This article was underwritten by Kidsburgh.org, a media partner of NEXTpittsburgh. Sign up here for Kidsburgh’s free newsletter filled with local resources and expert advice on raising healthy, thriving kids in southwestern PA.
Such a busy, busy month! Big stage productions, intimate performances, outdoor fun and the best family festivals of the year fill May with excitement. Kids of all ages will be engaged and entertained this month. Scroll on for May’s highlights.
1. May 2-9: Makeshop: Wind Tunnel, Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh
Kids visiting the Makeshop at the Children’s Museum will experiment with a variety of materials to consider how air makes them move. They’ll learn how leaves blow about in a breeze, understand the struggle to launch a kite and how to keep a paper airplane flying in a straight line. Each creation will be tested in a wind tunnel to see how the experiment soars — or crash lands. The activity is ongoing throughout the day from May 2-9. Free with general admission.
2. May 5-8: “Swan Lake” education programs, Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre
Performances of “Swan Lake” with the PBT Orchestra run May 6-15 at the Benedum Center. But the free educational programming for all ages, from tiny dancers to their ballet-loving grownups, begins earlier. Daily sessions launch on May 5 with Dance the Story, a movement-based storytime presented via Zoom and a virtual preview, The Fascinating History of Swan Lake. Or catch the Director’s Cut, an opening night conversation between dance historian Elizabeth Kaye and Artistic Director Susan Jaffe on May 6. Additional programming runs through May 8. The deep dive sessions are certain to enhance the audience’s experience of and insight into this iconic ballet.
3. May 7, 15, 22: Wildflower Walk, Point State Park
Head Downtown for a guided Wildflower Walk through Point State Park. Park staff will lead families through the park to discover blooming plants as well as those ready to burst onto the scene — plus plants awaiting warmer temps. Dress for the weather for this rain-or-shine activity. Registration is free but required.
4. May 8: Stars on Ice, PPG Paints Arena
Admire the grace and athleticism of champion ice skaters at the Stars on Ice show at PPG Paints Arena. Olympic gold medalist Nathan Chen leads the way with his extraordinary style that’s redefined men’s figure skating. Olympic bronze medalists and two-time U.S. Ice Dance Champions Madison Hubbell and Zachary Donohue bring passion and power to their programs. Others in the star-studded lineup include Karen Chu, Jason Brown and Mariah Bell. Tickets range from $15-$155.
5. May 12-15: “The Music Man Jr.,” Pittsburgh Musical Theater
Fast-talking salesman Harold Hill cons the good folks of River City with the promise of 76 trombones, plus horns of every shape and size. The Pittsburgh Musical Theater performance follows “The Music Man Jr.” adaptation as a Young Artist Production, cast with PMT Conservatory students. Your kids will add another generation to the legions of “Music Man” fans who love this show. Tickets are $15-20.
6. May 12-23: Remake Learning Days, multiple locations
More than 175 hands-on activities will be held throughout Southwestern Pennsylvania during Remake Learning Days. The fun connects kids from pre-K through high school with a wide network of community facilities — schools, museums, libraries and nonprofit organizations. Browse through the online event finder to locate activities in your neighborhood and in different areas of interest. Game Jam Jr., for example, is a video game makers event for grades 7-12 at Homewood Children’s Village. Kids in pre-K and kindergarten will explore with Bee Bots, Circuit Blocks and coding with iPads at Avonworth Primary Center. There are many, many more activities — and most are free.