This weekend is all about fall-themed festivals! We’ve got harvest festivals—one happening at French Prairie Gardens in St. Paul and one in Hood River along the waterfront—plus a cider festival in Cedar Mill. If you’re all festivaled out, there’s a plethora of other fun options… If a concert sounds appealing, Whistlin’ Rufus is playing Friday night and the Portland Baroque Orchestra is doing their popular Young People’s Concert on Saturday. Finally, there’s a Halloween-themed play, a story time at the Northwest Children’s Theater, a spider extravaganza, and a salmon homecoming. Phew, seems a little down time might be in order after all this activity!

Kick off the weekend by hitting a sale on Friday or Saturday. On the Eastside, the Rose City Cooperative Preschool hosts a 37-family basement sale. In addition to lots of high quality kids items, there will be a restaurant raffle with a chance to win gift certificates to local eateries and entertainment venues. On the Westside, the Cedar Hills Kindergarten & Preschool holds their annual garage sale. Expect lots of kid items plus household goods, yard equipment and sporting goods.



The Blue-Eyed Hare – A Gentle Halloween Tale From Scotland
A two-part experience sure to put a smile on your kiddos’ faces! First the play: A delightful story about a kind beekeeper who befriends a mysterious blue-eyed hare. The performance is filled with lively music and engagingly physical performances. Then the “play”: After the play, each child is invited to crawl, roll and tumble around with the performers in a safe, non-competitive way. Most appropriate for ages 2 – 8 but all ages welcome. Sat., 10:00 a.m., Sun., 2:00 p.m., Portland, $7, under 2 free.Event details.

Family Friday Concert Series Featuring Whistlin’ Rufus
Time for you to shake your groove thang! Whistlin’ Rufus has roots in classical, Irish, folk, bluegrass, jazz, and rock and roll music. When you stir it all together combining their exciting knack for arrangements, their three- and four-part vocal harmonies, original ballads and toe-tapping fiddle tunes, well, you end up with Whistlin’ Rufus. Fri., 7:15 p.m. – 8:30 p.m., Portland, $5 per person or $15 per family suggested donation. Event details.




Cedar Mill Cider Festival
How ‘bout a crisp, fall afternoon of old-time fun? The place to be is the John Quincy Adams Young House where you’ll be pressing apples, sipping cider and enjoying a delicious barbeque lunch! There will be music, games for the kids and more.Sun., 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m., Portland, free. Event details.


Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day Story Time
A storyteller from the Northwest Children’s Theater will read this children’s favorite about Alexander and his not-so-great day. Geared for ages 2 to 6, the story time also will offer hands-on activities, songs and games. Fri., 10:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m., Portland, free. Event details.


Spider Extravaganza
A perfect pre-Halloween outing! Learn about spiders, explore Tryon Creek State Park to find unusual spider homes, make a giant web, and hold a real tarantula! For children ages 4 to 7 accompanied by an adult, pre-registration required. Sun., 10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m., Portland, $10 per child for non-members, $8.50 per child for members. Event details.


Young People’s Concert: What Makes a Symphony?
Join Portland Baroque Orchestra and have fun learning about a symphony! You and your little one will be treated to excerpts from W. A. Mozart: Sinfonia Concertante for violin and viola, K. 364 F. J. Haydn: Symphony No. 60 “Il Distratto”. Sat., 2:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m., Portland, $10 adults, $5 youth (under 18). Event details.



French Prairie Gardens Fall Harvest Festival
Pumpkin patch? Check! Barnyard animals? Check! Hayrides? Check! Plus much more: a two-acre corn maze, 30-foot hay slide, obstacle course, indoor hay maze, apple and pumpkin slingshot, and even the Pigtucky Derby. This weekend is all about grandparents who will enjoy a special $5 admission price. Sat., 9:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m., Sun., 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., St. Paul, $8.50 per person, $32 four people, 1 and under free. Event details.

Hood River Valley Harvest Fest
Take in the beauty of the Hood River waterfront as you make your way through the vendor stands offering freshly harvested local fruits and vegetables, plus handmade arts and crafts. The Kid Zone is sure to please the littles with a climbing wall, bouncy houses, petting zoo, face painting, arts and pumpkin painting. Fri., 1:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m., Sat., 10:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m., Sun., 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., Hood River, $6 adults, 12 and under free. Event details.

Salmon Homecoming at Oxbow
Spot spawning salmon as they return to one of the Pacific Northwest’s premier rivers—the glacier-fed Sandy! Naturalists will be on hand at the river’s edge to help you locate the spawning salmon and to interpret their behavior and life cycle. Special salmon-viewing glasses will be available on loan. Sat. and Sun., 11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m., Gresham, $5 per vehicle. Event details.

—Holly Crisp