Festivals & Events in Bend
Here’s a list of some of our favorite upcoming Bend events and festivals in 2023, 2024 and beyond. Check out the Bend Event Calendar for all events and concerts happening at the Old Mill District.
September 22-24, 2023
A one-of-a-kind festival experience on the autumnal equinox is coming to Central Oregon. Enjoy the balance between experience and adventure, collaboration and community, a festival re-imagined.
Line up includes an eclectic array of national, regional and local bands to Bend for more than a decade. With grand views and grassy fields, multiple stages and a large late-night tent, vendors and a kids activity area, 4 Peaks is committed to building an intimate, family-friendly festival from morning yoga to the silent disco.
LINK TO TICKETS HERE.
For lodging options, please visit one of our preferred Bend hotels.
September 29-October 1, 2023
Founded in 1996, the Sisters Folk Festival is where a small town, friendly vibe meets world-class musicians and production in a picturesque setting. This one-of-a-kind Central Oregon music celebration brings high profile and lesser-known artists, songwriters, and bands together to perform in intimate settings, including expansive tents, a historic church, and courtyard venues at local restaurants.
The Sisters Folk Festival has a long-standing history of cultivating a listening atmosphere, combined with an understanding that folks need to have a good time. Attendees can expect a unique and transformative festival experience beyond fantastic live music.
The 2023 lineup features more than 32 artists, including John Craigie, Katie Pruitt, Nick Shoulders, Willi Carlisle, Beth Wood, Anna Moss, and more. This year’s lineup highlights artists from all over the world representing multiple genres of roots music, from folk and bluegrass to jazz and country-blues.
Go to SistersFolkFest.org for more details, including ticket information.
Saturday, Sept. 30, 2023
Happening on the streets on downtown Bend this end of summer tradition is a place for great beer, fun games, silly events, and being a part of the Bend community. Join us for the wiener dog race, traditional music, dancing, beer bong, stein holds, and so much more!
September 29-October 1, 2023
Celebrate the autumn season with crafts, art, music, and more. The annual tradition brings the best of the PNW culture right to the heart of downtown Bend. Enjoy a full weekend of fall fun during Central Oregon’s favorite time of year!
More than 80 artists will fill the streets of downtown Bend, including interactive installations from HOTTEA, Joel Stockpile and Yustina Salnikova.
In-Person October 12-15, 2023
Virtual October 16 – 22, 2023
Celebrate two decades of independent cinema this October with the 20th annual BendFilm Festival.
One of only 27 Academy-qualifying film festivals in the country, the BendFilm Festival is set to screen more than 100 films and host approximately 125 filmmakers Oct. 12-15. (Can’t make it in person? Check out the virtual festival Oct. 16—22.)
BendFilm is an independent Oregon film festival in the truest sense – rugged, brilliant, daring, adventurous, fun, and engaging. Dubbed one of the “25 Coolest Festivals in the World,” by MovieMaker magazine, BendFIlm has been showcasing some of the best independent films in the Pacific Northwest and beyond since its inception in 2003.
Festival passes start at $150 and can be purchased at BendFilm.org.
At BendFilm, screenings are intimate, providing cinema lovers access to the next generation of filmmakers. Films are screened throughout the High Desert, from downtown Bend’s cozy Tin Pan Theater and historic Tower Theatre, to the Old Mill District’s modern Regal Cinemas and Madras’ gorgeous new Performing Arts Center. At its core, the BendFilm festival, the high point of BendFilm’s year-round programming, celebrates independent cinema’s unique power to enrich lives, amplify diverse voices, and inspire change while educating future storytellers and bringing vibrant festival experiences to communities across Central Oregon. This diverse mix of traditional theaters, lecture sites, music rooms, and party venues spark with the energy excited by the overwhelming presence of cinema. Come. Join us in celebrating independent movies and their makers.
October 19-20, 2023
The Bend Venture Conference is the largest angel conference in the Pacific Northwest and is known for connecting early stage companies and entrepreneurs with investment and mentors. Hosted by Economic Development of Central Oregon (EDCO), this annual event includes attendees, investors and companies with the possibility of one million in investments and services awarded to multiple companies.
October 26-27, 2023
Collaboration, relentless curiosity and a daring expression of design can change everything. Bend Design 2023 promises to do just that by bringing together bold minds, thinkers and doers in AI, visual storytelling, graphic activism, branding and more.
Bend Design is a two-day creative conference with talks, problem-solving workshops, films, and experiences challenging designers to think differently and design with the future in mind. Held at various locations in downtown Bend, this event focuses on the importance of reality in the design process — bringing together speakers from various disciplines to highlight the impact design can have. Bend Design is for designers, architects, developers, researchers, product managers, SEO gurus, librarians, artists – anyone looking for inspiration and connection.
The conference kicks off Thursday morning at the Tower Theatre with keynote speakers Chuck McBride, Elodie Mailliet Storm, Pedro Ruíz, Cleo Barnett, Phoebe Anderson-Kline, Bernard Troyer, and Nishat Akhtar. Friday features a full day of workshops at Trinity Episcopal Church, the Doubletree Hotel and Tin Pan Theater, as well as a closing cocktail party at McMenamins Old St. Francis School.
Bend Design is the brainchild of Scalehouse, a Bend-based arts non-profit. Scalehouse helps shape our shared future through creativity, collaboration, and conversation. The organization believes our future presents complex challenges and opportunities, not just benefiting from creativity but requiring it. Throughout the year, Scalehouse convenes diverse thinkers for in-depth discussion, artistic expression, and hands-on collaboration in addition to their anchor event, Bend Design.
Scalehouse is for artists, creative thinkers, civic and business leaders, scientists and engineers, teachers and students, concerned citizens—anyone who feels a responsibility to help shape the future through creativity.
Put your deadlines to the side and take space to grow your personal knowledge and creative connections this October at Bend Design. Attendees can expect to gain insight into numerous fields and disciplines, walking away with a new network and awareness for a wide variety of creative endeavors.
Wildlife programs — porcupines, otters, reptiles, a bobcat — meet them all up close. Raptors of the High Desert sky — hawks, owls and eagles—soar overhead. And with a Living History ranch, you can step back into 1904 and join the Miller Family tending the garden and working the sawmill. Current and upcoming exhibits include:
Vistas del Cielo
Through November 26, 2023
Imagine strolling through a life-size diorama that takes you on a journey through the world of vaqueros—Latinx cowboys—brought to life with vibrant piñata paper. That is the experience multidisciplinary artist Justin Favela is bringing to the High Desert Museum in a new, original exhibit Vistas del Cielo, opening on Saturday, May 27.
Favela, who is based in Las Vegas, Nevada and Springdale, Arkansas, is well known for his large-scale installations and sculptures using colorful piñata material. His work invites visitors to experience playful landscapes of color and texture.
Vistas del Cielo takes the visitor on an immersive journey through a sometimes-overlooked history and culture of vaqueros, braceros and traqueros who have worked, roped and ranched throughout the region’s history. Vistas del Cielo translates to “views from the sky.” Meant to feel accessible and at the same time to evoke reverence, the installation is described by Favela as “a kid’s imagination of their grandfather’s story in an amusement park.” He calls art his way of taking up space and expressing joy.
Favela’s humble piñata materials transform into floating panes of paper stained glass in homage to the old churches visited with his grandfather, who was a vaquero. A Guatemalan-Mexican-American, Favela aims to reach across generational lines to celebrate the rich history of Latinx experiences in the High Desert region.
“Vistas del Cielo is a celebratory experience,” said Museum Executive Director Dana Whitelaw, Ph.D. “The intergenerational aspect of this exhibit—of Favela’s family and how that might have similarities to the visitors’ families—speaks to our own Museum efforts to make this a place that sparks curiosity for everyone.”
Favela’s unique installations have been on exhibit at numerous institutions throughout the country including the Denver Art Museum in Colorado, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Arkansas and Meow Wolf: Omega Mart in Las Vegas, Nevada. He was the recipient of the 2018 Alan Turing LGTBIQ Award in the category of International Artist and was awarded the Joan Mitchell Fellowship in 2021. Favela earned his Bachelor of Fine Arts in fine art from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
Favela also hosts two culture-oriented podcasts, “Latinos Who Lunch” and “The Art People Podcast.”
Vistas del Cielo will be on display through November 26, 2023. The exhibit is made possible by Gold 107.7 with support from the James F. and Marion L. Miller Foundation.