Heavy rain and wind is in our immediate future, but Portlanders are well used to working our way around inclement weather. If you’re looking to make weekend plans but want to stick to something that’s low commitment, we’ve rounded up a selection of events that fit the bill, many of which are also appropriate for spooky season, like Blow Pony's Annual Homoween or Imago Theatre's The Lonely Vampire. If all you're up for is sitting in a movie theater, we've got you covered there too: Dune and The French Dispatch are both out this weekend, and the horror film-filled GuignolFest returns for its 13th year. For more ideas, check out our guide to Halloween treats or our pumpkin patch guide.
Kickstand Comedy Presents: Jake Noll & Friends
After teaching online comedy classes for the last year, LA-based stand-up comic Jake Noll is coming to Portland for their first time ever to perform live. Their impressive resume also includes being named Chicago's Best Comic 2019 and opening for comedians including Cameron Esposito, so you should be in for a good time.
(Honey Latte Cafe, Buckman, $10 online, $12 at the door)
Quality Ski Time Film Tour
Global snowsports brand Salomon is "kicking off fall the best way we know how: by dreaming of winter." Get stoked for ski season with this program of five ski films: Tales from Cascadia by Blank Collective Films, Summit Fever by The Fifty Project and Cody Townsend, Girl Crush by Mali Noyes and Mary McIntyre, Ups and Downs by Sweetgrass Productions and Drew Petersen, and Pit Boss by Blank Collective Films and Chris Rubens. The evening will also include athlete poster signings and gear giveaways.
(Aladdin Theater, Brooklyn, $15)
Drake Nite (Happy Birthday 6 God) PDX
Celebrate the one and only Aubrey Graham's birthday two nights early at this dance night with DJ Ronin Roc. You can also expect a Drake-themed photo booth and Drake music videos.
(Morrison Market, Buckman, $10)
Fat Tony, Cadence Weapon
Houston-based rapper Fat Tony's bio reads: "For the last decade, Anthony Lawson Jude Ifeanyichukwu Obiawunaotu has been everywhere: from star-making turns on the first A$AP Rocky mixtape to hosting shows on Viceland and Super Deluxe, to co-founding a DIY culture magazine to playing every worthwhile rap party in America and burning the stage down every single time." He'll come to Portland on tour with Canadian rapper and writer Cadence Weapon, whose albums have been shortlisted for the Polaris Prize and who served for two years as the Poet Laureate of Edmonton. Milc and Bryson, the Alien will provide support.
(Polaris Hall, Boise, $15)
Portland-based Night Heron is the new project of former Radiation City frontman Cameron Spies, whose new record, Instructions for the Night, features "whispery" sad songs that "achieve an eccentric, ASMR-level of shush." They'll be joined by fellow Portland moody pop bands Glistener and Rain Cult.
(Doug Fir Lounge, Buckman, $10)
Rainbow Face and Basso Profundo
The sounds of progressive, experimental math rock groups Rainbow Face (named Best of 2020 by Prog Magazine) and Basso Profundo will fill No Fun's intimate space. Grab a Devil's Dill sandwich and take a load off.
(No Fun, Buckman, $8)
Power Hour is technically two hours—one to pregame on $2 cocktails (7–8 pm), then another to be entertained by local drag performers.
(Local Lounge, King, free)
Joy Cinema Scare-A-Thon
The independent west side movie house presents a monstrous fright fest featuring older classics, an '80s vampire flick, and rare gems. See one or see them all, but keep a tight grip on your popcorn and other movie snacks. Host Jeff "Punk Rock" Martin will provide entertainment during intermissions with trivia, merch, and "plenty of bad jokes."
(Joy Cinema & Pub, Tigard, $6 - $27)
Marvel Years & Maddy O’Neal with the Bzy Project
Two touring DJs / producers, Vermont-based Marvel Years (who makes "glitch-hop / electro-soul dance music") and Denver-based Maddy O'Neal, will headline this show, which will also feature support from the Portland-based BZY Project.
(Star Theater, Old Town-Chinatown, $15)
Plastic Cactus, Blood Lemon, Childspeak
"Dark, desert-inspired surf rock" is on offer from Portland-based Plastic Cactus, who will be supported by Boise's Blood Lemon (who recently wrote the "perfect soundtrack to kick off 2021") and locals Childspeeak, who "will make your face tingle, just a little."
(Bunk Bar, Central Eastside, $13)
Riley Downing with Kassi Valazza
Fresh on the heels of releasing his first solo album, Start It Over, Missouri-based singer-songwriter Riley Downing—who you may know from New Orleans group the Deslondes—will come to Portland, supported by Portland's own Kassi Valazza.
(Mississippi Studios, Mississippi, $15)
Blow Pony's Annual Homoween
Queer nightlife staple Blowpony makes their triumphant return just in time for Halloween with Dai Burger, Will Sheridan, Zepheur, Angelica D'Vil (Horse Mother), and more fierce and filthy performers. Let's ride.
(Bossanova Ballroom, Buckman, $13)
Drag 'N Drop
Sequin McQueen will host the October installment of this monthly drag variety show, which will also feature Angel Darko, Click Tha Icon, Flow, Jack Awful, Viper, and special guests Radium.Eve and DJ Aurora.
(Local Lounge, King, $10)
From Beyond the Drag
A stellar cast of drag performers (Diana Fire, Marla Darling, Mister Zero-1, Kizmy Astrid, PhantomX, Shuck Macabre, Jay j. Carmichaels, Mona Chrome, Kat Van Dayum, Zee to Zed) will rise from beyond the grave to get spooky and kooky for your entertainment. The self-described "Sexy Rasputin" Babylon Brooks will host.
(Mississippi Pizza Pub & Atlantis Lounge, Mississippi, $7 - $15)
The 13th Annual GuignolFest
This year, 33 filmmaking teams will have 72 hours to create a short film masterpiece (that clocks in at 6 minutes and 66 seconds) in an attempt to strike fear into your heart. A matinee screening will feature the works of teams who have been competing for less than three years, while the nighttime screening will show shorts from teams that have competed for three or more years. Steel yourselves for a ride through horror subgenres such as occult, haunted object, slasher, and more.
(Clinton Street Theater, Hosford-Abernethy, $15)
Church of Hive
DJs Skully and Pains Grey will head up this goth, industrial, and darkwave dance party.
(Star Theater, Old Town-Chinatown, $5)
Sweet N' Juicy followed by Sinferno Cabaret!
Fittingly, Sweet N' Juicy consists of three humans dressed up as pieces of fruit: "a Banana named Sweet, a Pineapple named N', and a Strawberry named Juicy." They've been compared to a funk version of the Talking Heads, and they "just want you to have fun." Stick around after for Sinferno Cabaret, included in the ticket price.
(Dante's, Old Town-Chinatown, $15)
READINGS & TALKS
Happy Hour Author Talk & Book Signing with Emilly Prado
Local Chicana writer and DJ Emilly Prado will read an excerpt from her dynamic debut memoir, Funeral For Flaca, which takes the structure of a mixtape and follows her coming of age through personal essays. Complimentary mimosas will be offered at the beginning of the event, and folks who purchase a copy of the book will be able to get them signed by the author.
(Gerding Theater at the Armory, Pearl District, free)
Hunt for a Halloween costume at the Flea’s last event of the season, which will include games and prizes. You’ll also find fall florals and spooky decor from vendors like Bramble Workshop, Hallow PDX, and Vibrant Valley Farm.
(Electric Blocks, Central Eastside, free)
Scrap Creative Reuse Crafternoon!
Unleash your inner child as your actual child unleashes their creativity during this Sunday afternoon workshop series at creative reuse center and craft store SCRAP. Their education specialist will guide families step-by-step through creative activities with themes ranging from bugs and robots to zines and journals. If the craft of the week doesn't spark joy, an assortment of craft supplies will be available for you to "free-create."
(Scrap PDX, Goose Hollow, $5)
The Great Pumpkin Hunt
Beloved Portland artist Mike Bennett will hide 100 of his quirky illustrated pumpkin cutouts among 70+ businesses in the downtown Portland area for scavenger hunters to find and keep. Keep an eye on Bennett's Instagram stories for clues, or if you'd rather cut to the chase, find some pumpkin paraphernalia at the Crypto-Zoo: Museum of Mystery gift shop.
(Friday–Sunday, various locations, free)
Kids Monster Fest
Geared towards kids 12 and under (and scaredy cats of all ages—no judgment!), this matinee event will take you through Underhill Manor, where you'll receive a magic beacon designed to ward off ghouls and monsters. Keep an eye out for resident bat Harry to win prizes, and get in the wholesome Halloween spirit without having to worry about nightmares later.
(Saturday–Sunday, Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Lloyd District, $5 - $8)
Oregon City Public Library Halloween Scavenger Hunt
The historic library will lead kids and adults of all ages on a scavenger hunt through Oregon City with two ways to play. An easy mode will task young kids and families with finding Halloween items hidden in the windows of town landmarks like Ermatinger House, Pioneer Center, and City Hall. In the advanced mode, older kids, teens, and adults will tap on a digital badge to read riddles and guess which noteworthy books they're referring to. Answers will be posted at each scavenger hunt stop. Each registered participant will receive a small prize and prize drawing ticket.
(Friday–Sunday, Oregon City Public Library, Oregon City, free)
Triskelee Farm Fall Fest
Live out your Stardew Valley daydream on this adorable farm, which will offer a tour, hayrides, pumpkin painting, pumpkin bowling, caramel dip, hot cocoa, cider, horse rides, farm snacks, and more. While you're there, hang out with goats, alpacas, ostriches, piglets, baby bunnies, and other critters.
(Saturday-Sunday, Triskelee Farm, West Linn, $10)
This latest adaptation of Frank Herbert’s loooooooong novel series is indeed a treat. It’s a thing of great visual beauty, from the lengthy landscapes to the camera’s loving, intimate attention to the characters’ bodies. They made this movie so you could gaze upon it, and I can understand the director’s dismay that many will watch its debut on streaming services instead of in theaters. An important note: You will see Oscar Isaac tastefully nude. About time. Read more from Matt Baume here.
(Friday–Sunday, all weekend)
The French Dispatch
For 50 years, The French Dispatch wedged itself between the pages of the Evening Star, a newspaper based in Liberty, Kansas. The fictional supplemental magazine that also serves as the title of Wes Anderson's latest film hired American writers to relay the comings and goings of a fictional French metropolis. The BFI described the movie as Anderson's "love letter to journalism," and it is, indeed, stuffed to the brim with the director's twee enthusiasm for glossy magazines like the New Yorker. Print media fanatics will be thoroughly delighted with this film. Read more from Jas Keimig here.
(Friday–Sunday, all weekend)
The Lonely Vampire
Imago Theatre knows how to kick it, inviting costumed folks down to their parking lot for a drink before ducking inside for a performance of the half an hour-long play The Lonely Vampire. Imago details the show, which was written and directed by artistic co-director Carol Triffle: "Willful and insatiable Dracula is propelled by a comic elusive desire. Is it hunger for blood, eternal love or ephemeral love hidden from sunshine that haunts his life at night and his dreams in the days? Who knows? Camilla doesn’t, but perhaps the Dancer knows before it’s too late."
(Friday–Sunday, Imago Theatre, Buckman, $15)
A new outdoor market in the Parkrose neighborhood, Parkrose Marketplace features local, Indigenous, and global arts & crafts, live music, food and drinks, and plenty of vendors to peruse. For the October edition, they also encourage you to bring your costumed kids for trick-or-treating.
(Saturday–Sunday, Parkrose, free)
Patterns Do Furnish a Life
Yemini American artist Mohammed Murshed's new exhibit "challenges the oppressive, particularly in dismantling the Patriarchy by reimagining conventional Yemini ornamentation, leading to an embodied experience of hope, healing, reimagining, and love." Curated by Art & About founder Ashley Gifford and PNCA grad Kyle Cohlmia, the exhibit features textiles and video that "highlight the traditional patterns of Yemen, such as the colors and patterns women wear on their scarves and garments." Stop by the opening reception on October 23 from 5–8 pm to check it out and meet some of the folks involved with the show.
(Friday-Sunday, SATOR Projects, Central Eastside, free; opening)
Crypto-Zoo: Museum of Mystery
Whimsical illustrator and woodworker Mike Bennett presents his most ambitious project yet: an entire museum full of monsters just in time for Halloween.
(Friday–Sunday, St. Johns, free)
The Haus of Luna
This new installation from Argentinian artist Sol Cejas is a "7-room multimedia interactive experience that represents an exploration of the self through experience design." Expect lots of surrealism, classical sculptures, and neon colors. She adds in her statement, "Each room plays with the senses in a unique way: some might make you feel like you’re floating, while others are more grounding."
(Saturday–Sunday, Vancouver, $15)