Starlight Blues

Blues Dancing Under the Stars in Pittsburgh

TimeLocation
Typically Saturday late-nights (early Sunday) starting at about 12:20am, weather permitting. Grandview Overlook, opposite Saint Mary of the Mount Church (403 Grand­view Ave, Pittsburgh PA 15211).

Why do we do this? We love to dance! Many of us head up to the over­look on Mt. Wash­ing­ton for free DJed music follow­ing Swing City in Squir­rel Hill because three hours of dancing is not enough. Want to be sure never to miss a dance? See below — Face­book is not a re­liable way to hear about these late nights.

Being outdoors in public at a popular viewpoint (part of Pittsburgh's Eme­rald View Park), we see all kinds of inter­est­ing people come by: hula-hoop­ers, fire-spin­ners, bach­elor­ette par­ties, formal wed­ding photo­graphy shoots, and more. Some even join in the dancing!

When Is a Dance Ann­ounc­ed?

Since this is an outdoor dance, the de­cis­ion whe­ther to actually hold it is based on the weath­er fore­cast for Mount Wash­ing­ton as of the morn­ing before the dance (gen­er­ally: at least 60°F and less than 20% chance of pre­cip­ita­tion). We'll then up­date the status of a plan­ned dance from "ten­tative" to either "con­firmed" or "cancelled".

Getting Notifications:

  1. You can ask to be added to the mail­ing list by send­ing email to .
    You will receive an email the morn­ing of a plan­ned dance if it has been confirmed.
  2. You can subscribe to the RSS feed in your fav­orite news reader.
  3. You can add the to your own Google Calendar, Apple Calendar, Outlook, or other iCal-compat­ible cal­endar by past­ing the follow­ing cal­endar address into the appro­priate "sub­scribe to cal­endar", "add other cal­endars", or "Other Calendars: Add by URL" (Google) form:
    g47d0q0auupbngid5e620picps@group.calendar.google.com
  4. Or, you can return to this page and check the agenda (click on an event to toggle details).

Do not rely on Facebook to be notified of dances! Only about a third of them wind up being listed on the HMB or Swing City pages.

Weather Radar

Getting There

From Swing City: Take Murray Ave­nue down the hill. Get on I-376 West and follow signs to the Liberty Bridge. Cross the bridge, and turn right at the sig­nal on the far side (don't enter the tun­nel). At the top of Mount Wash­ing­ton, PJ Mc­Ardle Road­way makes a sharp left to an inter­sect­ion. Turn left at the inter­sect­ion and go 1.5 blocks. If you reach the stop sign, you overshot by 50 feet.

From Absolute Ball­room: Take Fifth Avenue to Oak­land. Past the Cathe­dral of Learn­ing, fol­low the signs for I-579 to get on Boule­vard of the Allies, then fol­low the signs to the Liberty Bridge and con­tinue as above. (Fol­low the signs to I-376 West instead if the Liberty Bridge is closed.)

If the Liberty Bridge is closed: Take I-376 West to the Grant Street exit. Turn left onto Fort Pitt Blvd at the first light, then turn left onto Smith­field Street at the fol­low­ing traf­fic light. Continue as below.

From Downtown: Cross the Smith­field Street Bridge to­ward Sta­tion Sq­uare. Turn left onto Car­son Street at the traf­fic light, then turn right at the fol­low­ing light and turn right again just after the under­pass. Take East Syc­amore Street up the side of Mount Wash­ing­ton and turn right at the inter­sect­ion (you'll be fac­ing a Do Not Enter sign). Fol­low the street around the 90-degree left bend to the brightly lit church.

From Elsewhere: Click "View larger map" to access Google's directions.

Note that the Thomas J. Gallagher Overlook (its official name, after a former mayor) is just a con­crete platform — it has no facili­ties of any kind, nor are there any nearby. Please pre­pare acc­ord­ingly.

What is Blues Dancing?

Contemporary Blues dance has roots in African tribal rhythms, combined with modern tech­niques. "Blues-idiom" dancing is a family of dances and move­ments done to blues music which share common features of

Blues styles include "Jookin'", "Ballroomin'", "Struttin'", "Slow Drag", "Drag Blues", and more.

For more Blues dancing, come to Peter's Pub in Oakland for Hot Metal Blues every Tuesday. No cover, free lesson from 8-9pm.

Photos

Latest: August 18th, September 16th.

Privacy: This site uses Google's calendar and map­ping services, which are covered by Google's pri­vacy policy. Unless you sign up for email noti­fica­tions, we do not collect any person­ally-ident­ifiable infor­mation. Your email address will be used solely to inform you of upcoming dances.