Valentine’s Day is one week from today! We know people either love it or hate it (or choose to ignore its very existence), but regardless, we appreciate having a day dedicated to celebrating our loved ones (family, friends and pets included). For those of you looking for plans to get you in the spirit this week, we’ve compiled a roundup of dinners, wine tastings, shopping events and hilarious stories about the dark side of dating—a little something for everyone.Thursday, 2/713th Annual Valentine’s Invitational and Reading Frenzy Benefit: Share the love and help Reading Frenzy (they just lost their lease after 17 years on Oak Street) by bidding on some art tonight. Enjoy cake made by Garrett Izumi, special prints from Kate Bingaman-Burt and Will Bryant, a limited edition print from Miranda July and 9”x9” valentines made by 60 artists. 6-9PM.Saturday, 2/9 and Sunday, 2/10Small Shops Big Hearts on Mississippi Ave: The small businesses (like She Bop, Paxton Gate and Flutter) that line Mississippi Ave are celebrating the holiday with complimentary snacks, broken-hearted bourbon Jell-O shots, a photo booth, chocolates, trunk shows, champagne and wine, crafts for kids, art openings, special discounts and more.Wine and Chocolate Pairing: Join Hip Chicks Do Wine for a guided pairing of 6 wines (including their limited production Cabernet Sauvignon port) with local artisan truffles from Roll Chocolates. Admission is $15 and the pairing runs from 12-5PM, both days.Sunday, 2/10Lover’s Sale at Palace: Featuring major discounts (as in, the ENTIRE shop is 20% off), champagne, cookies from Sweedeedee and Alima Pure makeup demos. As a bonus, each purchase you make will automatically enter you into a raffle to win gift certificates to local favorites like Löyly, Sweedeedee and Heart Coffee. 11AM-7PM.St. Valentine’s Trunk Show at Backtalk: The girls behind NE Alberta store, Backtalk, have organized a seductive lineup of specialty designers (Lauren Kemp, Nicole Herinckx, Julia Barbee) to bring you bustiers, handmade truffles and fragrances. The event runs from 12-6PM and you can expect a chocolate tasting, wine, cookies, lingerie, cheeky cards and jewelry to get you in the mood for the holiday.Tuesday, 2/12It’s Not Me, It’s You (Stories from the Dark Side of Dating): This hilarious event features 8 different storytellers recounting their terrible dating experiences. Whether you’re single or taken, these tales of dating gone awry will have you laughing hysterically. Tickets cost $20 at the door ($18 in advance) and proceeds benefit the Planned Parenthood Advocates of Oregon. Catch it from 7-9PM (doors at 6PM) at the Bagdad Theater.St. Valentine Trunk Show at Beam & Anchor: Beam & Anchor invites the ladies and dudes of Portland to do a little shopping for their sweethearts (or for themselves) with new goods from local makers like OLO, Stone & Honey, Portland Apothecary, Wood & Faulk and Solabee Flowers. Enjoy some champagne while you shop, too! 6-9PM.
A Night for the Animals: In support of Green Acres Farm Sanctuary, celebrate the love of animals with a vegan buffet dinner at Union/Pine. Tickets are $35 and ALL proceeds go to Green Acres Farm Sanctuary in Silverton, Oregon. There will also be a cash bar, raffle and a guest speaker. Dinner starts at 7:30PM (doors at 7PM), and you can purchase tickets here.Valentine’s Dinner at Paulée: If you’re looking to escape the city, head to Oregon wine country and treat someone special to an exquisite local and seasonal dinner at Paulée. There will be two five-course prix fixe menus to choose from, along with fabulous wines, of course. Dinner will cost $75, and if you want to make it extra romantic (or if you’ve had too much wine to drink), you are invited to stay over at the Inn at Red Hills for only $100.And for tons more Valentine’s dining options, be sure to check out Portland Monthly’s list right here!Written by: Lauren Kodiak