Category Archives: Light Up Night

photo by ginnerobot / Flickr

With no traditional Pittsburgh Christmas parade planned, YaJagoff Podcast steps in with ‘fake’ parade

In September, WPXI-TV said it would no longer produce an annual Christmas parade.

Originating with the Kaufmann’s Department Store, the Celebrate the Season Parade marched along Fifth Avenue under the Kaufmann’s Clock for many holiday seasons.

A brief history: Kaufmann’s became Macy’s in 2006, the Downtown store closed in 2015, the parade route changed in 2015 and then there was no parade in 2020 due to the pandemic but WPXI did a 40th anniversary special of the 39 previous parades.

Local celebrities, national stars, musicians and a myriad of floats, bands and other marchers participated over the years. Alex Trebek. Jerome Bettis. Mr. McFeely. Smiley Cookie. Kenny Kangaroo. “Days of our Lives” stars.

Cue John and Rachael from the YaJagoff Podcast.

The Pittsburgh-centric podcasters will host “The YaJagoff FAKE holiday parade.” (Git aht a tahn.)

The podcast duo shared great memories of the former Celebrate the Season Parade from Kaufmann’s and WPXI.

“We would always go home and watch it and see if we could see ourselves,” John told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “This parade was a big deal to me. My kids always knew we’re going down to the parade. No matter how cold or miserable it was, we were there.”

The “fake” parade will include a lineup of Pittsburghers.

And, the best part? There’s no actual parade route, so you’ll watch from any screen! (The parade “location” is being kept secret so as to not have people show up, apparently.)

The lineup includes:

The fake parade will be livestreamed at 8:45 a.m. Dec. 11. Find details on how to watch here.

What happened to the gingerbread at PPG Place?

In short: The gingerbread houses at PPG Place’s Winter Garden were gentrified.

After more than 15 years of calling PPG Place home, the gingerbread displays were ousted to allow for Highwood Properties (owners of PPG Place) to use the Winter Garden space for private functions such as weddings and corporate holiday functions.

So, the 2018 holiday season was the final year for the gingerbread displays at Winter Garden.

But, never fear, the city government stepped in and rescued the gingerbread displays. (Some of the ingredients of a Hallmark Channel Christmas movie plot are here.)

In 2019, the competition and display moved to the City-County Building, where it was right-sized for the space in the lobby. In 2020, the competition was virtual.

For 2021, winning gingerbread houses will be displayed behind glass and viewable from the City-County Building portico on Grant Street, according to the Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership.

Find more information about the display here.