By Sally Turkovich

Anyone who knows Pittsburgh knows that Light Up Night is the must-do event of the holiday season in our fair city. The weather is cooler, the holiday spirit is starting to set in and downtown Pittsburgh puts on its party clothes and dresses up to impress all of its visitors.

bandsparade2 Guide To Light Up Night

(Credit: KDKA)

Light Up Night

November 18, 2011
5 p.m. to 10 p.m.

What’s so unique and fun about Light Up Night is that it is a free outdoor event that truly has something for everyone – college students, families with small children, and grownups who are kids at heart. There is a holiday parade through downtown featuring the best high school band in the Pittsburgh area and don’t miss the party on the Roberto Clemente Bridge with music, children’s activities and lots of different food booths to choose from. Here are just a few of the other must-sees.

marketsquarelitup Guide To Light Up Night

(Credit: KDKA)

Market Square

Intersection of Market Street & Forbes Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15222

Market Square has become the go to place for performances by local musicians. Spend some time there to discover new bands!

lightupnightppg Guide To Light Up Night

(Photo Credit: KDKA)

PPG Place

200 Three PPG Place
Pittsburgh, PA 15222

Take a stroll through PPG Place to see the gorgeous ice rink and if you’re brave enough, rent some skates and take a few laps around the gigantic Christmas tree in the center.

macys Guide To Light Up Night

(Photo Credit: KDKA-TV)


400 5th Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15219

Get downtown early on the 18th to get your share of the standing room only space in front of the Macy’s store windows. Throughout the evening, the store employees reveal incredibly detailed holiday decorations in each of their store windows along the 5th Avenue corridor.

pointstateparktree1 Guide To Light Up Night

(Photo Credit: KDKA-TV)

Point State Park

Confluence of Allegheny, Ohio and Monongahela Rivers
Pittsburgh, PA 15222

Head down to Point State Park for the lighting of the grand-scale Christmas Tree at the Point. Last but not least, while you’re still at Point State Park, turn your eyes to the sky at the end of the night for a fireworks display that rivals the 4th of July display.

lightupnight2010day21 Guide To Light Up Night

(Photo Credit: KDKA-TV)

Bonus Festivity

If you’re up for a second trip into the city, come downtown again on Saturday November 19th at 6 p.m. for the Candlelight Horse-Drawn Carriage Parade. Last year was the inaugural march and its huge success and massive turnout is an indication that Pittsburghers love this new event. If the huge crowds and staying out late after a long week has you thinking twice about attending the official Light Up Night festivities on Friday the 18th, opt to go to this smaller but certainly lovely event on Saturday. You won’t be disappointed!

Sally Turkovich lives in Pittsburgh with her fiancé, Jason and German Shepherd, Zeus. By day she works as an eyewear stylist for an independent eye doctor. By night, she writes a twice-weekly column for Twoday Magazine. Catch up with her there at


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