With Halloween passed, for those of us not trick-or-treating, people are looking to move on the the next holiday. The Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership will kick off the Christmas season with the 52nd annual Light Up Night.
With the CAPA (Creative And Performing Arts) high school choir performing, organizers and officials met in PPG Place’s Wintergarden to announce this year’s events.
Starting on Friday, November 16th and continuing the next day, this year’s Light Up Night and First Holiday Saturday will include a mix of traditional events like Macy’s Window unveiling, the lighting of four separate trees, and a fireworks celebration with some new surprises like, a new home for Santa, and a stage solely for Jazz.
This year will also see the creation of the People’s Gas Holiday Market. Designed in the tradition of Northern European holiday markets and Nuremberg’s Chriskindlmarket, the vendors daily will be offering products made around the world until December 23rd.
Santa also made a stop by the Wintergarden to express approval of his "new Pittsburgh home."
“Whenever I hear there’s a celebration in Pittsburgh, especially on Light Up Night, I clear my calendar, I hop on a sleigh, and I come flying right down.”
Santa Claus will flip the switch to light up Market Square.
Lindsay Berdell, Director of Promotions and Marketing for event sponsor Trib Total Media, said people can celebrate the season by stopping by this year’s bridge party.
“The Clemente Bridge will be the biggest, most rocking party of the year,” said Berdell. “And we have some of Pittsburgh’s greatest musical performers on hand to keep things rocking over the Allegheny.” Performers include Joe Grushecky and the Houserockers and Jonny Angel and the Halos.
In addition to the Clemente Bridge and Market Square stages, this year will have a third stage. The EQT Plaza Jazzmasters Stage will highlight the city’s jazz talent including the Al Dowe and Etta Cox Trio and the Kenny Blake Quartet. Longtime jazz radio host Tony Mowod will emcee.
Last year’s two-day event brought 800,000 visitors to Downtown and generated about $21 million for the local community.
John Rohe, Vice President of event sponsor the Colcom Foundation, said they are supporting Light Up Night because Pittsburgh captures people’s hearts.
“This is possibly even beyond say livability. Pittsburgh has captured that trophy. We’ve been there, we’ve done that,” said Rohe. “This might be about something more. This might be about making this place lovable. It might be about lovability, and that might be our next trophy that we’re seeking.”
Information on this year’s Light Up Night events can be found through the Downtown Partnership’s website.