Photo Credit: KDKA

The kids are out of school and the endless haze of sunny, warm days stretches out far and wide. The summer is your oyster – so go out and live it! Below are just a handful of the outstanding summer programs Pittsburgh offers that will not only educate, but challenge, engage and strengthen your children’s knowledge, relationships and skills. Some are free, or low cost, and all are accessible from any point in the region.

Pittsburgh Pro Baseball Camp by ABC
Shady Side Academy
423 Fox Chapel Road
Pittsburgh, PA 15238

Date: July 8-11, 2014

You might be thinking “is baseball instruction really educational?” Bear in mind that this camp is very, very different. Not only do kids get a format which is written by directors with years of pro-baseball experience, but they get a history of baseball and a week in which to grow not only physically, but socially as well. A day camp and overnight camp are both available, and the coach-to-player ratio is extremely low for maximum instructional time. General age divisions are 8-11, 12-13, 14-16 and 16+. Much more than your average sports camp, Pittsburgh Pro Baseball Camp is the leading sports camp for instruction, top form and outstanding attention to detail.

Pittsburgh Glass Center “Hot Jam”
5472 Penn Ave.
Pittsburgh, PA 15206
(412) 365-2145

Looking to get the kids interested in something more challenging than Minecraft this summer? Get them talking about art – and glass blowing, specifically. This delicate, challenging art form is on bright, full display at Pittsburgh Glass Center, where free open house events are held throughout the year. Each “Hot Jam” session, on the first Friday of each month, will feature live hot glass demonstrations and contemporary glass art exhibitions by trained artisans. Each session is from 6 to 9 p.m. All ages are welcome and no registration is required.

Related: Best Places For Kids’ Summer Art Activities In Pittsburgh

Celebrate the Arts Sundays
Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh
4400 Forbes Ave.
Pittsburgh, PA 15213
(412) 622-3114

The Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh is always gung-ho for anything music, poetry, dance, arts and culture related. Therefore, it’s prepared to bring residents of the Steel City free events all summer long; kids included. These events take place every Sunday from 2 to 3 p.m. on the first floor and are completely free; check the website for availability. International Cinema Sundays take place on the first Sunday of the month; Sunday Afternoon Music Series takes place the second Sunday of the month; Sunday Poetry & Readings Series takes place the third Sunday of the month; and World Kaleidoscope takes places the fourth Sunday of the month.

Pajama Storytime at Mt. Lebanon Public Library
16 Castle Shannon Blvd.
Pittsburgh, PA 15228
(412) 531-1912

Every third Tuesday of the month from 6:30 to 7:15 p.m., join Mt. Lebanon’s Public Library for a fun evening of jammy story time. Sing songs, tell stories, rhyme rhymes and enjoy fun activities with your little ones ages three to seven in your PJs. This event is free and pre-registration is not required, though a peanut-free snack might very well be welcomed. Call for further details or for event adjustments.

Related: Best Summer Reading Events For Kids In Pittsburgh

Nikki Tiani-Moroney is a full time mum of two boys, wife of a professional poker player/photographer/amateur pencil-sharpening competitor and writer from Pittsburgh, PA. When she isn’t studiously neglecting her housework in favor of a good book, she’s out simultaneously fighting crime and picking up sidewalk litter while savoring an occasional cigarette. Her work can be found at