Washington, D.C. may be hours away from Pittsburgh but this city offers plenty of ways to celebrate the second Presidential Inauguration of President Barack Obama this Jan. 21. The inauguration coincides with Martin Luther King, Jr. day, so take advantage of the myriad dual events Pittsburgh has to offer this year.
DC Rally Bus
1100 Liberty Ave.
Pittsburgh, PA 15222
2nd Inauguration Trip
Hill House Association
1835 Centre Ave.
Pittsburgh, PA 15219
If you have Martin Luther King Jr Day off Jan. 21, take full advantage of it. Two groups in Pittsburgh have organized chartered buses that will take you to and from Washington D.C. for Inauguration day — no hotel rooms to reserve, no gas to pay for and no extra time off from work required. D.C. Rally Bus departs from downtown at the Amtrak station at 3:30 a.m. Jan. 21, arrives in D.C. at 9 a.m. at Union Station, departs Union Station for Pittsburgh at 6 p.m. and arrives back to downtown Pittsburgh by 11:30 p.m. Price per ticket is $65 and tickets may be reserved online here. The Soul Pitt, a community group focused on keeping the black community connected in Pittsburgh is also doing a one-day bus trip to D.C. for the inauguration after the success of its bus trip for Obama’s first inauguration. Catch a ride with The Soul Pitt if you’d like an earlier arrival in D.C. and home. You’ll be back by 9:30 p.m., and tickets are $60. See the event website for details on how to reserve your seat. Either charter bus will get you from Pittsburgh to D.C. in plenty of time. The inauguration activities begin at the U.S. Capitol at noon.
Live Screening: Presidential Inauguration
Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh
10 Children’s Way
Pittsburgh, PA 15212
If the kids have Martin Luther King Day off, head to the Children’s Museum to watch the Presidential Inauguration on the big screen. This free event offers the community the opportunity to watch the ceremony and enjoy the inaugural tradition in a free, family friendly forum. Join the procession to the Capitol at 11 a.m. and stay until the end of Obama’s Inauguration speech at around 12:30 p.m.
MLK Day of Service 2013
Habitat for Humanity of Greater Pittsburgh
416 Library St.
Braddock, PA 15104
Each year in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Habitat for Humanity of Greater Pittsburgh organizes a service day that is based in the Braddock neighborhood of Pittsburgh and fans out to the area’s neighborhoods. It’s also in need of volunteers and community organizers. In the spirit of Martin Luther King Jr’s call for American’s to invest in their neighbors and neighborhoods, and Obama’s message of donating time to fellow citizens in need, sign up for one of more than a dozen day-long events. Tasks range from preparing lunch for families staying at the Ronald McDonald House to helping organize donations for homeless Pittsburghers at Catholic Charities.
Pittsburgh Cares: Love Your Library Sorting Project
Carnegie Library Support Center
50 Alexander St.
Pittsburgh, PA 15220
According to the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, more than 4 million books, audiovisual materials and mail are sorted and distributed through the library support center each year. Presidential inaugurations inspire patriotism and Martin Luther King Jr Day promotes a dedication to civic responsibility so spending time at Pittsburgh’s bustling, free library system that gives so much to the city is an ideal way to give back and bond with the community. The volunteer coordinators accept volunteers from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. for any amount of time. Take the opportunity of having a Monday off from work and turn it into a way to help make the library system run more smoothly.
Sally Turkovich Wright lives in her beloved city of Pittsburgh with her husband, Jason and German Shepherd, Zeus. She is a policy analyst by training, an eyewear stylist by trade and an amateur healthy-living advocate by choice. She also writes a column for Twoday Magazine. Catch up with her there at twodaymag.com. Her work can be found at Twodaymag.com.