You’ve done every craft and science project you can think of and the kids aren’t too thrilled about another trip to the library, but have no fear: spring is almost here! Don’t let a few (more) drops of rain stop you from grabbing the kiddos and heading out to our city’s best March festivities. We promise after you scroll through the list below, you’ll find plenty of motivation to head out, rain or shine

photo: by van_swoo via Flickr

1. Join the Timbers Army

Timbers season starts with the first game on March 3 against Minnesota United FC. Don your Timbers gear, paint the kids’ faces, and get ready to cheer at Providence Park! Or make it an at-home party with a full spread of snacks and all your friends–face paint still required.

Providence Park
1844 SW Morrison St.
Portland
Get tickets online: timbers.com/tickets

2. Catch a World Premiere

Head to the Oregon Children’s Theater for the world premiere of Flora & Ulysses! Based on the novel by Kate DiCamillo, the show is about a small superhero squirrel and a girl named Flora, who is a self-proclaimed cynic. Can Ulysses the squirrel give her a change of heart?

Feb., 25–Mar. 26, 2017
Sat., 2 p.m. & 5 p.m.
Sun., 11 a.m. & 2 p.m.
1939 NW Sandy Blvd.
Portland
Online: octc.org/flora-ulysses

3. Combat the Winter Blues with the Blues

Enjoy the crooning tunes of some of Portland’s best blues musicians. This indoor festival is on two stages with six bands and plenty of room for dancing with the kids. Raffle and auction items as well as food and drink will be on site. Proceeds benefit the Oregon Food Bank and the Youth Music Project, dedicated to providing low cost music lessons across Portland. They’ll have a special performance at the festival, as well!

Sat., Mar.11, 2:30-11 p.m.
Elk’s Lodge
13121 SE McLoughlin Blvd.
Milwaukie
Online: winterbluesfest.net

photo: Michael Barton via flickr

4. Explore Bugs and Mud 

Take your under preschool (2-5) explorers on a guided Ladybug Walk through Portland’s natural wonders. These drop-in weekly walks are guided by friendly naturalists, and move at an easy slow pace so kids can better explore the plants, insects, and nature around them. The hikes on March 3 and 9 are at Whitaker Pond; home to otters, beavers, grey owls, and more!

Whitaker Pond Nature Park
7040 NE 47th Ave.
Portland
Online: portlandoregon.gov/parks/64625

5. Spy Whale Tails at the Coast

Every spring near the end of March the Oregon Coast sees hundreds of grey whales migrate past on their way north to Alaska. The park staff at Depoe Bay are ready to answer your kids’ questions and help point out the gentle behemoths.

Mar. 25-31
Depoe Bay Whale Watching Center
119 US-101
Depoe Bay
Online: oregonstateparks.org

photo: Kirt Edblom via Flickr

6. Clog on a Tulip Farm

Tulip mania descends every spring at the Wooden Shoe Tulip Festival in Woodburn! Covering 40 acres of farmland with view of Mt Hood in the distance, the festival is a fun-filled day for everyone. Hay rides, cow trains, duck races, slides, food, hot air balloons, plenty of tulips to pose in front of and clogs to sit in. Pro tip: arrive early to beat the crowds!

33814 S. Meridian Rd.
Woodburn
Online: woodenshoe.com/

7. Celebrate with the Irish

Portland’s biggest St. Paddy’s Day party is at Kell’s Irish Pub all weekend long! This family-friendly festival has live Irish dancing and music, food, drink and lots of fun. Saturday holds the most in store for kids, with face-painting and arts and crafts. All proceeds benefit the Providence Child Center.
112 SW Second Ave.
Portland
Online: kellsportland.com/st-patrick-s-festival

photo: Mark Stalcup via flickr

8. Run in a Sea of Green 

The Shamrock Run is one of the biggest running events in Portland every year! Choose between a 5k, 8k, 15k, half marathon run or the Shamrock Stride, a stroller- and dog-friendly 5k walk. Live bands keep the energy up all day, and participants get a bowl of Irish potato soup. Kids ages 10 and under can join in on the Leprechaun Lap, a 1k (.6 mile) run along the Waterfront.

Sun., Mar. 19
Starting times begin as early as 8 a.m. (5k) and as late as 10:30 a.m. (4k walk). Kids Leprechaun Lap starts at 9:40 a.m.
Waterfront, Downtown Portland
Online: shamrockrunportland.com

9. Parade with Bagpipes

This local school parade has grown into a renowned community event every year, drawing hundreds. The parade, led by Sellwood Middle School Marching Band, winds through Sellwood to St. Agatha’s Parish, where an Irish festival awaits. The tent holds authentic Irish corned beef and cabbage and shepherd’s pie, along with an old-fashioned carnival for the kids.

Sat., Mar. 18, 11 a.m.-8 p.m. (Parade at noon)
7960 SE 15th Ave.
Portland
Online: stagathaschoolpdx.us/st-patricks-day

10. Go Wild at the Zoo

Your child can get a sneak peek at new spring babies with the day camps at the Oregon Zoo! Starting as young as 4-years-old, kids are invited to spend a day exploring little-seen areas of the zoo. They’ll meet animals face to face and hunt for clues to solve nature-themed mysteries. Each day has a different theme. Or create your own treasure hunt across the zoo for a visit anytime!

Mar. 27-31
Oregon Zoo
4001 SW Canyon Rd.
Portland
Online: oregonzoo.org/events/spring-break-day-camp

What’s your favorite March event? Tell us in the comments below!

—Katrina Emery