Heinz History Center
Heinz History Center

Heinz History Center
November 18 — January 15
Various times

Along with ice skating at PPG, winter flowers at Phipps, and the lights at Hartwood, long-standing holiday traditions in the Burgh used to include making the pilgrimage Downtown to Kaufmann’s (and later, Macy’s).

Under the iconic clock, Christmastime meant gazing at magical window displays and dazzling lights and decorations, visiting Santa, and of course, stocking up on gifts. The holiday ritual lasted for 130-plus years.

Even though Kaufmann’s is bound for luxury apartments (read about that here) — and classic department stores are becoming a faded memory — we can relive these cherished memories thanks to this new 3,000-square-foot exhibit.

See original artifacts from Kaufmann’s and Macy’s, such as ornate window displays, massive Mr. and Mrs. Claus ornaments, parade costumes and float materials, and the Santaland mailbox where thousands of Pittsburgh children mailed Christmas wish lists to the North Pole.

Check out classic toys spanning seven decades, including WWI toy soldiers, a Slinky, Mrs. Potato Head, Red Ryder BB gun, and Rock ’em Sock ’em Robots. Kids and kids at heart will love the interactive area featuring retro toys you can play with.

You can also find Pittsburgh-themed stocking stuffers and holiday gifts in the Museum Shop and snap a selfie with Kris Kringle.

Jennifer BaronArts & Entertainment / Jobs Editor

Jennifer has worked at the Mattress Factory, Brooklyn Museum of Art and Dahesh Museum of Art and is co-author of Pittsburgh Signs Project: 250 Signs of Western Pennsylvania. She also is co-coordinator of Handmade Arcade. Musically, she is in a band called The Garment District and is a founding member of Brooklyn's The Ladybug Transistor.