February is for lovers: Race alongside strangers in your underwear, channel your inner flapper, learn to make ancient beer and so much more.
1. Tarana Burke at Calvary Episcopal Church: February 6, 7 p.m.
Don’t miss this uplifting evening with civil rights activist Tarana Burke, who founded the #MeToo movement 12 years ago to support women of color who have survived sexual assault. According to CBS, in October 2017, 1.7 million tweets spanning 85 countries included the hashtag “#MeToo,” while Facebook saw 12 million posts in less than 24 hours. Go beyond the hashtags and headlines to hear Burke’s powerful story behind creating what is now an international movement and a rallying cry for survivors of sexual assault and harassment. She’ll share her work amplifying marginalized voices, supporting survivors and creating healing places for people who have experienced trauma. The event will include a lecture, Q&A and book signing. Limited admission scholarships are available. Flexable will provide on-site child care. Buy tickets.
2. Cupid’s Undie Run: February 10
Join the many passionate — and scantily clad — brave souls who will take to the city’s streets for the fun-loving Cupid’s Undie Run. The charity event benefits research for neurofibromatosis, a genetic disorder affecting one in 3,000 children. This “mile-ish” fun run is for all — as long as you don’t come overdressed. Check-in starts at noon at McFadden’s and the “brief” route takes runners across the Roberto Clemente Bridge. The post-run party continues at the North Shore saloon at 2:15 p.m. More than 14,000 “charitable cherubs” are expected to strip down to their skivvies — or dress in an array of inventive Cupid-themed costumes — for the “largest pantless party” in cities across the U.S. and Australia. There’s warmth in numbers, so register now.
3. For the Love of Pittsburgh Local Food Tasting at the August Wilson Center: February 10, 3 – 7 p.m.
Farm to Table Western PA wants to bring everyone to the table for a winter tasting event showcasing all things local. Slow down during the hibernation season to savor seasonal offerings from food producers, wineries, breweries and distilleries. Meet the makers behind some of the region’s most delicious and innovative food, beverage and wellness businesses. The event will showcase black and minority-owned businesses and hopes to eliminate disparities in the food industry. Featured presenters include Day Bracey and Ed Bailey of Drinking Partners Podcast, food entrepreneur Gary Jackson and Sankofa Village Community Garden founder Ayanna Jones, who was featured at Farm Aid. The relaxing vibe will feature live entertainment and informal conversations about the local food scene. New this year is the “Share the Love” VIP ticket, which gets you a “first-taste preview” and allows consumers to donate to nonprofits working to end hunger and food insecurity. Buy tickets.
4. History Uncorked at Heinz History Center: February 16, 7 – 11 p.m.
For its 20th-anniversary benefit bash, the History Center will wind the clock back to host a spirited — and spirit-filled — Roaring Twenties soirée. Be there when the venue “uncorks” its latest major exhibition — appropriately titled, “American Spirits: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition.” The first of its kind show will bring the fascinating story of Prohibition to life via 100 rare artifacts. See flapper dresses, temperance propaganda, and copies of the 18th and 21st Amendments. Channel your inner Zelda Sayre and Charles Lindbergh as you sip sparkling spirits, swing to throwback sounds by The Boilermaker Jazz Band and strike a carefree pose in the 1920s photo booth. Hone your Foxtrot and Charleston moves during a dance party hosted by DJ Mad Maxx, and attempt to break out of the Imaginarium escape room. Buy tickets.
5. Harry Potter Film & Cultural Festival at Row House Cinema: February 16 – 28
Strap on some Quidditch goggles because the Harry Potter Festival is soaring into town. Become Harry and Hermione as you attend the Hogwarts school, fight off Lord Voldemort and party with Death Eaters. It’s your chance to see all eight films while being transported to a land of wizardry and adventure. Attend sorting ceremonies, divination sessions and a Professor Slughorn dinner party. The Leaky Cauldron will serve fresh Butterbeer adapted from a 1500s-era recipe. See how fandom has rocked the fashion world during a costume showcase, and test your powers during trivia nights. The event will also feature live music by Muggle Snuggle and Hawthorn & Holly, 24-hour screenings and fortune tellers. Wizard Weekend boasts chocolate frogs, jelly slugs and Butterbeer ice cream. Did we mention the live owl and Harry Potter-themed drag queens? Wear your house colors and Weasley sweater for concession stand discounts. Buy tickets.