10 best April events for kids in Pittsburgh, from ‘Pete the Cat’ to a submarine escape room
Photo above: Does it get any cooler than ‘Pete the Cat’? Photo courtesy of the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust.
April events for kids in Pittsburgh include family-focused fun for all ages, from tiny tykes to sophisticated teens. Outdoor adventures, stage shows and hands-on ingenuity are all part of the lineup. Check out what’s coming up:
1. April 2 and 3: “Pete the Cat,” Byham Theater
He’s one groovy blue cat who runs into trouble when he’s caught rocking out after bedtime. That’s when Pete the Cat is sent to live with the prim and proper Biddle family to learn a lesson. Armed with his guitar, he soon has the whole family rocking. The live stage show is based on the popular “Pete the Cat” books by James Dean and the Amazon Prime TV series. Recommended for cool kids ages 3 and older. Tickets are $12.
2. April 2 and 3: DiscoverE programs, Point State Park
Hosted by the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, guided DiscoverE programs include two sessions in Point State Park. Bashful Birds on April 2 will explore the wooded area of the park to learn about birds and their songs. On April 3, Pennsylvania animals will be the focus of Animal Tracks and Signs. The hourlong DiscoverE events are best for kids ages 4-8 and their parents. Register for these free outings by sending an email to RAfirstname.lastname@example.org.
3. April 4: “CoComelon Live! JJ’s Adventure,” Benedum Center
Baby JJ and his family live in the town of CoComelon, where they are putting on a show. JJ is struggling to write his own song but learns he can do great things with the help of his friends and family. The preschool set will have a blast at the exuberant “CoComelon Live!” stage show that’s based on the TV series. The interactive experience includes more than 20 songs and special effects. This one is a bit pricey: Tickets start at $49.75.
4. April 15, 16, 22, 23, 29 and 30: Escape USS Requin, Carnegie Science Center
This must be one of the coolest escape rooms around. Escape USS Requin challenges participants to solve a series of games and puzzles to be released from the World War II submarine. In addition to keen detective skills, players will call upon USS Requin’s history, submarine science and general naval principles. Recommended for ages 12 to adult. Advance tickets, priced at $29, are required.
5. April 17: Opening Day, Kennywood Park
Kennywood’s open! Or will be soon — on April 17, to be exact. Celebrating its 125th anniversary this year, Kennywood Park has been working on beautifying improvements and service upgrades that will enhance your family’s visit. The Old Mill, in operation since 1901, sports a new facade. Color-changing lights line the midway. Best of all, the beloved Kangaroo returns on May 28 with modernizations. Kennywood will be open weekends from April 17 to May 22 for the Swing into Spring festival that promises lots of surprises.
6. April 19-24: “To Kill a Mockingbird,” Benedum Center
Harper Lee’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, “To Kill a Mockingbird,” continues to be read and taught in middle schools and high schools across the country. Adults and children who have fallen in love with the classic book in the years since its 1960 publication won’t want to miss the chance to see Aaron Sorkin’s new stage version, which became the highest-grossing American play in Broadway history prior to COVID. The just-launched national Broadway tour of “To Kill a Mockingbird,” starring Richard Thomas as Atticus Finch, is heading to Pittsburgh. Tickets start at $33.
7. April 23: “Peppa Pig’s Adventure,” Byham Theater
One of the most popular April events for kids in Pittsburgh is bound to be this piggie party. In “Peppa Pig’s Adventure,” Peppa heads out on a camping trip with her friends. Gerald Giraffe, Pedro Pony and Suzy Sheep pile into Daddy Pig’s bus and head to the woods for an outdoor adventure that’s filled with singing, games and dances. Be aware that this live show contains exciting flashing lights, fog and a shower of confetti. Tickets start at $44.25.
8. April 23: Clothing Expression with artist Stew Frick, MuseumLab
Young fashionistas ages 10 and older will learn how to repurpose and upcycle clothing that will reflect their personalities. Artist Stew Frick leads the Clothing Expression workshop with hands-on instructions to enliven and beautify jeans and other clothing. Denim pieces will be available to practice fabric painting or kids can bring their own jeans and jackets to get started on creating their new-ish wardrobes. Workshop registration is $20.
9. April 22 and 23: Family Drive-in Movies Opening, Settlers Cabin Park and Boyce Park
If you’re seeking April events for kids in Pittsburgh that happen outdoors, pack up snacks, blankets and pillows for Allegheny County’s spring drive-in movie series. The fun begins with a screening of “Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway” on April 22 at Settlers Cabin Park and on April 23 at Boyce Park. The weekly series continues with popular family fare like “Angels in the Outfield,” “A Bug’s Life,” “Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax” and “Over the Hedge.” Gates open at 6 p.m. with movies beginning at dusk. Admission is free and limited to 100 vehicles. Register for individual dates at Settlers Cabin Park and Boyce Park.
10. April 28-May 8: “Disney’s Newsies,” Little Lake Theatre Company
Jack Kelly and his pals are a band of newsboys in New York City who are pushed to the limit when publishers raise distribution prices. The “Disney’s Newsies” musical is based on the true story of the 1899 newsboys’ strike. With rousing songs and lively choreography, “Disney’s Newsies” is a fine piece of family entertainment that’s recommended for ages 5 to adult. Tickets are $15 for ages 15 and younger, $25 for grownups.
For more fun stuff to do with kids, check out these 26 egg-citing spring activities for kids in Pittsburgh, including great free events.