There’s something for every mom in this list of free and cheap Mother’s Day events in and around Portland.
The best part is no one has to spend a bunch of money to celebrate Mom on this special day. Instead, opt for some quality time and a fun activity.
Take a look at what Portland and neighboring communities have to offer during Mother’s Day weekend, from May 12-14. These are all great opportunities to make memories and celebrate your mom.
Free and Cheap Mother’s Day Events in and around Portland
Spend a Day in St. Johns
Enjoy music, art, food and fun for all ages during Mother’s Day weekend. On May 13, St. Johns is hosting two events: the St. Johns Bizarre and St. Johns Parade. There will be live music, activities, vendors and lots of food carts in the heart of this Portland neighborhood. Both events are free to attend.
Take a short drive up to Woodland for the annal Lilac Days. Hulda Klager, known as the Lilac Lady, began hybridizing lilacs on her property in 1905 and created 14 new varieties of lilacs in just five years. You can still see all her hard work at her quaint farm.
I recommend packing a lunch and spending the afternoon enjoying this special garden. Admission is $5 per person.
Washington Park is the keeper of many of Portland’s best attractions. Access these attractions on the Washington Park free shuttle. It is also the location of one of Portland’s best free rose gardens, which overlooks the city for a great view and place to stop and spend quality time with Mom. The shuttle and rose garden are free.
Explore local arts, crafts, food and performers at Portland Saturday Market. The market is back every Saturday in Downtown Portland. It features more than 250 booths filled with handcrafted goods and is free to attend.
Take a day trip and visit the crown jewel of the Columbia River Gorge. The historic 1918 Vista House at the top of Crown Point offers visitors an incredible view of the Columbia River Gorge. It is open on Saturday and Sunday during Mother’s Day weekend and is free to visit.
You don’t even have to leave the city to go on a nature adventure with Mom. One of my favorite things to do on the weekends is explore our area’s awesome parks. These 6 urban parks have lots of parking, family-friendly trails and beautiful sights.
Enjoy Oaks Park’s Free and Cheap Attractions
Did you know you can ride the carousel and train at Oaks Park for free? These historic attractions are complimentary during park hours. If you’re looking for a fun indoor activity, go rollerskating! The Oaks Park Roller Rink offers year-round skating fun for Portlanders. Admission is $12.
On May 14, Oaks Park is offering free Ride Bracelet for Mom with the purchase of a Ride Bracelet for their child.
On Saturday and Sunday, find one-of-a-kind goods for Mom and treat yourself to something special. Unique Markets spring event is featuring 150 of Portland’s best emerging brands, makers and artists. Tickets are $10. Kids 14 and under attend for free.
Does your mom have an affinity for vintage clothing and decor? Thankfully, our city is chock full of places where bargain hunters thrive. Spend a day finding new-to-you items at Portland’s more than 50 thrift and consignment stores all over the city.
Take a Guided Nature Walk
On May 13, learn about amazing amphibians at Tryon Creek Natural Area’s guided nature walk. This beautiful natural area is a great example of our temperate rainforest climate: trees covered in moss with huge ferns lining the trails that lead to the creek. There’s also a Nature Center and more than 8 miles of hiking trails.
Hoyt Arboretum will also be hosting a guided tour on May 14 at 1 p.m.
There is something particularly comforting about searching for a new book. Portland has upwards of 12 independent bookstores where you can find intriguing titles that are worth talking about and sharing with one another. Start a new tradition at one of Portland’s independent bookstores and let Mom pick out a new book on your dime.
Looking for a one-of-a-kind experience to retrace Portland’s history in an arboretum? Take your mom for a tour of Portland’s historic Lone Fir Cemetery. On Saturday, the Stories of the Stone Tour will give you an insider’s guide to all of the marvels of the cemetery. Tickets are $10.
Attend the Camas Plant & Garden Fair
On Saturday, take a morning trip to Camas for the annual Camas Plant & Garden Fair. The event has a variety of plants and garden-related items for sale. There’s also fun for the whole family, including a free kids zone, petting zoo, and plant and garden experts from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The event is free.
This place is a real Portland gem. Nestled between Reed College and the Eastmoreland Golf Course is an urban oasis called Crystal Springs Rhododendron Garden. On the 9-acre property grows a collection of rare species and hybrid rhododendrons, azaleas, shrubs, companion plants and unusual trees.
It’s a great place to enjoy quality time with Mom. Admission is $5.