Enjoy some nostalgia from Pittsburgh’s past, or explore some of the sights unseen throughout the city with our Virtual Storytelling–On-Demand.

All of our DOORS OPEN Pittsburgh Virtual Storytelling live events have been recorded and are available for on-demand playback through Patreon, our content host. 

Watch as many as you want, when you want–and get access to new content when it becomes available. 

Cost is $10 per month for access to all of our Virtual Storytelling On-Demand recordings.  Each event is approximately 45-55 minutes in length.  You can cancel your membership at any time.  Please register with our content host, Patreon.

As a registered 501(c)(3), we rely on the support of patrons like you, who also love Pittsburgh, to support our educational programming for all ages and across all communities.”

Virtual Storytelling On-Demand

Abandoned Pittsburgh: Gears & Ghosts

Join photographer Chuck Beard for a look inside some of Pittsburgh’s iconic and historic sites, including Duquesne Steel Works, Carrie Furnace, St Nicholas Croatian Catholic Church, Overholt Distillery, Hazelwood Brewery,

August Wilson’s Hill District

This story will provide a sense of what the Hill District was like during the era when Pulitzer prize-winning playwright August Wilson was growing up there and how this iconic

Bayernhof Museum: Music Boxes & Other Obscure History

We invite you for a virtual on-location peek inside one of Pittsburgh’s most unusual mansions–the Bayernhof Museum.  This mansion contains a world-class collection of music boxes and other antique automatic

Behind the Beer: A Peek Inside Penn Brewery

Let us take you on a behind-the-scenes tour of Penn Brewery where you will learn the fascinating history behind our 19th-century building, as well as show you how we make

Behind The Stage Doors: Rocking at the T-Bird

The Thunderbird Cafe & Music Hall had humble beginnings. In 1933 this space was known as Michalski’s Café and was granted the 2nd liquor license in the city of Pittsburgh

Behind the Stage Doors: A Promoter’s Life

Do you enjoy large-scale concerts in the 70’ and 80’s here in Pittsburgh? Ever wonder who makes that happen?  Meet one of Pittsburgh’s prominent concert promoters, Rich Engler, of DiCesare-Engler

Behind the Stage Doors: If These Walls Could Talk

Go inside Pittsburgh’s only “juke joint” and meet Moondog’s owner, Ronnie Esser.  Moondog’s is one of the region’s most significant stages for Blues music over the last 30 years, consistently

Behind the Stage Doors: Shama Lama Ding Dong

If you are a music fan who grew up in Pittsburgh over the last 50 years, you know the name Johnny Angel.  Johnny invites you into his museum, Ginchy Stuff,

Behind the Walls: Western State Penitentiary

Western State Penitentiary is a former Pennsylvania state prison, originally constructed between 1878 and 1893 on the east banks of the Ohio River. The facility has been closed since 2017,

Beyond the No Outlet Sign: Private Spaces in Public Places

How many times while driving around Pittsburgh have you seen a street sign which states No Outlet? Pittsburgh may lead the country with the number of dead-end streets. Many are

City Stairs: Stepping Back into Pittsburgh’s History One Staircase at a Time

City steps were the first mass transportation system, designed to bring workers from the hills to the mills.  Did you know that Pittsburgh has the most stairways of any other

Clemente Museum: Telling the Humanitarian Story

We commemorated MLK Day 2021 by celebrating Roberto Clemente, a black Latino, known as The Great One. Incensed by the injustice, inequality and racism, Clemente extended his humanitarian activism to

Culinary Journey from Portugal to Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh has evolved in all things having to do with food and culinary.  With humble beginnings dating back to the produce terminal in the Strip District to Pittsburgh being a

Daniel Burnham: Made No Little Plan in Pittsburgh

Did you know that, outside Chicago, no other city has more Burnham buildings? Learn more about this man and the buildings he built in Pittsburgh from local author and historian,

Development of Oakland

Oakland is home to museums, universities, and medical centers, but do you know how it all started? You will learn how Mary Schenley’s land holdings, combined with major philanthropy of

Finding Solitude: George Westinghouse

What happened to the mansion called Solitude – the mysterious Pittsburgh home of one of the world’s greatest inventors and industrialists? Why can’t we visit it today…or can we?  Pam Gianni

Frank Lloyd Wright in Pittsburgh

Frank Lloyd Wright was the most talked about “starchitect” of the mid-20th century and inventor of Prairie style architecture. He had a twenty-year relationship with Pittsburgh. Fallingwater was only the

Ghosts of Pittsburgh

Join storyteller Alan Irvine for an evening exploring the darker side of Pittsburgh’s history with ghost stories from the City’s days as a frontier settlement up to modern times. Discover

Glen Hazel’s WWII Housing: 80 Years of History

Explore 80 years of the Glen Hazel Defense Housing Project’s history.  Originally built for relocation of steelworkers during World War II, the project was the largest of four federally owned

H. J. Heinz—Secrets of a Pickle King

We all know about the ketchup and pickles. But what do we know about H.J. Heinz the man?  Sunday schools and opulence, alcohol and purity, love, and betrayal. This is

Henry Hornbostel’s Impact on Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh’s beautification efforts are ever evolving. Henry Hornbostel’s early twentieth century advancements in elegant architecture made Pittsburgh a leader in the City Beautiful movement. Employing his mastery of the Beaux

Holiday Cheers! A Truly Unique Winery Experience

Join head vintner, Duane Rieder, on-location at the Engine House 25 Wines, a discreet and private wine cellar under the Clemente Museum.  DOORS OPEN Pittsburgh gives you an on-location tour

I Shall Always Love You Isaly’s

Take a walk through Isaly’s history to learn why so many Pittsburghers have fond memories of the company, why its ice cream and chipped ham are still regional favorites, and

Inside the City of Pittsburgh Vault

Get virtual access inside the City’s Vault.  The City Vault is where hundreds of years of legislative records are stored and preserved.  In 2016 the City hired the first-ever archivist

Jewish Squirrel Hill: 1907-1957

Squirrel Hill has been the “Jewish part of Pittsburgh” for nearly a century. How did that happen? To find the answer, we’ll follow the trail year by year, looking at

Jonas Salk Ends Paralyzing Summers

Everyone who is old enough remembers where they were on April 12, 1955 when the Polio Vaccine was heralded. Horns honked, church bells rang, people celebrated in the streets. It

Kennywood Behind the Screams

Kennywood Park has been Pittsburgh’s playground since the 19th century, when baseball games, track races and pony rides were more common than Potato Patch fries and amusement rides! One of

Lost Treasures of Pittsburgh

Get nostalgic and reflect on the lost treasures of Pittsburgh with local author Rossilynne Culgan who is writing a book about the lost treasures of Pittsburgh. Rossilynne will share her

Mapping: From Pittsburgh to Middle-Earth

Maps change how we see the places where we live. For the past seven years, local cartographer Stentor Danielson has been drawing maps of Pittsburgh and other real cities in

Multi-stories: Skyscrapers and the Tycoons That Built Them

Back when skyscrapers were a new invention, business tycoons in Pittsburgh and across the country invested in this new form of high tech to proclaim their power. Learn about some key

Nationality Rooms: Uncover a Connection

Join DOORS OPEN Pittsburgh as we visit the Nationality Rooms in Oakland’s Cathedral of Learning.  These rooms were created to celebrate the cultural diversity of Pittsburgh. Learn about the thematic

Nellie Bly: How a Sassy Girl from Pittsburgh Became a Legend

This is the story of a girl from Pittsburgh who proved her mettle one front page headline after another. She took on prickly social issues. She went undercover when undercover

Obscure Pittsburgh

Did you know the ball in Pittsburgh goes up instead of down? Join DOORS OPEN Pittsburgh and storyteller Chris Whitlatch as he shares the obscure holiday traditions of Pittsburgh along

Painting Pittsburgh Neighborhoods, by Artist Ron Donoughe

Join DOORS OPEN Pittsburgh for a virtual visit to the studio of artist Ron Donoughe. He has been painting Pittsburgh and Western Pennsylvania for the last 30 years.   His studio

Pittsburgh Astronomer’s Tiny Abode

Ever wonder what it might be like to live in a “tiny house?”  DOORS OPEN Pittsburgh invites you into a Pittsburgh astronomer’s tiny house.  This 500-square-foot house was built by

Pittsburgh Jazz: Home of the Innovators

The Pittsburgh jazz community has fostered diversity across sectarian lines of race, gender, age and socioeconomic factors for decades.  Learn about the depth of the jazz scene of the 60s

Pittsburgh: America’s Glass City

For more than 200 years, Western Pennsylvania has been a center for the production, design and marketing of glass. It is also home to an internationally-known education center and studio,

Pittsburgh’s First Pandemic: The White Plague

Join DOORS OPEN Pittsburgh for the inside story behind the White Plague that ravaged Pittsburgh at the turn of the century.  Little was known about tuberculosis and we can learn from

Pittsburgh’s Lost Chinatown

In the early 1900s, Pittsburgh’s Chinatown was thriving. With more than 20 restaurants, bakeries, import shops, and food markets, it was a lively center for commerce.   Its temple, social halls,

Secrets of Pittsburgh’s Bridges

Think you know Pittsburgh’s bridges? Think again. Join author and engineer Todd Wilson for a virtual tour of Pittsburgh’s bridges where he will point out many of the secrets of

Significant African-American Buildings in Pittsburgh

Explore the region’s historically-significant buildings which document the accomplishments of Pittsburgh’s African American Community. We share the architecture and more importantly the pride, perseverance, and perspective of resourceful and creative local

That Was Where? Mill Locations in Pittsburgh

Western Pennsylvania has long been viewed as the home of the steel industry but what happens when the landscape changes and mills close or move away?   Long before the dominance

The Hidden Jewish Neighborhoods of Pittsburgh

On this fast-paced virtual tour, we will visit 12 city neighborhoods. With an eagle eye and help from archival records, we will find Pittsburgh’s Jewish history hidden in the cityscape.

Theatres of Downtown: A 100-Year Story

Did you know that Pittsburgh represents the birth of the “movie theatre?”  This story begins in 1896, on the day that an image first flickered on a screen in Downtown

Theatres of the Old Northside

Do you ever wonder what happened to the old Garden Theatre ticket booth? How about the nickelodeon theatre on Spring Garden Avenue? Join storyteller, Jim Kastner, as he takes you on a

To Pittsburgh, from Germany with love: Holiday Markets

German Christmas markets date back to the 1400’s. Did you know that many of our beloved Christmas traditions evolved from these markets? We uncover the stories and magnificence of these

Votes for Women in Western Pennsylvania

Join us as we explore women’s battle for the election ballot in Western Pennsylvania. Meet little-known Pittsburgh suffragists who paraded, protested, and rallied their way to the ballot box.  Along

Western Penitentiary: Life and Death Inside the “Wall”

This is a story of life and death inside Western Penitentiary, also known as “Western Pen” and “The Wall.”  Thousands of convicted persons through the years have lived and worked in

When George Washington Almost Lost His Head

One July 4th proved to be a nightmare morning for George Washington. The Virginia soldier was just 22 years old when he inadvertently started what is often called the first

When George Washington Defeated Death…Again

George Washington played a critical role in what turned out to be the worst British-American defeat during the French and Indian War. That disaster–Braddock’s Defeat–took place less than 10 miles

Whiskey, Women, and Pittsburgh’s Diamond

Since Pittsburgh’s early days, when residents called it “the Diamond,” Market Square has been a place where people go to have a drink. But from the days of the Whiskey

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