WRT the Houston photography show that Jorge mentioned, it is called Foto Fest. It is held in the month of March and only happens on the even ending years. So, March, 2004 is the next time. The city of Houston is given over to photography for the month. All the galleries and Museums all show photography for the month of March. There a lot of openings to attend that are pretty neat. Some of the work is ok some is great some I will not comment on. Rice University hosts the print review for 2 or 3 weeks. This is a pretty exciting thing. It always sells out. But if you can get in, then you get to show your portfolio to several of the reviewers there. These reviewers come from the galleries and museums and industry critics. A. D. Coleman has been there a time or two. Magazine photo editors are generally there also. These people are invited from all over the world. You have about 45 minutes to show your work and listen to their comments then the bell rings and you take your stuff to the next reviewer on your list and then you do that again and the morning section is over. It is a lottery system that is set up so that everyone gets a chance at their favorite reviewer. It is not perfect but works pretty well. There are lots of portfolios to look at in the lobby. In some of the big hotel bars the reviewers can be talked into looking at your stuff for the measly price of a drink or two. It is photography all the time. I have never been there during the week but on the weekends there is a lot of people. Several careers have been made at this gathering.
I think that there is something like this in Portland but I have no information on this one.