There's quite an eventful weekend ahead as far as national holidays are concerned, giving you an excuse to order takeout and books for the newly declared Arab American Heritage Month, stare at paintings for Slow Art Day, try new brews for Beer Day, and visit a dog-friendly patio for Pet Day. See those and more of our picks for COVID-compliant weekend activities and events below, like the reopening of the Portland Art Museum and Jack London Revue. For even more options, read our guide to the best online events this week.
Order books and takeout for Arab American Heritage Month. The State Department has officially declared April Arab American Heritage Month! If you're looking for a way to honor the new designation, we suggest supporting some local Arab-owned restaurants and carts, such as Al-Amir, Habibi, Aladdin's Cafe, DarSalam, Hoda's, or the Lebanese favorite Nicholas, which just opened a new location on Southeast Madison this week. If you opt for takeout, bolster your tuck-in with a new book by an Arab American author, like Zaina Arafat's debut novel You Exist Too Much, which follows a queer Palestinian American through vignettes that toggle between the US and the Middle East; Olivia Abtahi's Perfectly Parvin, about a 14-year-old Iranian American girl seeking out a date to homecoming (approved by comedian Mitra Jourhari); or Laila Chatti's locally published collection Deluge, which explores themes of "shame, illness, grief, and gender, transmuting religious narratives through the lens of a young Arab American woman suffering a taboo female affliction." They're all available for purchase or pre-order from Powell's and Broadway Books.
Celebrate National Beer Day. National Beer Day was on Wednesday, but there's no reason you can't celebrate belatedly by checking out some new beer releases from the city's abundance of local breweries. This week, the local favorite Von Ebert Brewing has dropped its new Dortmund-Style Export Lager, a smooth, pale Northwest German lager, in addition to introducing a new spring food menu, and Great Notion has unveiled Double Blueberry Shake, a "tart ale brimming with plump blueberries and fragrant vanilla." Plus, Culmination Brewing has unveiled Good Intentions, a German-style Helles lager brewed exclusively with Pacific Northwest barley from Skagit Valley Malting.
Prove your devotion to your pets with special treats and outings on National Pet Day. Surely the dogs, cats, lizards, and beta fish of Portland appreciate the quality time with their owners afforded by quarantine, but National Pet Day (this Sunday) is an opportunity to give your non-human companions even more love and attention. For a little spa day, tow your pooch or feline to Heather's Finest Dog and Cat Grooming in Southwest, then stop by Portland Pet Supply for some new toys and freeze-dried treats before heading to an off-leash dog park like Sellwood Riverfront, Mt. Tabor, Council Crest, or Portland International Raceway. For the best of both worlds, grab a cocktail on the dog-friendly patios at Tin Shed, the Bye and Bye, or Bar Bar. Love pets but don't have one? Look into the adoption and foster programs at Oregon Humane.
Decelerate your museum visit—as much as your timed ticket allows—for Slow Art Day, the nationally recognized brainchild of Brooklynite Phil Terry, who came up with the idea after spending 10 hours staring at Pieter Bruegel’s "The Harvesters." Adopting the gist of other slow-living movements (slow food, slow reading, slow cities, etc.), the holiday (this Saturday) encourages you to eschew the scrolling and multi-tasking habits you've developed as a 21st-century humanoid and instead devote your attention to a couple of artworks for at least 10 minutes apiece. "Approach it as if you were a visitor from another planet with no prior knowledge of the configuration or content of earthly art," suggests Harvard art history professor Jennifer Roberts. You can certainly stay home and look at art online (check out our sister site The Stranger's How To Look column for ideas), but for IRL viewings, we suggest zeroing in on pieces from the photographic collage show Support System at PDX Contemporary, the Johnnie Chatman and Lora Webb Nichols photographs hanging at Blue Sky Gallery, the multimedia group show Unquiet Objects at Disjecta, or Portraiture from the Collection of Northwest Art at the Portland Art Museum, which reopens for in-person visits this Saturday. Or, simply go outside and stare at a beautiful rock for a long, long time.
FOOD & DRINK
Check out the Oregon Taste Directory. Trying to support more local food producers? On Tuesday, the James Beard Public Market's public project Oregon Taste launched OregonTaste.com, a new directory to connect you with local food sources, including produce vendors, farmers, fishers, ranchers, roadside stands, U-pick fields, farmers markets, and orchards. For even more ideas, check out our guide to spring and summer CSAs to sign up for in Portland.
Other notable weekend events:
Bacon and Wine Pairing
For a little high-low action, enjoy an assortment of bacon-centric appetizers paired with four wines. Reservations are encouraged, and parties mustn't exceed six people.
Hip Chicks Do Wine, Southeast (Saturday-Sunday)
Climax Drag Brunch
Local drag star Flawless Shade will team up with Rose City Drag for an LGBTQIA+ spectrum-spanning revue over champagne and brunch fare like savory chickpea pancakes and NW salmon eggs Benedict.
Botanist, Northwest (Sunday)
Grasslands Barbecue Pop-Up
The new pop-up Grasslands Barbecue, started by former Occidental Brewing head brewer Sam Carroll and his friends Drew Marquis and Brendon Bain, will have its first pop-up in Oregon at Level Beer on Saturday, April 10. Carroll started making oak-smoked, Texas-style barbecue in the backyard as a hobby after losing his job due to COVID-19's impact and turned it into a full-fledged business. The menu will feature brisket, pulled pork, sausage, cheesy grits, collard greens, and Texas-style white bread.
Level Beer, Northeast (Saturday)
OTHER PICKS & HAPPENINGS
Do right by Bridgetown and walk across one. Remember back in 2014 when Portland was all abuzz from the opening of the pedestrian- and cyclist-only Tilikum Crossing? We love the Bridge of the People, which crosses over the Willamette River in cable-stayed elegance, but it's not the only overpass open to the car-less. Barring no cold weather surprises, freshen up your journey from point A to point B this weekend on one of the city's architectural beauties, like the iconic sage-green St. Johns Bridge, the tallest in the city. Not only will you get an eyeful of boats meandering down the river, but you'll also get to enjoy the requisite Burgerville milkshake—best sipped while admiring big squawking birds in Cathedral Park—or a beer and a pretzel from Urban German Wursthaus at the end of your journey. The Hawthorne Bridge (the oldest highway bridge in Portland), the Broadway Bridge (once the largest drawbridge in the world), the Burnside Bridge (known for its Italian Renaissance-style towers), and the LED-lit Morrison Bridge are also worth a stroll.
Pass on your used books to a local shop. If you've already sorted through your winter clothes in a fit of spring cleaning, transfer that Marie Kondo energy to your book collection to make room for other, better (for you) books. Plop those gently used tomes in your tote of choice and exchange them for pocket money (if your bookseller sees fit) at Wallace Books or Annie Bloom's. If you're left with stragglers, donate them to Powell's, which is holding a book drive at their warehouse through the end of the month.
Other notable weekend events:
Golden Egg Hunt
Hunt for "magical" golden eggs hidden throughout downtown Portland by following clues posted at 11:45 am each day on Downtown Portland’s Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter pages. Unlike eggs laid by birds, these ones contain certificates to local businesses.
Various locations (Friday-Sunday)
Marvel at life-sized dino replicas from the safety of your car, where they can't gobble you up.
Portland International Raceway, North Portland (Friday-Sunday)
No More Freeways Rally
Harriet Tubman Middle School students and friends from No More Freeways will rally on campus to oppose ODOT’s $800 million Rose Quarter Freeway Expansion in the "backyard" of the school.
Harriet Tubman Middle School, North Portland (Friday)
Wooden Shoe Tulip Festival
Gazing at forty acres of tulips lined up in orderly rows against the majestic backdrop of Mount Hood never gets old. In previous years at least, the traffic tends to be pretty bad on weekends, but it’s worth the wait if your eyes are starved for color. Peak blooms are expected to come in early to mid-April, but the fields are open for viewing (so long as you buy a ticket in advance) all month long.
Wooden Shoe Tulip Farm, Woodburn (Friday-Sunday)
ARTS & FILM
Architectural Heritage Center Reopening
Geek out over the history of Portland's built environment with an in-person visit to this museum, which will welcome a new exhibit, South Portland and the Long Shadow of Urban Renewal, upon its return.
Architectural Heritage Center, Southeast (Saturday)
Sate your longing for live music at this drive-in series spotlighting local artists like the one-man-band Vox Canyon.
Oaks Park, Southeast (Saturday)
The Croods: A New Age
Keeping up with the Joneses, cavepeople-style. (The prehistoric Crood family moves to an idyllic paradise, but they find themselves in fierce competition with a neighboring family, the Bettermans.)
McMenamins Kennedy School, Northeast (Friday-Saturday)
Darcelle's XV Drag Drive-In
The resident stars of the Darcelle XV Showplace (home of the West Coast’s longest-running drag show and owned by the world’s oldest drag queen, 89-year-old Walter Cole, aka Darcelle) will make itself accessible to people of all ages at this three-day drive-in promising Vegas-style glitz, glamour, and comedy.
Zidell Yards, Southwest (Friday-Sunday)
Jack London Review Reopening
This speakeasy-style basement jazz club returned for in-person visits this week at 25% capacity. Book tickets to see Ron Artis II for their opening weekend (tickets for the early show on Friday still remain), or stay home and watch the show via livestream.
Jack London Review, Southeast (Friday-Sunday)
Portland Art Museum Reopening
Mask up and reserve your timed tickets for an IRL visit to the Portland Art Museum, which will reopen at reduced capacity from Wednesday-Sunday from 10 am-5 pm. The onsite cafe will remain closed, but the gift shop will be open. You'll be able to see Victor Jorgensen photographs (through April 25), Ed Bereal's Apex, Ishaka Shamsud-Din's Rock of Ages, and Portraiture from the Collection of Northwest Art.
Portland Art Museum, Southwest (Saturday)
Portland Thorns Home Games
Portland's pro women's soccer team will welcome back fans to Providence park for two home games (one against Kansas City NWSL tonight and one against Tacoma's OL Reign later this month.
Providence Park, Southwest (Friday)
Promising Young Woman
With directorial reign over the second season of Killing Eve and a starring role as Duchess of Cornwall in The Crown under her belt, Emerald Fennell's new revenge thriller stars Carey Mulligan as a justice-seeker who traps would-be sexual assailants at clubs and teaches them a lesson about consent. Come for the thrill of watching smarmy men get what's coming for them, stay for the string-quartet rendition of Britney Spears' "Toxic."
McMenamins Kennedy School, Northeast (Friday-Saturday)
Reality gives way to paranoia and madness for a multi-generational group of astronauts—Tye Sheridan, Lily Rose-Depp, and Colin Farrell among them.
Living Room Theaters & Century 16 (Friday-Sunday)