Allegheny river towns host events to get in the holiday spirit
Friday, November 22, 2019 | 12:01 AM
Local municipalities are celebrating the holiday season with the following free, fun and family-friendly events.
What: “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” film screening
When: Doors open 1 p.m.; show starts at 1:30 p.m. Dec. 14
Where: Shaler Area Elementary School, 700 Scott Ave., Glenshaw
Jim Carrey stars as the Grinch in this PG-rated film from 2000. Shaler Area School District, Shaler and Reserve townships, and Etna and Millvale boroughs are sponsoring the screening. Registration is required at shaler.org.
What: Etna Light the Night 2019
When: 6:30 p.m. Nov. 29
Where: Various locations, but the event starts with a parade from Butler Street toward Elk Way.
Sensations Marching Unit musicians, Shining Dance Stars Dance School and Steel City Angels dancers and the Rode Rigs of Pittsburgh will participate in the parade. Etna manager Mary Ellen Ramage said that – new this year – Santa and Mrs. Claus will arrive by sleigh during the parade. Children may visit the famous couple and their reindeer starting at 6:45 p.m. on Walnut Street.
Guests will find the Pine Creek Band, children’s games and a balloon artist at 7 p.m. at Calvert Memorial Presbyterian Church, 94 Locust St.
The Etna Volunteer Fire Department will hold a 7:30 p.m. open house and 8 p.m. bonfire at its Clarence Fugh Memorial Hall, 437 Butler St.
Throughout the night, guests of all ages may take free trolley rides around the business corridor and snap photos in a photo booth. They also will find holiday sales, crafts and treats.
Children may stop by The Shiny Bean Coffee & Tea, 333 Butler St., to pick up free holiday books, courtesy of the Etna Economic Development Corp.
The public may complete holiday cards to send to troops serving overseas at Calvert Memorial or Fugh Hall. Ramage said people may donate phone cards for the military personnel.
Calvert Memorial Presbyterian Church and First Congregational Church of Etna, at the corner of Locust and Walnut streets, will provide warming stations and refreshments.
Fireworks launched from Dougherty Veteran’s Field at 9 p.m. will end the festivities.
In order to fund the free event, the borough is holding 50/50 and basket auctions. “There are some awesome prizes, including two tickets to a Penguins game this coming March,” Ramage said.
Guests may purchase raffle tickets in advance at the municipal building and on Walnut and Butler streets during the event.
What: Fifth Annual Millvale’s Yuletide & Holiday Drink Tour
When: 11 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Nov. 30
Where: It’s a full day of events! To participate in the holiday drink tour, purchase a $15 drink cup with cash at the Millvale Volunteer Fire Department, 501 Lincoln Ave., or in advance at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/yuletide-celebration-tickets-80243970877. Then, take a self-guided tour of Millvale’s 16 participating businesses, shop the Small Business Saturday sales and enjoy either beverages at each stop until 6 p.m.
Many stops will offer both alcoholic and non-alcoholic options, such as Salon 22’s “santa-ritas,” Bar 3’s ice cream floats and Tupelo Honey Teas floats, according to Lisa Love, of event organizer the Business Association of Millvale (BAM).
Proceeds will benefit the fire department.
The same day, the Business Association of Millvale invites guests to visit the borough’s shops and appreciate the entertainment available during the free Yuletide Tour occurring until 7:30 p.m.
First, Bar 3 is hosting a brunch with Santa benefitting the Make-A-Wish Greater Pennsylvania and West Virginia from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Children’s tickets are $3. Meal tickets are not required for children to visit Santa. For additional information, visit Bar 3’s Facebook page.
Esther’s Hobby Shop, 219 N. Ave., will display a train from noon to 3:30.
From 3:30 to 6:30 p.m., visit Santa and his friends at Grant Avenue Pocket Park for photos and make s’mores around a bonfire. DJ Budz will provide music from 4 to 7:30 p.m. around the McCarthy Park town tree, which Santa will light at 6 p.m. Children may write and give Saint Nick their letters prior to his departure for the North Pole.
Millvale Community Library staff will lead cookie decorating and children’s crafts from 2 to 5:30 p.m. The River City Brass Band will perform there from 4 to 5:30 p.m.
Pets can join the fun, too, by taking holiday photos from 1 to 5 p.m. at Asgard Raw Dog Food, 10 Sedgwick St. The $5 fee includes a 5×7 framed picture, dog treat and benefits the fire department and business association.
Horse-drawn carriage rides return this year from 3 to 5 p.m. Departure is in front of Salon 22, 227 N. Ave.
A Christmas bar crawl, starting at 7:30 p.m. at the McCarthy Park tree, will end the evening. Holiday revelers should bring non-perishable items to stock Millvale’s little food pantries.
Love is proud of the event’s growth over its five years.
“I think that it’s a learning process, and we see what the community wants and the fact that we get hundreds of people to come to the tree lighting means that they wanted it and needed and people come to our (BAM) meetings with ideas, and like I said, it just keeps growing.”
What: Township tree decorating
When: 5:30 to 7 p.m. Dec. 5
Where: Municipal building parking lot, 33 Lonsdale St.
Help decorate the township’s tree while enjoying refreshments. Bring an ornament to trim the tree.
What: Lunch with Santa
When: Dec. 7. Doors open 12:30 p.m.; lunch starts 1 p.m.
Where: Mt. Troy Ballroom, 33 Lonsdale St.
Annual free lunch featuring photos with Santa and letters to him, crafts, face painting and refreshments.
Registration is due by Nov. 29 by emailing [email protected] or calling 412-322-1551.