Always quirky, Southeast Hawthorne Boulevard is a walkable street with block after block of vintage shops, boutiques, and cafés. Find plenty of things to do!
Spanning 43 blocks, in old storefronts find thrift shopping, cozy bookstores, fine and casual dining, and a perfect espresso as you wander this locally beloved Southeast Portland neighborhood. Read on for our favorite things to do and see in the Hawthorne District.
Where to Eat and Drink on Hawthorne
Start your day with meticulously brewed coffee from Coava Coffee at its second outpost in a small cafe on Hawthorne. Coffee-lovers will find locally roasted single-origin coffee and espresso, plus single-origin mochas made with a custom blend of shaved and powdered Cocanu chocolate. Further east, Albina Press, pouring up rich mochas, cocoas and heavenly cappuccinos also serves as the water-cooler for work-from-home locals.
At this quintessentially hip coffeehouse, Upper Left Roasters you can wake up with a piping hot Ethiopian pour-over or creamy iced mocha at this which also offers a lengthy toast menu featuring toppings like macadamia nut butter and house-made ricotta.
Food and Drink
On Hawthorne you'll find a plethora of cuisines, many catering to many different dietary needs.
Harlow, one of the few dedicated gluten-free restaurants in Portland, delivers veggie and gluten-free bowls and smoothies that are decadent, yet health-focused. Try the walnut pancakes and the Portland Fog, or the “rawsome” veggie burger and rich smoothies like the Retrospection, loaded with almond butter and cacao.
Portland’s premier juice bar, Kure, is an unassuming tin shed that specializes in heavenly acai bowls, green juices and superfood smoothies.
The Waffle Window is quite possibly Portland’s most playful dining spot. A literal hole in the wall, demarcated by a blue door, the popular snack spot doles out smiles in the form of waffles overflowing with bacon, cheddar and jalapeño — or dipped in peanut butter and chocolate.
Portland brunch stalwart Jam on Hawthorne serves up breakfast staples seven days a week, inviting parents to dig into lemon ricotta pancakes and Grand Marnier French toast as kiddos delight in their own play area.
At the east end of Hawthorne, Apizza Scholls’ reputation for serving some of the best pizza pretty much anywhere was confirmed by a visit from Anthony Bourdain himself. The restaurant’s round beauties feature toppings like cured pork shoulder and goat horn peppers. But arrive early and expect to work up an appetite in the usually long line.
When you’re undecided on what to eat, make your way to one of the most iconic food cart pods, Cartopia Food Cart Pods where night owls devour bacon-honey-walnut crepes, Latin-style chicken, wood-fired pizzas and even vegan poutine. A few blocks away, Hawthorne Asylum hosts 21 carts in a food court sprawling half a city block in Southeast. From brunch to Ethiopian to Egyptian to BBQ, there is something to try for everybody.
Things to Do on Hawthorne
These local institutions showcase some of the best of Southeast Portland.
What to Do on Hawthorne
From shopping to movies, an indoor skate park, and a beautiful city park at the top of the strip you’ll have plenty of things to explore. Mount Tabor, one of only a handful of extinct volcanoes within city limits in the U.S., is a 636-foot cinder cone that boasts panoramic views of downtown. On its fir-shaded flanks, explore hiking trails, a playground and an amphitheater for summer-evening concerts.
For more than ten years, overgrown kids have taken part in the Portland Adult Soap Box Derby, hurtling down Mt. Tabor in homemade vehicles, while sunbathing, beer-drinking spectators cheer them on. The big race is held every August.
Every August, the neighborhood rallies for the Hawthorne Street Fair, one of the city’s finest fairs, with music stages spreading throughout the shopping district, sidewalk sales and kids’ activities.
The Bagdad Theater and Pub first opened in 1927 and now a McMenamin’s property, is one of the city’s many view-and-brew-style venues, with surround sound and rocker seats — in addition to craft beer, pizza and pub fare. After the show, play pool behind the screen at the Backstage Bar or visit the adjoining Greater Trumps and Bagdad Pub.
While it doesn’t boast a showy marquee like the Bagdad, CineMagic Theater has seniority as it opened in 1914. Head here for a good deal on new releases, which share screen time with second-run films and classics.
Do Jump! Extremely Physical Theater blends acrobatics and dance into shows that appeal to family audiences and seasoned theater-goers. And if you’re looking for laughs, catch great stand-up acts most nights at Helium Comedy Club.
Fun & Games
Commonwealth Skate Park offers an indoor skate park featuring a smaller bowl, a mini ramp and a small street course with a rail and a few ledges. They also offer lessons, skate camps, and a shop for all your skating gear and accessories.
If you want to watch the games, instead of playing the games, take your soccer fans to Gol. This soccer bar boasts outdoor seating and several screens to watch the matches, at any hour.
Southeast Hawthorne Boulevard’s indie boutiques and homegrown shops mirror the locals you’ll see on the street: fun, funky and fiercely independent. Antiquing is exciting wherever you make a great find, but hunting on Hawthorne brings it to a new level. So, whether it’s a cookbook, handbag or a handcrafted postcard, you’ll find plenty of only-in-Portland wares here — alongside lots of “Keep Portland Weird” personality.
Books & Music
If downtown Portland’s City of Books is too much, find a sampling at Powell’s Books on Hawthorne with aisles of new and used titles, this local chain is a destination for bookworms. Alternatively, you can explore Backstory Books, a woman-owned bookstore in a small house on Hawthorne, that sells a well-curated selection of used books and recycled yarn.
Part record label, part gift shop, Tender Loving Empire teems with made-in-Portland art, albums, tees and trinkets. Look through the eclectic used vinyl at Tomorrow Records. Jackpot Records bucks the trend of downloadable music with expertise worth its weight in CDs. Thumbing through their well-sorted selection of vinyl is time well spent, especially when you score a fairly priced, forgotten favorite, or take a chance on a disc recommended by their tuned-in staff.
Places to Shop on Hawthorne
With so many shops and boutiques on Hawthorne, here are some highlights.
Clothes & Accessories
House of Vintage has 1,300 square feet of vintage clothing, furniture and art. A Portland mainstay, Magpie, has a small curated collection of fantastic vintage clothes and accessories. With one of the largest stockpiles of vintage clothes in Portland, the high-traffic Red Light Clothing Exchange stops bargain-hunting fashionistas in their tracks. And nearby, you’ll find even more resale — with an emphasis on newer brands — at Buffalo Exchange and Crossroads Trading Co.
Stocking up on Portland styles comes naturally on Hawthorne. Designer denim and locally stitched sweaters fill the chic boutique Communion. Sloan Boutique offers head-to-toe fashions that are great for every day or a night on the town, and their staff knows how to mix and match to make the perfect look.
For smaller trinkets and great gifts to bring back to wherever you’re visiting, Presents of Mind, stocks locally designed jewelry and accessories, baby gifts and a great selection of cards. Or discover a signature scent at The Perfume House, which offers an astonishing collection of 1,500 aromas.
Spreading the joy of all things camp vibes with accessories and cozy stuff, Poler has you covered for outdoor and camping needs.
Explore Hawthorne's quirkiness at these upcoming events.
First Friday PDX
Located in Portland’s vibrant East Side Arts District, the First Friday Art Walk takes place on the first Friday evening of every month year-round. Offering a gateway into Portland’s thriving arts culture, First Friday PDX includes more than 23 independent galleries, shops, and studios and a street exhibition from April to October. The self-guided tour…
Whether you’re a grandmaster or a lowly woodpusher, you’re invited to come push some wood at 4th Wall’s very first Chess Meetup. Join in on a casual evening of play, discussion, and socializing over our favorite game. All ages and skill levels are welcome, and best of all, it’s free. Snacks and drinks will be…
Tuesday Trivia at the 4th Wall
The 4th Wall’s Tuesday Trivia is Hawthorne’s hottest trivia night and still the top spot to flex your nerd knowledge. Themes include: 5/16 – Buffy5/23 – Harry Potter – co-sponsored by @fracture_brewing,5/30 – Twin Peaks6/6 – The New Girl6/13 – The Good Place6/20 – Gilmore Girls6/27 – 30 RockThere’ll be plenty of fun, prizes, and…
Walk-in Wednesday at Tattoo 34
Tatoo 34, Portland’s only Indigenous and Black-owned tattoo shop, offers Walk-in Wednesdays starting at noon. Walk-in tattoos are small, simple flash or custom tattoos that take two hours or less. No appointment is necessary, but patience is required. Walk-in tattoos are: First come, first served (while being mindful of the tattoo concept and the best…
Craft Mixology Class
WHAT TO EXPECT: Learn to mix, shake, stir and properly garnish four craft cocktails- both modern and classic cocktails alike. All cocktails are made with Accompani, Straightaway Cocktails line of liqueurs, amaro, and vermouth.Gain a solid foundation of many bar tools and techniques involved in mixology. Learn when to shake and when to stir (thanks,…
Friends & Fam Improv Jam w/ Kickstand Comedy
Kickstand Comedy invites all PDX improv students and performers to this hot new in-person IMPROV JAM at 4th Wall PDX.! An inclusive, supportive and fun place to stretch those scene work muscles and get in some sweet, sweet improv reps. Improv Jams are a great way to skill-build and meet new folks. Hosted by a…
Live & Local w/ Ross Passeck
4th Wall’s resident standup and comedy superstar Ross Passeck (@sauce_packet) is back at the 4th Wall with his best show yet. LIVE & LOCAL is a monthly show collecting the city’s funniest comics. Doors are open as early as 6 p.m., the show usually kicks off around 7:15, and tickets are only $10.
Writer's Strike and Friends Improv
Do you love classic sitcoms? Join Writer’s Strike and Friends for their monthly improv comedy show at The 4th Wall where they create a 22-minute improvised sitcom episode built on their wit, skill and audience suggestions. Nothing planned. From co-workers to lovers, each show leaves you wanting the next episode. Local comedians will join them…
Dungeons & Dragons One Shot Adventure
Join 4th Wall for a one-shot Dungeons & Dragons adventure. You can bring your own character or play with one of their housemade presets. All ages and skill levels are welcome, and best of all, it’s FREE. Let 4th Wall know if you’re willing to DM; they may need extra help if attendance is good.
Everything in Between w/ Danelle Porter
A standup comedy show that promises No Straight White Men Allowed (on stage, y’all can still come watch) and features some of the finest and funniest femme, trans, queer, and bipoc comics Portland has to offer, hosted by Portland’s own comedy powerhouse, Danelle Porter. Doors are open as early as 6pm, the show usually kicks…
You Oughta Know
A show where comedians talk about the things they love and believe you need to know about. Is it preaching? Is it education? Is it philanthropy? 4th Wall isn’t sure- but they are positive it will be funny. You Oughta Know is a concept show about comics teaching, preaching, ranting and raving on their most…
Chess Tournament at the 4th Wall
4th Wall is back with another Chess Tournament Four rounds, 15/2 fast play. Please bring your own chess timer or use the Chess Timer app. Pre-registration is $15 prizes available for the top winners. Snacks and drinks will be available for purchase.
Stoney McBlaze presents: The We Quit Our Jobs Tour
Stoney McBlaze (2.3 Million Followers on TikTok) and his friends Leonard Smith Jr and Ray Lau (combined 9 followers on TikTok) are ON THE ROAD performing standup comedy. These three guys are out every night in Los Angeles, regularly performing for sold-out crowds. Now it’s time for the big leagues… PORTLAND. Tickets are almost all…
Open Mic Night w/ Amelia Evans and Jane Malone
Ever wanted to take your turn at one of our Funny Friday standup nights? Well, now you can. Local legends Jane Malone and Amelia Evans are back hosting 4th Wall’s hugely hilarious Comedy Open Mic Night. Tickets are just $10 at the door only, no fee to signup. See you on stage.
Hawthorne Street Fair
Visit one of Portland’s original “shop local” districts every August for the Hawthorne Street Fair. You can explore over 200 businesses while enjoying Vendors, Food, Music and Entertainment in a Car Free zone from SE Cesar Chavez to SE 30th Avenue on Hawthorne. 2023 is the 40th Anniversary of the Hawthorne Street Fair. Enjoy great…
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Illustration by Subin Yang
Southeast Portland Neighborhoods
East of the Willamette River and south of Burnside Street, this large quadrant is home to many favorite neighborhoods and business districts, as well as the dormant volcano at Mt. Tabor Park, delectable Asian food in the Jade District and urban nature at Leach Botanical Garden and Powell Butte.
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