Don’t shop on Black Friday, Pittsburgh. Do these things instead.

Drink! Exercise! Learn!

Instead of shopping, spend some time in Schenley or another Pittsburgh park.

Instead of shopping, spend some time in Schenley or another Pittsburgh park.

iris / Flickr
Sarah Anne Hughes

As you sit down to a Thanskgiving meal with friends or family today, your body may be present but your mind may already be drifting to tomorrow — Black Friday. Here’s something to consider.

You do not need to abandon your bed or your loved ones for the cold embrace of capitalism. There are other things to do today in the area. Some of them are even free.


  • Ugly sweaters, cheapish Sam Adams and walking — what more could you ask for? Pittsburgh Pub Crawls is hosting an ugly sweater edition in Shadyside from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. Participating bars — The Yard, Cappy’s Cafe, William Penn Tavern, Steel Cactus, Mario’s East Side Saloon and Shady Grove — will sell Sam Adams drafts for $4. Find out more here. 


  • If you feel the need to literally run from your family by Friday, Mojo Running & Multisport is hosting a 3.5-mile trail run that starts at the North Park Boathouse at 9 a.m. Like all good things in life, the run is free. Find out more here.
  • Ragnar Trail Ambassadors will lead a 3.6-mile run in Settlers Cabin Park. The run starts at 10 a.m. at the Tomahawk Shelter. Enter the park via Ridge Road in Collier Township. Find out more here. 

Go outside

  • Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy is opting in to REI’s Opt Outside campaign. “On Black Friday itself, the Parks Conservancy urges folks to explore the 47 miles of trails — and 2,015 acres — that our city’s regional parks have to offer,” a spokesperson said via email. On Sunday, environmental educators will lead two hikes (10:30 a.m. to noon; 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.) that start at the Frick Environmental Center. Find out more here.
  • Did you miss Light Up Night? Etna’s is Friday, and it features a parade down Butler Street, music, a bonfire and fireworks. Find out more here.


  • The Mattress Factory is hosting a family day, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission includes face painting and hot chocolate. Kids will also be encouraged to make “a collaborative tape perspective project inspired by Stephen Brahm” and create “imaginative dwellings inspired by Dennis Maher.” DJ Dave Zak will provide music. Find out more here.
  • Winter Fridays at the Frick kicks off on Black Friday. There will be carolers, alcohol, cookie decorating, tours and art. Find out more here. 


  • Black Friday, naturally, means square dancing. Steel City Squares’ Black Friday square dance is BYOB and will take place at an Uptown auto body shop. Find out more here.
  • It’s Title Town’s 7th anniversary, which means a party at Spirit. DJ Buscrates will be “throwing down a not-so-common, all-45 set of fat funk, synth soul, underground boogie, disco beats, and beyond.” Find out more here. 


  • A free Parker Posey double feature at the Ace Hotel? No, you’re not dreaming. “Party Girl” starts at 7 p.m. and “House of Yes” screens at 8:45 p.m. Find out more here. 
  • New episodes of Gilmore Girls are on Netflix. You can always watch that.

OK, fine. Shop.

  • If your really must shop, consult our guide to Downtown businesses which includes today’s I Made It! market featuring dozens of regional artisans.
  • Attention, beer nerds: Goose Island’s Bourbon County collaborations go on sale to the general public at Bierport at noon. People who subscribe to the Lawrenceville beer store’s newsletter can show up at 11 a.m. to pick up this year’s Stout, Coffee Stout and/or Barleywine. There’s a limit of two Bourbon County bottles per customer. Find out more here.
  • The Ujamaa Collective features items made by local black artists as well as fair-trade products from the Caribbean and Africa. The Hill District store opens at 9 a.m. Friday. Find out more here.