How your family can make the most out of three glorious days in Bend, Oregon

(Last updated May 20, 2024)

You chose Bend as your three-day weekend destination, way to go!

We highly recommend making note of the on-mountain spring skiing offerings up at Mt. Bachelor, as well as tee times at Widgi Creek or River’s Edge. For the rest of your weekend planning, we collected a handful of activities in Bend and Central Oregon worthy for the whole family!

Hayden Homes Amphitheater

Is anything better than live music outdoors along the banks of the Deschutes River with Cascade peaks on the horizon line? We think not, especially when Portland-based progressive rockers Portugal. The Man serenade us with their indie-laced, funky brand of pop rock along with special guests Tegan and Sara and Reyna Tropical Saturday, May 25! Why fight traffic getting back home Monday when you can stick around for Tuesday’s show with the spirited Sarah McLachlan, who celebrates the 30th anniversary of “Fumbling Towards Ecstasy” with special guest Feist.

High Desert Museum

Wildlife, art, history, living history – the High Desert Museum has it all! Located five minutes south of Bend, the museum sits on 135 acres and features river otters, porcupines, an authentic homestead and sawmill from 1904 as well as seasonal exhibits. Current museum exhibits include the Autzen Otter Exhibit offering both outdoor and indoor viewing areas to watch the otters, “Sensing Sasquatch” an exploration of Sasquatch’s past, present and future in the High Desert region through an Indigenous lens, “Endangered in the High Desert” creatively calls attention to species in the region that are facing threat, and “Near, Far, Gone” is a showcase of the intricate relationship between humans, wildlife, the environment, humanity, and art.

An image of Sasquatch as depicted by Indigenous folks, part of an exhibit at the High Desert Museum in Central Oregon

Tower Theatre

Downtown Bend’s historic theatre hosts global, national, and local artists that reflect the organization’s commitment to bring a variety of performance art to Central Oregon. This holiday weekend means it’s finally spring in Central Oregon. Come celebrate the season as Bend Dance Project presents “Spring! An Evening of Dance” featuring new works by local choreographers and dancers from Velocity Dance Theatre, Central Oregon Ballet, Jazz Dance Collective, Bend Contemporary Dance Company, Further Movement Collective, Sakura, and guest artist Rosie Sharkey. Dance is a universal language – join for an engaging conversation!

Group of performers dancing and singing in formation on the Tower Theatre's stage with a red and black curtain display lit behind them.

Confluence Fly Shop

Another experience we love are the casting lessons and fly tying classes at Confluence Fly Shop. Enjoy the scenery along the river while the experts at Confluence Fly Shop teach you how to cast and tie flies. Then laugh about it over a local craft beverage at their indoor-outdoor 8-tap bar while planning your next adventure!

Confluence Fly Fishing Casting Class on the River

Mill Works Pub

More than just a local eatery, Mill Works Pub, The Old Mill District’s newest addition, is a gathering place where delicious, approachable food meets the warmth of community. Nestled in a rich and inviting interior, they embrace the communities’ history and the legacy of the old lumber mill. They offer a blend of hip ambiance and family-friendly atmosphere. Mill Works Pub’s mission is to create a comfortable, fun space where families can come together for a meal or friends can unwind over local beers on tap.

Tacos and Beer at Mill Works Pub in the Old Mill District, Bend OR

Wild Child Toy Store

The Old Mill District’s whimsical toy store is home to a selection of beautifully curated and sustainable toys, games and crafts. We’re in love with all the Elsa Beskow books and gorgeous wall hangings owner Keri Travis has stocked her store with. Located next to Sunglass Hut and Sweet Tooth Candy Shoppe in the Old Mill District, this is the go-to spot for something special while you’re here in Central Oregon.

Wanderlust Tours

Wanderlust Tours is the premier destination to discover what is around this Bend. And they know that nothing inspires wanderlust like the natural playground of the Pacific Northwest! Whether you’re interested in kayaking the Deschutes River or high elevation mountain lakes, exploring underground lava tube caves, or sipping delicious local drinks, they’ve got you and your family covered with the best spring activities.

Wheel Fun Bike Rentals

Ride into the sunset, or simply enjoy the curves along the river trail on a bike from Wheel Fun Rentals. Wheel Fun offers a large selection including their flagship 4-Wheel Surreys (which seat 3-9 people), Deuce Coupes, cruiser bikes, electric bikes, multi-speed bikes, kid’s bikes, kids trailers, and more! Plus, they are conveniently located just across the Deschutes River from the Old Mill near Riverbend Dog Park at 769 SW Columbia, a perfect jumping off point for your Bend biking adventure!

Wheel Fun Bike Rentals fun for the whole family.

What are you waiting for?! You’ve got three days, or more, to create unforgettable family memories. Whether the crew chooses to get out in nature, savor local cuisine, or simply enjoy each other’s company along the river, a three-day weekend in Bend promises joy and connection for the whole family.