Looking for a good excuse to hit the open road and head for the coast this weekend?  The Oregon Coast Aquarium in Newport is celebrating sharks! With all that’s in store this weekend in the Portland area, sticking closer to home is sure to offer an abundance of family-friendly fun too. Don’t forget: The wonderful folks from the Fred Meyer Fund have made it possible for all of us to experience the awesomeness that is OMSI completely free of charge (excludes separate ticketed attractions) from Aug. 12 to Aug. 15! Just in time to check out the Einstein exhibit too. If a little shopping is just what you need to kick off the weekend, head over to the urbanMamas/Activistas Garage Sale. Great deals and 100 percent of the proceeds will be donated to Family Forward Oregon. Read on for more events:


Sunday Parkways Calling all walkers, runners, bikers, rollers, jumpers and skippers! Here’s your chance to check out the streets of Southeast Portland without worrying about those pesky cars! Neighborhood streets will offer plenty of performers, physical activities, food, and other surprises. Route also will connect to the Hawthorne Street Fair. Sun., 10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m., Portland, free. Read more.

Hawthorne Street Fair A perfect companion to Sunday Parkways (see above); come experience the funkiness that is Hawthorne! Plenty for everyone, including great music, a free movie, free bicycle repair, coffee tasting, and even several sidewalk sales. There will be a kid’s area at Kids at Heart (SE Hawthorne Blvd. and SE 35th Ave.) featuring face painting, circus skills workshop, kid’s jamboree, puppet show, and stilt-walking demonstrations. Sun., 11:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., Portland, free. Read more.


Girls Little League Softball World Series Our fine city is hosting this international competition where the top ten teams from all around the world will try to hit their way to the World Series Champion title! Come cheer on these little ladies, and who knows, maybe this experience will spark a softball interest in your wee one! Sat., 9:45 a.m. – 3:30 p.m., Sun., 12:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m., Portland, free. Read more.

Washington Park Summer Festival The last chance to get your groove on for this summer’s festival series! In keeping with tradition, closing night will feature the salsa and calypso sounds of Felicidades. Bring your own picnic dinner or purchase food at the concert. Sat., 6:00 p.m., Portland, free. Read more.


Tualatin Crawfish Festival You don’t have to travel all the way to Louisiana to satisfy a crawfish craving! The festivities begin with a crawfish cook-off on Friday evening, but come back on Saturday for a day filled with kid-friendly fun: kayak rides, music, performers, a parade, crawfish trail hunt, and a CrawKid art show. There’s even a kid’s crawfish eating contest for those with an adventurous palate! Fri., 7:30 a.m. – 9:30 p.m., Sat., 7:30 a.m. – 7:00 p.m., Tualatin, $4, 2 and under free. Read more.

Clark County Fair If you and your kiddos haven’t got your fair on yet this summer, this one is sure to delight! This year’s fair promises more FREE family entertainment, highlights include: an interactive alien encounter exhibit; mini-pigs doing tricks and athletic feats; and a kid’s park with circus and puppet shows. And for a small fee there are pony rides, face painting, carnival rides, and much more. There’s even a demolition derby on Friday, and monster truck shows on both Saturday and Sunday! Fri. and Sat., 10:00 a.m. – 11:00 p.m., Sun., 10:00 a.m. – 10 p.m., Ridgefield, Wash., $10 adults, $7 children 7-12, 6 and under free. Read more.

-Holly Crisp