Registration deadline for the convention is Friday, September 30. Registration deadline for Fallingwater tour is Friday, September 23. You can register at the door, but this does not include meals.
Check out all that Pittsburgh has to offer
By Kim and Stephen Hirtle
FFRF is bringing this year's convention to Pittsburgh, Pa., on the weekend of Oct. 7–9, a city that has been garnering national and international attention for its quality of life and unique features.
Recent accolades for Pittsburgh:
- Listed as one of the best places in the world to visit (Travel + Leisure).
- Rated as the No. 1 food city in 2015 (Zagat).
- Offers America's most stunning views (USA Today).
- Listed as the "coolest American city you haven't been to" (Huffington Post).
Pittsburgh, with a population slightly more than 300,000, is also known for having more bridges than any city in the world, including Venice. The three main rivers — Allegheny, Monongahela and Ohio — join downtown at Point State Park. Two inclines (funicular railways) dating back to the late 1800s take tourists and commuters up the side of Mount Washington, just as they did when steel was the main industry.
Downtown Pittsburgh, where the FFRF convention will be held, is known for its striking and varied architecture, notable restaurants and cultural amenities. The Andy Warhol Museum (named for a Pittsburgh native) and the Carnegie Science Center are just across the river on the North Shore. The Carnegie Natural History and Carnegie Art Museums are housed together, a short taxi or bus ride away, in the Oakland neighborhood, which is also home to Phipps Conservatory and two world class institutions: the University of Pittsburgh and Carnegie-Mellon University.
Across the street from the Cathedral of Learning is the Carnegie Natural History Museum, known for one the largest collections of dinosaur fossils in the world, including the Diplodocus Carnegii, named in honor of Pittsburgh native and freethinker Andrew Carnegie.
For those seeking outdoor activities, there are bike rental locations downtown, with bike trails throughout the city and along the rivers. Kayak Pittsburgh operates on weekends in October, just a short walk from the hotel, and for a modest fee, you can get out on the Allegheny River for an hour or two of exercise with excellent views of the skyline and stadiums.
FFRF visitors are encouraged to check out Market Square, a large European-style plaza surrounded by 14 restaurants near the hotel.
Those coming to the conference a day early will have the opportunity to visit Fallingwater. Considered to be the most iconic of all of Frank Lloyd Wright's designs, the house was built on top of natural waterfall.
Stephen Hirtle is chair of the FFRF Executive Board and professor of Information Science at the University of Pittsburgh.