The Labor Day weekend means the onset of harvest season and that means corn maize time. And time for the Vaux’s swifts to return to the Chapman School, where they will gather and shoot into the chimney to the delight of thousands of Portlanders. Speaking of the skies–you can also see an extraterrestrial family flick under the stars this weekend. Enjoy free entertainment for families while camping at nearby Oxbow Park. Or head to Blue Lake to learn how seeds travel, stems sprout, plants grow, or how flowers make fruit in a beautiful children’s garden.

In Town

Vaux’s Swifts at Chapman School (Pictured. Photo: Audubon Society of Portland Facebook)
Join Portlanders on the lawn at Chapman School most evenings in September for a spectacular display of Vaux’s Swifts as they gather to roost in the school’s chimney. Through September. Chapman Elementary School. 1 hour before sunset. Free. All ages. Event details.

Pumpkin Patch Annual Harvest Festival
Celebrate the grand opening of the Corn Maize. Activities include visiting animal friends, riding a giant slide, eating caramel apple, and conquering the giant hay pyramid. Sat-Mon, 9:00 am – 6:00 pm. The Pumpkin Patch. Free. All ages. Event details.

Movies in the Park: The Goonies
If your kids don’t know how to “phone home,” this is the weekend to share this classic family favorite with them under the stars. Movies are shown on a giant, 268-square foot screen with a state-of-the-art sound system. Sat. Movie begins at dark. Free entertainment begins at 6:30. Free. All ages. vent details.


Around the Campfire at Oxbow: Shadow Puppets
Enjoy stories and old-fashioned entertainment while camping at Oxbow Regional Park. Oxbow has 67 campsites available on a first come, first-served basis. Sat. 8:30 pm – 9:30 pm. Show is free to overnight guests. Camping $20. All ages. Event details.

Water Wonders at Blue Lake
Enjoy fun activities such as potato printing, bookmark making, flower origami, and leaf rubbings. Fri-Sun. 1:00 pm – 5:00 pm. Free. $5 parking. No registration necessary. Ages 3 and up. Event details.

Out of Town

Peach Celebration and Country BBQ
Celebrate the holiday with a country BBQ complete with smoked ribs, pulled pork sandwiches or chicken, pear coleslaw and apple cider baked beans. Or go straight to dessert and enjoy fresh-baked peach pies, cobblers, crisps, or a frosty peach milkshake. Sat-Mon. Apple Valley Store, Hood River. 10:00 am – 6:00 pm. Free. All ages. Event details.

Nature’s Yucky: Tillamook Forest Center
Several wild animals of the Tillamook Forest often have icky and gross behaviors, but for good reasons.  Join us for program filled with “eeewwws” and “aahhhs” as we discover that nature can be disgusting, but also beautiful. Sun. 1:30 pm – 2:00 pm. Free. All. Event details.

Will you be looking skyward for swifts or an extra-special-terrestrial or getting down and dirty with nature this weekend?

– Cheyenne Terbrueggen