FIVE THINGS: OCTOBER

Between pockets of dreary rain and the occasional, out-of-season 80-degree day, it’s officially fall in Pittsburgh. Though fleeting, autumn is one of the city’s best assets: the chilly mornings made cozy by a warm drink and a sweater-clad stroll, the weekend road trips to someplace scenic, and even the changes to your social calendar are all reasons to love this in-between season.

Whether you’re pitching a Pittsburgh visit to an out-of-town friend or just looking to fill your own days with fall activities before the season slips away, we have you covered with all kinds of must-sees and must-dos. Here are the five things at the top of our autumn bucket list.

Tickets to Mean Girls.

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Stop trying to make “fetch” happen — but don’t stop trying to snag tickets to the stage adaptation of everyone’s favorite bitchy high school movie. From October 29 through November 3, catch Cady and the Plastics (plus the addition of some incredible musical numbers) in a straight-from-Broadway performance at the Benedum Center. (Starting at $75, trustarts.org)

The fall spice beverages at Astroid.

Tucked away in the Terminal Building in the Southside, Astroid is always one of our favorite spots in town to hide out with an espresso and something good to read. This fall, what they’re calling their “fall spice sauce” adds a hefty dose of house-made autumnal flavor to just about any beverage you like.

An urban “hike”.

Who says a hike has to take place in nature? If you don’t have the luxury of a whole day off (or if you’re just more of a city dweller), an urban hike is an equally active and enjoyable alternative. Grab a coffee at Redhawk and hoof it from Downtown to Uptown and onto Oakland, or cross the 40th Street Bridge from Lawrenceville and finish your hike with a growler at Grist House. For some views of the changing leaves, trek from Squirrel Hill into Frick Park and back again to enjoy a quick escape.

Pop-up dinners galore.

The summer’s outdoor farm dinners are slowly transitioning into cozy, laid-back fall feasts at our favorite neighborhood spots, and we’re all for it. The Vandal is hosting a four-course wine dinner that’s full of hearty autumn dishes on October 22nd ($75/person, joey@thevandalpgh.com), and Black Radish Kitchen is partnering with Threadbare Cider for what sounds like an insanely tasty fall dinner on October 17th ($90/person, blackradishkitchen.com). For something a bit more casual, head to Pear and the Pickle on October 19 for their aptly named DeutschTroit German Food Pop-Up, which features German food by way of Detroit ($20-$55/person) or Umami/Ki Ramen chef Roger Li’s dim sum pop up at Bay 41 in Lawrenceville.

Learn to dance at the Ace Hotel.

Instead of grabbing a bar stool for a glass of wine at the Ace, head into the gym for a dance class — with the same glass of wine, of course. On Wednesday evenings from 7 to 8 p.m., pay just $5 for an hour-long swing or salsa dancing lesson, then show off your skills for the rest of the night, no matter how newbie they may be. ($5, acehotel.com)