Photo of a tour

See the murals: schedule a tour

Public Tours: Saturdays, 11 am and 12:30 pm

We are happy to provide regularly scheduled tours of the Vanka Murals on Saturdays at St. Nicholas Church.  Please note: Due to Allegheny County being identified as a high transmission location, masks are once again required for all visitors. Please bring your own mask. We cannot guarantee the availability of disposable masks. See the “Special Notice for Visitors” below for additional safety information. Occasionally, church events force a rescheduling; so please do schedule in advance.

Guided tours, provided by trained, enthusiastic docents last about an hour. In this time, you’ll gain insights into Vanka’s art and the experiences that shaped his ideas. Our terrific volunteer docents discuss and answer questions about Vanka’s early life, his success in Europe and his life in America.

Admission: $10 per person.

Private Tours: By Request

Private tours may be arranged with advance notice. Please complete the form below. SPMMMV requests a minimum of eight people or a donation of $80 to reserve an exclusive day, time and Docent. Private tours for smaller groups may be accommodated by combining them with other tours when possible.

Please try to schedule a private tour at least a week in advance. We will do our best to accommodate all requests.

Questions? tours@vankamurals.org

Tour Information

Vanka Murals: Special Notice to Visitors
As of August 6th, masks are required for ALL visitors.

A few other tour related items:

  1. Advance Reservations are requested. All visitors must provide contact information in advance or on the day of the tour. If you are unable to use our online registration system below, please email: tours@vankamurals.org to make your reservations. Please note: If there are no advance reservations for either tour — 11AM or 12:30PM — we may cancel those tours for drop-in visits.
  2. Masks are required and social distancing will be observed.
  3. Online payment for admission ($10 per person), merchandise, and/or donations is preferred but checks payable to SPMMMV and cash are accepted onsite and via mail: SPMMMV, 24 Maryland Ave, Millvale, PA  15209.
  4. Please try to arrive at least 10 minutes prior to the start of the tour and enter via the ramp on the south side of the Church.

We can’t wait to see you. Our thanks in advance for your patience as we maintain these protocols for the health and safety of our visitors and volunteers.

Questions? tours@vankamurals.org

School tours and field trips

Maxo Vanka’s murals provide a great platform for learning for all ages. Contact us about lessons in the immigrant experience, social justice, art and more.

Getting here

By car: Follow the easy directions via google map

On foot: A sidewalk with curb cuts run up Maryland Ave. to the church. The accessible building entrance is located on the rectory side of the church.  Maryland Ave. can be reached via a short, picturesque walk across the 40th St. Bridge or the Millvale Riverfront Trail.

By bus: Two bus lines run right off of Maryland Ave. The 2 Bus Line runs along Grant Ave. between Downtown and the North Hills, and the 1 Bus Line runs along E. Ohio St. between Downtown and Tarentum. You can plan your trip at the Port Authority website.

By bike: Millvale is served by a bike trail along the Millvale Riverfront Trail from Downtown. In addition, there are bike lanes connecting the 40th St. Bridge to Maryland Ave. The nearest Healthy Ride Bikeshare Station is located across the 40th St. Bridge at Butler St. & 42nd St. in Lawrenceville. Find stations and information at the Healthy Ride website.

 Thanks for supporting the murals.

Tour admission fees are essential to our efforts to ensure public access to the murals. You may pay your admission at the Church or in advance.

Special Note

St. Nicholas is an active church. SPMMMV provides public access through our tour program on Saturdays. These hours may be delayed or cancelled due to church activities. Please check our website or Facebook for any cancellation notices. Tours at other hours must be scheduled through SPMMMV. Mural viewing is not possible during regularly schedule weekly mass services.

Accessibility

SPMMMV welcomes all visitors and strives to provide the best possible experience for everyone. If you have questions about accessibility that are not addressed below, please contact us at 412-408-3180 or by email at info@vankamurals.org. You may also contact our Accessibility Coordinator listed below.

Parking and Entrance

Accessible parking spaces are clearly marked and available in the church-side parking area with direct access to the accessibility ramp entrance on the east side of St. Nicholas between the Church and the Rectory. The ramp location is clearly indicated on the Church building.

Accessibility Coordinator

SPMMMV’s Accessibility Coordinator is Anna Doering, Executive Director. She may be reached at: adoering@vankamurals.org or 412-408-3180.

Request a tour

Please fill in all required* fields. 

Frequently asked questions

When can the murals be viewed by the public?

Public tours, led by docents, are held on Saturdays at 11:00 am and 12:30pm. Private tours at other times are by appointment only. A minimum of eight people or a donation of $80 is required. Due to church schedule, private tours are not available after 3:00 pm on Saturday or before 12:30 pm on Wednesday.

For advance reservation (including pre-payment of admission fee) and private tour requests email us at tours@vankamurals.org.

What about mural viewing during church?

Please remember that St. Nicholas is an active parish. Mural viewing is NOT allowed during regularly scheduled Mass, 5:00 pm Saturday and 8:00 am Wednesday, or during other church-related activities.

When should we arrive?

Please try to arrive at least 10 minutes ahead of the tour start time. If you arrive late, you may join a tour in progress or wait for the next one. The $10 admission is still required.

Who leads the tours?

Trained volunteers serve as docents. We recruit volunteers with diverse experiences, expertise and interests. A passion for the Vanka Murals and desire to tell their story is the primary qualification.

How long is the tour?

Tours are approximately 60 minutes. Docents are happy to answer questions during and after the tour.

What’s the cost of a tour?

Tours are $10 per person. Admission fees and merchandise help to conserve and light the murals. They are also essential to our mission to provide access to the murals for the general public. Donations are fully tax deductible. If a donation receipt is desired, we recommend that you make an online donation or pay by a check payable to: SPMMMV.

Is there on-site parking?

Yes. Please follow directional signage upon arrival. Parking is available in the convent parking lot across from the church on Maryland Avenue and around the church. If your group is arriving by tour bus, email us for instructions: tours@vankamurals.org.

Please note: Exit from Church-side parking lot is behind the Rectory building with right turn up Maryland Avenue and left turn left on Logan Street or down to Sheridan Avenue.

Caution: The traffic coming down Logan Street (to the right next to the entrance to the church) does not stop and may be making a sharp left onto Maryland.

Other Parking:  

  • Sprinkler Fitters Lot (behind their building). (Accessible from Maryland, Sheridan Street off Grant OR Sheridan Street off Stanton)
  • Handicap Parking: next to the School. The ramp to the Sanctuary is on the Rectory side of the Church. Spaces are limited. Please let us know in advance if you’ll be needing a space so we can make arrangements if necessary.
  • Street Parking in Millvale if lots are full.
May we photograph/video the murals?

Flash photography is not permitted. However, photography for personal use is allowed. Any other photography must be approved by SPMMMV. For more information, please contact Anna Doering, Managing Director, at: adoering@vankamurals.org or leave a message: 412.408.3180.

We request that any posts to publicly accessible websites or blogs include a link back to our website – www.vankamurals.org – to assist us in our ongoing efforts to raise awareness and support for the murals. And if you are sharing to social media, please include hashtag #SaveMaxoVanka. We also welcome submissions for inclusion on our website at: info@vankamurals.org.

Is the tour suitable for children?

The tour is recommended for children who are capable of paying quiet attention to a presentation of up to one hour and can appreciate the solemnity of their setting. Ask your docent or greeter for children’s activities for use during the tour including noticing cards, scavenger hunts and other educational resources. Additionally, visit our tours page to learn more about school visits and field trips.

More questions? tours@vankamurals.org

Shrines of Pittsburgh

Shrines of Pittsburgh

In 2019, St. Nicholas was named as one of the Shrines of Pittsburgh.

The Society to Preserve the Millvale Murals of Maxo Vanka is an independent and registered 501 (c)(3) organization. Contributions are fully tax deductible.