1) It’s that time of year again. The air carries a slight hint of autumnal fragrance, the wind conveys an ever-so-subtle chill—and college football begins anew. Our hometown University of Pittsburgh Panthers kick off their 2018 season by hosting the University at Albany Great Danes at Heinz Field. For this particular Pitt alumnus, it’s hard to write this Cool Pick without a pang of nostalgia mixed with optimism. Maybe this will be the season. And who can forget that upset victory at the end of last season against the no. 2 Miami Hurricanes. Anyway, gauged on title alone, it’s hardly conceivable that a Great Dane, stands a ghost of a chance against a Panther. Best of luck Coach Narduzzi and team! Kickoff is at 3:30 p.m. 100 Art Rooney Ave., North Shore.
2) The Heinz Field Kick Off and Rib Festival is an end of the summer tradition. The festival features some of America’s top rib vendors reflecting the nation’s diverse barbecue tastes. Awards are given out to top vendors each year in categories according to expert judges and attendees. Adding great music to tasty ribs and cold beverages makes a perfect trifecta. Today’s entertainment is popular Pittsburgh rock acts The Clarks (9 p.m.) and Milly (7:30 p.m.). Free admission. Continues through Labor Day. Heinz Field, 100 Art Rooney Ave., North Shore.
3) Uptown Rhythm & Brass makes a big, beautiful, brassy rock and funk sound. Their music definitely gets people heading to the dance floor. You can catch them tonight at Headliners at The Meadows. 8 p.m. No cover. 210 Racetrack Rd., Washington.