Halloween Hoopla event! We turned our Courtyard into an urban pumpkin patch and sold locally grown pumpkins for donations to the Larimer Consensus Group. We also had face painters, popcorn, candy, live music and way more. We simply cannot wait for Fall 2023, we hope you'll join us too!
We got to host a slew of Holiday themed parties this year as well! As always, our friends Elsa and Anna really made an impact. Donut Decorating with Elsa and Anna was so fun and all the kiddos loved it! Here is a link to our event wrap-up where you can find the gallery of photos from that event! Missed this one? Don’t worry! We have a feeling you won’t have to wait too long to see them again… The best way to spread Christmas cheer is by singing loud for all to hear. Or, at least, that’s what our friend Buddy the Elf says! Buddy and Jovie joined us for a little cookie decorating and a song this December too! Kids in the community were invited to icing up their favorite holiday cookies and meet some of the funniest characters on this side of the North Pole (and the Holland Tunnel). We pulled out all the stops for this one, even including a pasta bar thanks to City Fresh Pasta. Buddy (and all the kids!) got to make their own signature spaghetti. Marshmallows, maple syrup, and all! There is a link to the event gallery here! We really love the holidays, if you can’t tell. All of that seems mild compared to the holiday bash we threw in the Conservatory! The Holly Jolly Holiday Party was a hit! We invited the whole community to come out and celebrate with us. Live music, arts and crafts, sweet treats, and wayyy more. You could make your own stocking or ornament and even write a letter to Santa! And as the year winds down, so did our events for 2022. We said goodbye to this year the best way we knew how, a New Year’s Eve Party! Except… who wants to wait until Midnight? No one! So we took matters into our own hands and threw a Noon Year’s Eve Party! DJ BMW was here and playing all the jams while we danced our hearts out until noon. With a ‘fauxmosa’ toast by our friends at Galley- Bakery Square and some really cool sparks, we welcomed in a new year and said goodbye to a year we’ll never forget.