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Photo courtesy of Portland Parks & Recreation
By The Skanner News | The Skanner News
Published: 25 May 2022

(Portland, OR) –The long-anticipated Summer Free For All (SFFA) events will be back this year, revitalized, revamped and with an amazing series of events by Portland Parks & Recreation (PP&R). This year’s program will begin with Free Lunch + Play on Tuesday, June 21 at 15 parks in the Portland Public School district area and for other school district sites on Monday, June 27. The free lumch program will kickstart dozens of utdoor citywide events all summer long.

Summer Free For All (SFFA) is a community-building, annual program consisting of cultural events and free meals and activities for kids in Portland parks. This year’s program includes 42 events, including festivals, movies and concerts in the park and other special events across the city. The free lunch program will again provide free lunches to youth while schools are not in session.

New for 2022

This summer Portland Parks introduces the first East Portland Summer Arts Festival July 9-10 at Ventura Park, headlined by Grammy award-winning Portland native and artist Esperanza Spalding. Also returning is the Washington Park Summer Festival on August 5-7.

Portland Parks Commissioner Carmen Rubio welcomes the return of the summer program. “Portlanders know their parks are safe, welcoming spaces to pass the time, exercise, meet friends and neighbors and forge community,” she says. “Summer Free For All programming is community-driven and community focused, and it meets real community needs. I’m thrilled we’re able to offer this key public service again, thanks in part to the investment Portlanders made in the Parks Levy.”

SFFA event guides and schedules are posted online at portland.gov/parks/sffa and will be available in multiple languages in early summer. 

free for all medPhoto courtesy of Portland Parks & Recreation

Adena Long, director of Portland Parks & Recreation, says she is excited about the return of SFFA. “Simply put, Summer Free For All is summer in Portland.” “When friends and family come together for shared experiences, fun and recreation, it leads to a lifetime of memories and a more connected Portland community. Summer Free For All is a wonderful way to get introduced to all that Portland Parks & Recreation has to offer.”


The Kickoff

Join the fun on Tuesday, June 28,  noon-1:30 p.m. at Kʰunamokwst Park with free arts and music activities, games and a musical performance by Grammy-nominated reggae artist Aaron Nigel Smith. It’s free and fun for all.  Kʰunamokwst Park is located at  NE 52nd Avenue and Northeast Alberta Street

New East Portland Summer Arts Festival - July 9-10 at Ventura Park

Five-time Grammy award-winning bassist, singer, songwriter and composer Esperanza Spalding will headline the first East Portland Summer Arts Festival. This is a new addition to the summer schedule’s theme “music and expression.”

This event will run 2 -8:30 p.m. both days, and attractions include multicultural music and dance performances, including Spalding, Aaron Nigel Smith, and 1 World Chorus, live painting from Sora Shodo, Tongan dance, African dance and more. Free drop-in mini music lessons, arts activities will be provided by Portland Parks & Recreation's Community Music Center and Multnomah Arts Center. Big Up Music Show and Family Fun Drumming will be a part of daily activities.

Washington Park Summer Festival

This beloved Portland summer tradition returns, featuring world-class performances at the Rose Garden Amphitheater in Washington Park. On Friday, Aug. 5, Espacio Flamenco; Aug. 6, Albina Music Trust presents "Time Sound: Albina's Jazz Reimagined" + screening of Oscar- and Grammy-award winning film Summer of Soul; Aug. 7, Opera in the Park: Angela Brown in Verdi’s Aida.

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