Celebrate the long-held belief that everyone is at least a little Irish on St. Patrick’s Day with events taking place all across town. From the 16th Annual St. Patty’s Day Parade and Festival in Sellwood-Moreland, to the Murphy’s Furniture Parade and Corned Beef and Cabbage Feed in Hillsboro, that’s been running for over 30 years, there’s bound to be something everyone in the family can get behind.  Also on tap this weekend, are the Fitness Fair, Underwater Puppet Show and Brain Fair. shamrock


St. Patty’s Parade and Festival
Sellwood-Moreland’s 16th Annual St. Patrick’s Day Festival and Parade features a 5k Fun Run followed by a parade with the Sellwood Middle School Marching Band, Irish Wolfhounds, Portland Fire and Rescue’s fire engine, Portland Police’s motorcycles, along with parade kids pulling and riding on decorated wagons and bikes. After the parade, join in some old fashioned carnival games and a cakewalk under the tent, as well as Guinness, corned beef and cabbage, shepherd’s pie and Irish sausage rolls, and entertainment by Clackamas Fire Fighters Pipes and Drums, Hyatus, The Boys of Malin, The Chancers and Irish dancers. Sat., 10:30 a.m.-8 p.m., Free, All Ages. Event details.

Family Fitness
In conjunction with the Shamrock Run, Adidas is hosting a Shamrock Fitness Fair that’s open to the public.  65 exhibitors will take part in the fair and will include a special Leprechaun Lane for kids, with Timber Joey, CLIF bars, Doernbecher Children’s Hospital, Gentech Dentist, Live 95.5 and the Portland Rose Festival Grand Floral Walk. Fri. 11 a.m.-8 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-3 p.m., Free, All Ages. Event details.

Trams Rock
Ride the tram and have a little St. Pat’s fun while you wait for your loved ones to finish the Shamrock Run. Free activities at the base of the Portland Aerial Tram include face painting, balloon making, St. Patty’s crafts and puzzles.  Tram t-shirt coloring and tram rides are available for a fee.  Sun., 10 a.m.- 2 p.m., Free; $10 t-shirt; $4 tram ticket for kids 7 and older; free rides for kids 6 and under, All Ages. Event details.

Underwater Puppets
Check out “The Underwater Adventure” puppet show featuring Shawnery Connery telling seafaring tales about sea creatures, including a seahorse, sting ray, sharks, jellyfish, angler fish, manta ray, dolphin puffer fish, octopus and others, as well as the most deadly of all inhabitants of the sea – pollution.  Sat., 10:30 – 11:15 a.m., $7, Ages 3 and up. Event details.

Use Your Noggin
Join the largest cerebral celebration in the country this weekend with Brain Fair, part of OHSU’s Brain Awareness Season. The fair features exhibits, real brains, crafts, prizes and talks from brilliant neuroscientists. Sat., 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Free with museum admission, All Ages. Event details.


Kells Irish Fest
Every year, Kells Irish Restaurant & Pub serves up a celebration of epic proportions, which includes family-friendly activities, in addition to their adults-only party. During their designated family hours, visitors can expect a heaping helping of yummy food, live music, Irish dancers, crafts and face painting for kids.  Minors are welcome in the back tent and restaurant area. Sat. 11 a.m.-5 p.m., Sun. 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Free, All Ages. Event details.

Irish I had Fresh Veggies
Kick of St. Patty’s Day weekend with some healthy, fresh fruits and veggies along with special guest, Mayor Denny Doyle, and live Irish music by Hanz Araki, Seamus Egan, Cary Novotny and Joe Trump, and the Molly Malone Irish Dance Troupe.  Traditional Irish dance and music will be called by Sam Keator of S & A Irish Entertainment. Sat., 12-1:30 p.m., Free, All Ages. Event details.

Do an Irish Jig
If you’re looking for a little less green beer with your music, the Beaverton City Library will host its St. Patrick’s Day Eve celebration featuring The Stomptowners. But don’t expect a passive show.  Vocalist, Andrea Wild, and foot percussionist, Maldon Meehan, will have you up on your feet doing a jig right along with them. Sun., 2 p.m., Free, All Ages. Event details.

Worth the Drive

Murphy’s Furniture St. Patrick’s Parade
Not that you have to drive too far to get to Hillsboro, but if you live in deep, east Portland, this could be considered a road trip.  Check out the longest running St. Patrick’s parade in the State of Oregon (over 30 years!), which is also a celebration of spring’s arrival and a thank you to the residents of Washington County.  After the parade, the event will conclude at the Civic Center, 150 E. Main St., with a corned beef and cabbage feed and kids’ games, hosted by the Hillsboro Boys and Girls Club. 11 a.m.-12 p.m. parade, 12-1 p.m. food and games, Free, All Ages. Event details.

What’s your tradition for St. Patrick’s Day?  Let us know in the Comments section below!

–Suzie Ridgway

Photo via Flickr