February—with its customary gray skies and rain—is here. But cheer up, because there are many family-friendly events and activities in Portland this month. Whether you are looking for indoor activities or outdoor explorations, here are 20+ fun things to do with kids in Portland this February — all for free!
We’ve made every effort to confirm this information, but always double check with the organization before heading out!
Ring in the Year of the Rat! There will be traditional cultural performances, children’s entertainment and arts & crafts on Saturday, February 1 at Washington Square Mall.
Hear a Symphony Storytime. This series of storytimes features a reader from the library who will tell stories while an Oregon Symphony musician brings them to life with live music. At the end, the kids get to try the instruments for themselves! On Tuesdays (February 4, 11, 18 & 25) at 2 pm at the Belmont Library.
Try golf! Glendoveer Golf and Tennis is offering free kids’ golf clinics, including one on Wednesday, February 5. Pre-registration is required. For kids ages 5-12.
Not into golf? How about tennis? Glendoveer Golf and Tennis is also offering free clinics for kids interested in trying tennis. Pre-registration is required. For kids ages 6-12. Saturday, February 8.
See the light. Check out the Portland Winter Light Festival with its illuminated art installations, kinetic fire sculptures and stand-out performances. Many installations are situated along the banks of the Willamette, between the foot of the Tilikum Bridge and the Hawthorne Bridge, but check the website for more details on the festival expansion across the river. Thursday, February 6 to Saturday, February 8. Starts at dusk.
Head to Cloverdilly Kids to chase away the winter gloom. This kids’ consignment shop will have free face painting and a friendship bracelet crafting station on Saturday, February 8.
Go to Multnomah County Library’s African American Read-In. Local community leaders, teachers, students and celebrities will read from their favorite works from African American writers. Books for kids, teens and adults will be spotlighted. Saturday, February 8. North Portland Library. Get there early; first come, first served.
Make Valentine’s craft and cards. At the Multnomah County Library’s Valentine Fun event, they’ll provide all the fun bits for your little one to make adorable cards. Saturday, February 8 at the Belmont Library and the Central Library branches.
And go to a Valentine’s party. The Tigard Public Library is hosting an “I Love You, Valentine!” party on Sunday, February 9. Kids and families can create beautiful, sparkling treasures to share with that special someone on Valentine’s Day and enjoy tasty treats.
Learn about local birds at the Audubon Society Nature Sanctuary. Meet the nonprofit’s famed educational birds, check out the Wildlife Care Center, and see the interpretive displays. If the weather cooperates, walk along nearby trails to explore Forest Park and Balch Creek.
Get in the pilot’s seat. Every Saturday from 10 am-5 pm, the Pearson Education Center is open and free to explore. Check out the flight simulator lab, vertical wind table, historical airplanes and collections, and enjoy special kids activities.
Celebrate Oregon’s 161st birthday. Head to the Oregon State Capitol in Salem on Saturday, February 15 for family-friendly activities, covered wagons on display, and live costumed historic interpreters. Plus there will be birthday cupcakes (while supplies last)!
Skip the parking fee. February 17 and February 20 are Metro’s Free Parking Days. Enjoy free parking at Oxbow (pictured above) and Blue Lake regional parks, Broughton Beach, M. James Gleason Memorial Boat Ramp, and Chinook Landing Marine Park. Those days don’t work for you? You can always find your perfect park with Metro’s online park finder tool.
Explore the Gilbert House Museum. At their Legacy of Play Day, you and the kids will have access to 16 indoor exhibits within three historic houses, plus there’s also the massive Outdoor Discovery Area to explore. Monday, February 17.
Meet baby farm animals. The North Clackamas FFA will open their land lab on Monday, February 17 for Red Barn Baby Day. Take pictures with animals and learn about them from volunteers. You can bring a pair of new socks or toiletry items to donate to the Wichita Center for Family and Community in Milwaukie.
Catch a bit of New Orleans. Check out the Portland Mardi Gras Parade on Mississippi Avenue. The kids’ costume contest starts at 6 pm, and the parade starts rolling at 7 pm. If you are watching the parade from the sidelines, cheer extra loud when the Mysti Krewe of Nimbus passes by to score one of their coveted mini umbrella “throws.” Tuesday, February 25.
Take part in a Pokémon Day celebration. Why is February 27 Pokémon Day? It’s the day the first Pokémon video game launched in 1996! You gotta catch the crafts, snacks, movie and fun at the library’s Pokémon Day celebration on Thursday, February 27 at St. Johns Library.
Celebrate Dr. Seuss’s birthday. On Saturday, February 29, Maggie Mae’s Kids Bookshop is hosting a special storytime, with free gift bags for the first 10 guests, games and treats.
Plan a fun outing with your library’s cultural passes. Local library systems offer free and discounted passes to popular museums and attractions. Find your library system here to see where you can go.