Event News

The Best Bang for Your Buck Events in Portland This Weekend: Nov 24–26, 2023

Christmas Festival of Lights, Holiday Markets, and More Cheap & Easy Events Under $15
November 24, 2023
The Grotto's twinkly Christmas Festival of Lights kicks off this weekend. (The Grotto Portland via Facebook)
The holiday season is now officially in full swing, and as such, there's plenty to busy yourself with. Make merry at events like the 39th Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony or the Grotto's Christmas Festival of Lights, and take the opportunity to shop small this weekend at the Black Friday Indigenous Marketplace, Spectrum Art Market Presents HoliGAY Market, or Record Store Day: RSD Black Friday. For more ideas, check out our guide to the top events of the week.

Holiday hours may vary—please check event websites directly for the most up-to-date information.

Jump to: Friday | Saturday | Sunday | Multi-Day



Bjork Friday 6 Past Event List
Forsake the consumerist "holiday" and give thanks to Icelandic treasure Björk instead at this annual revue and dance party. DJs will get her iconic experimental tunes flowing while an army of drag queens and burlesque performers offer up some big-time sensuality. AV
(Clinton Street Theater, Hosford-Abernethy, $16)


Oregon Potters Association Holiday Sale Past Event List
You'll find handmade wares from over 35 Oregon Potters Association-affiliated ceramicists and artists to spruce up your living space, plus holiday decor and wintery plantings, at this three-day, market-style sale. Don't forget to make a wreath while you're there; you can also pick out a perky poinsettia to plant in your fancy new pot. LC
(Portland Nursery, Mt. Tabor)

Record Store Day: RSD Black Friday 2023 Past Event List
Whether you're looking for special RSD releases, or just want to support your local record store, drag yourself out of bed bright and early this Black Friday as shops around town fill up with vinyl-hungry shoppers. Participation varies store-to-store, but expect sales, exclusive merch, extended hours, in-store performances, and other special events. Highlights from this year's special releases include a 7" box set of De La Soul's long out-of-print opus 3 Feet High and Risingunheard demos from Joni Mitchell's Court and Spark, and PNW label Light in the Attic's compilation Light In The Attic & Friends, which features contemporary artists covering their favorite unsung heroes. Check out the RSD website for a full list of participating stores. AV
(Various locations)


39th Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony Past Event List
It's hard not to believe in the holiday spirit when a real 75-foot-tall Douglas Fir adorned with thousands of twinkly lights appears in your town square. Kick off the Christmas season the day after Thanksgiving with the grandest of tree lighting ceremonies featuring a sing-along led by Portland's own Thomas Lauderdale of Pink Martini and Mr. Claus himself flipping the ceremonial switch to turn on the lights. SL
(Pioneer Courthouse Square, Downtown Portland, free)



Lez Stand Up: Chosen Family Past Event List
Gather 'round, ladies and theydies: Your fave queer comedy show will return for another installment, with special guests Alyssa Yeoman, Monisa Brown, Kirsten Kuppenbender, and Two Evils co-host Arlo Weierhauser hitting the stage. They'll help you step back from the ledge amid that long, long weekend of spending time with your family, or aid you in avoiding them altogether. On top of being a barrel full of queer chuckles, the show is a great excuse to check out the new-ish Siren Theater space on Mississippi. LC
(Siren Theater, Boise, $15)


Films to Make You Feel Some Type of Way: Holiday Edition Past Event List
Southeast Portland's New Agey community center, the Breathe Building, will play host to a series of indoor, picnic-style film screenings (bring blankets or folding chairs) on Saturdays through December 9. You can bring your own snacks, or grab Burmese bites from Rangoon Bistro; the cinema selections focus on "fractured families," which feels like the perfect catharsis for the familial challenges that come along with this season. The series will kick off with 2015 drama Krisha, in which a long-estranged aunt shows up at a Thanksgiving gathering. LC
(The Breathe Building, Richmond)

The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari Past Event List
The 1919 Expressionist masterwork (and malevolent freak fest) The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari will take on a hypnotic new level of otherworldliness with a live original score performed by Hollywood organist Dean Lemire, who'll perform on the Mighty Wurlitzer pipe organ. The silent film follows a fairground "doctor" and the unfortunate sleepwalker who murders at his command—it's a gem of early cinema that sorta-kinda invented the entire horror film genre, and influenced directors like David Lynch and Stanley Kubrick. LC
(Hollywood Theatre, Hollywood District, $12-$14)


Federale with The Prids Past Event List
Portland septet Federale is the project of ex-Brian Jonestown Massacre bassist Collin Hegna. The band evokes the florid, dusty melodrama of spaghetti western and Italian horror soundtracks while embracing the narrative song stylings of counter-culture troubadours (à la Lee Hazlewood and Nick Cave). Their third album is supposedly in the works, and if it sounds anything like their newest single "Blood Moon," then expect new wave-inspired tracks complete with emphatic Echo & the Bunnymen-eque vocals. They will be joined by local post-punk band the Prids. AV
(Crystal Ballroom, West End, $15-$18)


Hold Music & Deep Like Present: Revival ft. Cee White, Jason Burns, Floyd Vader, and Peter Sheppard Past Event List
Portland's new-ish dance night Hold Music & Deep Like celebrates house music’s roots; it kicked off back in April with a set from legendary Chicago DJ and producer Mike Dunn. This time around, residents DJs Cee White, Jason Burns, Floyd Vader, and Peter Sheppard will take you on a journey through the past, present, and future of house. AV
(Holocene, Buckman, $12)


Scandinavian Christmas Goat Market Past Event List
Although this Christmas market does not have actual, living goats (we got our hopes up, too), it brings the Scandinavian holiday symbol of the Jule (Yule) goat right here to Portland. Get into the julstämning (holiday spirit) with traditional Nordic foods, live performances, face painting, and a giant LEGO Christmas display. You can also get a head start on your shopping list by picking up gifts from over 20 local vendors selling an array of Nordic goods. SL
(Norse Hall, Kerns, $0-$6)



World Forestry Center Discovery Museum Free Sundays Past Event List
Thanks to a generous grant, the World Forestry Center is throwing open the doors to its wood-filled Discovery Museum for free on Sundays through December 17. Learn about the Northwest's forests and their role "as a habitat, a place for recreation and reflection, a critical resource, and more" through an engaging variety of exhibits and documentaries, including Obscurity: Life Inside the Smoke, in which six Portland-area artists explore wildfire smoke through new works. LC
(World Forestry Center & Discovery Museum, Washington Park, free)


Big Night Past Event List
In the 1996 classic Big Night, two Italian immigrant brothers, the grouchy but brilliant chef Primo (Tony Shalhoub) and the pragmatic manager Secondo (Stanley Tucci), throw an unforgettably decadent feast in a last-ditch attempt to keep their struggling Jersey Shore restaurant Paradise afloat. Not only is Hollywood Theatre screening the film, they're also invoking its festive spirit by throwing lavish cocktail soirées before and after in collaboration with their neighbor Vivienne Culinary Books, which will offer light bites, a welcome cocktail, 10% off all Italian cookbooks, and additional wine by the glass available for purchase. Get ready for a night of glamour and revelry. JB
(Hollywood Theatre, Hollywood District, $12)

Killer Klowns from Outer Space Past Event List
My first encounter with Killer Klowns from Outer Space was when it aired on television at my friend's house sometime in 1998. As children without adequate supervision do, we devoured the whole thing, after which a major problem presented itself: I had to walk back to my house, alone, in the dark. The experience was a blur. I know I sprinted the entire way, and I know every tree branch, car, stray cat, and blade of grass looked like a clown (excuse me, Klown) out to feast on my brains or whatever. Anyway, this movie is a ton of fun, just have a game plan for how you'll get home. In honor of its 35th anniversary, the Hollywood has also arranged a Q&A with actor Harrod Blank, who "played the role of Rudy Klown, as well as several other alien clowns." Gulp. LC
(Hollywood Theatre, Hollywood District, $10-$12)


"Let's Be Friends" BIPOC Makers Market Past Event List
Why not polish off the holiday weekend by getting a tattoo, piercing, or hair trim? Shop local and support BIPOC vendors at the Let's Be Friends Market. Over 50 makers, artists, and small businesses will be selling their wares alongside a groovy DJ set by Lapaushi and a live performance from Portland Opera singer Onry. Cocktails from Hey Love will bring some extra cheer. SL
(Jupiter Hotel, Buckman, free)



Celebrating Birds of the Pacific Northwest Past Event List
In 2020, I started birding: I'd been laid off from my previous job due to COVID-19 uncertainty and found myself with an unfamiliar amount of hours to fill. (It's interesting how a brief respite from the binds of capitalism nudges us toward the natural world, but anyway.) If you're "going through it" in any capacity, I highly recommend looking toward the skies—there's a lot going on up there. Or maybe you're a birder already. If so, what's your spark bird?! Mine is the northern flicker...but I digress. This exhibition of works by contemporary wildlife photographers Ken Goldman, Ryan Hooper, Dan Kearl, and Diana Rebman explores the abundance and diversity of our avian friends. You'll catch sight of regional beauts like the lazuli bunting, osprey, and great horned owl. Chances are good that you'll be inspired to pick up some 'nocs afterward. LC
(Oregon Historical Society, South Park Blocks, $0-$10, Friday-Sunday; closing)

Halloween Cultural Preservation Museum Past Event List
If your Halloween tastes lean more toward old-school skeletons, plastic light-up pumpkins, and vintage Dracula posters than this year's Barbie and TikTok-influenced costumes, you'll probably dig the Halloween Cultural Preservation Museum, a pop-up exhibit occupying the old Spencer's at Lloyd Center. The project "aims to keep the traditions and spirit of Halloween’s golden age alive and well through education and preservation," which means visitors can scope out the best in Halloween commercialism from the '20s through the '90s. Expect rare and vintage decorations, including a "replica of an '80s living room, where old Halloween commercials play on a tiny, cathode-ray tube TV" (The Oregonian). LC
(Lloyd Center, Lloyd District, $8, Saturday-Sunday)


Double Feature: Trolls Band Together and The Grinch Past Event List
I can think of few more effective ways to decompress from the Thanksgiving grind than with this double feature of Trolls Band Together, in which the aforementioned Trolls will band together (which I thought they'd done already, but whatever), and The Grinch, a 2018 remake that I did not know existed until this moment. They'll screen back-to-back at Newberg's beloved, old-timey drive-in theater. Pull up before sunset, settle in, and switch off your brain for a few blissfully brainless, holiday-season-approved hours. LC
(99W Drive-In, Newberg, $5-$10, Friday-Saturday)

Dream Scenario Past Event List
Fans of last year's Everything Everywhere All at Once will likely dig Dream Scenario, which continues A24's recent propensity for gonzo dream sequences and madcap visuals with a fun plotline: Nicolas Cage stars as a typical dude whose life flip-flops when he begins appearing in millions of people's dreams. If that sounds familiar, you're not wrong—it seems likely that the film was inspired by This Man, who allegedly began appearing in dreams back in 2006. Does this mean we'll start to see more flicks based on old memes, guerilla marketing tactics, and internet hoaxes? I'm here for it. LC
(Hollywood Theatre, Hollywood District, $10-$12, Friday-Sunday)

The Holdovers Past Event List
It's November. It's time to watch Paul Giamatti act his little heart out as a curmudgeonly educator at a New England prep school in the '60s, where a gaggle of students have been left behind on Christmas break. Honestly, though, have you ever heard a film premise that made you want to wear wool socks and drink apple cider more than this one? Plus, and perhaps most importantly, The Holdovers was directed by Alexander Payne, aka the guy who made Election and that movie about wine. It's going to be funny and charming!!! Enjoy. LC
(Cinema 21, Nob Hill, $9-$11, Friday-Sunday)

May December Past Event List
If I’m going to watch an ouroboros, I’ll take one helmed by someone as curious and literate as Todd Haynes. Though May December doesn’t rank with the director’s top-tier achievements—it lacks the sublimity of Carol, the mad invention of I’m Not There, the elemental force of Safe—its intelligence and staying power are tough to discredit. It really is one of the thorniest, most thought-provoking movies you’ll see this year. PORTLAND MERCURY CONTRIBUTOR CONNER REED
(Hollywood Theatre, Hollywood District, $10-$12, Friday-Sunday)

Saltburn Past Event List
Emerald Fennell's latest film is nothing if not polarizing ("Saltburn is the sort of embarrassment you’ll put up with for 75 minutes. But not for 127," says the New York Times), but as the world's preeminent Barry Keoghan stan, I have to at least entertain the idea that it has legs. Saltburn is billed as a "wicked tale of privilege and desire" (oOoOo) that sees an Oxford student attempt to infiltrate the aristocratic world of a classmate on an "eccentric family’s sprawling estate." (Has anything good ever happened at a "sprawling estate?") If you like Agatha Christie and drugs, this one might hit. LC
(Cinema 21, Nob Hill, $9-$11, Friday-Sunday)

Stop Making Sense: New 4K Restoration Past Event List
Calling it now: If you've seen Stop Making Sense, it's probably your favorite concert film. It's jangly and arty and all of the other words one might use to describe Talking Heads's catalog, and David wears the suit. Not feeling the Byrne? Listen, I know watching a concert movie for a band you don't listen to sounds like hell, but this one might be an exception. If you haven't seen it yet, anticipate looking back on the experience with a funny fondness later, like a good birthday party or the first time you smoked weed. Jonathan Demme (yes, the guy who went on to make The Silence of the Lambs) recorded all of the concert footage over the course of three days at Hollywood's Pantages Theatre in 1983, during the height of the Heads' visionary fame. It's screening in a new restoration, so prep for a "once in a lifetime" experience. LC
(Cinema 21, Nob Hill, $9-$11, Friday-Sunday)


2nd Annual Holiday Lights Wine Walk Past Event List
Traipse through picturesque Abbey Road Farm at night, illuminated by dazzling holiday lights. You'll get to grab a glass of wine before touring the goat barn, vineyard overlook, poultry pasture, toolshed, silo garden, and pig pasture, all decked out in their holiday best. Fertie's BBQ will sling succulent smoked meats for dinner, and the trailer will offer warm treats and candy canes. Plus, proceeds will be donated to a different charity each weekend. JB
(Abbey Road Farm, Carlton, $5, Friday-Sunday)


Black Friday Indigenous Marketplace Past Event List
Put your money where your land acknowledgment is and support the Indigenous community at this market featuring goods from local Native artists. Forget the sales at big box stores and opt for one-of-a-kind gifts instead! There will be a performance every day at noon from the Turquoise Pride Drum group, raffles, art, and more. SL
(PSU Native American Student & Community Center, Southwest Portland, free, Friday-Sunday)

Geek the Halls 2023 Past Event List
Find gifts for every nerd in your life at this long-running craft fair presented by PDX Guild of Geeks. Shop from over 80 local vendors on Small Business Weekend offering everything from laser-cut jewelry to papercut light boxes. Don't forget to treat yourself to something, there's plenty of apparel and accessories for you to start building your next cosplay. SL
(Doubletree Hotel, Lloyd District, free, Saturday-Sunday)

The Makers Fair Holiday Market Past Event List
This 11-week market will feature 140 local craftspeople all under one roof, so consider your gift-giving list trounced. Vanquished. Utterly defeated. If you are the type of person who starts stressing about "the holidays" long before they're here (aka me), never fear: You'll find pretty much everything under Santa's sun, from woodturned decor to vintage goods, candles, and holiday treats, at the gargantuan pop-up. LC
(Rejuvenation, Buckman, free, Friday-Sunday)

Omiyage Holiday Store Past Event List
The Japanese American Museum of Oregon’s pop-up holiday shop offers distinctive Japanese-inspired gifts created by local artisans, from origami objects to curated vintage and art. Head there to shop for that "person who has everything," and feel good about your purchases—proceeds benefit JAMO and help them on their mission to preserve and honor the history and culture of Japanese Americans in the Pacific Northwest. LC
(Japanese American Museum of Oregon, Old Town-Chinatown, free, Friday-Sunday)

Spectrum Art Market Presents HoliGAY Market Past Event List
Spectrum's annual holiGAY market returns this weekend, and will be back for a second weekend in December. Don't miss this curated shopping experience featuring local LGBTQ2SIA+ artists and vendors, where you can find gifts like ceramics, home decor, accessories, and retro-reflective wear. Art demos will be happening throughout both weekends, giving a behind-the-scenes look at how different crafts are made! SL
(Lloyd Center, Lloyd District, free, Saturday-Sunday)


Converge 45 Contemporary Arts Biennial Past Event List
The free, citywide art exhibition Converge 45 is in full swing, with artists showcased across over 15 venues in Portland, including college campuses, the Portland Japanese Garden, and Pioneer Square. The biennial's theme, Social Forms: Art as Global Citizenship, takes on topics of Amazon deforestation, indigeneity, citizenship, and immigration, and aims to amplify the voices and experiences of people of color, so you're bound to find a cause you can get behind. I'm looking forward to local textile legend and Seneca Nation member Marie Watt's Chords to Other Chords (Relative) and Yishai Jusidman's history-driven cyanotypes in Prussian Blue. LC
(Various locations, free, Friday-Sunday)

Danny Aros-Aguilar: Sandunga Nunca Muere Past Event List
Colombian American non-binary artist Danny Aros-Aguilar reflects on cultural complexities and their gender queerness in Sandunga Nunca Muere, which spotlights the artist's commitment to "celebrating, highlighting, and leaving a print of brown queerness in history." The works in the exhibition were created in collaboration with Aros-Aguilar's Oaxaca-based friends, reflecting upon their conversations on Muxe culture and the marginalization of queer people in Oaxaca. I love Machete al Machote, in which Aros-Aguilar's subject wields a massive machete. LC
(Blue Sky Gallery, Pearl District, free, Friday-Saturday)

Orlando Almanza: Love Letter from A Shapeshifter Past Event List
Drawing from ethereal memories and myths, Froelick Gallery's newly signed painter Orlando Almanza constructs natural worlds in his works, with embedded narratives that feel pulled from his own mysterious folklore. Earlier this year, the gallery paved for the way for his first official solo show with a display of lithographs printed in Havana, Cuba. For this show, Almanza continues to showcase his "deep dedication to nature, and the unique way it connects with myths and storytelling across cultures" with portraits and vivid oil works overflowing with flora and fauna. LC
(Froelick Gallery, Pearl District, free, Friday-Saturday)

Secret Room Work•Shop Pop-Up Past Event List
Risograph print studio and comics and art publisher Secret Room Press has joined the other lovably artsy weirdos at Lloyd Center and opened a sparkly new pop-up art gallery and print shop. The Secret Room Work•Shop home to Life on Earth: A RISO Art Show, "a RISO art show showcasing over 25 cartoonists from the Pacific Northwest and beyond," plusweekly events and workshops and a curated selection of books, cassettes, vinyl, and VHS. Drop by the next time you're headed to Floating World Comics. LC
(Lloyd Center, Lloyd District, free, Friday-Sunday)

Seeding: A Group Exhibition of Seattle Artists Past Event List
This cross-city pollination invites six artists from the Seattle "artist-forward exhibition space" The Vestibule to showcase work in Portland, while Well Well Projects collective artists will install an exhibition in Seattle. Curated by Kascha Semonovitch, The Vestibule's exhibition Seeding "challenged notions of installation art, possession of place, and expectations of a gallery experience" with focuses on material growth and "seeds" of future conversation. I'm excited to see what one of my favorite regional artists, Francesca Lohmann, will share on these themes. LC
(Well Well, Kenton, free, Friday-Saturday; closing)

Yishai Jusidman: Prussian Blue Past Event List
The color Prussian blue has a surprising history—created in the 18th century, it was one of the earliest artificially developed pigments used by European painters. The chemical compound that comprises Prussian blue also happens to be related to prussic acid (hydrogen cyanide) in Zyklon B, a toxic gas used at some Nazi concentration and extermination camps, and traces of the pigment still remain as disturbing reminders of the Holocaust on the walls of gas chambers. Artist Yishai Jusidman engages with this strange overlap in his series Prussian Blue, rendered almost completely in the titular hue. JB
(Oregon Jewish Museum and Center for Holocaust Education, Pearl District, $0-$10, Friday-Sunday; closing)


Christmas Festival of Lights 2023 Past Event List
Don your hat and gloves, gather your loved ones, and get excited for one of Portland's favorite holiday traditions. The Festival of Lights transforms the Grotto into a magical place where twinkling lights and joyful songs guide your way. The plaza tent will host puppet shows at the beginning of every hour, followed by the Grotto Carolers and their merry tunes. Don't miss the Chapel of Mary's "cathedral-like acoustics" with nightly performances from local choirs. SL
(The Grotto, Sumner, $5-$18, Friday-Sunday)

Creatures of Christmas Past Event List
Mysterious creatures from Nordic lore will stop by Nordic Northwest this holiday season, including the 13 Icelandic Yule Lads (don't worry, they were banned from tormenting children in 1746), a Swedish Yule goat (cute and tied to ancient Pagan festivals), Danish and Norwegian nisse (gnome-like dudes with conical caps), and the Finnish Santa, Joulupukki, who looks a lot like the American one these days. While you're there, don't miss Ole Bolle, Thomas Dambo's own mythical creature (a giant troll made of recycled materials). LC
(Nordic Northwest, Metzger, free, Friday-Sunday)

Report This

Please use this form to let us know about anything that violates our Terms of Use or is otherwise no good.
Thanks for helping us keep EverOut a nice place.

Please include links to specific policy violations if relevant.

Say something about this item. If you add it to multiple lists, the note will be added to all lists. You can always change it later!

Gotta catch 'em all?
Click below to be reminded about every instance of this event. (You can turn this off anytime of course.)
Remind Me