Pittsburgh Poised to Shine Bright Throughout Holiday Season

Visitors Can Celebrate with Only in Pittsburgh Experiences and Attractions

PITTSBURGH – With the holiday season upon us, Pittsburgh is primed to help visitors celebrate the season through boundless Only in Pittsburgh experiences, attractions, shops, restaurants and so much more that help set the region apart.

“The 2021 holiday season is the perfect time to reunite with friends and family in Pittsburgh,” VisitPITTSBURGH President & CEO Jerad Bachar said. “Pittsburgh has plenty to offer visitors, from outdoor festivities and events to unique shopping experiences, new cultural exhibits and award-winning food and beverage options.”

VisitPITTSBURGH aims to reach potential visitors through paid social and native ad placements in key drive markets, including Cleveland, Erie, Harrisburg, Washington, D.C. and Philadelphia.

“We want to demonstrate to visitors the holiday-season magic waiting for them in Pittsburgh while also assisting our hospitality community, including the wonderful small and local businesses,” Bachar continued. “We remain grateful to this dedicated workforce and the incredible service they provide each day, ensuring that visitors feel welcomed in Pittsburgh.”

Festivities officially kick off in Pittsburgh this week with Highmark Light Up Night. This beloved celebration returns in 2021 for its 60th Anniversary and moves from the typical Friday evening experience to a full day of activities on Saturday, Nov. 20. Several tree lightings and fireworks displays will take place during the day, as well as the dedication of the Pittsburgh Créche. Additionally, multiple stages throughout Downtown Pittsburgh will feature free music and entertainment, and the World’s Largest Pickle Ornament – over 35-feet tall – will make its grand debut at EQT Plaza.

Visitors can start checking off their gift list this weekend, too, as the Peoples Gas Holiday Market™ opens in Market Square on Nov. 19. Inspired by the original German Christkindlmarkts, the Holiday Market features national and local vendors housed in vintage, wooden chalets selling one-of-a-kind holiday gifts and remains open until Dec. 23. Holiday shoppers also won’t want to miss Handmade Arcade, the largest holiday market in the region. This one-day event is scheduled for Dec. 4 at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center and will feature unique, one-of-a-kind products from 200 talented makers, artists and craftspeople. Holiday shoppers also can support even more local businesses with suggestions found in the VisitPITTSBURGH Holiday Gift Guide.

Visitors also will want to experience long-time favorite activities like skating around The UPMC Rink at PPG Place (Nov. 19 – Jan. 9, 2022) and riding the Duquesne Incline up to Mount Washington for breathtaking views of the holiday lights that dazzle the iconic Pittsburgh skyline.

Speaking of holiday lights, visitors of all ages are invited to walk among 1 million twinkling bulbs at Kennywood’s Holiday Lights, Nov. 20 – Jan. 2, 2022 (times vary). Select rides will be open for kids, plus special entertainment for all. And, the Holiday Magic! Winter Flower Show and Light Garden returns to Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens (Nov. 19 – Jan. 9, 2022).

Several of Pittsburgh’s world-class museums will feature special exhibits this holiday season. The Carnegie Museum of Art’s Hall of Architecture will once again transform into a winter-wonderland with BEDAZZLED: Celebrating the Diamond Anniversary of the Carnegie Trees (Nov. 20 – Jan. 10, 2022). Additionally, the Senator John Heinz History Center will allow visitors to relive childhood memories and make new ones with their families at its A Very Merry Pittsburgh exhibition (Nov. 20 – Jan. 17, 2022). Featuring a special selection of family keepsakes, artifacts, film and imagery, visitors can explore how Western Pennsylvanians have celebrated major winter holidays, including Christmas, Hanukkah, Diwali and Kwanza, through the years.

Celebrations continue throughout Pittsburgh’s Cultural District, with several holiday-themed shows planned for the nine theatres, including Cirque Dreams Holidaze (Nov. 26-27, Benedum Center), Black Violin: Give Thanks Holiday Tour (Dec. 2, Byham Theater), Texture Ballet presents The Nutcracker (Dec. 3, August Wilson African American Cultural Center), The Second City It’s a Wild, Wacky, Wonderful Life (Dec. 8-12, O’Reilly Theater) and Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre’s The Nutcracker (Dec. 10-29, Benedum Center).

Finally, ring in the New Year with the Highmark First Night Pittsburgh celebration on Dec. 31. A variety of family-friendly activities will be available throughout the Cultural District, with a dazzling fireworks display planned for midnight!

Be sure to visit VisitPITTSBURGH.com for additional events throughout the holiday season.

Follow VisitPITTSBURGH on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and be sure to track and spread messaging using #LovePGH.

As the official tourism promotion agency for Pittsburgh and Allegheny County, VisitPITTSBURGH is dedicated to generating conventions, trade show and leisure travel business for the Pittsburgh region.