Dating back to 1925, the word “Blawnox” represents not just a quaint town with a population of 1,550, but a destination with a strong sense of community. At its inception, Blawnox embodied the heart of Pittsburgh as a true Steel town; It was named for the company that provided many of its residents with employment, the Blaw-Knox Steel Construction Moondog'sCompany. Even after the end of the Steel era, Blawnox carried on the name that denotes its origins, and today, continues to blossom into a beautiful and unique getaway.

Full Moon
Just as the Rex Theater and Club Café come to mind when thinking of intimate live music venues in Pittsburgh, so too does Moondog’s. Bar owner Ron “Moondog” Esser is chairing this year’s Pittsburgh Blues Festival Committee, and on July 23-24, artists playing the festival will make a stop on the Moondog’s stage for a jam session. The 18-year-old bar’s longstanding goal is to find and play the best music, including rock, blues, and reggae. “There are things you will see here that you won’t see anywhere else,” says longtime associate Mary Bock. For more information on Moondog’s, call 412.828.2040, or visit

Boy’s Night Out
Allegheny Smokeworks, a tasteful cigar and pipe tobacco haven for gentleman smokers, will host a cigar tasting on July 8, featuring the new Brick House Cigar by J.C. Newman. Other rare finds in the store include the smooth Perdomo Edicion de Silvio cigar line, Don Pepin cigars, and the Padron anniversary line. The store boasts a large walk-in humidor and a lounge to sit and enjoy a recent purchase. To make visitors even more comfortable, a big-screen TV is available and the coffee is always on. For more information on Allegheny Smokeworks, call 412.828.665, or visit

Drive My Car
Only in Blawnox can $28,000 buy a Mercedes-Benz, Jaguar, Porsche, Infiniti, Audi, or BMW. Tower Auto Sales specializes in pre-owned Lexus vehicles and boasts an array of beautiful brand-name cars that are from 2007 and newer. “We don’t do anything like any other dealership,” says owner Mike Fanto. The dealership, which has been in operation for 35 years, offers a full-service facility, three showrooms, extended warranties, financing and leasing plans, and service before and after delivery. For more information on Tower Auto Sales, call 800.515.4CAR, or visit

Garden Getaway The Songbird Sanctuary
The Songbird Sanctuary offers a serene shopping experience and carries an array of nature-inspired items for indoor and outdoor decorating, including birdbaths and feeders, garden accessories, and furniture. Stop by to peruse what owner Janet Bronder says is the area’s largest collection of products that invoke tranquility and exceptional beauty. A visit to the store is truly relaxing thanks to its soft music, warm color scheme, and comfortable wingback chair for visitors’ delight. Free classes, covering a range of nature topics, are also available to patrons. For more information on The Songbird Sanctuary, call 412.828.5393, or visit

By Joanna Blake

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