things to do this weekend around Pittsburgh

Polar bears, wild flowers, skating, Locomotion and more: 6 fun things to do this weekend around Pittsburgh

Photo above by Weston MacKinnon by permission via Unsplash.

Got plans this weekend? All around the Pittsburgh area, cool things will be happening:

Saturday, Jan. 15, 12-4 p.m.: Polar Party at Carnegie Museum of Natural History

January is the perfect time of year to throw a Polar Party. This episode of Super Science Saturday helps kids discover how animals adapt to and flourish in cold climates. They’ll help a polar bear pack its lunch, embark on a scavenger hunt using frosty clues and imitate penguins playing hopscotch. Activities are included in Carnegie Museum’s general admission ($11.95 for ages 3-18, $14.95 for seniors and $19.95 for grownups). Kids younger than 3 are free.

Saturday, Jan. 15, 1-3:30 p.m.: Mascot Skate, Schenley Skating Rink

So many mascots, so little time. The annual Mascot Skate at the Schenley Skating Rink gathers a full crowd of Pittsburgh’s favorite costumed mascots. Fuzzy and foamy creatures like Kenny Kangaroo, Pitt Panther and the Smiley Cookie will hit the ice for a glide around the rink and lots of fun photo snaps. Tickets are sold online only for this special event and are priced at $3 for kids 17 and younger, $4 for seniors and veterans and $5 for grownups. Skate rental is $3.

Saturday, Jan. 15, 9:30 a.m.-11 p.m.: Orchid and Tropical Bonsai Show: An Ocean of Color at Phipps

This tropical day-cation of “all-star specimens” is arriving just in time to rescue us from winter boredom. Wander through displays of bright orchids backed by large, colorful foliage, savor aromatic scents and relax as you explore flowing ponds and fountains. See exquisite fruiting and flowering bonsai trees showcasing a wide variety of species and pruning techniques that have been in training for decades. The Orchid and Tropical Bonsai Show: An Ocean of Color opens today and runs through March 6. Buy timed tickets here (adults $19.95, children $11.95 for nonmembers).

Saturday, Jan. 15, 7 p.m.: Let Freedom Sing Concert Online Concert

The power of music will celebrate unity and diversity — and raise funds to fight hunger — during the MLK Jr. holiday weekend. This signature concert features classic spirituals, gospel and jazz standards. Directed by Herbert Jones, the free concert will stream live from Pittsburgh’s historic Hill District, showcasing the Heritage Gospel Chorale of Pittsburgh, the MLK Festival Singers, regional choirs and vocalists Chantal Braziel and Anqwenique Wingfield. Donations will benefit the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank.

things to do this weekend around Pittsburgh
Photo courtesy of Carnegie Science Center.

Saturday, Jan. 15 and Sunday, Jan. 16, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.: Locomotion Weekend at Carnegie Science Center

Head to the North Shore for a weekend dedicated to trains. Hop aboard the building-wide extravaganza to check out awesome displays from local hobbyists and train associations, see interactive set-ups and visit the Miniature Railroad & Village. You can also chug along to The Rangos Giant Cinema to experience the immersive “Rocky Mountain Express” before it closes. Buy tickets.

Sunday, Jan. 16, various times: 2,022 Miles Challenge with Venture Outdoors

Think you can traverse 2,022 miles in 2022? Join Venture Outdoors to try new outdoor experiences and accomplish health and wellness goals. How does it work? Participants can walk, run, bike, hike, skate, kayak, swim — the goal is to get moving outdoors. Keep track of your miles, submit your results every month and keep on moving. In addition to feeling fab, finishers will get a medal, free gear, event invitations and prizes. Register now.

And looking ahead to Monday;

Monday, Jan. 17, 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.: Give Me Liberty: East Liberty Celebrates MLK Day at the Kelly Strayhorn Theater

There are so many impactful ways to celebrate MLK Day throughout Pittsburgh, from public events and family celebrations to personal experiences and virtual activities. One must-do event for Pittsburghers is this vibrant community celebration from 1 to 4 pm. Co-presented with BOOM Concepts, the day is designed to highlight the life, legacy and activism of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. This year’s theme empowers citizens to use their own voices and stories to transform the world and achieve justice. Inspired by the multitude of ways that Dr. King and many other civil rights activists worked for equality then and now, the engaging event includes family-friendly activities and performances led by Women of Visions, Anita Levels, Bloomfield-Garfield Corporation, The Alloy School and PearlArts. Admission is “pay what makes you happy.”

Looking for more things to do this weekend around Pittsburgh with kids? Check out our winter entertainment guide and our full guide to January happenings for kids (and moms). You also have all month to make a free visit to see the giant rabbits Downtown!