Edit ModuleEdit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Five Different Ways to Celebrate New Year’s Eve in Pittsburgh

First Night downtown promises to be a spectacular evening, but if you’d prefer to usher in 2015 with hubbub of your own making, here are a few ideas beyond the official hullabaloo.

photo by adam fagen via flickr


Just across the river at the Carnegie Science Center you can find all of Pittsburgh and western Pennsylvania—in miniature. Celebrating its 90th season, the Miniature Railroad & Village conjures up the region as it was from the late 1800s to the 1930s. This tiny wonderland originally was built by Charles Bowdish on the second floor of his Brookville home. It features the Monongahela Incline, Forbes Field with 23,000 cheering fans and even a teeny-tiny Punxsutawney Phil. Admission to the exhibit is included with entry to the science center, open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m on New Year’s Eve.


Photo by Tsuji via flickr

No need to BYON (Bring Your Own Noisemaker) to Arsenal Bowl: There’s the growl of the ball, the crash of pins and the exuberant tones of a DJ spinning from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. to mark the acoustic ascension of the new year. For those 21 and older, bowling is unlimited, and the house will offer various drink specials; a Champagne toast and snacks will be offered at midnight. And if Dec. 31 just isn’t the same without noisemakers, Arsenal will be handing those out, too.


photo by Allessandro Valli via flickr

Though many visitors choose to make their pilgrimage to Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater in spring or summer, the house built for Pittsburgh’s Kaufmann family takes on an even greater fairy tale cast in winter. Wrapped in frost or mist, the house seems to emerge slowly from the landscape, fulfilling Wright’s vision of a building in harmony with its surroundings. The last tour of the house departs at 3 p.m.; make a night of it by dining at one of the many restaurants at nearby Nemacolin Woodlands Resort. Advance ticket purchase at Fallingwater is recommended.


Photo courtesy of pa department of conservation and natural resources

While we’re thinking outside the box, why not go way outside the box? Pack your thermals, some snacks, bubbly and four or five good pals into the car and head for a cabin in the woods. The Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (PADCNR) offers reservations for a slew of cabins and unique houses across the state parks system. Modern and rustic cabins offer different amenities, such as restrooms complete with showers or fireplaces for the backwoodsman or -woman in the crew.


photo by john altdorfer

Then there’s the option of doing whatever one pleases, with nary a thought for the reactions of grown-up pals come Monday. At Kickback Cafe in Lawrenceville, pay $2 to BYOB and blow your whole allowance on tokens to feed the pinball machines that pack the upper gallery. Though the cafe closes at 10 p.m., there are plenty of bars nearby to offer a spot to rendezvous with friends less in touch with their true New Year’s Eve desires.



Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module

Edit Module Edit ModuleShow TagsEdit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags

The Latest

Pittsburgh Rings, Sings and Dances into the New Year

“Highmark’s First Night Pittsburgh” features 100 performances for kids of all ages and, of course, fireworks for everyone.

The 400-Word Review: At Eternity's Gate

It's a fair Vincent Van Gogh biopic, but fails to make a strong impression.

When I Realized the True Meaning of the Army-Navy Game

As Army veteran and Pittsburgh Steeler Alejandro Villanueva sees it, Army-Navy is football at its core in a setting that transcends the sport.​

Apteka and Whitfield Team Up for a Vegan Christmas Meal

The latest installment of Bethany Zozula's Sharing Knives dinner series brings Apteak co-owners Kate Lasky and Tomasz Skowronski in for an Eastern European feast.

At Jergel's, It's Beers and Grub Near Some Rock and Roll

The Warrendale venue makes seeing a show feel like an easygoing night out.

The Mon Wharf Switchback Paves a Route to the River

The new ramp to the Monongahela River provides a way for bikers and walkers to access the riverfront.

Overseas Adventures Lead to Pittsburgh Weddings

These couples made the trip that would take them from dating to engaged.

Hungry for Something Good, Pittsburgh? Where We're Eating in December.

We're celebrating a decade of Dinette, tempted by hot pitas at Pitaland and digging the (not so) secret sauce at Salem's Market & Grill.

I Made It! Market Can Simplify Your Holiday Shopping

More than 90 local handicraft artists will come together for a one-day event to save you from a panic-induced Christmas Eve shopping trip.

Have a Stout or an IPA, with a Shot of Space

Pittsburgh’s astronomers head to the taps to discuss everything from planetary movement to asteroids to — yes — the possibility of alien life, much to the delight of conspiracy theorists and space fanatics alike.

Festival of Lights Illuminates Holiday Cheer

La Roche hosts a night of drinking cocoa, taking carriage rides and getting into the holiday spirit.

Allegheny County Could Pay You to Convert Your Wood Burning Fireplace

In the hopes of reducing air pollution and improving indoor air quality — particularly for those with asthma — the county health department is conducting a program to convert open-hearth fireplaces into vented gas-burning appliances.

The 400-Word Review: The Possession of Hannah Grace

It's tough to take a setting this creepy and waste it, but this limp possession flick manages to do just that.

Relive Steelers' Super Bowl Wins at New Heinz History Exhibit

The Western Pennsylvania Sports Museum’s new exhibit features game-worn, signed jerseys and other artifacts from Steelers legends.

Five Essential December Events in Pittsburgh

A creepy Christmas, Cleveland comics and more December happenings.