Though the temperature gets cooler, Portland’s events scene starts heating up every November. Special seasonal offerings include the annual Portland Book Festival in downtown Portland, special shopping events and Thanksgiving traditions. Read on for some of our favorite November events and things to do in Portland, or check out our full events calendar to see everything on offer.
The Portland Book Festival
Reinvented in 2015 as a one-day celebration, the Portland Book Festival draws more than 100 authors each year. The largest celebration of literature and literacy in the Pacific Northwest includes an extensive book fair, large-scale events, smaller panels, on-stage conversations, and readings, all held at and around the Portland Art Museum.
Markets and Art Walks
The Portland Holiday Market comes every year to the Portland Expo Center. Featuring anything from clothing to home decor or craft items to leather goods, the market is a great place to get all of your holiday shopping done early. Combining the vibes of an art show, a live street concert, and an open-air bazaar, the Portland Saturday Market has been a beloved Rose City tradition since 1974. The largest arts-and-crafts fair in the country is open every Saturday in November. The First Friday Art Walk takes place year-round in Portland’s vibrant eastside. Art openings at galleries and open spaces set the scene and can include group art shows, open maker spaces and lively performances.
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Held twice a year, My People’s Market brings together dozens of local artists, entrepreneurs and creatives of color for live music, networking and shopping. The November market is an early kickoff to the holiday shopping season and draws attendees who shop, eat, drink and dance throughout the weekend.
The Ha Ha Harvest Comedy Festival brings amazing comedy to the Rose City throughout the Thanksgiving weekend. The festival holds performances across the city on ten different stages and, in 2023, is introducing a film and screenplay competition.
Kick off the holiday season with Wine Country Thanksgiving, when wineries throughout the Willamette Valley offer special tastings, food pairings, live music, holiday discounts and other wine-country experiences. Discover a delicious local pinot to pair with your holiday celebrations, or find the perfect gift for the wine lover in your life.
Join in honoring all Veterans, past and present, at the annual Portland Veterans Day Parade. The parade is made of marching bands, floats, vehicles and marching veterans and makes its way along northeast Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, concluding with a closing ceremony.
Every year, the Lan Su Chinese Garden celebrates the beauty of chrysanthemums and their significance to Chinese culture during the month-long Celebration of the Chrysanthemum. A symbol of longevity and wealth, the beautiful bloom is showcased in floral designs and cultivation demonstrations throughout the gardens.
On the day after Thanksgiving, thousands of people gather in downtown Pioneer Courthouse Square to see the Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony of the spectacular 75-foot-tall tree and celebrate the official start of the holiday season. Also starting the day after Thanksgiving is the Christmas Festival of Lights at The Grotto, featuring nearly 160 indoor holiday concerts performed by many of the region’s finest school, church, and civic choirs. The annual holiday ZooLights display at the Oregon Zoo has gotten a grown-up spinoff. For two nights every November, BrewLights takes over the zoo. Tickets include adult-only access to the festive display and samples from local breweries.
The Portland Veterans Day Parade is an inclusive, nonpartisan, family-friendly event honoring all Veterans, past and present, living and deceased. It is officially permitted by the City of Portland and was established in 1974 by Vernon E. Ross, proprietor of Ross Hollywood Funeral Chapel. All community members are welcome to register to be in the…
Prepare to journey back in time to the birth of the Cascade Mountain Range, where lava and pyroclastic matter oozed and flowed, creating a solid layer of basalt rock that coated Western Oregon. Fast forward to the Pleistocene Ice Age, and witness the epic Lake Missoula Flood, which carved out the majestic Columbia River Gorge,…
Get ready to explore the heart and soul of Portland with a half-day City Tour. This isn’t your average tour; you'll be takn on a journey through the city’s charming streets and reveal its laid-back atmosphere. Brace yourself for an amazing tour of Portland’s must-see spots like the International Rose Garden (seasonally), the World Forestry…
Buckle up for an epic journey as you are whisked away from Portland to the spellbinding Mt. Hood. With passionate and well-informed guides leading the way, you’ll have plenty of chances to snap up some breathtaking shots of the majestic landscape and soak up the mesmerizing history of this iconic mountain. Enjoy a full day…
Ready for an adventure? Join the ultimate tour of Portland and the Columbia River Gorge. You'll see the must-see sights in Portland and then be whisked away to the stunning Columbia Gorge National Scenic Area. Discover the magic of the waterfalls, soak in breathtaking views, and dive into the history of the area’s top attractions….
Goodness is a show that brings the best stand-up comedy in Portland to the incredible Laurelhurst Club! Tickets are only $10, with even more affordable drinks! (21+)
Experience the eccentricity of Portland, Oregon and visit one of its quirkiest neighborhoods on this walking pub tour. This tour is a must-do for anyone who wants to immerse themselves in the fascinating history of the city, including stories of UFO sightings, Bigfoot sightings, exploding whales, wacky bike rides, strange locals, hijackings, hipsters, artists, and…
Comedy Open Mic for every skill level. Beginners are welcome. Weekly mic every Monday night with 8:30 p.m. sign-ups. Hosted by Sam Bass and Milo Loza. The Cheerful Tortoise is an iconic Portland bar that has been around for more than 60 years and provides a cheerful environment for everyone to enjoy.
Portland comics Bjorn RG and Eliza Butler host this weekly show at Neighbors Taproom with curated lineups of local and nationally touring comedians. 21+
Join hostess Devlin Lynn Phoenixx and her cast of talented queens for a Sunday brunch experience you won’t soon forget. Your ticket includes admission to the show, your meal, AND your first mimosa. Vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options are available. So grab your friends and get down to The Pharmacy for a spectacularly fun time.
Trade muddy trails for winter walks along the smooth, paved walkways of Portland's parks, then treat yourself to a warm mug of coffee or tea.
Brighten your February with glowing sculptures and thousands of twinkling lights at Portland’s annual Winter Lights Festival.
Oregon is the perfect place for outdoor adventure, any time of year — explore our selection of all-weather paths and hikes in and near Portland.
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