First trip to Pittsburgh and a bunch of new Philly

A few weeks back, Fran said I should go up to Philly for a weekend to explore. I figured it would be a good opportunity to also hit Pittsburgh, so I booked a flight. It was a quick, three-day trip, leaving out early Friday morning and coming home before work on Monday morning. Fran picked me up at the airport around 10:30 and we went straight to an old church that I’m surprised is even still there. It’s one of those places that I’ve planned on going to for years, but for some reason never made it. It was a quick in-and-out, then we were on our way.

front back angle close side above

Pretty hungry after a flight and an explore, I was ready to eat something delicious. From the time I jumped in Fran’s car, he was telling me about this place Paisano’s with all this amazing food. It’s right by his house, so it’s the perfect spot to stop and grab some food while we waited for Chris to get there. We finally walk up to the place and there’s a fucking sign in the window saying they’re closed for renovations or they’re moving or something! Pretty heartbreaking. We decided to just go order some food from Trio’s and eat at Fran’s. It was good, but I’ll always wonder if Fran was right about this Paisano’s place. Once Chris got there, we were ready to head to an old mansion-turned nursing home kinda place. I’m not real sure what it was, but it had a beautiful main staircase and some pretty awesome decay. Thinking it was basically just a place with a nice staircase, I was pleasantly surprised.

main stairs bathroom bedroom burned downstairs green angle toilets

To finish off the day, we stopped by a church that was nice. It still had a lot of stained glass and most (if not all) pews were still there. It also had a small library and basketball court. We met Becca back at Fran’s then it was time to grab some food at Cedar Point Bar and Kitchen. I can’t even remember what I had, so it must not’ve been too fantastic or too terrible.

church side view piano porn library chair

After getting 2-3 hours of sleep, it was time to get up and hit the road to Pittsburgh. I had never been to Pittsburgh and it’s been on my list for a while. It definitely didn’t disappoint. We got started by meeting up with Jayson and Greg at school. It was pretty impressive. First, it was huge. But it also had some character…lots of graffiti, plenty of stuff left behind. We were there for quite a while.

extinguisher court back court flag room books lab room closet green board chair stalls upside down piano

Next up, we stopped by a nearby church. It was pretty clean inside, including a band setup that looked like it was ready for a show that night. I wouldn’t be surprised if it reopens at some point. It had a pair of chapels and some interesting rooms.

church front side view vacuum stuff room band room nature extra chapel

We stopped at a Get Go to grab a quick sandwich, since it’s supposedly as good as Wawa, and it monsoons like crazy outside. Luckily it stopped right as we were leaving. Pretty good timing. Sandwich, not so good. Anyway, after that, we hit a couple quick, empty churches. Not much to them, aside from a few smoke bombs and Becca climbing all over everything, but I’m glad we saw them. (Update – the church in the first two pictures is already a pile of rubble.)

close view side view dangling Becca side view

As the sun was going down, we tried to fit in one last location, an abandoned hotel. It actually turned out to be one of my favorite places. It was full of all kinds of shit, but it was pretty nasty and we were tired, so took off without exploring the entire building.

stove wallpaper hotel room covered graffiti chair office bloody mary

We said goodbye to Jayson and headed over to a church to check it out before it got dark. There wasn’t a whole lot to it, but it would at least allow for another stop before leaving town.

upper level front close KLOPS church front

For the last stop in Pittsburgh, we went to a school that is apparently watched pretty heavily, but we didn’t run into any issues. Pretty cool school, but it was getting dark quickly and we had some driving to do.

stairway classroom KLOPS classroom  auditorium sunset

Another long drive and couple hours of hotel-sleep later, we found ourselves in one of the most beautiful theaters I’ve ever seen. It was still incredibly dark when we got there, but it allowed you to really see the details in the stained-glass dome ceiling. It was a pretty large building with some interesting rooms and had a barber’s chair on the stage.

theater wheelchair foyer top area stuff clothes backstage theater top

After that, it was time to meet Ramy, Carly, Mike, and Shauna back at Fran’s. At that point, none of us knew we were each going to lose 10 pounds from sweat that day. By the time we reached the power plant, we knew it was going to be a hot one. It was a strenuous 30 minute ordeal getting into this place, so it only added to the intense heat. We were all drenched by the time we got inside. I felt I’d already leaked out the entire bottle of water I consumed on the way in. Nonetheless, I press on to try to get some shots while everyone was kinda hanging out in the control room. The place was pretty impressive, but I’m not sure I’ll ever go back to that one, definitely not in the summer.

control room psycho hallway power windows clock

As if that power plant wasn’t hot enough, we headed off to another one. Luckily, this one was a bit easier to get to, but still involved a mile-long walk in the 500 degree heat. I think by the time we got here, I was pretty worn out. I only took a few shots, witnessed a roman candle battle, then we bounced.

rays stairs tanks SLOPS equipment railing clock huge

We tried to hit one church, but we were unsuccessful, so we begrudgingly agreed to go to another, appropriately dubbed “the mosquito church”. After standing there and staring at a pile of tires filled with hungry mosquitos for a few minutes, we (most of us) decide to go in. It was hot and late, so I lazily snapped like four pictures and we left. Miraculously, (and because Becca had a can of Off) none of us were bitten. That was about the only positive on that stop, pics not so great.

holy spirit side window

Last stop for this trip was an abandoned bank building that had been locked up for months. Unfortunately, right when we were going to wiggle our ways in, someone got pulled over by a cop right by the point of entry out front. Worst timing ever. It was getting darker outside by the minute and that cop sat there forever. Fran and I decided to just grab our stuff and walk over there and see what’s going on. We wait for what seemed like an eternity, then I just decided I’m gonna go in right in front of the cops and hopefully no one sees me, or at least I have enough time to snap a couple shots. As we’re walking to the front, the cops drives off. In we go. Not much to it, but it’s a fucking bank vault. How can you not be in awe? It just brings up so many questions of the place’s history. Considering the situation outside a few minutes prior and the sun rapidly going down, we get a few photos, then take off. One last meal at Johnny Brenda’s and it was time to head back home. Another pretty successful trip.

vault door empty room vault room back door

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