Whether you’re a seasoned local or visiting Portland with kids, you can spend an entire day on Hawthorne Boulevard. We love all sorts of neighborhoods across Portland, but Hawthorne has a special place in our hearts! You could easily while away the day just drifting up and down the street, but here are (just a few) of our many favorite things to do.
Good morning, sunshine! There’s no shortage of places to grab breakfast in Portland, but Hawthorne has some great options. On a sunny morning, there’s nothing finer than joining the line at the Waffle Window for a liege waffle with sweet or savory toppings (Bacon, Basil, & Brie is our personal fav). Fried Egg I’m in Love trades in egg sandwiches with a side of puns, like the signature Yolko Ono. Bread and Ink or Cup and Saucer fill in admirably when you’d prefer not to brave the out of doors...
Most of the street’s independent shops are open by 10 am or so. Stop by Kids at Heart, of course, to say hi and check out all the cool new toys! But we’re definitely not the only store worth perusing with the family. Powell’s Books and “Books for Cooks,” as the locals like to call the smaller home and garden annex up the street, are chock-full of books, gifts, and kids' items. If you enjoy browsing through vintage stores, you’re in luck: west of Kids at Heart there are enough vintage and consignment stores to keep you busy for a week straight. Clothes, furniture, or knick-knacks; you can find it all. Gift stores like Presents of Mind and Memento will have plenty to discover, especially if you’re looking for something to bring home.
A Little Treat
Not to tempt you too much, but it would be a shame to leave the neighborhood without at least a little something sweet. Farina Bakery closes on the early side, so you might want to stop by early for perfectly precious French macarons and pastries. Maple Parlor serves up a Very Portland sundae bar experience, while Ruby Jewel makes the best ice cream sandwiches in town. Blue Star Donuts is just a few doors down from Kids at Heart, and we are very familiar (maybe too familiar) with all their delicious offerings, if you need a recommendation.
Play Around and Watch the Game
Quarterworld is a brand-new vintage arcade: just opened this year with all kinds of games that mom and dad might remember playing. How about The Simpsons arcade game AND Simpsons pinball? Kids are welcome until 8 pm. You’ll find a list of games on their website, but note that games in the lounge are only for those 21 and over.
Kids are welcome at Bazi Bierbrasserie, and it’s a great place to take in a Timbers game on the big screen. There's a kid-friendly menu, and between the 17 taps and wide bottle selection:LOTS of beer choices for the grownups.
Dinner and a Movie
What are you feeling like? Sushi? Thai? Pizza? For some of the best pizza in town, grab a seat early at Apizza Scholls, or be prepared to wait. (And be sure to abide by the rules. Three toppings max, please!) If you’re feeling like something a little more on the healthy side, Harlow serves “fresh conscious” cuisine, including a kids’ menu with gluten-free, vegan macaroni & cheese that comes topped with kale. Try out the “Cartopia” food cart pod on 12th for a variety of choices, or head across the street to Lardo for hearty sandwiches that are Portland favorites.
The Bagdad Theater’s weekly movie isn’t always kid-friendly, but it’s worth checking. It’s a lovely place to see a movie, with its balcony seating, updated projector and seating, and all the charm of a grand movie house in its fourth decade. Minors must be accompanied by an adult, because those parents can enjoy an adult beverage with the show. Cinemagic down the street has matinees on weekends, and all shows starting before 5:45 are just $5. Kids’ tickets are $5 all the time. Take that, multiplex!
The list of things to see and places to go on Hawthorne could go on and on!
What’s your favorite way to spend a day on Hawthorne?