Numerous holiday events are scheduled throughout the North. Here is a sampling of activities:
Allegheny County Courthouse
Several music groups from North schools will be among 26 choirs, orchestras and bands performing in Allegheny County's 46th Holiday Choral Program on the Grand Staircase of the Allegheny County Courthouse, 436 Grant St.
Participating schools were asked to make donations of filled stockings to The Holiday Project, a program that has provided gifts to children and youth who receive services through the Allegheny County human services system.
Here are student music groups from North schools who will perform:
Friday -- 11:30 a.m. to 12:10 p.m., Ingomar Middle School seventh-grade orchestra.
Monday -- 11:30 a.m. to 12:10 p.m., Carson Middle School orchestra.
Tuesday -- 11:30 a.m. to 12:10 p.m., Ingomar Middle School eighth-grade orchestra; 12:20 to 1 p.m., Northgate Sizzlers jazz band.
Wednesday -- 11:30 a.m. to 12:10 p.m., Deer Lakes chamber singers.
Next Thursday -- 11:30 a.m. to 12:10 p.m., Marshall Middle School seventh-grade orchestra.
Dec. 16 -- 11:30 a.m. to 12:10 p.m., Shaler Area High School Choir; 12:20 to 1 p.m., Shaler Area advanced jazz band.
Dec. 19 -- 11:30 a.m. to 12:10 p.m., Shaler Area High School orchestra.
Performances will be broadcast on the Grant Street side of the Courthouse for the benefit of Downtown shoppers and workers. Concert-goers are invited to make a donation of an unwrapped gift.
The program opened this week with performances Tuesday by the Quaker Valley High School concert choir and the Seneca Valley Intermediate High School choir. The Marshall Middle School eighth-grade orchestra performed Wednesday.
Glenshaw Public Library
A Cocoa and Cookies with Santa program will be presented from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday and Dec. 14 in the Glenshaw Public Library, Old Butler Plank Road, Shaler. The donation is $3.
The event is sponsored by the Glenshaw Century Club to benefit the library.
The annual Christmas Tree Light Up from 7 to 9 p.m. today will feature holiday music, ice carving and a bonfire at the community center.
Also, Santa Claus and Rudolph will arrive on Hampton and North Hampton Volunteer Fire Department trucks, the Depreciation Lands Museum will have displays and a spinning wheel demonstration, and Waste Management will discuss the recycling rewards program and there will be free cookies and hot chocolate.
A craft show, ice carving, carriage rides and a tree-lighting ceremony will be among the activities during the Festival of Lights starting at 3 p.m. Friday on the adjoining campuses of La Roche College and the Sisters of Divine Providence on Babcock Boulevard.
Admission is free, and the event is open to the public.
There will be a craft show in the Zappala College Center, a live Nativity, Christmas karaoke and performances by the La Roche College dance team, Ladies of Note and Village Quartet of TriCounty Choir, Village Singers of TriCounty Choir Institute and the Providence Heights Alpha School students.
For children, there will be activities, games, crafts and a visit from Santa Claus in the Kerr Fitness & Sports Center. The festival will culminate with a fireworks display on the La Roche campus.
Visitors are asked to bring canned goods and nonperishable food items for the Cans for Cocoa food drive to benefit North Hills Community Outreach.
The La Roche Student Government Association will accept donations from 6 to 8 p.m. on the lawn of Bold Hall II. Donors will receive a 12-ounce cup of cocoa in appreciation.
Information: 412-536-1069 or www.laroche.edu.
Verland is hosting its annual Adopt-a-Horse-Donkey Fundraiser to help take care of their therapeutic horses and miniature donkeys.
Individuals or groups will be able to come to the stables and have their picture taken with their new adopted friend.
Donations from $10 to $1,000 will be accepted until Jan. 11. The estimated monthly cost is $150 for each animal.
A certificate of adoption will be given out to all participants at the end of the program.
Fundraiser efforts will help Verland maintain their animals and provide feed, supplements, farrier services, vet care and other associated costs. Proceeds also will help fund reseeding the turnout fields.
Last year's donations went toward a new ramp and lift system for the therapeutic riding program.
Verland is a private, nonprofit agency, providing programs for people with intellectual and physical disabilities from its main campus on 12 acres off of Mount Nebo Road.
St. John Lutheran Church
The North Star Kids will perform Hooray for the Holidays at 2 p.m. Saturday in St. John Lutheran Church, Cumberland Road, McCandless. The event is free and open to the public, but tickets are required as space is limited. Doors open at 1:15.
Children from the audience will be invited on stage for a song and dance event. Also included will be an auction and 50/50 raffle. Information or tickets: 412-366-6610 or www.northstarkids.com.
Yuletide in Sewickley, an annual holiday tradition marked by weeks of events in the village, will be in full effect with Light Up Night from 6 to 10 p.m. Friday.
On the Main Stage on Broad Street, there will be live music by Dancing Queen from 6 to 7:30 and the Lighting of the Village with Mayor Brian Jeffe from 7:30 to 8. Fireworks will follow with music by No Bad JuJu until 10.
On the Orr's Rocks Stage in the Orr's parking lot, there will be performances by the PA Academy of Dance, the Sewickley Academy Jazz Ensemble, the St. James Choir and the Montour Band from 6 to 10 p.m.
Sweetwater Center for the Arts will have Let the Men Cook! from 5 to 9 p.m. and its annual Holiday Mart Shopping from 5 to 10 p.m.
St. Paul's Lutheran Church will offer the Arnie Fleig soup and sandwich dinner from 4:30 to 7 p.m. and the St. Nicholas Shoppe from 5 to 8.
There will be food vendor booths along Beaver and Broad streets, as well as free horse-drawn carriage rides on Beaver Street at Chestnut Street from 5:30 to 9 p.m.
Yuletide in Sewickley continues on Saturday with a Santa Parade at 10:30 a.m. with Santa remaining from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the gazebo in Wolcott Park. Carriage rides will be offered from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., and there will be entertainment by Michelle's Dance Center.
On Dec. 14 and 21, Santa will be in Wolcott Park from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., and there will be free carriage rides from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
On Dec. 14, there will be entertainment by The Allegheny Brass Band. On Dec. 21, the Sewickley Area Theatre Company will perform and "Miracle on Beaver Street" will be performed by Northway Christian Community.
There will be evening shopping Wednesday and Dec. 18 at many of the village stores and entertainment and free carriage rides from 6 to 8 p.m.
On Wednesday, Northway Christian Community Choir will perform from 6 to 7 p.m., followed by The Moon Brass Quartet from 7 to 8 p.m. On Dec.18, The Strolling Strings will perform from 6 to 7:30 and the North Allegheny String Quartet will perform from 6 to 7:30.
Parking will be free after 1 p.m. weekdays and all day Saturdays and Sundays until Dec. 31.