The Best Things to Do in Portland This Weekend: June 19-21 2020

June 18, 2020

Okay, take two: This weekend is the first in which Multnomah County is officially PHASE ONE reopened! And that means there are some things for you to go do OUTSIDE! That's not the same as saying "masks off elbows deep sneeze on everything olly olly oxenfree," or anything even close to it. Just because you can go out, doesn't mean you have to. But there are a lot of options for those seeking a good way to spend their weekend both on and off the couch. Hit the links below and plan accordingly.

Jump to: Friday | Saturday | Sunday

Friday, June 19

Juneteenth General Strike
Juneteenth was the day (two and a half years late) that slaves in Texas were informed of the Emancipation Proclamation. To pay tribute to this historical date, and to stand in solidarity against racism, white supremacy, and police brutality, Black Lives Matter is asking people to participate in a General Strike. For today, one of the best Things to Do is to not do what you'd normally do. Don't go to work. Go to a march instead. #StrikeForBlackLives, and strike a blow against white supremacy

Pedalpalooza: Loud 'n' Lit
Portland's streets are about to become one big, mobile, DJ livestream, as the regular "Loud 'n' Lit" tradition gets even louder and more lit up to account for the safe spacing and social distancing practices Pedalpalooza is promoting for 2020. That means the glow-up your bike gets will have to shine all the brighter, and the beats your bike is bumping will have to hit just that much harder.

Tahirah Memory, Charlie Brown III
Portland jazz vocalist Tahirah Memory comes back - like, really back - to perform live (but still safely socially distanced) at 6 pm (Fri-Sat June 19-20) on Amalfi's converted patio for a sorely-needed hit of homegrown goodness.

Minority Retort: Juneteenth Live Showcase
The long-running, always-hilarious stand-up showcase hosted by Jason Lamb brings a special edition Juneteenth showcase (Fri June 19, 7 pm) to XRAY.FM's YouTube and Facebook Live channels, with sets from Curtis Cook, Tawana Gona, Reese Samuels, J. Jones, Janae Burris, Nathan Brannon, Maggie Maye, Shanna Christmas, and Dahlia Belle. Proceeds benefit Self Enhancement, Inc.

PDX Black Futures Rally
Snack Block leads this protest that starts 2:30 pm, Fri June 19 at Salmon Street Springs and marches to Terry Schrunk Plaza, demanding that PDX City Council cut much more than $15mil from the Portland Police budget, and urging Mayor Wheeler to vote no on that cut and amend it up to $50 mil. Attendees are asked to wear masks and observe safe social distancing. Youth from the PDX Metro Area will also be speaking and performing during the action.

Queer House Party: LIVE in Your Living Room
Comin' straight outta the UK is this Queer House Party, kicked up another notch or two on occasion of Pride, with all the best bops served up by resident DJs Harry Gay, Wacha, and Passer, with a rotating cast of special guests coming through every week. Register to join the party June 19, 2 pm, on Zoom.

Black Liberation Ride
The annual Black Liberation Ride is ready to roll from Irving Park on this Friday Juneteenth at 5:30 pm, riding through areas important to local Black history before ending at a local park for some socially distanced hanging out. This ride is for Portland's Black Community. If you don't identify as BIPOC, please limit your participation to donating funds to the Black Liberation Ride campaign, and letting your BIPOC friends know about this so they might attend.

Petey Wheatstraw w/ Live Commentary from Donnell Rawlings and Mike Sargent
Maybe you're a connoisseur of fine cinema, and thus have always known about the Rudy Ray Moore Cinematic Universe. Maybe you're new to his low-budget filthy genius thanks to Netflix's Dolemite Is My Name (which got nowhere near the Oscar attention it should have). Either way, if you're looking to get more Rudy into your life, tonight (June 19, 6:15 pm) is the night, with this livestreamed, live-commentaried screening of Petey Wheastraw, the movie about Rudy marrying into Satan's extended family. Donnell Rawlings (The Wire, Chappelle's Show, that one guy who incorrectly rats out Spider-Man for stealing pizza in Spider-Man 2) and film critic Mike Sargent will break the movie down, while Mustafa Shaikh of 36 Chambers will moderate.

The Laramie Project
Moises Kaufman's The Laramie Project is a haunting and intimate presentation through interwoven monologues of the reactions of Laramie, Wyoming residents, and members of the play's originating Tectonic Theater Project, to the murder of gay student Matthew Shepard. This one-night-only performance (Fri June 19, 4 pm) benefits the New Deal Creative Arts Center, and the Hudson Valley LGBTQ Community Center.

Ron Artis II & the Truth
Live at 3 pm on Fri, June 19, from the Recording Studio right here in Portland comes a stream full of soul-filled goodness courtesy of 2017 Pickathon standout Ron Artis II and his band, The Truth, with special guests dropping in for good measure.

The reason Zack Snyder’s 2009 movie (which, to clarify, is not what we're recommending here) feels like an airless simulacra of the book is due to a fundamental dissonance between its reverence for the original and the basic disrespect that comes with being a party to Watchmen's corporate exploitation. But showrunner Damon Lindelof has chosen instead to steer into that disrespect, openly and thoughtfully rearranging and replacing the building blocks of Alan Moore & Dave Gibbons' graphic novel by sequelizing it with his single-season miniseries. And as a result, HBO’s version investigates themes and ideas the book barely, if ever, touched on. The decision to reframe the whole of masked vigilantism as a form of therapy through the lens of America's fundamental, institutionalized, and unending traumatization of Black people feels alarming, shocking, and meaningful in ways Moore never got at. As an act of retconning, it's maybe the single most audacious and successful example in all genre fiction, and it's being streamed for free on all available platforms this weekend.

Saturday, June 20

Juneteenth Oregon 2020
Streaming live from the Jack London Revue, this Juneteenth celebration (June 20, 1 pm), produced by PDX Jazz, features live music from some of the city's finest artists, including Saeeda Wright, Alonzo Chadwick, Arietta Ward, Noah Simpson, and many more, with a special performance of the Black National Anthem by Nancy Jane, and appearances from City Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty, reps from the Black United Fund of Oregon and Don't Shoot PDX, healer of the healthcare blues Norman Sylvester, legendary drummer Mel Brown, and DJ Blackjack.

HUMP! Greatest Hits Vol. 1
Have you just watched your first HUMP! and are now in a post-coital glow, wondering just what the hell the past festivals must have looked like? Well GOOD NEWS, EVERYONE: After getting permission from filmmakers to bring their films online, we're bringing you several volumes of our (and audience) favorites from 2005-2018. Get ready for HUMP! Greatest Hits! (Sat June 20, 6 pm) You will see films that shock you, that make you laugh, that turn you on, and ou will also be touched by the sincerity and vulnerability with which these films are lovingly made. HUMP!'s main mission is to change the way America sees-and makes and shares-porn.

Support Portland's Black Owned Restaurants
You ordering out for dinner tonight? You better check this list first, and then send your money to one of the eateries doing their damndest to make sure this city eats so much better than it deserves.

Six Nineteen: Defend Black Lives
A die-in event from Six Nineteen and the Movement for Black Lives, with protesters using their bodies as a visual representation of how white supremacy and police brutality have disproportionately taken Black lives, not only through interactions with criminal police, but in the way the federal government has botched their response to COVID-19. The action (Sat June 20, 3 pm) has three demands: Defund police, invest in Black communities, make Donald Trump resign.

Still Chasing Rainbows
The Ambassador Council at Our House Portland presents this afternoon variety show streamed live to your screen (Sat June 20, 3pm) and transforming your living room into a den of fabulosity with a bunch of fun games, great guests, and more. Hosted by Summer Lynne Seasons. Proceeds benefit Our House Portland.

Bakers Against Racism
An anti-racist bake sale, featuring over 20 Portland-area bakers donating 100% of all proceeds from their goods to the Black United Fund of Oregon. Orders can be placed online here, and retrieved via contact-free pickup at the Side Yard Farm on Saturday starting at 10 am.

Noir: A Melanated Drag Celebration presents Juneteenth
An invitation to join the cast of Noir as they present one of the most melanated drag shows in the whole Pacific Northwest for Juneteenth. Hosted by Londyn Bradshaw and Scarlet Dior Black. Stream starts at 8pm on Sat, June 20.

Pride After Dark
One of the benefits in everything being online for 2020 is that it makes attending some of the country's bigger Pride celebrations no longer requires plane tickets or hotel reservations. For example: PFY's annual Pride event in Long Island NY, Pride After Dark, will stream (Sat June 20, 4 pm) with Frida Cox starring and bringing a whole bunch of special guests along for the ride.

Black Lives Matter: Black Gay Pride
A virtual Pride celebration hosted by Seattle/King County's grassroots Black Lives Matter organization, hoping to provide queer Northwest performers an opportunity to get paid for putting on a vital, vibrant Pride performance of the type that would have taken the roof off a club if COVID-19 hadn't closed things down. Stream starts 9 pm, Sat June 20.

Binge Watch Tonight!
Kickstand Comedy's Dylan Reiff hosts this online talk show with a panel of "TV experts" who come together every week to talk about all the stuff they've been binging on quarantine: The good, the bad, and the "what the hell am I even watching?" of it all. Stream starts at 9 pm, Sat June 20.

The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air
Hey, speaking of binge watches: There were a bunch of people who considered HBO Max having Friends at launch to be a very, very big deal—not least of which being the millionaire CEOs at Warner Bros. But funny enough, in the short amount of time that HBO Max has been around, the beloved '90s-era sitcom warming hearts and prompting nostalgia-fueled binge-watches isn't the one with Ross & Rachel. It's The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, the TV show that made Will Smith into WILL SMITH, and more importantly, gave millions of people the gift of James Avery as Uncle Phil. Oh, and the Carlton-dance, too! And the theme song! Which is now stuck in your head. You're welcome.

The 6/20 420 Comedy Extravaganja
A lot of people like to say that 420 isn't a date, or a time, but a state of mind. And now there's a livestreamed online comedy "extravaganja" (Sat June 20, 6 pm, $10-15) putting that theory to the test starring Netflix's Cooking on High co-host Ngaio Bealum.

Mom, I'm Gay. Can My Friends Sleep Over?
A livestream series from "Portland's premier queer improv team" Queer Ye Queer Ye, transforming whatever screen you're watching on into a window on an utterly unique "gay-riety" show, one that offers storytelling, commentary, comedy, and sleepover games! Stream starts at 7:30 pm, Sat June 20.

Sunday, June 21

Schedule a Trip to the Library
It's been awhile, but you can actually get books from the Library again! Real, tactile, literal page-turner-type books! Granted, you can't just stroll into a Multnomah County library just yet, we're not quite there, but while we've been consistently recommending you visit their website and put your library card to good use by borrowing ebooks, audiobooks, and watching movies via Kanopy (and we're still recommending you do that), you can now put a book on hold at Central, Gresham, Midland, and the North Portland libraries, and pick up those holds by appointment, between 10am-4pm.

Drag Queen Storytime with Poison Waters
Join hostess Poison Waters and she shares some of her favorite age appropriate story books (Sun June 21, 11 am, $20) on the themes of acceptance, inclusion, and gender identity. These colorfully illustrated books are engaging as well as enlightening for children of all ages. Recognizable sing along songs will also be enjoyed so get ready to have fun!

No Hate Skate
A protest action from the skateboarding community of Portland, a community that includes teachers, organizers, videographers, photographers, artists, athletes, tattoo artists, scientists, and many other intersections of industry and creativity. The meeting will begin at Da Vinci Arts Middle School (Sun June 21, 1 pm), and then participants will skate to Revolution Hall to lend support. Attendees are asked to wear masks and to practice safe social distancing.

Black Pumas
Fans of ’70s soul—hey, that’s me!—will rejoice over the sounds of Black Pumas, an Austin duo who reach deep into one of the genre’s greatest decades to mine the particular, rhythmic mood of this music (Sun June 21, 6 pm). Expect brooding, fuzzy-buzzy guitars from Adrian Quesada, paired with staccato horns and organ, and fronted by the soulful vocals of lead singer Eric Burton who sounds like a 2019 version of Wilson Pickett. It’s like stumbling upon a missing Curtis Mayfield soundtrack of a lost Richard Roundtree film—with a decidedly modern touch. WM. STEVEN HUMPHREY

Pedalpalooza: Bike*Love*Fest Scavenger Hunt
One of the most fun things you can do during any Pedalpalooza is get caught up in one of their city-spanning, exhilarating-yet-maddening scavenger hunts, and Filmed by Bike and The Street Trust have teamed up to build a doozy of a hunt for 2020, involving costumes, treasure hunts, trivia, and more.

Quarantine Cat Film Fest
An opportunity to make staying home a little bit fuzzier and a lot more entertaining via this VOD presentation of the Quarantine Cat Film Fest, featuring a curated list of only the very most finest and adorable-est kitty videos, and even better: Half of your ticket price will go directly to the Hollywood Theatre!

Hannah Gadsby's Douglas
Last year (jesus was it really only one year ago?) Hannah Gadsby—after successfully upending the world of stand-up for a hot minute with her Netflix special Nanette—retired, then unretired, then embarked on her first world tour, which sold out every stop (including four shows at the Newmark here in Portland). Douglas is streaming now on Netflix, and it differs from Nanette in that there isn't a show-stopping ending that turns your heart inside out (Gadsby addresses that expectation pretty early on), but it's also a more finely-tailored, comfortable, and confident hour of stand-up, one that touches on the controversy of male comics completely disqualifying Nanette as stand-up at all, somewhere before she turns the whole concert into a renaissance art lecture. According to Gadsby, "It's gonna be good! Unless you don't like it! Then it's still gonna be good, and you'll be wrong."

Visit the Portland Japanese Garden
One of the city's most blissful destinations has re-opened, and a Sunday walk through all that placid, peaceful beauty might sound like just the perfect way to wind down the weekend and possibly help in re-centering yourself for the week to come. The Garden (611 SW Kingston) is opening with timed admissions, extra sanitizing stations, and one-way paths. Please observe safe social distancing practices, and you better have your mask on, too.

10th Annual Midsummer Midsommer
The Original Practice Shakespeare Festival isn't letting COVID stop them from celebrating the 10th anniversary of their mission to make the Bard a little more dangerous than normal, taking to Facebook Live (Sun June 21, 7:30 pm) and letting the audience cast the production, which should, if everything goes to plan, conclude at midnight on this midsummer night.