Edit ModuleEdit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Light Up Night to be a Celebration of Community

Saturday’s tragedy was present on the minds of those announcing the schedule for Light Up Night, the kickoff of Pittsburgh’s holiday season. But the 58th annual celebration was touted as a time for everyone to come together.

Photos by Renee Rosensteel

This year, more than ever, Light Up Night will be a chance for the community to come together, local officials said Thursday during the announcement of this year’s holiday lineup Downtown.

The 58th annual Comcast Light Up Night will take place Nov. 16 with extended hours, more free offerings, more food trucks and more musical performances.

But officials were mindful that it's a difficult week to make such a happy announcement.

“Light Up Night brings together people from every reach of our community,” said Jeremy Waldrup, President and CEO of the Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership. “Every neighborhood, age group, religion and race have been coming to Downtown Pittsburgh for generations on this one evening to be a part of something special: our amazing collective community.”

Photo by Lauren Davidson

A cheerful face at the announcement at One PPG Place was Daniel Tiger’s, whose presence marked a new, expanded Holiday KidsPlay Partnership with Fred Rogers Productions in honor of the 50th anniversary of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood.

The Holiday KidsPlay program will offer free activities in the Heinz Hall Courtyard themed around “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood,” “Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood,” and other kids’ shows “Odd Squad,” “Peg + Cat” and “Through the Woods.”

KidsPlay will run 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. every Saturday and Sunday during the holiday season as well as Black Friday and every day between Christmas and New Year’s Eve. Space is limited, and registration may be required for busy times.

At KidsPlay, children can take photos at Odd Squad HQ, with Peg and Cat, and with Daniel Tiger and his Neighborhood Trolley, and they can sit on the official replica of Mister Rogers’ iconic bench on loan from the Heinz History Center. They’ll also be able to decorate a paper ornament in the shape of Mister Rogers’ sweater to display on the Children’s Museum Thank You Tree and participate in numerous other activities. There will also be an opportunity to donate a new or gently used sweater as part of the Children’s Museum’s Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood Sweater Drive during KidsPlay hours.

Light Up Night’s extended hours mean a later fireworks show, which will happen at 10 p.m. rather than 9:30 (with an earlier show at 7 p.m. as well) and more time for musical performances. Highlights include the Grammy Award-winning duo A Great Big World, singer/songwriter Elley Duhé in her Pittsburgh premiere, Joe Grushecky and James Tormé (son of Mel Tormé, who co-wrote “The Christmas Song (Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire).”

More than 30 food trucks will pop up around Downtown, including Emporio: A Meatball Joint, Nakama, Millie’s Homemade, BRGR and Edgars Best Tacos in Pittsburgh.

The Peoples Gas Holiday Market will return for the seventh year from Nov. 16 through Dec. 23 (with the exception of Thanksgiving). More local and national vendors will be on display, including artists from Monmade, Pittsburgh’s craft business accelerator. Daniel Tiger will help to open the first Saturday of the market at 10 a.m. Nov. 17 and will be available for photos, and Santa will return to the market as well this year in his storybook home. Photos with Santa are free in exchange for a donation to the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank. Extended hours will be offered on weekends, with the market opening at 10 a.m. rather than 11 a.m.

Other events taking place around town will include free mini concerts by the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra in Heinz Hall beginning at 7 p.m., the noon dedication of the Crèche at the U.S. Steel Tower, free horse drawn carriage rides from 6 to 9 p.m. on Fourth Avenue, and of course, the opening of the MassMutual Pittsburgh Ice Rink in PPG Place, which will remain open until midnight on Light Up Night.

At the closing of the press conference, Paul Siefken, President and CEO of Fred Rogers Productions, read a Fred Rogers quote about the holidays.

“I like to compare the holiday season with the way a child listens to a favorite story,” Rogers said. “The pleasure is in the familiar way the story begins, the anticipation of familiar turns it takes, the familiar moments of suspense, and the familiar climax and ending.”

“In times like these, that familiarity will be a very comforting feeling,” Siefken said.

Full details and scheduled are available at downtownpittsburghholidays.com

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

A Slice of Pizza Kept Sean McDowell Going in the Early Days

After 41 years in the business, the legendary rock DJ on WDVE has announced his retirement.

This New App Will Help You Track Upcoming Cicada Swarm

Follow Brood VIII, which is expected to have three species of periodical cicadas emerging from the soil as early as this month, on the Cicada Safari App.

Best Restaurants in Pittsburgh in 2019

Our annual roundup of Pittsburgh's Best Restaurants covers a lot of ground. The list of 30 includes everything from fine dining at a resort hotel to a scrappy, farm-to-table breakfast and lunch counter in Bloomfield.

This Restless Pair are Pittsburgh Restaurateurs of the Year

Together, Richard DeShantz and Tolga Sevdik of the Richard DeShantz Restaurant Group form the Pittsburgh restaurant world's most dynamic duo.

Our 50 Years: The Best Restaurants of 1999

Twenty years later, nearly everything about our best restaurants list is different. But our picks for the best of 1999 hint at the great leap forward that was on the horizon.

How Pittsburgh's Homeless Teens Escape the Mean Streets

For homeless Youth, living on the street can end up being worse than what they’re running from. Gaining their trust and guiding them to safety is a long and painful process, but local agencies are making progress.

Announcing our Scenic Photo Contest Winner

There were 682 photos submitted to our Scenic Vistas photo contest, which ran during the month of April. Art Director Chuck Beard picked a winner and two runners-up.

Braddock Brewery Brew Gentlemen Turns Five

A deliberately slow fermentation has the young brewers primed for a big expansion.

Claudy Pierre is Non Stop

The owner of Arnold’s Tea spends his time connecting communities and working to empower a new generation of Pittsburghers.

Daytripping: Enjoy Comedy History 3 Hours from Pittsburgh

The national comedy center in Jamestown, N.Y. takes the whole comedy thing kinda seriously (just kidding)

Remembering Some of Mister Rogers' Famous Houseguests

A world renowned French pantomime artist, an astronaut, a TV news anchor and a beloved chef are among the notable visitors to Mister Rogers' neighborhood.

Perspectives: Call of the Wild

Award-winning journalist Sally Wiggin explains the evolving role of zoos, including the Pittsburgh zoo, to save endangered species from extinction.

Pirates’ First Quarter Record Defies Logic if Not Description

The 21-19 record the Bucs took to San Diego doesn’t add up given all they’ve had to overcome. Perhaps there’s more to this team than meets the eye.

The 400-Word Review: John Wick: Chapter 3 — Parabellum

Keanu Reeves returns, and Halle Berry arrives, as the action series broadens its scope.

A Look at the Latest Restaurant Openings in Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh says hello (again) to Dish Osteria, Cinderlands Warehouse, Pizzeria Davide and more.