Avenu Company Spotlight: NurturePA


NuturePA, Inc., a charitable, non-profit organization, is connecting parents with the information and resources they need – exactly when they need it.

Kate Brennan is their enthusiastic and passionate Director of Operations. Here she talks about how they use technology to support new moms and how Avenu is supporting their small non-profit:

What is one thing people are surprised to learn about you/your company?
At NuturePA, volunteer mentors support moms during the first three years of her baby’s life – all through an innovative text messaging program. We use our custom developed software to connect volunteer mentors with moms so that they leave the hospital with support already in their pocket. Volunteer mentors use our software to share parenting information, make referrals to community resources, and, perhaps most importantly, build relationships during a critical time in the life of a mom and her baby. People are often surprised at the meaningful relationships that develop between moms and their mentors without them ever meeting face-to-face. Bottom line — we are supporting moms so they are better able to nurture their babies.

One goal for 2018?
We plan to expand our volunteer pool to 100 mentors so that we can support upwards of 1000 moms and babies. For more information about volunteering with NurturePA, go to our website and click on Mentors.

Why Avenu?
Avenu provides a professional space in very convenient location for our small non-profit to hold meetings, trainings, and a drop in space for day-to-day work. We also love the neighborhood and appreciate its proximity to one of our partner hospitals – UPMC Mercy. We’re proud to have our name on the door at Avenu!

Thirsty Scholar Bar and Grille – Food for Thought, Thirst for Knowledge

Thirsty Scholar Bar and Grille, located at 3610 Fifth Avenue in Oakland, is one of the area’s latest spots for good eats and cool drinks. Having opened in June of this year in the former location of the Campus Bookstore, Thirsty Scholar provides an enjoyable atmosphere – perfect for unwinding after work, going out with friends, or simply grabbing that burger and wings you’ve been craving. Mike Chizmar, owner of Thirsty Scholar, transformed his former book store’s ~5,000 square feet space into a lively and happening bar, grille and bottle shop and really enjoys serving up some of his establishments’ amazing bites and brews. Going from a book store to a bar and grille is quite a 180 degree turn, and Mike is happy he did. “We’re a family-owned restaurant – my wife, Joanne Chizmar, brother-in-law, Mike Meinert, and I are all mangers, and we love providing a place where the college students and the area’s employees can unwind!” said Chizmar.

Thirsty Scholar has incredible, mouth-watering food options, too, with ‘Daily Grille Specials’ for only $6 – featuring tacos, wings, quesadillas and appetizer specials on certain days of the week. “We press our own burgers and use Mancini’s Bread on all sandwiches and burgers for extra quality… Not to mention, we also make a fantastic grilled or fried chicken salad that’s topped with fires and cheese,” said Chizmar. “We know how busy everyone is in Oakland and actually offer a ‘Lunch Express’ option on the menu! ‘Lunch Express is offered Monday through Friday from 11AM-4PM featuring a burger and fries or a chicken salad – dine in or carry out – for only $6!” he continued.

Thirsty Scholar is also a bottle shop with many varieties of craft beers and other beverages. “We kept a little of our retail roots here at Thirsty Scholar and offer over 300 bottles of craft beer which you can mix-and-match as a six pack and 150 varieties of wine!” said Chizmar. “When we started, we knew that the restaurant and bar business would be a learning curve and that we were literally building it from the ground up, but we have a nice, aesthetically pleasing place now, and we welcome anyone who steps in!” said Chizmar.

Mon – Thurs: 11a – 12p
Fri: 11a – 1a
Sat: 4p – 1a
Sun: 12p – 10p

Oakland Welcomes The Law Offices Of Matthew S. Feinman

Are you looking for legal service but you do not want to spend an arm and a leg to get it done? Stop by the Law Offices of Matthew S. Feinman, located at 3504 Fifth Avenue in Oakland. Having already helped many clients with law services in contracts, small business, real estate and entertainment, Attorney Feinman is as reliable and versatile as he is affordable.

“I’m not a nickel-and-dime kind of guy,” said Matthew, “and I’m definitely not the kind of attorney who overcharges and underworks…I’m typically in the office by 9AM, but given certain situations I’ve been known to be in here as late as 2AM working for a client,” he continued.
Despite only working in Oakland since last December, Oakland stretches deeper back into Attorney Feinman’s roots. Feinman can attribute all of his law education and degree to Oakland’s very own University of Pittsburgh. His first office was located in the Barco Law Building of the University of Pittsburgh, which led to his transfer over to his current office down the street. But why stay in Oakland?

“I love the atmosphere of Oakland,” explains Attorney Feinman. “I can go into any store, and I swear I haven’t yet met anyone here unhappy with what they’re doing.” Feinman also notes the practical perk of working in Oakland. “It’s convenient! I live in Squirrel Hill, and I can walk to my office if necessary. It’s also great for my clients because I’m in close enough proximity that they don’t have to pay $20 in parking just to see me for a half hour.”

The Law Offices of Matthew S. Feinman specialize in many categories, such as small business law, contracts, real estate, tenant/landlord relations, entertainment and bankruptcy — among others; however, Feinman makes sure to clarify the following: “I serve everybody and anybody. No matter who calls, I’ll have a way to help them out.”

Law Offices of Matthew S. Feinman
3504 Fifth Ave
1st Floor
Pittsburgh, PA 15213

Revv Oakland And Startuptown Merge To Form Avenu

Revv Oakland and StartUptown are merging to form Avenu, a not-for-profit entity with a renewed commitment to equitable economic development in the Fifth/Forbes corridor spanning Uptown and Oakland.

“The new identity, Avenu, captures both our mission — to drive equitable economic development in the corridor — and our geographic footprint. We currently operate seven locations in the Fifth Avenue/Forbes Avenue corridor,”explains acting Executive Director Tad Hale, “and plan to activate additional sites in the corridor to provide increased opportunities for retail, live-work spaces, flexible work spaces and other development.”

StartUptown and Revv Oakland housed some of the region’s most recognizable technology startups that achieved exits — NoWait, Shoefitr, Rhiza, Allpoint Systems, and Powered Analytics — and continue to serve numerous early stage counterparts that are on similar trajectories — StitchFix, Containership and Forest Devices among them. Despite finding success in coworking, founders of both organizations cite a larger vision, beyond just flexible workspace, as motivation.

Furthering this collective vision, Avenu will connect people and programs through place-making, to help create an equitable community of residents, builders and entrepreneurs. “We are collaborative by nature and are eager to participate in transformative projects where we can add lasting value,” says Hale, “We are committed to building a vibrant, equitable corridor by attracting more community-based startups, while continuing to support tech, social, and maker businesses.”

Avenu is increasing its community engagement by making its spaces more available and by partnering to bring increased programming into the corridor.

Avenu unveils its new website (www.avenu-pgh.com) on September 15, 2017.

Oakland Welcomes Residence Inn by Marriott Pittsburgh Oakland/University Place

Left: Kimberly Baverso, Assistant General Manager; Cindy Dohmlo, General Manager; David Cocco, President and CEO at North Star Lodging & Development

The Residence Inn by Marriott Pittsburgh Oakland/University Place, located at 3341 Forbes Avenue in Oakland, opened earlier this summer on June 21. This 10-story, 144 all-suite custom Residence Inn has everything a visitor needs for an extended stay in Oakland’s commercial district.

David Cocco, President and CEO at North Star Lodging & Development, is proud of the building’s construction and recent opening, and he looks forward to giving residents a pleasant experience.

“For our residents, our focus will always be to provide all the comforts and conveniences of home,” said Cocco. “Extended stay hotels are driven by the ‘eds and meds’ market and we know that Oakland is the hub of those.”

There are plenty of perks to staying at the Residence Inn by Marriott Pittsburgh Oakland/University Place, including:

  • Outdoor courtyard with a large hearth fireplace and gas heat-lamps
  • Complimentary shuttle service
  • Fitness center
  • Indoor swimming pool
  • 24-hour market
  • Complimentary hi-speed internet
  • Complimentary (and customizable!) hot breakfast buffet

The hotel has a ‘Residence Inn Mix’ – a social program offered to the residents Mondays through Wednesdays from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. There’s Make Your Own Soda on Mondays, Off The Grill on Tuesdays and Local Fare–provided by a featured local restaurant–on Wednesdays.

“The residents love it, and we encourage them to relax and enjoy what we have to offer!” said Cindy Dohmlo, General Manager.

The hotel has three different floor plans: Studio Suite (350 s.f.), 1 Bed (495 s.f.) and 2-Bed (700 s.f.) and all the modern amenities an Oakland over-nighter needs and more.

“Each room even has a full size kitchen equipped with a fridge, dishwasher, microwave – even china, silverware and pots and pans!” said Dohmlo. “The televisions have smart ports for gaming, Netflix, Hulu… And even the pull-out sofa beds have outlets for convenience.”

“We’re proud that we had the collaborative efforts from everyone involved in the development of this hotel: MassaroConstruction Group as our general contractor keeping everything on time and on budget, Hospitality Furnishings & Design for executing their ‘urban/European interior design-work’, TKA Architects, Marriott International and of course the Oakland community,” said Cocco.