The City of Pittsburgh’s celebration kicking off the 2019 holiday season will begin on Friday, November 22, at 5:15 p.m. with the lighting of Pittsburgh's 104th Christmas tree on the Portico of the City-County Building.
The Salvation Army Brass Band will perform holiday favorites as the crowd gathers along Grant Street before Mayor William Peduto and other guests lead the countdown to illuminate a 60-foot decorated evergreen.
The City-County Building doors will formally open at 5:45 p.m. with a ribbon cutting to unveil the 17th annual Gingerbread House Display & Competition, which celebrates its first year at its new location in the City-County Building's Grand Lobby. A delightful display of hundreds of delicious gingerbread dwellings created by talented individuals, families, organizations, students and chefs will fill the Grand Lobby and remain on display throughout the holiday season.
Outside, the musically timed City-County Building Light Show will illuminate the Grant Street facade every 30 minutes between 6 – 8 p.m. The festivities will continue outdoors with performances by Pittsburgh Musical Theater's "Xtreme Teen Broadway" at 6:05 p.m. and CMU Treblemakers A Cappella at 6:35 p.m.
Indoor activities will include free guided tours of the historic City-County Building from 6 – 9 p.m. Pittsburgh's historic seat of government -- designed by legendary architect Henry Hornbostel -- celebrated its centennial in 2017. Learn about the rich culture of Pittsburgh by touring the building's historic State Rooms and rarely seen spaces including the Archival Vault.
ABOUT PITTSBURGH'S OFFICIAL CHRISTMAS TREE -- Pittsburgh's official Christmas Tree was first erected at the construction site of the City-County Building in 1915. For more than a century, a beautiful 60-foot live evergreen (the only live holiday tree in Downtown Pittsburgh) has graced the front steps of our seat of government. Visitors enjoy hundreds of larger-than-life ornaments, including Pittsburgh’s Coat of Arms designed by Wendell August Forge and 90 distinct ornaments, each bearing the name of Pittsburgh's beloved neighborhoods.