fall events in Pittsburgh

Our big Fall Events Guide: 64 kid-friendly fall events in Pittsburgh and beyond

Photo: Caroline Bowman stars as Elsa in the “Frozen” North American Tour. Photo by Deen van Meer.

Make plans for an awesome autumn with this schedule of events happening now through the end of November. Your family will be entertained with fun-filled festivals, mesmerizing theater performances, intriguing museum exhibits and fresh-air activities in the great outdoors. Check out these 63 kid-friendly fall events in Pittsburgh and beyond:

Through Oct. 30: Asian Lantern Festival, Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium. Explore the zoo at night through a wondrous trail of luminous, handcrafted sculptures. Tickets are $16.95-$19.95, free for kids younger than 2.

Through Oct. 30: GUITAR: The Instrument that Rocked the World, Carnegie Science Center. This touring exhibit showcases nearly 70 acoustic, electric, historical, and unusual guitars, including the world’s largest playable electric guitar.

fall events in Pittsburgh
The Mantis shrimp’s spring mechanism gives it an extreme speed that creates a sound wave. Photo by Perry Aragon courtesy of Carnegie Museum of Natural History.

Through Jan. 2: Nature’s Amazing Machines, Carnegie Museum of Natural History. Explore the marvels of natural engineering in this fascinating exhibit.

Through Dec. 18: “Mr. Messado’s School of Magic for the Young and Young at Heart,” Liberty Magic. This family-friendly, Sunday matinee performance offers eye-popping magic with a touch of comedy. Best for kids from age 8 through adults. Tickets are $25-$40.

Pyramid XL Sphere is a monumental public art installation dedicated to contemplation and exploration. Photo courtesy of Pittsburgh Cultural Trust.

Sept. 23: Cultural District Gallery Crawl, Downtown. Explore galleries, bop to live music and discover wild public art like the Pyramid XL Sphere stack of yellow globes and the return of the Umbrella Sky Project. Free.

Sept. 23, 30: Storytime, Schenley Plaza. Kids will enjoy a story under the Schenley Plaza tent followed by a ride on the PNC Carousel. Free.

Photo courtesy of Carnegie Science Center.

Sept. 23-Nov. 5: Escape the Requin, Carnegie Science Center. Climb aboard the USS Requin Submarine on select Fridays and Saturdays for an escape room experience. Tickets are $175 for a group of 4-6 players. Best for ages 13 and older.

Sept. 24-Oct. 30: Phantom Fall Fest, Kennywood Park. The annual Halloween event features over 30 rides and attractions with family fun during the day and care zones after dark.

Sept. 24: Chinese Cultural Festival, Mellon Park. Enjoy Asian cuisine, traditional dance performances and exhibits. Free.

fall events in Pittsburgh
Image courtesy of Allegheny County Parks.

Sept. 24: Hay Day, Hartwood Acres. The family event includes hayrides, arts and crafts, a petting zoo, entertainment and games. Free.

Sept. 24: Preschool Adventures: Bubble Science, Carnegie Science Center. This series of workshops are designed for little scientists between the ages of 3-5 years to cultivate a love for learning and to teach them basic science concepts. $14, separate from Science Center admission.

Oct. 1: Doors Open Pittsburgh, various Downtown locations. This family-friendly event gives you access to explore normally off-limits spaces in a large collection of Downtown buildings, including private clubs, theaters, government offices, artist spaces, hotels, commercial spaces, residential buildings and more. Kid-focused events include a “Photo Safari” that will have children ages 5-12 on the lookout for simple architectural details that are common across Pittsburgh’s buildings. The first 25 who complete a bingo line on the Safari Card will win a special gift.

Oct. 1: Hay Day, South Park. The family event includes hayrides, arts and crafts, a petting zoo, entertainment and games. Free.

Oct. 1: Life with a Shawnee Family, Meadowcroft Rockshelter and Historic Village. Watch American Indian interpreters perform daily tasks like their ancestors and learn how Ohio Valley tribes lived off the land.  Included with Meadowcroft admission.

Oct. 2: Riverview Park Day, Riverview Park. This family-friendly event includes music, a CycloCross race, guided hikes and interactive activities for kids. Free.

Oct. 2: Youth Film Fest, Carnegie Museum of Art. The museum will showcase teen-submitted art and films, along with an art talk by emerging artists and photographers. Free for ages 13-18, but registration is required.

Oct. 2: “Fiesta!,” Schenley Plaza. The authentic Mexican Folkloric band, Mariachi Internacional de Pittsburgh, offers a sensory-friendly performance. Register for free tickets.

Oct. 5 and 22: Preschool Adventures: Creepy Crawly, Carnegie Science Center. This series of workshops are designed for little scientists between 3-5 years to cultivate a love for learning and to teach them basic science concepts. $14, separate from Science Center admission.

Oct. 5, Nov. 2, Dec. 7: Early Childhood Activities, National Aviary. Pint-size learners ages 2 to 5 will enjoy story time and sensory play activities like puppet shows or puzzles. Activities included with National Aviary admission.

Collin Baja plays Sven and F. Michael Haynie is Olaf-in the “Frozen” North American Tour. Photo by Deen van Meer.

Oct. 5-16: “Frozen,” Benedum Center. Do your kids love the movie and know the songs by heart? Now, they can see the magic onstage in the Broadway-touring production that’s filled with amazing special effects and spectacular sets. Tickets start at $32.

Oct. 8: Story Saturday: What To Do With A Box?, Carnegie Museum of Art. The Jane Yolen story explores the many ways a box can spark creativity. The session includes a hands-on art project. For kids ages 12 and younger. Free with museum admission.

Oct. 8: Festival of Combustion, Carrie Blast Furnaces. Rivers of Steel hosts a celebration of industrial arts and American crafts with hands-on demonstrations, live music and tours. Tickets are $20 for grownups, free for kids.

Oct. 8-30: Blooms Under the Big Top, Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens. Phipps will be transformed into a circus-themed spectacle of chrysanthemums with whimsical touches like carousels and funhouse mirrors.

Oct. 8: A Beginner’s Guide to Blood and Gore, Trust Arts Education Center. Just in time for the spooky season, kids from age 14 through adults will learn how to create gruesome makeup at this workshop. Registration is $25.

These African penguins swim and play in their pool at the National Aviary. Photo by Mike Faix.

Oct. 8: International African Penguin Awareness Day, National Aviary. Learn what can be done to help endangered African Penguins with a visit to their colony at the Aviary. Activities included in admission.

Oct. 9: Kids Day, Schenley Plaza. The fun afternoon is filled with activities like crafts, performances,  a balloon artist and rides on the PNC Carousel. Free.

Oct. 10: STEAM Fest, Pittsburgh Zoo. Celebrate science, technology, engineering, art and math with educational buses and STEAM vendors. Free with zoo admission.

fall events in Pittsburgh
Photo courtesy of the National Aviary.

Oct. 10, Nov. 14 and Dec. 12: Sensory-Friendly Mornings, National Aviary. These specially designed sessions include a sensory-friendly version of the African Adventure live bird show with consistent lighting and low volume.

Oct. 12-30: “A Raisin in the Sun,” O’Reilly Theater. Pittsburgh Public Theater presents the American masterpiece about the dreams of a tight-knit Black family in Chicago. Best for ages 13 and older. Tickets start at $32.

Oct. 13: Fluorescent Forest Walk, Frick Park. Hike leaders will use UV flashlights to light up the trail in search of fluorescent organisms and provide participants with UV protective eyewear. Registration is $5.

Oct. 13: “Blue’s Clues & You,” UPMC Events Center. Kids will fall in love with musical theater as they solve Blue’s Clues to find out what Josh needs to make a show. Tickets start at $39.

Oct. 13: Teen Night: Thursday the 13th, Carnegie Museum of Natural History. This teens-only night includes lots of spooky activities like skull matching, bug tasting and vampire protection kits. Free for ages 13-18. Registration is required. Costumes are optional.

fun history
Photo courtesy of Fort Ligonier.

Oct. 14-16: Fort Ligonier Days, Ligonier. The three-day event features historic Battle of Fort Ligonier reenactments, crafts, food, local spirits, live music and a grand parade. Free.

Oct. 15: Family Adventures: Ready to Rocket, Carnegie Science Center. Join a guided tour of themed exhibits, followed by hands-on activities and experiments. Best for ages 6 and older. $14, separate from general admission.

Photo courtesy of the Latin America & Caribbean Festival.

Oct. 15: 40th Annual Latin America & Caribbean Festival, University of Pittsburgh campus. The celebration of Latin American culture includes food vendors, musicians and performances. Free.

Oct. 15-16 and 22-23: Owl-O-Ween, National Aviary. This owl-themed Halloween party includes crafts, bird meets and goody bags. Activities included with aviary admission.

Oct. 15-16: Pittsburgh Monster Pumpkins Festival, Strip District. From a pie-eating contest and giant pumpkin sculptures to a floating pumpkin regatta, this festival celebrates all things pumpkin. Free.

Oct. 16: Family Day, Allegheny Commons. Spend the afternoon with a balloon artist, enjoy hands-on craft activities and check out fun performances. Free.

Photo courtesy of the National Aviary.

Oct. 16, 23, 28 and Nov. 5, 6, 11, 12: Owl Prowls, various locations. National Aviary experts lead twilight treks to spot and hear owls in Pittsburgh’s parks. Best for kids ages 7 and older. Registration is $20.

Oct. 19: “Hocus Pocus” in Concert, Heinz Hall. Pittsburgh Symphony performs the score to one of our favorite witchy movies. Tickets start at $25.

Oct. 20: Taffy Pull and Fall Finale, Meadowcroft Rockshelter and Historic Village. Taffy pulling parties will be held on the half-hour with a $5 fee per participant in addition to regular admission. Save your spot in advance.

Oct. 22, 23, 29 and 30: ZooBoo, Pittsburgh Zoo. The kid-friendly Halloween event returns with trick-or-treating throughout the zoo and lots of fun activities. Free with zoo admission.

Photo courtesy of Carnegie Museum of Art.

Oct. 27: International Teen Lab, Carnegie Museum of Art. The drop-in art-making session for teens is inspired by The Carnegie International. Free with museum admission (note: the CMOA offers free memberships to teens — details here).

Oct. 27: Spy Ninjas Live, UPMC Events Center. The Spy Ninjas are a team of YouTubers on a mission to save the internet from an evil organization of hackers. The audience is counted on to help. Tickets start at $30.

Oct. 27-30: “Jurassic World Live,” PPG Arena. The production features more than 24 life-sized dinosaurs, including the velociraptor Blue and a T-rex. Tickets start at $21.

Oct. 29: Sensory-Friendly Hours, Carnegie Museum of Natural History. Enjoy a sensory-friendly Halloween celebration with quiet zones, scavenger hunt and story time. Costumes are encouraged. $5.95 for kids, $9.95 for grownups.

Oct. 29: Super Science Saturday: Booseum Trick-or-Treat, Carnegie Museum of Natural History. Friendly museum staff will give kids a look at things that might seem scary at first, like spiders and skeletons, in this Super Science Saturday. Free with museum admission.

Nov. 3-6: “The Little Mermaid,” Byham Theater. This Young Artist performance is presented by students of PMT Conservatory in collaboration with the CAPA Orchestra. Tickets start at $19.50.

fall events in Pittsburgh
Image courtesy of Prime Stage Theatre.

Nov. 4-13: “Frankenstein,” New Hazlett Theater. The Prime Stage Theatre production follows the 18-year-old Mary Shelley as she conceives the monstrous story throughout a stormy night. Suitable for ages 13 through adult.

Nov. 5: Everyday Heroes, Heinz Hall. This Fiddlesticks family concert shines a light on the heroes we meet every day. Come early for an hour of activities, followed by a concert that includes “Stars and Stripes Forever,” Dvořák’s “Songs My Mother Taught Me” and John William’s theme from “Superman.” Tickets start at $16.

Nov. 9 and 19: Preschool Adventures: Ready for Blast Off, Carnegie Science Center. This series of workshops are designed for little scientists between 3-5 years to cultivate a love for learning and to teach them basic science concepts. $14, separate from Science Center admission.

Photo courtesy of Pittsburgh Cultural Trust.

Nov. 12: Hex Bug STEAM Challenge, Trust Arts Education Center. Families with kids from age 3 and older work together to build a maze and set of obstacles that challenge the creepy crawly Hex Bugs. Registration is $10.

Nov. 12: Super Science Saturday: Clever Creatures, Carnegie Museum of Natural History. Get inspired by creative ways animals use tools and discover how biomimicry is paving the way for human innovation. Designed for kids ages 7–12. Free with museum admission.

Nov. 12: Introduction to Musical Theatre Auditioning, Trust Arts Education Center. This workshop for ages 11-18 offers guidance for future stars to polish their acting, singing and dancing. Registration is $25.

Nov. 12: Resonant Bodies, Trust Arts Education Center. Ages 14 to adult will explore using the body as a sound source in this music workshop that uses only voice and body percussion. Registration is $25.

Nov. 13: Story Hike, Frick Park. Join a naturalist educator for a reading of “Ruby’s Birds” by Mya Thomson. Then make a pair of binoculars and head out on the trail to look for the birds. Best for families with kids ages 8 and younger.

Chibueze Ihuoma and company in the “Hadestown” North American Tour. Photo by Kevin Berne.

Nov. 15-20: “Hadestown,” Benedum Center. Winner of eight Tony Awards, the Broadway-touring “Hadestown” connects two mythic tales – Orpheus and Eurydice and that of King Hades and his wife Persephone – in its exciting journey to the underworld and back. Recommended for ages 8 to adult. Tickets start at $45.

Nov. 18: “Elf” in Concert, Heinz Hall. View the adventures of Buddy the Elf while Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra performs the John Debney score from this beloved movie.

Nov. 19: Ballet Hispanico, Byham Theater. The largest Latinx cultural organization in the U.S. brings an engaging repertory program that ranges from mambo and rock en Espanol to flamenco. Tickets start at $15.

Nov. 19: Family Adventures: Sustainable Stories, Carnegie Science Center. Join a guided tour of themed exhibits, followed by hands-on activities and experiments. Best for ages 6 and older. $14, separate from general admission.

“A Boy Called Isamu” book cover.

Nov. 19: Story Saturday: A Boy Named Isamu, Carnegie Museum of Art. The storytime includes a reading of the James Yang book followed by an art-making activity for ages 12 and younger. Free with museum admission.

Nov. 22-27: “Les Miserables,” Benedum Center. The Broadway-touring production has been brilliantly restaged while retaining the epic story and stirring music. Recommended for ages 13 and older. Tickets start at $35.

Nov. 28: Disney Princess: The Concert Presented by Pandora, Benedum Center. Rescheduled from Jan. 14, this concert brings four television and Broadway stars together to celebrate Disney princess’s beloved songs. Tickets start at $39.50.

Looking for more kid-friendly fall events in Pittsburgh? Check out our guide to 5 weeks of fun during RADical days, our September events guide and our guide to 6 local farms for apple picking, and our daily events calendar.