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Culture: Arts and Entertainment

Nights in the City

Portland shines at night, offering a rich and eclectic nightlife. Whether you’re a film buff, a sports fan, love the performing arts or simply have an appreciation for great food, wine and beer, Portland offers something for everyone.

Music

Discover Portland’s music scene by listening to the latest local bands, going to jazz clubs or attending big-name concerts all over town, including the annual Waterfront Blues Festival held in July.

Do your tastes run to the classical? Portland has a world-class symphony and opera. Musical theatre and many other theatrical performances are available year-round.

For jazz fans, the annual Mt. Hood Jazz Festival is yet another great musical treat.

Art

Host to a thriving art scene, Portland is exploding with options for the art aficionado, with the Portland Art Museum at one end of the spectrum, and local galleries at the other.

The city supports more than 70 art galleries and 10 museums.

Portland’s art galleries promote evening art walks with new monthly exhibits on First Thursdays in the Pearl District and Last Thursdays in the Alberta street district.

Festivals

The Portland area offers cultural events for all facets of its community. The largest and most famous of these is the Portland Rose Festival, a 100+ year-old tradition. Held each year in June, the Festival lasts 25 days and features more than 70 events, the highlight being the Grand Floral Parade. In 2007 it was named Best Festival in the World by the IFEA.

Other festivals include The Bite, Oregon Seafood & Wine Festival (featuring Portland’s premier food, wine tasting, and musical entertainment) and Fiesta Cinco de Mayo (Oregon’s largest multicultural event).

Mt. Angel Oktoberfest is Oregon's largest folk festival celebrating Bavarian heritage, music, food and more.

Film & Animation

If you are a film fan you can get your fix at the Portland International Film Festival, the annual Cascade Festival of African Films or attend an animation festival hosted by ASIFA.

Theater

In addition, you can find diverse and vibrantly creative events throughout all of Oregon. The highly lauded Oregon Shakespeare Festival in Ashland is one of the oldest nonprofit theatres in the nation, and produces 11 plays each year. 

Other Local Attractions

Portland’s Saturday Market – the largest weekend open-air crafts market in the nation.

Powell's Books – one of the largest used and new bookstores in the nation, the building has three floors and covers an entire city block.

Portland Parks & Recreation – offers free summer concerts and movies in various city parks.

Here is a short list of some of the more popular organizations and attractions:

Arts & Culture Attractions
Artists Repertory Theatre Lan Su Chinese Garden
Northwest Film Center International Rose Test Garden
Oregon Ballet Theatre Japanese Garden
Oregon Symphony Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI)
Portland Art Museum Oregon Zoo
Portland Arts & Lectures  
Portland Center for the Performing Arts  
Portland Center Stage  
Portland Opera  
White Bird Dance