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FireWalk Festival To Illuminate The North Side

Lindsay Dill
City of Play

Bonfires inside metal cauldrons forged by local artisans will illuminate Allegheny Commons at this fall's inaugural Pittsburgh FireWalk carnival. The event was created by the arts organization City of Play as a nod to “historic autumn fireside traditions."

“We’re trying to create a, maybe, an old-world feeling of walking around through the park at night,” said artistic director Greg Manley. The group also hopes the festival will strengthen the community's trust in strangers and sense of walking safely at night. “I felt, 'Well, how can we have a real carnival in the city unless we first address that fear?'”

Three bonfires will be located throughout the park, with a “hearth” in the center. Throughout the Nov. 23 and Nov. 24 events, dancers, musicians and storytellers will perform on multiple stages.

“Fire, historically, has been an extremely important element to Pittsburgh, certainly in its industrial development. I mean this was the city that could harness fire and make the world turn,” said Manley.

The carnival will be held from sunset to midnight.