The Portland Saturday Market is so good they even have it on Sunday but still call it the Saturday Market. It's virtually under the Burnside Bridge which was our daily entrance into town since we stayed on the other side of the river. We are glad we gave it a go as it was full of local color and showed just how much the people of Portland rightfully love their town. There are heaps of vendors selling crafts and trinkets but we went down to try some different foods. We were hungry when we arrived so jumped on and spit a middle eastern chicken in pita concoction only to come across a more interesting Polish stand minutes later. You should never eat till you walk around first, right? We still had room for a crepe and that particular stand was packed so we had to wait a bit for our treat. We split a bag of kettle corn after that and I'm sure we had something else sweet. Prices were pretty typical. We spent $22 between the both of us.
The Portland Saturday and Sunday Market has something for everyone: takeaway food, handcrafted jewelry, pottery, balloons, tie-dye and woven clothing, sculpture and other artwork -- even a catnip fix for your favorite feline.
This is a fun way to while away an hour or two.
The Portland Saturday Market was far more elaborate than I imagined. I was thinking a couple of food stands and maybe a handful of vendors. We roamed among blocks of vendors selling artwork, crafts, clothing, jewelry and other items. There was an entire section of food vendors with various ethnic specialties and other treats. It was surprisingly crowded given the overcast day and the chilly weather. Well, chilly by my South Florida standards that is.
The market is open every Saturday and Sunday from March through December.
I must say I was very disappointed. I have no idea what I was expecting, but this market was pretty small compared to other martkets I have been to.
There was a "music" area where a band was playing. There is plenty of stalls selling art work from the area, local crafts and a few other things that you can find in all the markets.
I wouldn't go out of my way or spend too much time in this market. I did manage to find the only stall specializing in "Doggie treats" and of course I brought home to my little Cookie some gourmet fish flavored cookies.
It is actually the Saturday and Sunday Market but we just call it the Saturday Market. Not all vendors are there both days so the best day to go is in fact Saturday. There are so many different things to see and do within the Sat Market but shopping is a big one as there are local artisans selling throughout. Unfortunately there are also a lot of people selling dime store crap too – but they are usually on the west side of the MAX tracks so they are easy to avoid.
My favorite booths to hit are the jewelry and art. We have such wonderful and talented people in Portland and this is the one place where you actually have access to some of them. There are of course those that pay for a booth and you wonder why as no one is ever there and half the time they leave there booth to shop others. This if you did want to purchase something you wouldn’t be able.
The long and short is that during the summer – the Saturday Market is well worth a visit as it is definitely a very Portland thing to do.
Hours of Operation
Saturdays 10 - 5pm
Sundays 11 -4:30pm
I would definitely check out the Saturday Market if you visit Portland between March and December. It is open on Saturdays and Sundays during these months. There are numerous food vendors, street performers, and artists .
This craft market is the largest in the US and is a great way to spend a Sat. or Sunday in Portland. It's in the Old Town section which makes it convenient . If you have kids in tow, there is a children's craft booth to entertain them. International food court for a quick bite to eat..Polish, Hawaiian, Thai, Middle Eastern, Greek, Vegetarian..you name it, they got it. It's a great place to pick up souvenirs or gifts for the folks back home.
One of my favorite places to visit in Portland when I get a chance is the Portland Saturday Market (open Sundays too) of about 300 arts and crafts booths which operates in the Old Town area of downtown under Burnside Bridge nine months of the year (the first weekend of March to Christmas Eve.)
The Market is a nonprofit venture, with members collectively paying operating costs but keeping profits from the sale of their ware -- a colorful and wonderful mix of fabrics, pottery, wood crafts, photography, etc etc.
What I enjoy about it is the wealth of creativity you never know what you will find, from whimsical garden creatures to tie-died sox to wearable wooden ties to duct tape wallets and more and more. Some of the stuff you can see on-line.
There's also an International Food Court serving international food -- Thai, Greek, Mexican, American etc. etc.
Musicians can sign up to perform on the main stage or as street performers.
There's always lots lots going on at the Saturday Market -- it's a very fun place to visit, I think.
It is in its 32nd year of operation during 2005. Last year they say 750,000 people visited with $8 million gross sales, so it's a big economic boost for not only Portland but for all the artists.
It's open Saturday 10-5 and Sunday 11-4:30.
Portland Saturday Market is where you can sample local arts and crafts. The stalls are nicely spaced and even with lots of visitors, it never feels crowded like other outside markets. Just cuz they're stalls doesn't mean they don't have fancy stuff on display. Really beautiful artwork, pottery, and photography on display, but it ain't cheap. Most of the vendors that sell the pricier items will accept major credit cards.
The handmade jewelry section wasn't very abundant and I saw a lot of the same stuff in diff vendors. However, there's this vendor at the very last stall nearest the Made in Oregon store, that had the most amazing lamps made out of wood and paper. It looked very much like Hobbiton from The Fellowship of the Rings.
One of the biggest flea markets in the USA, Portland Saturday Market is not only for shopping but also a meeting point for having a drink or some ethinic cuisine, while listening to local musicians playing their music and people watch for hours. An urban place of great anthropological interest, as the whole of Portland seems to pass by the market on Saturdays.
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