Pickathon, located just 15 miles from Portland at Pendarvis Farms, aims to be the best, most sustainable and unique music festival experience in the Northwest. (Photo credit: Brud Giles)

Oregon’s festival season is springing upon us, which means sunshine and warm weather are within arm’s reach. Oregon has a myriad of festivals hosted around the state each year, but I am going to share with you some our biggest and best music festivals — because music is what makes the world go round, after all.

Oregon has an eclectic mix of music festivals that will satisfy an array of different genre lovers, while also being fun for all ages and reasonably affordable — festivals featuring indie rock, pop, country, bluegrass/folk, electronic, classical, jazz… and the list goes on. We have big festivals that receive national attention and we have lots of little festivals that cater to a local audience.

Greater Portland
Pickathon (July 31-August 2, 2015)
Pickathon, the “biggest little music festival in the Northwest,” is a truly unique multi-day outdoor music experience that takes place each year at the beautiful Pendarvis Farm in Happy Valley (about 30 minutes outside of Portland). While Pendarvis Farm’s 80 acres offers space for 17-20K people, Pickathon wants to remain intimate by offering only 3.5K tickets. It is also the only outdoor music festival in the U.S. to minimize all single-use cups, dishware and utensils, and the first one to go plastic free.  With over 50 bands, just about every genre of music you can think of is represented, and multiple hand-built stages (art pieces in and of themselves) mean that the music never stops. With so many other great things to experience, such as amazing local food and craft beverages, you’ll wonder how to fit it all in. Pickathon is also incredibly family friendly. All kids under 12 get in free with their families. Plus, there is a jammed-packed schedule of activities for kids, as well as over 3.5 miles of LED-lighted trails. Camping is also “everyone friendly” with comfortable showers, a “front desk concierge,” camp scouts and a beautiful forested setting.

MusicfestNW (August 21-23, 2015)
MFNW is Portland’s largest and most successful music festival that teams up with local, regional and national bands to create a three-day, two-stage outdoor festival featuring the biggest names of indie rock, hip hop, punk and many other genres.

The Waterfront Blues Festival (July 2-5, 2015)
The Waterfront Blues Festival in Portland is the largest blues festival on the West Coast. It not only brings a stellar lineup each year, but is the number one fundraiser for the Oregon Food Bank (raising over $7 million in its 25 years). The festival has grown steadily in size and reputation each year and is now recognized as one of the nation’s premier blues festival.

Project Pabst: (July 17-19, 2015)
After a successful first year in 2014, Project Pabst returns to Portland’s South Waterfront district at the historic Zidell Yards. The festival originated as a thank you from Pabst Brewing Company to Portland for making Pabst Blue Ribbon an essential beverage in the Rose City. The festival also offers a cluster of nighttime shows taking places at various venues throughout the city.

Willamette Valley
Oregon Bach Festival ( June 25-July 12, 2015)
This festival is an annual celebration that celebrates the music and legacy of Johann Sebastian Bach. Based in Eugene, The University of Oregon presents three weeks of an unequaled environment of performance, discovery and community. See and hear the best the classical music world has to offer, from masterworks for chorus and orchestra to rare gems from the vast classical repertoire, performed by internationally heralded music stars under the direction of Helmuth Rilling.

Oregon Jamboree (July 31-August 2, 2015)
This the Northwest’s unrivaled country music and camping festival set among 20 acres on the foothills of the scenic Cascade Mountains. The Jamboree offers a full festival experience in the main venue and a more intimate atmosphere on the second stage area. Every year some of the biggest names in country perform at this family-style event, which draws attendees from all of the United States.

Oregon Coast Music Festival (July 11-15, 2015)
Each year for two weeks in July, the small coastal town of Coos Bay comes alive with the sounds of music for the Oregon Coast Music Festival (OCMF). During week one attendees are treated to the sounds of big band, blues, barbershop, folk and jazz among others. Bands, choirs, quartets and solo performers spend the week playing at venues throughout the town. Week two is where the real musical magic begins when over 80 professional orchestral players, regional and national, come together to perform three orchestral pieces, including a family friendly POPS Concert.

Southern Oregon
Britt Music Festival (June 4-September 16, 2015)
Britt is a non-profit performing arts festival located in the historic, charming town of Jacksonville. It’s one of the Pacific Northwest’s premier outdoor music and arts festival featuring world-class jazz, folk, country, pop, dance and classical music artists. The Britt’s performance venue is a naturally formed amphitheater set among spectacular natural scenery. This festival brings tens of thousands of music lovers from all over the West to enjoy the world-class performances, educational programs and a casual, beautiful and relaxing atmosphere.

Central Oregon
4 Peaks Music Festival (June 19-21, 2015)
This festival gets its name from the four Cascade Mountain peaks that form a majestic backdrop at the venue: Broken Top, South, Middle and North Sister. The festival strives to bring nationally touring bands to Central Oregon to create an intimate and family-friendly community experience for both the attendees and artists.

So, now that you’re a little more in tune with Oregon’s music festivals, I hope you’ll invite your friends and family and come experience one of them firsthand. Start your music trip planning!

about author Allison Keeney

Allison Keeney is a part of Travel Oregon's Communications Team. When she's not blogging or photographing the thriving music scene in Portland, you'll find this native Oregonian exploring the many wonders of her home state, savoring the bounty of local craft beverages and eateries, and enjoying the company of friends and family.

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These maps and directions are for planning purposes only. You may find that construction projects, traffic, or other events may cause road conditions to differ from the map results. For travel options, weather and road conditions, visit tripcheck.com, call 511 (in Oregon only), 800.977.6368 or 503.588.2941.

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  1. Erika Sanchez says…

    Hello Allison.
    Perhaps you haven’t heard of us, but here we are, Oregon’s newest classical music festival: the OREGON MUSIC FESTIVAL (www.oregonmusicfest.org) This year, the festival features its educational arm, Orpheus Academy, featuring Orchestral Training Program, violin masterclass, and a concert of great music on June 19 at First Baptist Church (909 SW 11th Ave.). Featured soloist is Canadian violinist Carla Trynchuk; Travis Hatton is the conductor. Please see our website.
    Please spread the word.
    Thank you,
    Erika Sanchez, Managing Director

    Written on June 13th, 2013 / Flag this Comment
  2. Allison Keeney says…

    Hi Erika,

    Thank you for this information. I hope you had a successful and fun festival this year! We would love information for next year’s festival so we can put it on our calendar of events. Feel free to email me anytime.

    All the best,


    Written on June 26th, 2013 / Flag this Comment
  3. Scott Graves says…

    Hi Allison!
    Just wanted to let you and your readers know about a brand new festival on the Southern Oregon Coast that our nonprofit is doing to raise money for music in the schools. The event is called the Wild Rivers Music Festival. The two-day festival features 50 vendors highlighting local breweries, restaurants, artisans and the following bands: Hot Buttered Rum, T Sisters, Dead Winter Carpenters, Achilles Wheel, Patchy Sanders, Moon Mountain Ramblers and Supermule. More information on Facebook and http://www.wildriversmusicfestival.com
    Scott Graves
    festival co-founder

    Written on June 22nd, 2015 / Flag this Comment
  4. Fred Wickman says…

    Hi Allison,

    Just thought I would let you know we are coming up on or 6th annual Music In The Mountains festival at the Prospect Historic Hotel Bed & Breakfast Inn – Motel and Dinner House.

    All Day Saturday – September 26th and Sunday – September 27th, 2015
    ‘Music in the Mountains’ on the Prospect Historic Hotel grounds. Two days of local Bluegrass, Country, Folk and Americana Music. Starting at 10am Saturday and Sunday Sept. 26th & 27th. A wonderful collection of original music performed by Pacific Northwest Bands.. Enjoy great food, local wines and beers. Craft Booths, Quilt Show and more. Tickets are only $22 for one day or $35 for a 2 day pass. Call Prospect Hotel 541-560-3664 or visit http://www.prospecthotel.com/bluegrass.html for more info. Sponsored by Mike’s RV Service of Central Point. Bring lawn blankets and chairs, For some of the best fun, there is an open ‘Jammin’ on the Veranda’ Friday night Sept 25 at 8pm. Then another open Jam Session on Saturday night at 9pm.

    The last weekend of September has predictably pleasant weather for the Upper Rogue’s Premier Music Festival where superb bands create their original combination of Folk, Bluegrass, Americana and Country music for your enjoyment. Seated on the lawn of the majestic Prospect Hotel grounds, surrounded by hundreds of spectacular trees you will be entertained with each genre performed by delightful, multi-talented musicians from the Pacific Northwest.
    Each morning Prospect’s Search and Rescue Team offers a benefit breakfast from 7-9am. Bring your lawn chairs and blankets for a GREAT weekend in Prospect at ‘Music in the Mountains”! Saturday September 26th & Sunday September 27th 2015. SORRY but NO PETS will be allowed.
    Our rooms fill up fast at the Prospect Hotel (www.prospecthotel.com), so make your reservations early! There are rooms available in Shady Cove and loads of campsites in the area. This promises to be another great event at the Prospect Hotel! Stay an extra night or two and explore the wonders of the Rogue River and Crater Lake National Park.
    See us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/MusicInTheMountainsatProspectHotel?ref=hl

    Thanks Fred Wickman, Manager

    Written on August 24th, 2015 / Flag this Comment

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