Pittsburgh is best known for its rich cultural diversity, and it is no stranger to putting on a glorious celebration during the holidays. Events, fine dining and entertainment await you and your family, so whether you’re visiting relatives or just making a trip to see the sights, the five items below are sure to dazzle, excite and warm the soul of everyone in your party.
People’s Gas Holiday Market
24 Market Square
Pittsburgh, PA 15222
Date: Nov. 21 through Dec. 23, 2014
Free for attendees, the 3rd annual People’s Gas Holiday Market is brimming with all sorts of holiday shopping. Inspired by the traditional Christkindlmarkts in Germany, this delightful marketplace offers a beautiful amalgamation of local charm and international flair to people of every culture. Delicious food, handmade gifts, live music and even a visit from Jolly Old St. Nick will dazzle shoppers. Even if you’re not in the market to shop, go simply to visit the BNY Mellon Season of Lights which illuminates the heart of downtown with more than 150,000 lights and a 30-foot-high electronic sphere tree.
St. Jude Give Thanks Walk
Southside Works 425 Cinema Drive
Pittsburgh, PA 15203
Date: Nov. 22, 2014
Do something important with your holiday vacation – give back. Participate in the St. Jude Give Thanks Walk on Saturday, November 22 at 8 a.m at PNC Park. Pittsburgh will be just one of 75 cities across the nation that will participate in the annual, noncompetitive 5K fundraiser that serves as the official kick-off event for the St. Jude Thanks and Giving crusade. Registration for this family-friendly event is free, and is sure to be a wonderful way to jump start your own holiday of thanks.
Mass Mutual Pittsburgh Ice Rink
Four PPG Place
Pittsburgh, PA 15222
Date: Now through March 1, 2015
Larger than the rink in New York’s famous Rockefeller Center, PPG Place’s own ice rink will leave you breathless as you glide around the stunning 65-foot Christmas tree. Monthly passes are available for this special holiday tradition, and skating lessons are always offered. Adults are $8, children and seniors are $7 and skate rentals are $3. Lunchtime monthly passes are also available to save you time and money, and are an affordable $25. Continue to check the rink’s website for special holiday events and plan your visit accordingly.
Saturdays in the Centre
301 Grant St.
Pittsburgh, PA 15219
Date: Nov. 22 through Dec. 20, 2014
Make sure your stay in the Steel City includes a Saturday, as this event is not to be missed. One Oxford Center, a downtown hallmark, will be offering free entertainment for the whole family. Live holiday music from the Rick Gallagher Trio will be on hand to liven your day, as free carriage rides, live reindeer and free children’s activities delight and launch you right into the holiday spirit. Specialty retailers will open their doors to your party, and also offer free gift wrapping, while One Oxford Centre offers discounted parking for everyone to start their experience off right.
237 7th St.
Pittsburgh, PA 15222
Date: Dec. 5-28, 2014
Heralded as the “the best holiday performance in Pittsburgh” by the Pittsburgh Post Gazette, this holiday spectacular, and Pittsburgh-inspired production, combines the traditional holiday tale with new surprises each year. Showcasing the sheer magnitude of over 170 wildly talented dancers, “The Nutcracker” will transport your family into the magical, moonlit Snow Scene to the effervescent Land of Enchantment, and beyond. Imagine the wonder in your children’s eyes as they take in this 200-year-old story for the first time – and delight in the knowledge that it won’t be their last. Tickets can be purchased here.
Nikki Tiani-Moroney is a full time mum of two boys, wife of a professional poker player/photographer/amateur pencil-sharpening competitor and writer from Pittsburgh, PA. When she isn’t studiously neglecting her housework in favor of a good book, she’s out simultaneously fighting crime and picking up sidewalk litter while savoring an occasional cigarette. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.