PGC's Top 10 for 2022


Best Class Registration Numbers, Again? 

This story never gets old. We’re once again happy to report that our class registration was stronger than ever. This year we taught over 9,500 students. Total projected class revenue for 2022 is $744,000 which is 18% higher than 2019’s class revenue of $631,600. 

New Accessibility Initiatives 

Since onboarding our new outreach & accessibility coordinator, we’ve launched several new initiatives to make PGC even more inclusive and welcoming including our first braille tour brochure, an audio tour guide supplemented by our mobile Bloomberg Connects App, and sensory kits to enhance the experience for visitors with sensory needs. LEARN MORE ABOUT ACCESSIBILITY AT PGC

Blown Away by Mayor Gainey 

We were thrilled to welcome Pittsburgh Mayor Ed Gainey and his wife Michelle for a special event with Netflix Blown Away Season 2 winner Elliot Walker. The Gaineys joined over 500 visitors to watch Walker demonstrate his skill and talk about his experience on Blown Away

Blown Away by Blown Away  

Season 3 of Blown Away premiered this year, featuring local glass artist John Sharvin and PGC Director of Operations Chris Clarke. County Executive Rich Fitzgerald and hundreds of people were standing on the window sills and chairs in the Hot Shop in October to see the top 3 finalists including John Sharvin, Minhi Su England, and John Moran during their glassblowing demonstration. Since the launch of Season 3, class registrations, email signups, and website traffic have all increased.  

Now There’s an App for That 

We launched our new digital guide on Bloomberg Connects, the free arts and cultural app created by Bloomberg Philanthropies. The Bloomberg Connects app makes Pittsburgh Glass Center accessible for either onsite or offsite visits through photo, audio, and video features. PGC is the first organization on the app that is dedicated to glass art and combines both visual and performance art. Locally, we join Silver Eye Center for Photography to represent the Pittsburgh area on the app. LEARN MORE AND DOWNLOAD THE APP



Colorful Community Project in Highland Park 

We worked with the Highland Park Community Council and friends and families in Highland Park to create a community mosaic mural for the new super playground. Community members designed 166 brightly colored flowers in various shapes and sizes that are incorporated into the 12-foot sign. Additionally, 12 drawings created by children ages 4–11 and one school teacher were chosen to be reimagined in glass and installed around the playground as “hidden mosaics” for children to discover as they explore the space. READ MORE ABOUT THE PROJECT

Free Glass for 450 6th Graders

By the end of the year, 450 sixth graders in Pittsburgh Public Schools (PPS) tried glass at Pittsburgh Glass Center. Next year, we’re expecting 900 more students! 

Through a partnership with PPS, every sixth grade class was invited to come to PGC and get hands-on experience with glass free of charge. We welcomed students from Allegheny Traditional Academy, CAPA, Obama Academy, Pittsburgh Carmalt, Pittsburgh Langley, Pittsburgh Sunnyside, and Sterrett Classical Academy.  

This is the first year for this partnership that is funded by contributions from Huntington Bank and UPMC Health Plan through the Educational Improvement Tax Credit (EITC) program. READ MORE ABOUT THE PROGRAM

SOLD OUT! Teen Boot Camp 

This summer was the first time that we sold out our week-long teen boot camp class. 40 young people ages 13–18 took over PGC to learn all about glass this July helping us fulfill our commitment to growing a community of glass artists. In 2023, plans include doubling the teen boot camp capacity by adding a second week. LEARN ABOUT OUR YOUTH PROGRAMS

New Talent and Equity Director Joins the Team 

Fatima Bunafoor joined us this year as the new talent and equity director. In a cohort with three other mid-size local arts organizations (City Theatre, Mattress Factory, and Pittsburgh Public Theater), Bunafoor was appointed to address common staffing challenges and inclusive human resource objectives. We are already seeing the benefits of Fatima’s hard work in improved onboarding processes, staff morale, and a new DEAI structure at PGC.  

Hot Wheels Hits It Hard

Hot Wheels hit the road early in March this year, taking glassblowing demonstrations out into the community. This year we had more stops than ever, with 33 locations ranging from Uniontown to Forest Hills, Fayette County, and more. Highlights included Barrel and Flow Festival, August Wilson Center Community Day, Festival of Combustion, and People’s Pride. We’re bundling up to start 2023 in January at The Frick Museum. LEARN MORE ABOUT HOT WHEELS