PoMo Picks

Top Things to Do This Weekend: June 22–25

Strip down for the World Naked Bike Ride, pay tribute to Dolly Parton, catch genre-busting performances at Risk/Reward, learn about the science of warfare, and hear solo tunes from Dave Depper.

By Rebecca Jacobson, Fiona McCann, and Anyi Wong-Lifton June 22, 2017

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Pepper Pepper performs at Risk/Reward this weekend. (Want to get nakey yourself? Saturday brings the World Naked Bike Ride.)

Books & Talks

Science on Tap: Grunt

7 p.m. Thu, Alberta Rose Theatre, $15–25
Bestselling (and hilarious) author writer Mary Roach exposes some of soldiers’ most challenging adversaries in war—exhaustion, heat, panic, infection, deafening noise, and even waterfowl—and explores warfare’s peculiar science of staying alive.

David Sedaris

6 p.m. Fri, Powell's Books at Cedar Hills Crossing, FREE
In Theft by Finding, the misanthropic humorist offers a peek into his personal diaries from 1977 to 2002. As ever with Sedaris, expect things to get weird.


Adam Conover

7:30 and 10 p.m. Fri–Sat, 7:30 p.m. Sun, Helium Comedy Club, $22
This CollegeHumor alum may be the only person in his family without a Ph.D., but he still enlightens and educates while hilariously debunking popular ideas on truTV’s Adam Ruins Everything. You might also recognize his voice from Netflix’s BoJack Horseman.

Michael Che

7 p.m. Sat, Revolution Hall, SOLD OUT
The Weekend Update coanchor is a master of absurdist analogies, with a take on All Lives Matter that transcends every cliché. Go watch his Netflix special, aptly titled Michael Che Matters. He’s also referred to the Constitution as “the list of white guy perks,” and he’s kinda got a point.


CLOSING Portland Jewish Film Festival

Various times Thu–Sun (continues thru June 25), Whitsell Auditorium, $10
The venerable fest, a coproduction of the Northwest Film Center and the Institute for Judaic Studies, hits its 25th year with a varied slate of features and documentaries.


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Dave Depper drops a new solo album, Emotional Freedom Technique.

Dave Depper

9 p.m. Thu, Mississippi Studios, $5
You may have heard of Dave Depper. He’s that Death Cab for Cutie guitarist who’s also played with Menomena, Fruit Bats, Laura Gibson—most every Portland band of the indie persuasion, in fact. He’s just released a solo album, Emotional Freedom Technique, showcasing soft-voiced synth pop with sweet hooks and the occasional guest appearance from collaborators past. 

John Prine

7 p.m. Sat, Oregon Zoo, $44.50–104.50
The singer-songwriter, who's logged more than four decades of humorous, soulful, and socially conscious folk-country tunes, has been tapped by both Bob Dylan and Johnny Cash as one of their favorite musicians.

Dolly Parton Hoot Night

8 p.m. Sat, Alberta Rose Theatre, $20
Saddle up for a night of Portland musicians paying tribute to the queen of country at this 12th annual event, with proceeds to benefit the 2017 Siren Nation Festival, a showcase of music, film, art by women.

The Ukeladies

6 p.m. Sat, Secret Society Lounge, $6
This local 11-piece all-lady band bring everything from beachy vibes to folky country to the stage. Christening themselves “Portland’s Sexiest Mother Pluckers,” these ladies truly know how to jam, promising to convert all those in earshot to honest plucking fans.


CoHo Summerfest

7:30 p.m. Thu–Sat and 2 p.m. Sun, CoHo Theater, $20
Promising “innovative, irreverent performances,” CoHo stages a different show each weekend, including one about a fake Polish punk band and another about Mike Pence stiffing a dinner invitation from a trio of history’s most prominent women (presumably because his wife won’t be in attendance).

Risk/Reward Festival of New Performance

7:30 p.m. Fri–Sat and 5 p.m. Sun, Artists Repertory Theatre, pay-what-you-will
The annual bonanza of genre-busting, unclassifiable performance turns 10 this year, with a slate of works—none longer than 20 minutes—that span dance, theater, film, and music, and rove in subject matter from black feminist liberation to HIV to drag queens to “existential longing and mortality.”

CLOSING Good with People

8 p.m. Thu–Sat, Performance Works NW, $15
Set in a Scottish seaside hotel, David Harrower’s drama finds two characters confronting a brutal chapter from their past. The New York Times called it a “beautiful, deceptive wisp of a play.”

Visual Art

Wendy Ewald and Ima Mfon

Noon–5 p.m. Thu–Sun, Blue Sky Gallery, FREE
Ewald has spent 40-odd years distributing basic cameras to people to document their own lives, and This Is Where I Live collects the results from her repeated trips to Israel and the West Bank. For Nigerian Identity, the Lagos-born Mfon photographed Nigerians living in New York and Texas, using a neutral background to focus attention on their faces.

Revisiting Documerica

10 a.m.–6 p.m. Fri–Sun, Newspace Center for Photography, FREE
Forty-six years ago, the newly formed Environmental Protection Agency hired about 70 freelance photographers and charged them with one task: to document “subjects of environmental concern” across the country. Now, Portland’s Newspace Center for Photography revisits the project, albeit on a smaller scale. Expect some 30 works from nine artists, in video, digital media, and photographs, on topics from Portland’s Ross Island to America’s rural environmentalism to New York’s contaminated Hoosick Falls. Read more in our exhibit preview.

Special Events


Various times and places through June, FREE
Pump those tires and lube that chain, folks: this monthlong celebration of velophilia features bikes rides for cyclists of all abilities and proclivities, from a family-friendly kazoo-themed spin to a black metal–fueled sojourn to a Cully bar crawl. And, of course, the for-everyone’s-eyes flesh frenzy that is the World Naked Bike Ride this Saturday.

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