50+ things to do for the holidays

Family Sing-Along

2 p.m., Friday, NOV. 29
Mt. Lebanon Library
Join Margaret Hooton and Bob Barnett  for their annual day-after-Thanksgiving family sing-along.
Free. www.mtlebanonlibrary.org

Holiday for the Birds

10 to 11:30  p.m., Saturday, DEC .7
Mt. Lebanon Library
Mt. Lebanon Nature Conservancy’s annual nature program for preschool children. Crafts, stories and furry and feathered animals from Oglebay Park’s Good Zoo.
Free, but you must preregister. www.lebonature.org

Breakfast (or Lunch)with Santa

Saturdays and Sundays, DEC. 7-22
Trax Farms off Rt. 88 in Finleyville Includes a Christmas craft. $8. Reservations required at 412-835-3246 starting November 4. www.traxfarms.com

Breakfast (or Lunch) with Santa

9 a.m. to 2 p.m., Saturdays and Sundays, Dec. 7-22 Pittsburgh Zoo
Holiday craft making, sugar cookie decorating and zoo animals. Tickets at www.pittsburghzoo.org and 412-665-3640.

Pancakes with Santa

8 to 11 a.m., Saturday, DEC. 14
Mt. Lebanon High School, 4th floor cafeteria
The High School’s Winter Guard will cook up a pancake breakfast. Games, crafts, bake sale, performances by the school’s musical ensembles and a visit by Santa. $8, adults; $4, children 2-5. 412-343-0732.

Dormont’s Daylong Holiday Extravaganza

10 a.m. to 9 p.m., Saturday, DEC. 7  Dormont
10 a.m.: the volunteer fire department’s Christmas Parade (along West Liberty and Potomac avenues). 11 a.m. to 2  p.m.: free cartoons and $1 hot cocoa at the Hollywood Theater;  3 to 5  p.m., Cookies with Santa at the Dormont Recreation Center (by the pool) with Light Up Night to follow at 6; 7 p.m.: screening of A Christmas Story at the Hollywood Theater.

Pennsylvania Trolley Museum’s Santa Trolley

Nov. 29, 30, Dec. 1, 7, 8, 14, 15
Washington, Pennsylvania
Caroling, shopping in the museum store, holiday crafts, a Lionel toy train display and a scenic ride. Complimentary hot chocolate. www.pa-trolley.org for prices.

Outdoor Ice Skating at PPG PLACE

Nov. 22-Feb. 16, 2014
Between Third and Fourth avenues, Downtown
Spend an afternoon at this outdoor ice skating rink. www.ppgplace.com/directory/the-rink/ for hours and prices.

Miniature Railroad and Village

Daily, Carnegie Science Center
A Pittsburgh tradition since 1920. www.carnegiesciencecenter.org and 412-237-3400 for hours/prices.

Holidays at the House

Noon, Sunday, Nov. 17
Woodville Plantation, Washington Pike, Bridgeville
Take a candlelight tour and learn about 18th century holiday customs from Twelfth Night and Boxing Day. Tours run noon to 8  p.m. Admission is $5; children under 6, free. www.woodvilleplantation.org

Clayton Holiday Tour: A Pittsburgh Christmas

10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Nov. 29 through Jan. 5, 2014
7227 Reynolds Street, Point Breeze
This year’s holiday exhibit focuses on how Pittsburghers celebrated Christmas in the 1880s and 1890s. www.thefrickpittsburgh.org or 412-371-0600 for hours/prices.

Old Allegheny Victorian Christmas Tour

Friday and Saturday, Dec. 13 & 14
North Side
Restored Victorian homes and the historic Calvary United Methodist Church will be decorated to celebrate a 19th century Christmas. Tour guides will explain Victorian holiday traditions. Toy Train Musuem. Brunch, lunch or dinner tours available. 412-323-8884 and http://www.alleghenywest.org/tours-events/christmas-tour/ for times/prices.

Oliver Miller Homestead

1 p.m., Sunday, NOV. 24
An 18th Century Thanksgiving
1 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 1

A Scots Irish Celebration

1 p.m., Sunday Dec. 8 End and a Beginning: Hogmanay and Haggis.
South Park
The Miller house will be decorated for a Western Pennsylvania frontier style Christmas. Events include traditional dances, music, displays of traditional foods and more. $2.


Book Cellar Holiday Shop

10  a.m. to 4  p.m., Saturday, NOV. 16
1:30 to 3:30 p.m., Sunday, NOV. 17
Mt. Lebanon Library, Room A
Holiday books, decorative items and lots of great specials. www.mtlebanonlibrary.org

Animal Friends’ Holidays with Heart

10 a.m.-4 p.m., Saturday, DEC. 7
Animal Friends, Camp Horne Road
An extensive collection of handmade items, pottery, jewelry, photography and more. Food vendors. www.thinkingoutsidethecage.org

Handmade Arcade

11 a.m. to 7 p.m., Saturday, DEC. 7
David L. Lawrence Convention Center, Downtown
Pittsburgh’s first and largest independent craft fair with 150 vendors from around the city, region and U.S. offering truly unique items. Free admission. www.handmadearcade.com.

Deacon Cookie Sale

10 a.m. to noon, Saturday, DEC. 14
Sunset Hills United Presbyterian Church, 900 Country Club
Fresh baked cookies, breads and pastries. 412-561-6261.

Festival of American Arts & Crafts Show

10 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Sunday, NOV. 3 
Holiday Inn & Holidome, Uniontown
Showcasing handcrafted traditional, folk and contemporary craft art by 100-plus craftspeople from the tri-state area. Free door prizes every hour. $3.50; children under 12, free. 724-880-0881.

Craft show

9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Saturday, NOV. 23 

The DeMarillac Guild of St. Louise DeMarillac Church will hold its annual “Joy of Christmas” craft show in the LeGras Parish Center and School, 320 McMurray Road, Upper St. Clair. The show will have 115 vendors, a bake sale, candy sale and Chinese auction. Lunch is also available for purchase. $2 admission includes an auction ticket.

Mt. Lebanon Junior Women’s Club’s Holiday Market

9 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturday, DEC. 7
Mt. Lebanon Lutheran Church, Washington Road
Vendors, crafters and a bake sale. Bring canned goods and other non-perishables for the local food pantry donation box to benefit the Wallace Presbyterian Food Pantry.

Books in the ‘Burgh

10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Saturday, DEC. 7
Heinz History Center, Strip District
Get the readers on your shopping list a book by a local author or a book about a local topic. Many of the authors will be on hand to sign their books.www.heinzhistorycenter.org. 412-454-6000.

10th Annual Cookie Walk

10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Saturday, DEC. 14
Sts. Peter and Paul Ukrainian Orthodox Church, Mansfield Boulevard at Walnut Street, Carnegie
50 to 60 varieties of cookies—nut rolls, nut crescents, biscotti, Ukrainian truffles, Kolache—to choose from. Cookies sold by the pound. Free admission. 724-348-7326.

Christmas Cookie and Gift Bazaar

9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Saturday, DEC. 14
Mt. Lebanon United Methodist Church, West Liberty Avenue
Chose from a selection of homemade cookies and soups, shop the craft sale and relax in a British tearoom with a hot cup of tea and some scones.

Joy Of Cookies Cookie Tour

Thursday through Sunday, DEC. 5-8
Lawrenceville business district
Stop in the more than 35 participating shops and receive the shopkeeper’s favorite cookie and the recipe. Many shops will be offering sales and discounts. Free. Each shop will keep its own hours, but most will be open from about 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Sugarplum Shop Show & Sale

10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Thursday and Friday,  NOV. 7 and 8
10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday, NOV.  9
11 a.m. to 3 p.m., Sunday,  NOV.  10
10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday  and Tuesday, NOV. 11 and 12
Old USC Recreation Center, 1770 McLaughlin Run Road (next to the 3-Hole Golf)
Upper St. Clair League for the Arts hosts an event of original fine art and hand crafted items from local artists.

Enjoy Coupon Books

Mt. Lebanon Recreation Department off Cedar Boulevard
Get these popular coupon books for all your friends who like to save money. $30 each. Available during office hours. www.mtlebanon.org

Annual Holiday Bazaar

10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Tuesday, DEC. 10
Concordia of the South Hills, Social Room, Bower Hill Road
A variety of vendors, crafts, auction, bake sale and holiday bargain table. Free.  412-278-1300. www.concordia-southhills.org.

Mrs. Bob Cratchit’s Wild Christmas Binge

NOV. 27, 29, 30, DEC. 5-7 and 12-14
Little Lake Theatre Company, Canonsburg
This silly parody of everybody’s favorite Dickens classic should draw belly laughs from even the stodgiest Scrooge. www.littlelake.org or 724-745-6300 times/tickets.

Pittsburgh Jazz Orchestra Holiday Celebration featuring Freddy Cole

7 and 9 p.m., Saturday, DEC. 14
Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild
The Pittsburgh Jazz Orchestra jazzes up your holiday favorites. Tickets at mcgjazz.org and 412-322-0800.

Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre’s The Nutcracker

DEC. 6-29, Benedum Center
Surrender to the grand sweep of Tchaikovsky’s score and the wonders of childhood. Tickets at 412-281-0360 and www.pbt.org/performances

The Nutcracker

Andrew Carnegie Music Hall in Carnegie presents two productions of this holiday favorite.
DEC. 6-8 and 13-15,
Friday and Saturday, 8 p.m.; Sunday, 2 p.m.
Presented by the Carnegie Performing Arts Center. Tickets, available at the door, are $15, and $12 for children and seniors. 412-279-8887.
7 p.m., Saturday, DEC. 21
2 p.m., Sunday, DEC. 22
Nearly 50 students from Broadway Dance Studio will bring the magical dream of a little girl named Clara and her handsome Nutcracker Prince to life.  Tickets at tututix.com.


NOV. 26-DEC. 1
Benedum Center, Downtown
The hilarious tale of Buddy, a young orphan child who thinks he’s an elf. Tickets start at $20 at trustarts.culturaldistrict.org

Renaissance and Baroque Society Drive Away the Cold

8 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 7
Synod Hall, Oakland
Piffaro performs a concert of songs and dances celebrating the various traditions of the season—from Advent to Hanukkah. Tickets start at $20 at www.rbsp.org

CLO’s A Musical Christmas Carol

DEC. 6-22
Byham Theater, Downtown
Scrooge, Bob Cratchit, Tiny Tim and a host of colorful characters sing your favorite yuletide melodies. Tickets at www.pittsburghclo.org or 412-281-3973.

Pittsburgh Camerata

8 p.m., Friday, DEC. 13
Mt. Lebanon United Methodist Church, 3319 West Liberty Avenue
It Was All Shining: A Camerata Christmas with flautist Josie Kost and oboist Lenny Young. $15 at pittsburghcamerata.org or $20 at door.

River City Brass Band Christmas Brasstacular

7:30  p.m., Tuesday, DEC. 10
Upper St. Clair High School Theater
Carols include Sleigh Ride, A Christmas Festival, Santa Baby and more. The evening features the choirs of Fox Chapel and Westmoreland Choral Society. Tickets and other dates/locations at www.rivercitybrass.org

South Hills Chorale Holiday Celebration

7:30 p.m., Friday & Saturday, DEC. 13 & 14
Westminster Presbyterian Church, Upper St. Clair
This 75-voice chorale performs holiday tunes. $15 at patmoraytis@comcast.net or 412-221-9109

Holiday, Bells, Mallets  Drums

7:30 p.m., Friday, DEC. 13
2 and 7:30  p.m., Saturday, DEC. 14
High School Fine Arts Theater
Mt. Lebanon High School Percussion Ensemble performs holiday classics. $10 adults; $8 students for evening performances; Saturday matinees is $7 for all. These concerts usually sell out, get tickets early at 412-563-4201.

Holly ‘n’ Bells

7:30 p.m., Friday, DEC. 6
Mt. Lebanon United Methodist Church, West Liberty Avenue
at Scott Road
Christmas classics performed on handbells. Childcare available for pre-schoolers. 412-531-7131.

Christmas in Oz

6 p.m., Saturday, NOV. 30
Andrew Carnegie Music Hall, Carnegie
Dorothy and the other residents of Oz prepare for their first Christmas in the Emerald City. A celebration in the reception hall follows the performance. Tickets at www.manconwest.com.

Holiday Breakfast

Friday, DEC. 6
Doors at 8:30 a.m.; breakfast at 9:45
Crowne Plaza, Fort Couch Road

Coldwell Banker Real Estate Services South Hills office’s holiday breakfast and raffle

benefits Make-A-Wish and the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank. Bring non-perishable food items for the food bank. $20 at 412-833-5405, ext. 248 or 412-638-8133.

Breakfast and a Movie

11 a.m., Sunday, NOV. 24:
It’s a Wonderful Life
11  a.m., Sunday, Dec. 22:
White Christmas
Hollywood Theater. Potomac Avenue, Dormont
Breakfast catered by Kelly James, old cartoons and a classic movie. Tickets are $15 at the theater and www.thehollywooddormont.org. You must get breakfast tickets by the Thursday before the event. Movie only is $7 at the door. 412-563-0368.

Holiday Wine & Cheese

6:15  p.m., Wednesday, DEC 4
Cabaret at Theater Square,
655 Penn Avenue
Carol “Dear Heart” Pascuzzi, the Cheese Lady of Penn Mac, hosts a wine and cheese pairings party guaranteed to wow any gathering. Q&A and door prizes. Dessert, coffee and full bar available after the show (not included in ticket price). Guests can bring a 750 ml bottle of any type of wine for a wine swap. $35.75 at trustarts.culturaldistrict.org. 412-325-6766.

Mt. Lebanon Recreation Department’s Senior Luncheon

10:30 a.m., Tuesday, DEC. 17
Mt. Lebanon Recreation Department, off Cedar Boulevard
Entertainment by Bob Morelli at 11, hot lunch at noon, movie at 1. $6 per person. Register by Friday, December 13 at 412-343-3409.

Holiday Tea Party at Trax Farms

11 a.m. and 2  p.m., Saturday, NOV. 23
Rt. 88 in Findleyville
A spread of tea sandwiches, tea breads, scones, fruits, desserts and tea. Raffle basket of holiday gifts. Reservations required at www.traxfarms.com or 412-835-3246.

Holiday Dinners on the Gateway Clipper

5:30  p.m., Fridays and Saturdays, NOV. 30 through DEC. 21
Station Square
Toast friends and colleagues on the three rivers. Buffet dinner, holiday music and the sparkling lights of the city. $55. www.gatewayclipper.com

Happy Bloomin’ New Year

1:30  p.m., Sunday, DEC. 29
Phipps Conservatory, Oakland
Take a class that will inspire you with seasonal designs and make a resolution to bring more beauty into your life. phipps.conservatory.org

Highmark First Night Pittsburgh

New Year’s Eve
Downtown Pittsburgh
An arts-focused and family-friendly celebration offering 150 events—including live music, children’s activities, comedy and fireworks—at nearly 50 indoor and outdoor locations within Pittsburgh’s 14-block Cultural District. Tickets at www.firstnightpgh.org

Noon Year’s Eve Celebration

11 a.m. to 3 p.m., Tuesday, DEC. 31
Pittsburgh Zoo and PPG Aquarium
Ring in the New Year with your family at a celebration of Times Square proportions. Count down to a noon ball drop and dance into the New Year with live entertainment. www.pittsburghzoo.org for prices.

Howard Hanna House Tour and Luncheon

9:30 p.m., Saturday, NOV. 9
This designer showcase of several local houses begins at 9:30 a.m. and will be followed by 11 a.m. lunch at the Bower Hill Community Church. Meal provided by Pennsylvania Macaroni Co., Giovanni’s and Bado’s. Chinese and silent auctions items. Bake sale and boutique. $25; lunch only, $8. Don’t miss the raffle for $15,000. www.hhmtlebo4childrens.com or 412-561-7400.

Winter Flower Show

9:30 a.m. to 11  p.m., daily, NOV. 29-JAN. 5, 2014
Phipps Conservatory, Oakland
Evergreens, poinsettias and sparkling lights will turn Phipps into a winter wonderland (Note; Phipps closes at 5 on Christmas Eve and will be closed Christmas Day). Evening hours feature candlelight tours. phipps.conservatory.org for special events and prices.

Christian Clay Winery

Open House
Noon-3  p.m., Saturday, DEC. 7
Laurel Highlands
Caroling, holiday fare, wine tastings, Mr. and Mrs. Claus, activities for the kids. Complimentary admission.  www.cwklaywinery.com

University of Pittsburgh Nationality Rooms Holiday Open House

Sunday, DEC. 8
Cathedral of Learning, Oakland
Tour the 29 Nationality Rooms—all decorated in traditional holiday fashions. Guides in ethnic dress, performances of holiday traditions every 15 minutes, ethnic foods, craft demonstrations and a marketplace. Free. Decorations remain up until the second week of January. For tour information: 412-624-6000 or www.nationalityrooms.pitt.edu


10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Sunday, DEC. 8
Mt. Lebanon Recreation Department hosts a trip to Nemacolin Woodlands & Overly’s Light Display. The day includes a gourmet brunch at Nemacolin and time for shopping. Tickets are $119 at 412-343-3409.

Lebo Light Nights

6-9  p.m., Thursday, NOV. 14, Washington Road
6-9  p.m., Thursday, Dec. 5, Beverly Road
New this year to the Washington Road event is a Gingerbread House Contest at the municipal building (everyone is welcome to enter! Check www.mtlebanon.org for details) and a train display courtesy of the South Hills Model Railroad Club. Both events feature live music, horse-drawn carriages, a tree lighting, refreshments and Santa Claus.

Light Up Night at Trax Farms

5 to 8  p.m., Saturday, NOV. 30
Trax Farms off Rt. 88 in Finleyville
Santa and his elves arrive at 5:30 to light the tree. Christmas crafts, coloring contest, Christmas trivia and a reindeer scavenger hunt game. Free admission (additional cost for some games and activities). www.traxfarms.com

Holiday Mansion Candlelight Tours

NOV. 25, 26, DEC. 2, 3, 9, 10
Hartwood Acres
Candlelight tours begin at 5  p.m., with the last tour starting at 8.
Every room in the mansion will be decorated in keeping with the season.
Advance reservations required at 412-767-9200. $6. www.alleghenycounty.us/parks/calendar/hightea.aspx

Kennywood’s Holiday Lights

5 to 9  p.m., Friday, Saturday and Sundays NOV. 29 through DEC. 22
Kennywood Park
The amusement park will be transformed into a wonderland of dazzling light displays, family friendly activities and seasonal food favorites. www.kennywood.com

The Winter Festival of Lights

NOV. 8– JAN. 5, 2014
Oglebay Park, West Virginia
Drive down to Oglebay for one of the nation’s largest light shows—covering more than 300 acres over a six-mile drive. Sundays through Thursdays until 10 p.m. and Fridays and Saturdays until 11. A per car donation is requested. Trolley tours are offered several times each night beginning at Wilson Lodge. www.oglebay-resort.com

Animal Friends’ Pet Photos with Santa

10 a.m. to 4  p.m., Sundays, NOV. 17 & NOV. 24
Animal Friends, Camp Horne Road
Bring your furry family members to Animal Friends for a photo with Santa. Three 4- by-6 prints for $10. Dogs must be leashed and cats and rabbits in carriers. 412-847-7055.

Christmas Bird Count

8  a.m., Saturday, DEC. 14
Bird Park Fire Circle
Bring your binoculars and bird guides to help the Mt. Lebanon Nature Conservancy count birds for the Audubon Society, which tracks the bird species in our area and around the country. www.lebonature.org

Toys for Tots

4 to 8 p.m., Thursday, DEC. 5
Manor Oak Two, Suite 520
1910 Cochran Road
Bring toy donations (new and unwrapped) for the United States Marine Corps’ Toys for Tots program and enjoy an evening of tasty treats and holiday cheer. Sponsored by the Musuneggi Financial Group and Single Steps Strategies. RSVP to 412-341-2888 or sdurzo@singlestepsstrategies.com

Poinsettia sale

The Dormont-Mt. Lebanon-Castle Shannon Rotary will sell pots of pink, white or red poinsettias for $10 each in December. Order flowers by calling Mimi at the library—412-531-1912, ext. 214—no later than December 16. Pickup dates are Tuesday, December 3, 10 or 17, at the library.

hanukkah Seniors Luncheon

Noon, Tuesday, DEC. 3
South Hills JCC, 345 Kane Boulevard
Hot latkes, food, Hanukkah music and more. Suggested donation, $5.  Wheelchair accessible. Information/RSVP at 412-278-2658 or barb@chabadsh.com.