fun

Quirky But Oh So Cool Pittsburgh ๐Ÿ†’๐ŸŽจ๐Ÿšฒโšพ๏ธ๐Ÿ‰

So our first city on our 5 week RV trip was….drum rolls…PITTSBURGH!!! ๐ŸšŽ๐Ÿ’จYou can follow our journey across the Midwest and down the Mississippi River at @rvtheryet on Instagram and this blog www.sprintingwiththeshaps.com


Our first stop was the famous Abby Lee Dance Company studio from Lifetimes hit show DANCE MOMS!


Since Abby Lee is in jail it appears as though she has leased out the studio to a new company called Appolonia Leake Dance Company. But when we took a tour inside there was many recognizable landmarks from the show!


The girls were thrilled! ๐Ÿ‘ฏโ€โ™‚๏ธ๐ŸŽฅโค๏ธ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿฝ
Then we headed over to the Warhol museum to see some of Andy Warhols famous silkscreen paintings! ๐ŸŽจ


Stopped for lunch by the Pittsburgh Pirates baseball stadium!!! โšพ๏ธ


My favorite part of the day was RANDYLAND!!!! โค๏ธ๐ŸŽจโค๏ธ


From the uncoveringpa.com site “VISITING RANDYLAND: THE HAPPIEST PLACE IN PENNSYLVANIA…Stand outside of Randyland and you might think that itโ€™s a quirky art project and a great way to fix up a once-dilapidated house. However, when I asked owner and creator Randy Gilson what Randyland was, he responded with a very simple answer: โ€œRandyland is a giant heart of love.โ€

There are no words to explain what my eyes saw and my heart felt.โค๏ธ It was a beautiful jumble of colors๐ŸŒˆ, and paint๐ŸŽจ, and art and junk turned treasure, and nature, and culture and LOVE๐Ÿ’—. There was LOVE And HAPPINESS everywhere you look.


You could spot Randyland blocks away because the colors were beautifully blinding and the architecture was well…extremely UNIQUE.


I was so excited that I took a wrong turn and ended up in Randy’s house. Well THAT was an interesting way to meet Randy! As I was walking around from room to room ๐Ÿšถ๐Ÿฝโ€โ™€๏ธ๐Ÿšถ๐Ÿฝโ€โ™€๏ธ๐Ÿšถ๐Ÿฝโ€โ™€๏ธI thought to myself well this is INCREDIBLY generous of Randy to allow fans to walk through his personal space like a museum. Then I heard the voice “yoohoo!” And I shouted out “am I not suppose to be up here???”๐Ÿคฆ๐Ÿฝโ€โ™€๏ธ๐Ÿคท๐Ÿฝโ€โ™€๏ธ and I did an about face and headed down the stairs and was greeted by a smiley blonde RANDY! ๐Ÿ’๐Ÿผโ€โ™‚๏ธWe both giggled about how awkward it was that I just gave myself a tour of his home and he was totally SO SWEET and directed me towards the Randyland gardens. ๐ŸŒˆ๐Ÿ’๐ŸŒท


You know the part of the Wizard of Oz when it goes from black and white โšซ๏ธโšช๏ธto technicolor โค๏ธ๐Ÿ’›๐Ÿ’š๐Ÿ’™and it’s a beautiful sight to be seen.


Well that’s how it felt when you walked into Randyland, your senses are overloaded!!!


First thoughts that came to mind were WHO?WHAT?WHEN?WHERE?WHY?HOW? It’s something you’ve never experienced before and may never experience again! You know the saying “one mans junk is another mans treasure”. This should be the motto for Randyland!!! Randy is the “Master in the art of making something worthwhile out of what is seen as worthless”. He gives new life to the meaning “repurpose, reuse, recycle” โ™ป๏ธ Randy is the ultimate dogooder “Gilson purchased the home now known as Randyland in 1995. Dipping into his savings as a waiter, he purchased the home and began to clean it up. He had been working on cleaning up the neighborhood for almost 10 years at that point. Removing trash, setting up community gardens, and putting flowers in front of abandoned buildings got him in trouble with the police more than once, but his goal was always to make the neighborhood a better place to live.”


We spent a good 20 minutes exploring around!


After taking SEVERAL pictures with the kids all of a sudden a familiar voice came through the gate and Randy started welcoming everyone to his garden!!! ๐Ÿ’™


The boys were in heaven playing with all the toys and the awesome sandpits!



The girls were in heaven taking artsy pictures!



We walked over to ask Randy so I could ask how the gardens came about and he gave my girls the most beautiful inspirational pep talk ever. ๐Ÿ‘จ๐Ÿผ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿฝ He told us how he was homeless as a child and he used to dig in the garbage collecting toys and giving them to his siblings. He also said that he tries to mentor local homeless kids and allows them to help in his garden. What a special guy! ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿฝ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿฝ



It brought tears to me eyes. ๐Ÿ˜…โ˜บ๏ธ With every sentence he spoke he exuded SO MUCH KINDNESS. I’ve met nice people but Randy will always stand out as one of the NICEST people I’ve ever met. ๐Ÿ‘๐ŸฝHe told us he is constantly adding new pieces of art to his garden.


He has a special section of hundreds of painted arrows with the word WELCOME from around the world. When someone from a new country comes he has them paint the word WELCOME in their native language!๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ป๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฟ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡พ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ญ๐Ÿ‡ผ๐Ÿ‡ซ SO COOL!


Randy was also super proud of other sites in Pittsburgh.


He suggested we head over to check out Bicycle Heaven,๐Ÿšฒ๐Ÿšฒ the largest bike museum in America. Randy posed for pictures with all his fans and took so much pride in his creation.


It was such a beautiful experience and I’m so glad that my family got to experience the LOVE that was Randyland!!! โค๏ธ๐Ÿ’›๐Ÿ’š๐Ÿ’™๐Ÿ‘จ๐Ÿผ

We jumped back in the RV and headed to Bicycle Heaven.


Oh mahhh Godddd I have never seen anything like this before.


Over 3000 bicycles, it was part shrine to Schwinn bicycles, part museum to bikes spanning from the 1800s to now, part bike repair shop and then part Bike store.


Beside bikes there were HUNDREDS of random cool nicknacks!!! The belle of the ball was none other than the one the only THE PEE WEE HERMAN BIKE from Pee Wes’s Big Adventure!


Which was awesome after visiting the Alamo in January!!! Pee Wee fans would appreciate the Alamo connection!


We spent a half hour just roaming and ogling super cool bikes!


Raise your hand if you recognize this seat? ๐Ÿ™‹๐Ÿฝ


Raise your hand if you had a little red bicycle like this???๐Ÿ™‹๐Ÿฝ #memories


So many unique pic opps!


We ended our day at the Carnegie Science Center at the building called Highmarks SportsWorks to let off some steam!


Inside there were 30 interactive experiences in the areas of Life Works, Physics of Sports and Sports Challenge.๐Ÿ’ช๐Ÿฝ๐Ÿ’


They even had a sick ropes course!


It was closing soon so we only had an hour to explore!



After an action packed day ๐Ÿ˜ด we packed up the RV and headed out. So as to not cross paths we waited for Trump to depart Ohio this morning ๐Ÿ™„ so we could safely enter the state without seeing his dreadful face! ๐ŸšŽ๐Ÿ’จ๐Ÿ‘‹๐Ÿฝ NEXT STOP OHIO! ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿฝ

 

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