REMAINS RELOCATING Greg Anderson has enjoyed his record store, Vinyl Remains, and its Dormont storefront, since 2017. But this July, he’s moving over to Uptown.
“Washington Road is the difference between being in an alley and being on Broadway,” says the former New Yorker of his new spot, 692 Washington Road. “I have to be super-visible.”
But one of the best things about moving his store to Mt. Lebanon’s Main Street is the synergy he will have with such businesses as A’Pizza Badamo and Commonwealth Press, all of whom share an independent, DIY aesthetic. “I already feel a complete connection to that business district. It keeps getting better.”
Anderson, who lives on Newburn with his wife, Jennifer, and their children, Iris, 11, and Wyatt, 9, is starting to feel like a true Pittsburgher after relocating here from New York two years ago. “I really have built up a pretty good store,” he says.
Vinyl Remains features used and some new records of every genre except traditional classical. His specialty is horror movie soundtracks, especially those on the labels Waxwork Records, Death Waltz Records and Mondo Records. Anderson also buys, trades and sells unusual books, T-shirts, tote bags, hats and patches. Prices range from $1 to expensive collectibles.
But his new foray is into selling turntables. Many younger customers are excited to buy records but then realize they have no way to play them … so they keep collecting but can’t listen. Anderson began stocking used turntables and even knows how to fix many of them. He plans to start selling needles in the future.
Greg and Jennifer owned two bars/restaurants in Brooklyn, and in fact, still own one there, called “Mother’s.” But the lure of reasonably priced housing and uncluttered streets drew them to move here after visiting friends.
He says he’s finally figured out the “Pa. record vibe,” and the concept that unlike NYC residents, we drive almost everywhere. That’s fine with him, as he sees a lot of Mt. Lebanon residents driving over to Dormont, a trip they’ll no longer have to take now that he will be in Mt. Lebanon. “To me, to have this store there, I’m so excited.”
YOGA ON THE MOVE When Alaina Stockhausen began teaching yoga to the kids in her neighborhood on Mohawk Drive a year and half ago, she knew she was offering them something they couldn’t find anywhere else. “There wasn’t really any kind of program for them,” says Stockhausen, a certified kids yoga teacher and fitness specialist. “There wasn’t any time for a little bit of calm.”
So Stockhausen approached Jessica Johns, Central Square, a longtime Mt. Lebanon friend and fellow yoga instructor who has taught kids in the Mt. Lebanon schools, with the idea of offering programming just for children.
Together they founded Peace Kids Pittsburgh, the South Hills area’s only kid-centered yoga and fitness studio. They cater to children and youth ages 2 to 19, and are currently offering classes at St. Paul’s Nursery School, the Mt. Lebanon Recreation Center, and StudioMake in Peters, where they acquired studio space in April.
They also stand out from the crowd by being a fully mobile yoga studio. “We can come to the kid wherever they are, whether they are on the field playing sports or in the therapist’s office,” Johns says. “Bringing something calming like yoga, in a space where they are comfortable, is so important.”
Peace Kids offers introductory yoga and art classes for young children, workshops to empower tweens to build confidence and combat bullying, and teen-focused classes to reduce stress and improve concentration. Sessions for kids with special sensory needs are also available, as well as group events for parents who want to have a little yoga downtime while their kids are learning yoga in a separate space.
They also travel for birthday parties and special events, as well as one-on-one private sessions. “Every kid’s different and needs a different thing and we can tailor it to them,” Stockhausen says.
Stockhausen specializes in working with younger children, and emphasizes the importance of mindful creative play. For them, she says early exposure to yoga can involve art and crafts alongside basic movements they learn while playing. “We want to create a place for children just to be children,” she says.
Stockhausen says yoga becomes a more active, mindful practice that teaches kids how to control their emotions and deal with stress and anxiety. “Yoga helps with self-reflection,” she explains. “It builds strength, it builds balance, it instills confidence and calms your mind.”
“Yoga brings your mind back into your body,” Johns adds. “It teaches you to be aware of your body and yourself.”
For children growing up in a chaotic world where they are increasingly plugged in to technology, mindfulness can be hard to achieve, Johns says.
“Kids these days have phones attached to their hands,” she explains. “They are losing all of these healthy benefits we would have had just going outside. Kids are more stressed out than ever. Yoga teaches them mindfulness and resilience.”
Johns credits Mt. Lebanon School District’s new mindfulness initiative with helping to educate local families about the importance of the connection between your body and mind. “We aren’t just moving through this world alone,” she says. “We influence the people around us. Yoga teaches us to connect with the people around us and treat them with kindness.”
For upcoming events and classes, visit peacekidspgh.com or Facebook and Instagram at @peacekidspittsburgh for more information.