The Riverlife Pittsburgh Riverwalk & Chalk Fest has officially returned to the Burgh! One of the coolest art festivals of the year is coming back to Pittsburgh after its inaugural year for a second installation. This year, the Pittsburgh Riverwalk & Chalk Fest has found its home in the North Shore along Isabella Street and is going to be even BIGGER and better than the last! Running Saturday, May 27th – Sunday, May 28th, this year’s Chalk Fest will again be a destination for all celebrating Memorial Day in the city!

Riverlife President and CEO Matt Galluzzo spoke about why this new-to-Pittsburgh festival is such an important one: “Art moves and art activates. Connecting Pittsburghers and visitors to Pittsburgh to cultural experiences along our greatest regional assets – our rivers and riverfronts – is at the heart of all we do.”

This free event is made possible by Riverlife, a local nonprofit organization that works to create, activate, and celebrate Pittsburgh’s riverfronts while connecting people through exceptional places and experiences. What better way to achieve that goal than by holding this event for all ages right along the Riverwalk? Riverwalk & Chalk Fest is the perfect spot for all to come and immerse themselves in creativity. With over 24 artists from 9 states, this year’s talent is endless!

People might think, how cool could chalk art really be? Well, take a look at these photos! This year’s artists take chalking to a whole new level with their different techniques and signature styles. If you want to see the artists in action putting the final touches on their pieces, stop by the festival on Saturday from 1pm – 6pm. They will begin their work on Friday, but they’ll be available for meet-and-greets and photo ops near their murals during Saturday’s festival.

Saturday will be a day filled with not only art, but eats, treats, live music, games, face painting, and more! This year, you will find over a dozen food vendors from some Pittsburgh favorites. Burgatory will be slinging custom burgers, Millie’s Ice Cream will be scooping their best flavors, and Shorty’s will be hosting a themed pop-up bar featuring beverages for all and special CHALK-tail Bar drinks for those age 21+. Come hungry, because a portion of food and drink sales will go to benefit Riverlife!

As we mentioned, Riverwalk & Chalk Fest is an event for all ages. Keep the whole family entertained by stopping by Shorty’s for some block party games! Feeling extra creative and artsy from the event? Head to the P.G.H. Party Creations pop-up where you can become the canvas with their complimentary face painting and glitter tattoo art! Maybe you can even get some cool inspiration from some of the chalk murals.

Now it wouldn’t be a Pittsburgh festival without some live music from local favorites. Keystone Artist Connect has put together quite the lineup for this year’s Riverwalk & Chalk Fest. At the top of Allegheny Landing on Saturday, you can find live performances by Dr. D and the Earthtones, Arie Cole, Byron Nash and Jacquea Mae of NASH.V.ILL, and Paging Doctor Moon. There isn’t much better than live music, good local eats, and incredible artwork down by the beauty of the river.

If you have plans already for Saturday, don’t worry because the fun will continue on Sunday! Bike PGH’s first OpenStreetsPGH of the year will be taking place on Sunday, May 28th from 10am – 2pm on the North Shore, and will run the whole way down to the South Side. Start your OpenStreets journey over in the North Shore to check out the completed chalk murals from the returning artists and newcomers! This year’s artists come from all over the nation including the states of Ohio, Texas, California, Florida, Minnesota, and more.

One returning artist (that also happens to be local to Pittsburgh) is the one and only, Erik Greenawalt aka The Chalking Dad! Here is what he had to say about the return of this festival for a second year: “Last year’s first Chalk Fest was magical, and this year promises to bring even more fun and even more incredible art…I’ve participated in a lot of the larger national festivals, and it’s exciting to welcome so many of my esteemed artist friends to Pittsburgh and show off our city for the second year. Last year, they loved Pittsburgh and it’s amazing how the city has embraced this event and we can’t wait to unveil this year’s art on the North Shore!”

After welcoming over 5,000 people to the kickoff year for Riverwalk & Chalk Fest, Riverlife is thrilled to bring back this awesome festival. Bring your families, friends, and out-of-town visitors to this free event packed with 2 days of fun! Here’s to making year number two even more amazing!

This content was provided by a local, independent contributor to Made in PGH, a lifestyle blog.
Francesca Ferrante

Francesca Ferrante aka The412Franimal is a Blogger/Influencer for travel and ALL things Pittsburgh. Typically you can find her all over the US exploring the best food, views and adult beverages, or at a local PGH brewery watching whatever sport is in season. Passionate about helping others make the best memories, she loves sharing recommendations and tips for restaurants, events, happy hours & more!

1 Comment
  1. It’s a little annoying that the art was sprayed off at 2pm so no one else could enjoy it. Super disappointing

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