weekend events for Pittsburgh families

11 weekend events for Pittsburgh families — lots of free fun, a resource fair and even a visit with furry alpacas

Photo above courtesy of Asgard Acres Alpaca Farm.

This first weekend in December is filled with events around the Pittsburgh region to celebrate various winter holidays, as well as several general family activities to fill the cold weekend days. From alpacas to menorahs, check out what’s happening in Pittsburgh this weekend:

Friday, Dec. 1 and Saturday, Dec. 2: Allegheny County Health Department Resource Fair at CLP

If you have questions about resources available to families in this county, folks at this one-stop shop at the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh’s Beechview location on Dec. 1 and Hazelwood location on Dec. 2 from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. will be able to answer them. There will be information on recovery, health and mental well-being resources. This event is for grownups, but will benefit all families who attend. Info can be found here for the Hazelwood event and here for Beechview.

Friday, Dec. 1 and Saturday, Dec. 2: Canonsburg’s Old Fashioned Christmas

On Friday from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturday from noon to 8 p.m., Canonsburg is welcoming in the Christmas of yesteryear with Santa, Mrs. Claus, the Grinch, train displays, activities, food and more. This event is free and all of the details can be found here.

Photo courtesy of Canonsburg Old Fashioned Christmas.

Saturday, Dec. 2: “Gremlins,” Carnegie Science Center

It’s an ’80s classic that today’s kids still love. This PG-rated Christmas horror flick includes a fair amount of dark humor. Catch it on the (very) big screen at Rangos Giant Cinema. Tickets are $12.

Rangos Giant Theater at Carnegie Science Center.

Saturday, Dec. 2: Light Up Bellevue, 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.

The main street of Bellevue, Lincoln Avenue, will be closed to allow for a free and family-friendly event. With kid crafts, food and beverage stations, photos with Santa (sign up for a timed slot right here to avoid the line), and vendors from around the region, it’s the perfect way to ring in December. Find all the details here.

Courtesy of Bona Fide Bellevue.

Saturday, Dec. 2: Handel’s Messiah at Heinz Hall, 7:30 p.m.

There is nothing more magical than Heinz Hall during the holidays. Manfred Honeck conducts the Pittsburgh Symphony and the Mendelssohn Choir in this traditional holiday masterpiece. Tickets start at $25.

Saturday, Dec. 2: Cue’s Creative Workshop for Kids at CLP, 2 p.m. to 3 p.m.

Cue Perry leads this one-hour workshop that features drawing, painting, color theory and more. This session will be focused on how to have fun with art and “think outside the box.” Designed for kids in grades K-5, this free event will be held at the Knoxville location of the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh.

Courtesy of Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh

Saturday, Dec. 2 and Sunday, Dec. 3: Alpacas visit PA Market, 12 p.m. to 3 p.m.

It’s about to get fuzzy and cute this weekend at PA Market, a food hall and wine bar with plentiful outdoor space in the Strip District. The alpacas from Asgard Acres Alpaca Farm will be on site for feeding, petting and photo ops. There will also be merchandise made from their wool for sale. PA Market will have plentiful outdoor heaters, their indoor restaurant space is open, and there are tons of kid-friendly food options available from the current food vendors.

Saturday, Dec. 2 and Sunday, Dec 3: Cookies with Santa at Allegheny County Parks

To many kids, sharing Christmas cookies with Santa is a pretty cool experience. This visit with the jolly old elf includes making holiday crafts along with refreshments. The Dec. 2 session will be held at Boyce Park, with the Dec. 3 session at Round Hill Park. Admission is free with registration.

Photo from last year’s Black Market by Renee Rosensteel courtesy of the Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership.

Saturday, Dec. 2 and Sunday, Dec. 3: 4th-annual Black Market holiday shopping event

The unique pop-up market Black Market: Holiday Edition will take place Downtown this year at 413 Wood St. You’ll find a wide selection of goods and gifts created by Black-owned businesses from around the region. Since its inception, The Black Market has provided a welcome platform for local black entrepreneurs to promote their products, make lasting connections, and network with other like-minded businesses. The Black Market showcases a wide range of products, including premium coffee, specialty foods, luxurious self-care items, home goods, fashion accessories, and more. For more details, click here.

Sunday, Dec. 3: Pre-Chanukah Legoland, Chabad of South Hills

Family fun includes building light-up Lego menorahs, a mystery Maccabee quest, a mega dreidel showdown and a hot dinner. Registration is $13.

Saturday, Dec. 2 and Sunday, Dec. 3: West Point Ballet Presents “The Nutcracker”

This beloved local performance will take place at Moon Area High School this weekend at 6 p.m. Saturday and 3 p.m. Sunday, and will feature everyone’s beloved (and despised) Nutcracker characters. Tickets are $22.

Courtesy of West Point Ballet.

Looking for more winter fun and weekend events for Pittsburgh families? Check out our holiday lights guide and big winter guide packed full of affordable and free activities for families.