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St. Johns Bizarre is Back and Bigger Than Ever!

Free Street Festival Brings Stacked Lineup of Iconic Bands, Food and More

Photo credit to Jason Quigley


After its joyous post-COVID revival last year, the St. Johns Bizarre — one of Portland’s most popular street fairs — returns May 11 for its 15th year with a record-smashing number of local craft vendors and a stacked music lineup that highlights the best parts of Portland’s past, present and future.

 

And, as always, the Bizarre takes place on the same day as the historic and beloved St. Johns Parade — another Portland favorite that roared back to life last year after a pandemic pause.


Both the Parade and the Bizarre are all-volunteer efforts that serve to showcase the St. Johns community and business district by bringing people from all around the city to dance, shop for art, eat food and more. 

 

The St. Johns Bizarre will take place from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. in the heart of downtown St. Johns (N. Lombard and Philadelphia). This year, thanks to a bigger footprint, as many as 180 vendors — up from 141 last year — are participating, including food carts, artisans and community groups.

                       

This year, we’re thrilled to announce that Team Dresch will headline the Bizarre — a rare and must-not-miss appearance for the beloved punk icons, who reunited in 2019 and picked up the baton years after helping found the queercore movement.

 

They’ll be joined by Northwest pop-rock legends The Minus 5 (with Scott McCaughey and REM’s Peter Buck), making a special appearance at the Bizarre. (If you missed them at their sold-out show at Polaris Hall on April 19, then this one’s for you!)

 

Los Angeles-based noise-rock juggernauts No Age will also appear, bringing experimental sounds that somehow manage to be both angry and ethereal. Check out once-in-a-generation hip-hop veterans Cannibal Ox, coming from New York City. And show us a smile for local up-and-comers Growing Pains, once described by Willamette Week“ as your favorite Portland rock band’s favorite Portland rock band.”

 

And that’s not all — we’ll have a bevy of other local acts playing all through the day, including pop/Brazilian tropicália band Caicedo, dream-pop indie-rockers Queen Rodeo, dance punk stars Rad Max and the “hiphopera” genius of The Gard3n.

 

In addition, local promoters Megalith will kick off the day on our John Street Stage with a special showcase featuring dub wonk and minimalist composer Carly Barton and the experimental drone stylings of Airabout.

  

This year, we expanded our footprint, allowing us to add dozens more vendors. Our craft fair will now feature a record 180 local vendors selling an impressive array of handmade art and craft items, joining the many eclectic shops who help make downtown St. Johns of Portland’s largest clusters of independent small businesses. And with Mother’s Day coming up on Sunday, May 12, the Bizarre provides a perfect opportunity to pick up a thoughtful and unique gift for the mothers in your life (or, for yourself, if you’d like!) 

 

The Occidental Beer Garden, just off the Plaza Stage, will be back this year, once again sponsored by St. Johns’ very own Occidental Brewing Co. and their new brand, Further Beer.

We’ll also be pouring cider as a delicious gluten-free option. Down the way, StormBreaker Brewing Co. will be serving beer and other wares, sponsoring our John Street Stage — back for a second year. 

 

This year, the Bizarre will continue to showcase our deep commitment to protecting our planet by once again forgoing the use of single-use plastic cups in the Occidental Beer Garden!


Instead we’ll offer our durable — and highly collectible! — stainless steel Klean Kanteen pint cups, emblazoned with beautiful artwork by Stevie Shao.

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