8 things to do with kids this week in Pittsburgh, from twilight hikes to RADical Days excitement

Welcome the long weekend with loads of family fun. Relax, explore and get excited with this week’s top events for kids in Pittsburgh.

1. Explore trails at twilight

Allegheny County Park rangers will lead intrepid explorers along a 2-mile hike, where families will rely on their senses to learn about twilight life in the parks. Kids will consider how wildlife changes as the sun begins to set. What settles down and what ramps up? The free outings take place on Sept. 3 at Harrison Hills Park and Sept. 4 at Deer Lakes Park, with registration. The hike will be on moderate terrain so plan your footwear and clothing appropriately.

“Amari and the Night Brothers” by B.B. Alston.

2. Join the City of Asylum book club for kids

City of Asylum’s children’s book department welcomes kids ages 8 to 15 years to its club. The Young Readers Book Club focuses on a diverse list of novels each month. Entertaining activities are included in the virtual meetings. Kids can prepare for the 11 a.m. Sept. 12 discussion by reading this month’s selection, the first book in the Supernatural Investigation series, “Amari and the Night Brothers” by B.B. Alston. For details and to RSVP, please contact City of Asylum’s children’s book buyer, Jen Kraar.

Image courtesy of Pittsburgh Shakespeare in the Parks.

3. Go classic with a great Dane

Pittsburgh Shakespeare in the Parks opens its 17th season of free performances throughout Pittsburgh-area parks with “The Tragedy of Hamlet.” Running on weekends from Sept. 4-26, this adaptation of Shakespeare’s classic tragedy features an all-female cast. Admission is free, but donations are appreciated. BYO blankets and chairs for your comfort at this outdoor presentation. Or pack a picnic and catch pre-show events, like Alan Irvine’s “Hamlet: The Quick Version.” It’s a great dip into the Shakespeare catalog for middle and high school kids, who will likely encounter “Hamlet” in their studies. Find the complete schedule here.

Image courtesy of Carnegie Science Center.

4. Chug, chug, chug through the Rocky Mountains

“Rocky Mountain Express” is the newest film to be featured at the Rangos Giant Cinema in Carnegie Science Center, running from Sept. 4-Jan. 17. The movie combines history and engineering with spectacular shots of a steam engine chugging through the Canadian Rockies. Viewers will be impressed at the ability of the men who managed to complete this transcontinental railway against near-impossible odds. And those dizzying aerial shots add a bit of excitement, too. “Rocky Mountain Express” screens multiple times daily. Tickets are $7, separate from Science Center admission.

Photo courtesy of Society for Contemporary Craft.

5. Get RADical with a month of free fun

It’s the most wonderful time of the year – in Allegheny County, at least. The month-long RADical Days, running Sept. 9-Oct. 10, is the time when organizations that have benefited from the Regional Asset District thank taxpayers with free activities and events. Families can enjoy admission to local museums, behind-the-scenes tours of Heinz Field and PNC Park, plus concerts and musical performances. Check out the complete lineup and mark your calendar for a fun-filled month of free, free, free fun!

Photo by Sean Carroll.

6. Pop Art Pop Up at the Warhol

Head to the Warhol Green Space for the final weekend of Pop Art Pop Up which ends Sept. 5. The free art activities take place under the tent across the street from the Andy Warhol Museum. Projects inspired by Warhol include silkscreen printing, collage, stamping and photography. While at the Green Space, check out Reprogrammed, an art installation presented by the Warhol Youth Arts Council. Visitors can add their own take on the collaborative exhibit that envisions a bright and inclusive future. No tickets or registration are needed for Pop Art Pop Up, which operates from 4-8 p.m. Friday and 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

Photo courtesy of The National Aviary.

7. Last chance for a Journey to Africa                                                         

The National Aviary focuses on the rich diversity of ecosystems in “Journey to Africa,” which closes Sept. 6. The program delves into avian species found in a wide range of environments, from rocky shores to grassy savannahs and scorching deserts. Meet birds from each of these areas and learn how they adapt to their surroundings. Be sure to catch the immersive bird show, “African Adventure.” Kids will experience Red-Billed Hornbill flying overhead and the 6-foot wingspan of a Grey Crowned-crane. And watch for a new program, “Forests,” opening on Sept. 8. Make a plan and buy your tickets here.

Photo by Ylanite Koppens.

8. Learn about seeds and spores

It’s hard for grownups, let alone kids, to imagine how towering trees sprout from little seeds. A Park Explorer program aimed at kids ages 5-10 years – and their fascinated grownups – takes place at Round Hill Farm from 4:30-5:30 p.m. on Sept. 7 and 10:30-11:30 a.m. on Sept. 8. The Seeds and Spores Hike with Park Rangers explores this life cycle in nature. Choose your date and register for the Sept. 7 or Sept. 8 hike.  Additional dates are planned for Boyce Park and White Oak Park later this month.