Events for the week of Feb. 1–7

CORRECTION: the print version & a previous online version of this story provides incorrect pricing for non-PSU patrons of 5th Avenue Cinema. We have updated the online version & regret the error.


27th Cascade Festival of African Films
Multiple times
Hollywood Theatre
4122 NE Sandy Blvd.
PCC Cascade Campus
705 N. Killingsworth Street
All screenings free
Running from February 3 to March 4, this documentary-heavy celebration focuses on the life of those from the African continent as seen through the eyes of African filmmakers and directors. I’ll just quote here from the Travel Portland event listing to give you an idea of what they’re going for:
“The films celebrate Africa’s achievements, expose Africa’s failures, and reveal the possibilities for change and a hopeful, more prosperous future. They show us pictures of Africa through the eyes of Africans, rather than a vision of Africa that is packaged primarily for western viewers.”
All showings are free and open to the public, though your mileage may vary based on content and personal sensibility. Visit for complete listings.

Wednesday, Feb. 1

Portland Winter Light Festival
1945 SE Water Avenue
Back for a second year, this glowing festival is a way to fight back the dark night of winter’s cold. Come see bikers with lights, bridges with lights, fire troupes, a silent disco and more. Remember: PSU students can ride the Portland Streetcar for free! If you haven’t taken a ride across Tillikum Crossing, here’s your excuse.

Write Around Portland: Community Reading
6:30-8:30 p.m.
5441 SE Belmont Street
Come and hear the tales of your fellow Portland citizens. Write Around Portland expressly likes to bring to light voices that you otherwise might not hear. Every Community Reading has its own publication, Light to the Edge, with sales benefiting the nonprofit’s work.

Thursday, Feb. 2

The Hick Inbreds of Valley Low
6 p.m.
Smith Memorial Student Union, room 294
PSU STAGE presents a free production written by the Vanguard’s very own John Pinney (That’s me!). This story of three siblings trying to escape the rural community of Valley Low will hopefully leave you touched and with just a little chuckle in your throat. This is the first original student production at Portland State in several years and will also be shown Friday night.

The Illusionists – Live from Broadway
7:30 p.m.
Keller Auditorium
222 SW Clay Street
Fee: $25+ 
Come see Broadway’s spin on the art of magic, brought to you by some of the top talented illusionists in the country. It’s like Now You See Me, but if Dave Franco was replaced by a talented Asian guy.

Friday, Feb. 3

The Cave
9 p.m.
Black Book
20 NW 3rd Avenue
If you’re a dancer looking for a mix of rap, raggaeton, and some surprises, then DJ Massacooramaan will have your back. It’s recommended you get there before 11 p.m., because the entrance line gets long.

Bossanova Ballroom
722 E. Burnside Street
Fee: $15 Advance/$20 Door
This body-positive, queer-positive, sex-and-kink positive, clothing-optional party happens the first Friday of every month at the boss Bossanova Ballroom. Come and leave your inhibitions at the door, but remember there’s nothing sexier than consent and respect.

Saturday, Feb. 4

Queer Composers: Finding Our Voice
7:30-10 p.m.
Central Lutheran Church
1820 NE 21st Avenue
Fee: $18 General, $12 students & seniors
The Portland Lesbian Choir presents the beginning of their 31st year, pulling songs from the last 100 years together into a truly sublime and uniquely queer repertoire. Dance to follow.

9 p.m.
Doug Fir Restaurant and Lounge
830 E. Burnside Street
Fee: $15
If you’re looking for a rocking night out, then look no further than the luscious and hard-powered tribute to the ultimate ’80s band: Heart. Endorsed by founding member and guitarist Roger Fisher, there’s no way you’ll want to leave this alone.

Sunday, Feb. 5

The Goonies
7-9 p.m.
Portland Center Stage at the Armory
128 NW Eleventh Avenue
Celebrating the story of Astoria (where The Goonies was filmed), this film is a love story not just to the ’80s but also to Astoria itself. Come and remember the iconography and also that Goonies never say die. Free pizza and soda.

The Superbowl
All day; doors at 2:30
Aladdin Theater
3017 SE Milwaukie Avenue
The best deal that I can find for watching the Patriots take on the Falcons, besides your couch and some take-out Buffalo Wild Wings (my annual pilgrimage), is the Aladdin Theater. Not only is admission free, there will be food and drink specials as well as 4 buck drafts for those of age. Food from the nearby Lamp may be brought into the theater.

5th Avenue Cinema
510 SW Hall Street
Fee: Free for PSU Students w/ID, other students $4, general admission $5

This weekend’s showtimes:

The Black Power Mixtape 1967–1975
Feb. 3, 7 p.m. & 9:30 p.m.
Feb. 4, 7 p.m. & 9:30 p.m.
Feb. 5, 3 p.m.
Lots going on at 5th Ave. this weekend. You have no less than five opportunities to catch Black Power Mixtape, an “archival montage” shot in the ’60s and ’70s by Swedish journalists following a group of young Black Power Movement activists. The film features footage of Dr. Martin Luther King, Huey Newton, Eldridge Cleaver, Stokely Carmichael, and Angela Davis, with contemporary commentary by Davis, Erykah Badu, Harry Belafonte, and others.

Night of the Living Dead
Feb. 4, 10 p.m.
George Romero’s classic Night of the Living Dead, prime candidate for Patient Zero in the zombie craze, screens once, late Saturday night. Popcorn, as always, is free for all.