These cool events add up to an awesome autumn

From September through November, theaters raise the curtain on new seasons of shows, museums put out the welcome mat for family-friendly exhibits – and Halloween and Thanksgiving are just around the corner.

Here’s a roundup of some of the fun ways you can turn the season into an awesome autumn.

Through Jan. 6: “Native Voices,” Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh. Explore the lives of five Native American tribes through hands-on exploration, including artifacts, photos, music and activities to learn how these resilient cultures carefully balance traditional practice with life in the modern world.

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The Apollo Command Module lands at Heinz History Center for the blastoff of the “Destination Moon” exhibit.

Through Feb 18: “Destination Moon: The Apollo 11 Mission,” Heinz History Center. Celebrate the 50th anniversary of man reaching the moon with this amazing exhibit from the History Center and the Smithsonian.

Through May 5:  “Rube Goldberg: The World of Hilarious Invention!” Pittsburgh Children’s Museum, North Shore. New exhibit showcases Pulitzer Prize-winning humorist and inventor Rube Goldberg’s iconic contraptions and celebrates his imaginative techniques, humorous storytelling and inventive skills.

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These former stars of the Moscow Circus make up Aga-Boom to open the season of the Citizens Bank Children’s Theater Series.

Nov. 9-10: “Aga-Boom,” Byham Theater, Downtown. Rooted in theatrical clowning, this show for children ages 3 and up and adults brings together the best traditions of circus arts, physical comedy and European avant-garde, featuring shadow puppetry and play, movement, humor, storytelling and acting.

Nov. 10: Jammie Jams! Space Night, Carnegie Science Center, North Shore. Kids can wear their PGs and have a blast exploring space at this evening designed for early learners. The evening wraps up before bedtime.

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Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra celebrates “Heroes in our Neighborhood” in a Fiddlesticks Family Concert. Photo courtesy of Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra

Nov. 10: “Heroes in our Neighborhood,” Fiddlesticks Family Concert, Heinz Hall, Downtown. Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra celebrates individuals that have made Pittsburgh a great neighborhood, featuring Sousa’s “The Stars and Stripes Forever,” “It’s You I Like” by Fred Rogers and other favorites.

Nov. 10: Second Saturday Studios at the Frick: Paper Explosion, The Frick Art Museum, Point Breeze. Use a plethora of paper on a paper exploration.

Nov. 16: Light Up Night Sleepover, Carnegie Science Center, North Shore. Start your holiday season with a band of a science-y twist on this special night in Pittsburgh that’s festive, fiery and full of fun.

Nov. 16: Downtown Pittsburgh Light-Up Night 2018. Free annual outdoor event kicks off the holiday season with musical entertainment, activities, food, and fireworks.

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Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre brings “The Nutcracker” to Phipps Conservatory. Photo courtesy of Phipps Conservatory

Nov. 16: Poinsettias and Pointe Shoes, Phipps Conservatory & Botanical Gardens, Schenley Park, Oakland. This seasonal treat from Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre features live vignettes from “The Nutcracker,” performed by dancers from PBT School. After the performance, visit with the dancers and take a tour of Phipps.

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Ventriloquist and comedienne Lynn Trefzger and friends perform at Shady Side Academy Senior School.

Nov. 17: Ventriloquist and comedienne Lynn Trefzger, Shady Side Academy Senior School, Fox Chapel. Vocal illusionist shares her trunk full of comical characters. Part of Hillman Performing Arts Series.

Nov. 18: Nickelodeon Double-Dare Live! Benedum Center. Mark Summers hosts the messiest game show on the road.

Nov. 18: Afternoon of Enchantment, Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre studios, Downtown. Enjoy an afternoon filled with “Nutcracker”-inspired dance classes, performances, crafts and photo opportunities for all ages, with appearances by the Nutcracker and Sugar Plum Fairy.

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Peppa Pig Live! brings together the beloved characters from the popular children’s book series.

Nov. 20: Peppa Pig Live! Byham Theater. This action-packed live show features favorite characters as life-size puppets and costume characters in “Peppa Pig’s Surprise.”

Nov. 21: History Explorers: Pittsburgh and the Movies, Heinz History Center, Strip District. Explore Pittsburgh’s Hollywood stories, look at costumes and become a director or an actor and make your own mini movie! Children ages 5-8 can explore Pittsburgh stories through games, cooking and other hands-on activities.

Nov. 23-Dec. 16: Santa Trolley, Pennsylvania Trolley Museum. Celebrate the season on the trolley with Santa, sing along with Christmas caroling, make a craft in the Events Room and interact with the Lionel Trains in the Visitor Center.

Nov. 23-Jan. 6: “Winter Flower Show: Holiday Magic: Let It Glow!” Phipps Conservatory. See dazzling displays in every room, plus new light features in Tropical Forest Cuba and Winter Light Garden.

Nov. 24-Dec. 16: “Beauty and the Beast Holiday,” Gemini Children’s Theater, McKees Rocks. Original holiday show about Belle’s first Christmas at the Beast’s castle and the spirit of giving.