Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy

March e news

25 years of park improvements 

As we celebrate 25 years of the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy, we're reflecting upon our long-standing partnership with the City of Pittsburgh and the work we have accomplished together to restore Pittsburgh's park system to excellence.

And we're looking back on some of our most transformative projects to date. Learn more about one of our most memorable transformations from 2010: the trail and signage restoration project. 

In 2010, the Parks Conservancy and the City improved almost six miles of trails and installed nearly 100 directional and interpretive signs throughout the, at the time, four regional parks. This project aimed to develop a new standard for signage design to be used throughout the entire park system. Before designing, building, and installing the signs that visitors see in the parks today, there were inconsistencies in messaging, maps, facts and data, and historical information along with way-finding and site identification.

The Parks Conservancy raised more than $3 million in federal funds for the project that were matched by an additional $800,000 raised from the community. 

The Conservancy is honored to work alongside the City, local community members, and to have friends like you to support our neighborhood and park improvement projects year-round.

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we're on the move  

Did you hear the news? We're excited to share that we have relocated to a new office.

Starting today, please direct all mail to our new location listed below.

Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy
The Highline 
West Tower
317 East Carson Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15219

(Please Note: All staff emails will remain the same.)

ride the beloved pnc carousel all season long 

The PNC Carousel in Schenley Plaza has a storied past and continues to be a gathering place for Pittsburghers and visitors from around the world. Every year from April through October, visitors of all ages and abilities enjoy the carousel’s lively colors and old-fashioned pipe organ music as they spin around Schenley Plaza.

Create your lasting memories this spring and summer on the carousel by purchasing a season pass. Click here to order your pass today!

Our Visitor Experience team is keeping COVID-19 safety at the forefront of the PNC Carousel operations. 

Learn about how the team is keeping your family safe during your upcoming carousel visits by clicking here

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hike (virtually) with a naturalist 

Bring the sounds of spring into your home on this live virtual hike with Naturalist Educator, Stephen Bucklin! Together, we will visit a wetland to experience amphibians on their annual return to their breeding grounds.

Click here to learn more!

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the wonders of tree seeds  

Do you ever think about trees and the seeds they produce? Homeowners will often clean their gutters and realize they are clogged with Maple 'helicopters' which are technically samaras seeds. Arborists and environmentalists often consider tree health, physiology, and mitigating environmental stressors in the urban forest as they are thinking about tree attributes. However, most people don't necessarily notice tree seeds or think about their importance.

Seeds are very tiny structures that contain the genetic material necessary to produce a giant sequoia. They are packed with enough energy to burst into the world and thrive while organizing and producing roots and shoots.

Click here to continue reading.

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#loveyourparks stories 

"My name is Kirstie Lynn Mosher, and I am a Master's student at Carnegie Mellon University, where I'm studying voice and opera performance. Though I am a musician by trade, I am a park lover and have a passion for environmental education! I currently live in Shadyside with my little Dachshund pup, Piper. We love experiencing new trails together. She loves to sniff all the scents and explore while on her leash. Sometimes I'll bring my film camera and take pictures while we're on the trails, too!

This past summer, I realized the importance of green spaces and wildlife conservation, and I decided that I wanted to learn more about educating people about the great outdoors. It has been one of my most favorite experiences..."

Click here to continue reading about Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy intern, Kirstie. 
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explore the outdoors from anywhere 

Parks on the Go is a digital education and nature resource package that connects people of all ages and abilities to nature from anywhere. It provides environmental experiences through virtual tours, health and wellness exercises, education resources for Pre K through 12 educators, exciting activities and resources for families and caregivers, and much more. 

Click here to begin exploring!

Special thanks to the Jack Buncher Foundation for supporting this program.
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25 years of love in the parks  

"The Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy turns 25 this year, and to celebrate, the nonprofit organization is collecting stories about memorable experiences visitors have had in the many green spaces throughout the city.

The First Friday monthly series features stories from people recalling special moments from their time in one of Pittsburgh's many parks.

'I created The First Friday because I wanted to provide park lovers with a piece that would truly make them feel good,' says Conservancy communications strategist Alana Wenk. 'Almost everyone looks forward to Friday, so I thought what better way to kick off the weekend than with stories that were not only informative but also provided someone an escape from the trials and tribulations of everyday life for just a few minutes.'"

Click here to continue reading.

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environmental education is vital  

At the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy, we believe in the importance of environmental education. Our team of dedicated and passionate educators understand how critical it is for students to have exposure to environmental education from a young age. 

Environmental education can help students learn about the importance of nature and develop skills that will last them a lifetime. Studies show that students who are exposed to environmental education experience a wide array of benefits such as increased confidence, academic performance, knowledge, perseverance, analytical skills, independence, teamwork, and leadership. 

The Pennsylvania Academic Standards for Environment and Ecology and Science and Technology are currently undergoing a revision process. Now is the opportunity to make changes for the better to ensure the requisite knowledge, performance expectations, and core ideas that build environmental literacy remain strong and continue to place Pennsylvania’s Environment and Ecology Standards at the forefront.   

Unfortunately, the newly proposed standards do not support opportunities for children to learn about local environmental and agricultural issues through real-world investigations. 

Click here to continue reading and how you can speak up about the importance of environmental education.

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let's move at the parks 

Get together with friends and family for a day of movement at your local park! You can walk, run, bike, or move however you like. This free event is hosted by P3R in partnership with the Parks Conservancy. 

Click here for the complete list of dates and for more information.  

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everyone has a park story...

...tell us yours  

Parks are where Pittsburghers make a lifetime of memories. 

Can you recall your first memory of spring and the scent of new blooms? 

What feeling did you get when you explored a new park trail for the first time? 

Did it fuel your soul with hope?

Your stories are what makes Pittsburgh's parks such treasured spaces.

Tell us your favorite park story and what your parks mean to you as spring approaches in just a few short weeks and new hope blooms.

Click here to submit your special park story. 

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enhance your time in nature

Reserve one of our themed backpacks! Choose between four different backpacks, each with its unique materials and resources to help experience Frick Park in a new and exciting way. Keeping safety in mind, our team has also created a contact-less procedure for backpack borrowing.

Explore the following backpack themes below!

The Winter Backpack, make new discoveries in Frick Park during the cooler months with our winter exploration backpack; 

The Meadow Backpack, for learning about insects, spiders, and butterflies and a book about common meadow creatures;

The Forest Backpack, featuring a ‘Bird Identiflyer’ for identifying and making bird calls;

The Stream Backpack, with tools, such as a sieve and aquaviewer, for discovering what lives in the local pond or creek; and

The Health Backpack, with hiking poles, a hammock, and a FitBit to help visitors measure their workouts.

To receive a backpack, please submit a reservation by 3:00 p.m. on the Friday before your reservation date, then pick-up the backpack on the designated Saturday or Sunday at the open-air gatehouse at the Frick Environmental Center.

Click here to learn more and reserve your backpack for your next park adventure!

Special thanks to the Katherine Bassara Memorial Fund and the Howard and Carol Lang Family Foundation Fund of The Pittsburgh Foundation for making this program possible!


Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy

317 East Carson Street, West Tower, Pittsburgh, PA 15219
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