Heinz ketchup sculpture

Insider's Guide: Senator John Heinz History Center

Safely explore Pittsburgh’s Heinz History Center.

The health and safety of visitors and staff is the History Center’s top priority. The History Center and its museums have established new procedures and policies to ensure all guests feel safe upon entering the buildings and enjoying the exhibitions.

Uncover 250 years of Western Pennsylvania history at the Senator John Heinz History Center. The Smithsonian Affiliate features the original TV set from the iconic "Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood," the world's largest collection of Heinz artifacts, and the Western Pennsylvania Sports Museum.

Plan Your Visit in Advance

The Senator John Heinz History Center and its family museums, including the Fort Pitt Museum and Meadowcroft Rockshelter and Historic Village, reopened to the public on July 1, 2020. To help manage capacity and keep visitors safe, guests are encouraged to pre-purchase online tickets and reserve a date and time of visit. Showcase your Pittsburgh Pride and enjoy all the benefits of being a member, including free admission to the History Center and its museums, and a membership to the Smithsonian Institution. Learn more about being a History Center Member.  

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Health & Safety Policies 

The health and safety of the visitors and staff of the Heinz History Center is top priority. New policies and procedures are in effect including the following: 

  • Face coverings are required at all times inside the museum.  
  • The museum will operate at a reduced capacity (50%). All visitors are encouraged to practice social distancing of at least six feet apart. 
  • Hand sanitizing stations will be available at the museum entrance and throughout the building. 
  • Regular cleaning and sanitizing of high-touch surfaces and restrooms will occur throughout the day. 
  • The museum will regularly inspect and monitor HVAC HEPA/MERV filters and air exchangers. 
  • The Café at the History Center will be open in a limited capacity, serving snacks and beverages only. 

4 Museums in 3 Locations 

The Western Pennsylvania Sports Museum is a museum-within-a-museum. Located on the second and third floors of the History Center, this sports museum celebrates Pittsburgh’s iconic sports legacy. Take a stroll to the historic Point State Park and see the Fort Pitt Museum, a two-floor, 12,000 square-foot museum that features the region’s essential role during the French & Indian War and the American Revolution. Located in Avella, Washington County, Pennsylvania, Meadowcroft Rockshelter and Historic Village is the oldest site of human habitation in North America. This National Historic Landmark also houses three outdoor areas including a 16th century Indian village, 18th century Frontier Trading Post and 19th century village. 

Insider's Tip: All kids ages 17 and under will receive free admission to Meadowcroft Rockshelter and Historic Village throughout the month of August, presented by UPMC.

Smithsonian’s Portraits of Pittsburgh: Works from the National Portrait Gallery 

Experience powerful works of art from the Smithsonian at the History Center’s new and dynamic Portraits of Pittsburgh exhibition. Featuring original paintings, sketches, prints and photographs of more than 100 Americans with Western Pennsylvania connections, this exhibition is one of the largest loans of artwork ever shared by the National Portrait Gallery. 

The exhibition features stunning portraits of musicians, actors, innovators and sports figures such as Lena Horne, Rachel Carson, Arnold Palmer, Jonas Salk and Mel Blount. Additionally, select paintings and artifacts like Gene Kelly’s plaid wool suit from the classic film “Singin’ in the Rain” will be on display.

What Else Do I Need to Know?

Adult Admission: $18 ($9 for students)

Child Admission: $9 for ages 6-17. 5 and under are free.

Senior Admission: $15

Parking: Paid Parking.

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Expand your knowledge of Western PA and plan your next family adventure with a trip to the Heinz History Center - Pennsylvania’s largest history museum! Visit the History Center’s website for more information and to plan your visit

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