University of Pittsburgh
November 1, 2006

Pitt Nationality Rooms Spread Holiday Cheer

Rooms decorated Nov. 11, open house Dec. 3
Contact:  412-624-4147

PITTSBURGH-The University of Pittsburgh's 26 Nationality Rooms will be decorated in traditional holiday grandeur when nearly 100 committee members work to display various holiday customs from around the world beginning at 9:30 a.m. Nov. 11.

Each year, the rooms that encircle the Cathedral of Learning's Commons Room are trimmed to reflect their ethnic heritage, including such decorations as Lithuanian geometric straw ornaments, Polish paper cutouts, German gingerbread cookies, a French crèche, and a hand-carved Austrian manger scene.

Guides will adapt their daily presentations to include descriptions of holiday traditions celebrated throughout the world during tours, which run from Nov. 12 through Jan 12.

The Holiday Open House, an annual event to showcase the decorated rooms, is scheduled from noon until 4 p.m. Dec. 3 in the Commons Rooms. The event is free. There will be traditional holiday performances every 15 minutes, as well as ethnic foods and crafts for sale.

From Nov. 12 through Dec. 23 and Jan. 3 through Jan. 12, the rooms will be opened Monday through Friday, 9 a.m.-4 p.m.; Saturday, 9 a.m.-2:30 p.m.; and Sunday, 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m. An exception is Friday, Nov. 24, with rooms opening at 10 a.m. From Dec. 27 through Dec. 31, the rooms will open at 10 a.m., with the last tour beginning at 2:30 p.m. The rooms are closed Dec. 24, 25, 26, and Jan.1.

Admission is $3 for adults and $1 for children ages eight to18. Children under eight are admitted free. For more information, call 412-624-6000.