Memorial Day Pool Openings in Pittsburgh

Memorial Day weekend is, of course, America’s unofficial pool opening weekend, and there are some great options available around Pittsburgh.

Swimming is one of the best forms of exercise, and it’s a great way to stay cool on a hot day. (Residents of Alvern Gardens Apartments can enjoy their summer poolside for a $10 season pass.)

Sandcastle is opening its gates for the 2016 season at 11 a.m. on Saturday. There are a variety of ticket options, so check their website for details.

The Mt. Lebanon Swim Center opens at 11 a.m. on Saturday for an hour long adult swim before opening to the general public for the season. Season passes are available, but admission at the gate is also an option.

The Dormont Pool is slightly less expensive than the Mt. Lebanon Swim Center, and people living in the Keystone Oaks School District enjoy resident pricing. The Dormont Pool opens at noon on Saturday. Daily hours start on June 11, after school lets out for the summer.

The Alvern Gardens pool will open for the season at noon on June 11. Season passes for residents are available now at the leasing office.

Goblins! Ghosts! Ghouls! Haunted houses in the Pittsburgh area


No, that wasn’t very scary, but read on if you dare for places where you can get some serious frights in the Pittsburgh area this Halloween season.

Phantom Fright Nights

Happy Halloween
Visit the haunted houses of the Pittsburgh area if you dare.
Source: By Cindy (Flickr) [CC-BY-SA-2.0 (, via Wikimedia Commons
Kennywood’s 13th annual Phantom Fright Nights kicked off on Sept. 26th and run 7 p.m.-1 a.m. every Friday and Saturday through Nov. 1. Bonus: Fright Nights will also be open 7-11 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 12.

Tickets are available at the gate for $32.99, for a discount of $3 online, and for a discount of $5 at Giant Eagle stores. If you’re serious about your scares, you can get a Phantom’s Fright Pass, granting you unlimited visits for the 2014 Fright Nights.

On Oct. 12 and 31 and Nov. 1 tickets are half price for season pass holders and college students.

If you’d like your scares to be preceded by a ghoulish feast, you might want to attend the Phantom’s Pre-Scare Dinner at 5:45 p.m. on Oct. 10 and 11. But be warned: the menu includes “Succulent Rat Ribs, Haunted Bell Tower Squab, Graveyard Stuffed Cabbage,” and more.

Hundred Acres Manor

Located in South Park, Hundred Acres Manor is close to several Prudential Realty Communities. If you’ve ever dreamed of shooting zombies with paintball guns, their new attraction this year lets you do just that. Plus, there’s going to be a Halloween party this year (check their website for updates). On top of it all, this place is touted as one of the best haunted houses in the entire United States.

Considering the high accolades, the price of admission isn’t the least bit scary. It’s $10 per “victim” for Zombie Paintball on its own, but you can add it to general admission for the Manor itself: general admission $18, $25 if you add Zombie Paintball. There are also various VIP tickets available online: for $20 you can skip the general admission line at the Manor any day except Fridays and Saturdays ($27 if you add Zombie Paintball), for $25 you can skip the general admission line any day ($30 if you add Zombie Paintball), and for $35 you get to skip the line, take advantage of preferred parking, and you get a T-shirt ($40 if you add Zombie Paintball).

On Wicked Wednesday College Nights, presenting your student ID at the door gets you into the Manor for just $10. Students also get $3 off general admission on Thursdays and Sundays. On Military Mayhem Thursdays, presenting your military ID makes general admission just $10. On Wednesdays and Sundays, there’s a $3 military discount.

There’s also a few places in the Pittsburgh area that sell tickets for a discount of $3-$5.

The Scarehouse

Looking for frightening fun just north of the city? Check out the Scarehouse in Etna, PA. This one is so terrifying, Guillermo del Toro said he could live there. The spookiest part? The Scarehouse has two levels: the regular haunted house, and the basement. The basement is a place you may only enter after signing a waiver. Why? Because the actors down there are allowed to touch you.


Back to school safety

Pittsburgh schools celebrated the start of the 2014-2015 school year this week, and there are schools and school bus stops all over the place so safety is important.

While following traffic laws such as speed limits and school zone is advisable year-round, it’s crucial now that kids are back in those school zones. Drivers: lay off the gas, keep your eyes open, obey the crossing guards, and stop when the school bus tells you to.

back to school safety
Motorists need to pay special attention in school zones and areas with school bus stops.

If you’re stopped at a 4-way intersection, you need to wait for the bus to tuck in its stop sign before you continue driving. When the kids get off at an intersection, they could be crossing the street in any direction. The bus’s stop sign is meant to stop all traffic in the area until the kids are off the street.

For your reference, here are some important spots around Prudential Communities to look out for students:

Please do your part to keep our communities safe: don’t speed, don’t text and drive, signal your turns, and keep your eyes on the road.

Where to throw a party outdoors in the South Hills of Pittsburgh

Now that it’s getting warmer, it’s time we look around the South Hills of Pittsburgh for a nice picnic spot.

Residents of Alvern Gardens Apartments  can set up their grills at minimum of 15 ft from the building and set out patio furniture for the day. This community has just enough space for a small family cook-out, and any residents looking for a place to have an outdoor birthday party or Memorial Day gathering just need to rent out a pavilion at near-by South Park.

picnic space at Alvern Gardens
Residents of Alvern Gardens have access to green space around the property for cook-outs as long as they set the grill up at least 15 feet away from the building.

In addition to the wave pool, BMX track, golf course, play grounds, etc., South Park has several shelters available for rent. Visitors can even bring their dogs to the party and swing by the dog park.

Riehl Park in Castle Shannon has a pavilion with a full kitchen for rent. The park also has soccer and t-ball fields, bathrooms, a playground, and a walking trail.

Hamilton Park also has a full kitchen, bathrooms, a playground, as well as tennis and basketball courts, and baseball, softball, and soccer fields.

Castle Shannon’s Municipal Park facilities are also available for rent.

No matter whether you’re grilling at home or throwing a party at a local park, always remember to respect the space, clean up, and leave the place exactly how you found it.

If you’re looking for a rental in the South Hills, contact Prudential Realty Company for the current availability at several properties.

What’s it like to live in Pittsburgh?

Pittsburgh is a pretty cool place, but it doesn’t have the prestigious reputation of the country’s bigger cities. So Chi Quach, assistant property manager of Alvern Gardens Apartments and resident of Pittsburgh for over 35 years, took some time to sing Steel City’s praises.

Prudential Realty: What’s your favorite thing about the city?

Chi Quach: The view of the city coming out of the Fort Pitt Tunnel, and going to all of the sporting events.

PR: What are some advantages of living in the south hills?

Bridges: That's what it's like to live in Pittsburgh.
The Smithfield Street Bridge crosses the Monongahela River, connecting the historic South Side to downtown Pittsburgh.

CQ: Having access of the “T” [Pittsburgh’s light rail system]. Having that easy commute to the South Hills Village [Mall] and downtown by the “T” is a bonus because you save time and money on finding parking spaces.

PR: Pittsburgh was recently named the next big food town, and you’re a foodie yourself. Where do you like to eat?

CQ: Wow, that’s a hard question there. I have to say Pittsburgh has the best eateries around from the north, south, east, west. I mostly stick around the south hills when I go out for dinner. Here are some of my favorite spots in the south hills:

PR: What do you like to do for fun in the city?

CQ: I enjoy going down to the Strip District. You can find a lot of great places just by walking up and down Penn Avenue. There’s a lot of restaurants, grocery stores, and a few historical landmarks on every block.

PR: Do you have any advice for people who are new to the area?

CQ: Definitely grab the local magazine and read through it. It has a lot of information on current events, entertainment, and places to eat.

PR: Do you have any pointers for renters looking for an apartment in Pittsburgh?

CQ: Yes, make sure you find a place that is close to public transportation.

Contact Prudential Realty Company to find out about our current availability of apartments close to public transportation, restaurants, and fun in the Pittsburgh area.

Holiday events in Pittsburgh area

Residents of Prudential Realty Communities in the Pittsburgh area—Alvern Gardens Apartments, Place Seville, and rentals on Sleepy Hollow Road—have plenty to do this holiday season.

Keystone Oaks School District Events

The students of Castle Shannon’s Keystone Oaks School District, many of whom live in Alvern Gardens Apartments and Place Seville, are offering several holiday shows next week.

At 7 p.m. on Dec. 17, Keystone Oaks Middle School is holding a band concert.

Keystone Oaks High School’s Chorus, Symphonic Band, and Jazz Band will perform a holiday concert at 7 p.m. on Dec. 18.

4th and 5th graders of Myrtle Avenue Elementary School will perform their holiday concert at 1:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. on Dec. 19.

Downtown Pittsburgh Events

Pittsburgh from Mt. Washington
A winter view of Pittsburgh from Mount Washington, an iconic location accessible from Alvern Gardens Apartments, Place Seville, and Sleepy Hollow.

The Peoples Gas Holiday Market is running until Dec. 23 in Market Square. Residents of Alvern Gardens, Place Seville, Sleepy Hollow Townhouses, and Sleepy Hollow Apartments, can ride the T to Gateway Station for a European-inspired holiday shopping experience.

Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre’s production of The Nutcracker is playing through Dec. 29 at the Benedum Center in Pittsburgh’s Cultural District. The theater is just a short walk from the T’s Wood Street Station. Alvern Gardens residents live just a block from St. Anne’s T stop, and Place Seville is walking distance from the Red Line’s Overbrook Junction.

The 20th Highmark First Night kicks off at 6 p.m. Dec. 31 in Pittsburgh’s Cultural District, just a 26-minute T ride from several Prudential Realty Communities in the South Hills, like Alvern Gardens Apartments and Place Seville.