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LAW AND ORDER PARTY 102 Events // 70 Beaches

2016


Rhode Island Scottish Highland Festival


LAW AND ORDER PARTY 102 Events // 70 Beaches

Matthew Lawrence www.lawandorder.party Instagram // @lawandorderparty Twitter // @lawandorderRI

2016


HOW THIS GUIDE WORKS

image via New York Public Library Digital Collections

Here’s a list of 102 things to do this summer, along with a list of 70 places to check out the water. It says Beaches on the cover, but some of these sites will probably fall outside your definition of what should be considered a beach. That’s part of why there are 70 choices. Events (sorted by date) make up the first section of the guide, while the second half is a list of beaches, parks, nature preserves, and other places to swim, picnic, surf, fish, and so on. All listed ticket prices are for adults on the day of the event, unless otherwise noted. If there’s no ticket price listed then admission is free, to the best of my knowledge. For spatial reasons, and to minimize any chance of error, discounted ticket prices weren’t included. Sometimes tickets are cheaper if you get them ahead of time, or if you’re a child, or if you’re a member of whatever organization is throwing the event. It can’t hurt to ask, and you may be pleasantly surprised. WHAT’S WITH THE COLOR CODING? Events are roughly divided into categories. Art festivals are red – and that includes anything focused on music, theatre, or dance, too. What Law And Order Party normally covers, in other words. The others are pretty self-explanatory, but magenta (“Parties”) is sort of a catch-all for everything else. If something falls between two categories I just picked one. That’s why Farm Fresh RI’s Local Food Fest fundraiser is purple and not green, for instance.


May 27 - May 30

LONG WEEKEND!

Miantonomi Watchtower // Providence Public Library

Over 150 artists will exhibit at Westerly’s large juried Virtu Art Festival, which sounds like a digital art event but isn’t. On Saturday there’s also the Garden & Herb Festival in Tiverton Four Corners. On Memorial Day proper, get one of the best views in the state at a rare public opening of the World War I memorial in Newport’s Miatonomi Park – it’s only open a few hours each year. Hungry? Expect big crowds Saturday for the grand opening of PVDonuts. And if you’re in downtown Providence, keep an eye out for Kate Schapira’s Peanuts inspired Climate Anxiety Counseling booth, this week and on select afternoons through the summer.

5/25-5/30 5/28 5/28 5/28-29 5/30

Climate Anxiety Counseling // 3-6pm Check website for additional dates and locations Burnside Park, Providence PVDonuts // 9am until the donuts are gone 200 Allens Avenue, Providence Garden & Herb Festival // 10am-4pm Soule-Seabury House, Tiverton Four Corners Virtu Art Festival // 10am-5pm Wilcox Park, Westerly Miantonomi Watchtower // 1:30-t3:30pm Miantonomi Park, Newport


May 31 - June 5

6/2-6/5 6/3-6/5 6/4 6/4 6/4 6/4

PVDFest Check website for full schedule Downtown Providence St. Stanislaus Polish Festival 5pm-9pm Fri & Sat, 12pm-4pm Sun Broadway & Rockland Street, Fall River, MA Best Native Plant Sale // 9am-1pm 1 East Farm Road, Kingston Westport River Fest // 10am-3pm Drift Road & Old County Road, Westport St. Columba’s Garden Party // 1-5pm 55 Vaucluse Avenue, Middletown Knock Out Homelessness // 6:30-10pm 69 Silver Lake Avenue, Providence $35

Lakou Mizik // PVDfest

There’s lots of stuff happening all over downtown Providence with the newly named PVDFest, with programs organized by FirstWorks, the Columbus Theatre, and the city itself. Technically the festival runs for four days, but most of the programming is condensed into Friday night and Saturday. If you’re determined to stay outside city limits, stop by the confidently titled Best Native Plant Sale in Kingston. Just over the border, you can paddle your cares away at the Westport River Fest. In Middletown, the morris dancing Ladies of the Rolling Pin will perform at the very English St. Columba’s Garden Party, or if you’re looking for heavier fare, get some pierogi and kielbasa at St. Stanislaus Polish Festival in Fall River. If fighting’s your thing, there’s Knock Out Homelessness, a boxing match and light cigar dinner to benefit Mae’s Organization.


June 6 - June 12

SVF Foundation Visitors Day

The week begins with two arts fundraisers: Manton Avenue Project’s Homecoming Gala and the Cirque du ¡CityArts!. But don’t overdo it: June 11 just might be the busiest day of the calendar year, starting with the colonial Gaspee Days Parade in Pawtuxet and the Scottish Highland Festival in Richmond. It’s Strawberry Thanksgiving at Exeter’s indigenous Tomaquag Museum, and in Newport it’s the annual SVF Foundation Visitors Day, where you can hang out in a replica Swiss village with heritage livestock and the Julian’s bus. Sunday’s Day of Portugal parade leaves the State House at 2pm and concludes at the Alex and Ani City Center.

6/6 6/10 6/11 6/11 6/11 6/11 6/11-6/12

MAP’s Homecoming Gala // 6-8:30pm Roger Williams Park Casino, Providence $60 Cirque du ¡CityArts! // 7-10pm Woods-Gerry House - 62 Prospect Street, Providence $35-$60 SVF Foundation Visitors Day // 9am-3pm Shuttles depart from Fort Adams State Park, Newport RI Scottish Highland Festival // 9am-5pm Washington County Fairgrounds 78 Richmond Townhouse Road, Richmond $18 Gaspee Days Parade // 10am Pawtuxet Village, Cranston/Warwick Strawberry Thanksgiving // 10am-2pm Tomaquag Museum - 390 Summit Road, Exeter $5 Day of Portugal // 5:30pm-11pm Sat, 2pm-9pm Sun Alex and Ani City Center, Providence


June 13 - June 19

6/17-6/19 6/17 6/18 6/18 6/18-6/19 6/18

Secret Garden Tours // 10am-5pm 32 Washington Street, Newport $25 All of Everything Dance Party // 7-11pm RISD Museum - 20 North Main Street, Providence $50 (VIP tickets $100) 10th Annual 5K in Honor of David K. Lays Jr. // 8:30am Norman Bird Sanctuary - 583 Third Beach Road, Middletown $25 before 6/1, $30 after Strawberry Festival // 12pm-5pm Smith’s Castle at Cocumscussoc 55 Richard Smith Drive, North Kingstown $8 Newport Storm Brew.S. Open // 12-8 Sat, 12-5 Sun 293 JT Connell Road, Newport $5/round RI Rebellion v. Bucks County Sharks // 5pm Brown Rugby Ground - 401 Elmgrove Avenue, Providence $5

Lady Bunny // All of Everything Dance Party

The RISD Museum celebrates its great Todd Oldham retrospective with the All of Everything Dance Party, featuring a DJ set by New York legend Lady Bunny. Take self-guided Secret Garden Tours of Newport’s private residences, or visit Smith’s Castle for its annual Strawberry Festival. For something sportier, sort of, there’s Newport Storm’s mini-golf Brew.S. Open. Runners and walkers can join the 5K benefitting Middletown’s lovely Norman Bird Sanctuary, while Providence’s semi-pro rugby team, the Rhode Island Rebellion, play at home against the Bucks County Sharks.


June 20 - June 26

Newport Garden Show

Summer kicks off with a full moon – celebrate the solstice at a cocktail party at the Rose Island Lighthouse! Meat eaters will go nuts for the inaugural Ocean State BBQ Festival. Burnside Park celebrates World Refugee Day, while Womanimation! showcases women’s short animated films from around the world. Saturday night is the Zoobilee! gala at Roger Williams Park Zoo. Outside the city, it’s the 33rd Annual Narragansett Arts Festival, while Newport’s Rosecliff hosts the Newport Flower Show, the largest outdoor event of its kind in New England.

6/20 6/24-6/26 6/24-6/25 6/25-6/26 6/25 6/25 6/25

Summer Solstice Cocktail Party // 5:22pm-8:22pm Rose Island Lighthouse Ferry departs from Jamestown Pier $30 (includes ferry ticket) Newport Flower Show 10:30am-5pm Fri, 9am-5pm Sat & Sun Rosecliff - 548 Bellevue Avenue, Newport $25 (Friday), $23 (Saturday-Sunday) Ocean State BBQ Festival 5pm-10pm Fri, 12pm-10pm Sat The Steel Yard - 27 Sims Avenue, Providence $20 (1 day) / $30 (2 day) Narragansett Art Festival // 9am-6pm Veteran’s Park - 35 Ocean Road, Narragansett World Refugee Day // 12pm-4pm Burnside Bark, Providence Womanimation! // 4pm, 6pm, and 8pm AS220 - 115 Empire Street, Providence Zoobilee! Fest With The Beasts // 7pm-11pm Roger Williams Park Zoo, Providence $125


June 27 - July 4

LONG

WEEKEND!

7/1 7/2 7/3 7/4 7/4 7/4

Blanc de Blanc Summer Soirée // 6pm-9pm Jamestown Arts Center - 18 Valley Street, Jamestown $150 / $200 Beaux Arts Ball // 6pm dinner, 9:30pm drinks/dancing Newport Art Museum - 76 Bellevue Avenue, Newport $125 drinks/dancing / $350 dinner Independence Day Beach Ball // 7pm-10pm Ocean House - 1 Bluff Avenue, Westerly $140 Rhode Island Red Chick Hatch // 10am-2pm South County Museum - Strathmore Street, Narragansett $2 Arnold Mills Parade // 11am Nate Whipple Highway, Cumberland Revival Fest // 12:30pm-2am Dusk – 301 Harris Avenue, Providence

Beach Ball at the Ocean Houset

This week starts off very fancy! Dust off your whites for the Jamestown Arts Center’s Blanc de Blanc Summer Soirée on Friday, then get ready to dance dance dance Saturday at the Newport Art Museum’s Beaux Arts Ball. Sunday it’s the preppy Beach Ball at the Ocean House in Westerly. Once you’ve blown all your money, do some considerably cheaper stuff on the 4th: if you don’t like crowds, skip Bristol and head to the South County Museum to watch Rhode Island Red chicks hatch. For a more low-key parade, hit up the 90th annual Arnold Mills Parade in Cumberland. Then get rowdy at the second annual Revival Fest, a free show at Dusk – the bar, not the time of day – featuring 22 bands on indoor and outdoor stages.


July 5 - July 10

Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park

With the Fourth falling on a Monday, this week’s going to speed right by. Head to Cranston Tuesday for a serious post-holiday Drum and Bugle Corps Competition. These aren’t your local high school groups, and the competition comes from as far away as San Antonio. If that’s not enough brass for you, Friday you can listen to the Rhode Island Philharmonic Summer Pops for free on Narragansett Town Beach. For the weekend, head south for the Wickford Art Festival or stay in Providence for the Cape Verdean Independence Day party. If you’ve never seen live auto racing, get a cheap ticket at the specially priced For The Fans Night, just over the border at Thompson Speedway.

7/5 7/8 7/9-7/10 7/9 7/10

Drum and Bugle Corps Competition // 7pm Cranston Stebbins Stadium - 9 Flint Avenue, Cranston $20 / $40 Rhode Island Philharmonic Summer Pops // 8pm North Beach Club House, Narragansett Town Beach Wickford Art Festival // 10am-6pm Sat, 10am-5pm Sun Wickford Village, North Kingstown For The Fans Night // 6:30pm Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park 205 East Thompson Rd, Thompson, CT $12 Cape Verdean Independence Day // 10am-7pm India Point Park, Providence $3


July 11 - July 17

7/15-7/17 7/16 7/16 7/16 7/17

Black Ships Festival Check website for locations and ticket prices Newport History Tours: French In Newport // 11am Brick Market Place - 127 Thames Street $15 Tennis Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony // 12pm International Tennis Hall of Fame 194 Bellevue Avenue, Newport $99-$119 Bootlegger’s Ball // 5pm-9pm Hearthside House - 677 Great Road, Lincoln $40 Colombian Indepdendence Day Festival // 10am-7pm 10am parade begins at 286 Main Street, Pawtucket 12pm festival at Higginson Park, Central Falls

Bootleggers Ball at Hearthside House

It’s Bastille Day! Rhode Island doesn’t boast much of a French population these days, but that wasn’t always the case. Newport History Tours will teach you about the year when 12,000 French soldiers shacked up in Newport. Down the road, the Tennis Hall of Fame holds its annual induction ceremony – this year Justine Henin and Marat Safin are the big honorees - while the Japanese Black Ships Festival hits Newport for the 33rd consecutive year. For mainland fun, Hearthside House ends its daylong 1920s tribute with an old-timey Bootlegger’s Ball, while on Sunday Central Falls hosts its annual parade celebrating Colombian Independence Day.


July 18 - July 24


July 18 - July 24

Project Fusion // Kingston Chamber Music Festival

Tis the season for high art music festivals. The large classical Newport Music Festival overlaps with the seven concerts comprising the Kingston Chamber Music Festival, while Island Moving Company’s Great Friends Dance Festival welcomes the renowned company Owen/ Cox Dance from Kansas City. For something less performance-based, consider the South County Hot Air Balloon Festival and, if you’re hungry, tour Kenyon’s Grist Mill. Head to Cranston Sunday night for sausage and peppers and the completely ostentateous fireworks display that wraps up the 111th annual Saint Mary’s Feast.

7/8-7/24 7/16-7/25 7/20-7/31 7/20-7/24 7/22-7/24 7/23-7/24

Newport Music Festival Check website for details and ticket info Great Friends Dance Festival Check website for details and ticket info Great Friends Meeting House Marlborough Street, Newport Kingston Chamber Music Festival (times vary) URI Fine Arts Center Concert Hall $25-$30 per concert Saint Mary’s Feast (fireworks Sunday at 10pm) Phenix Avenue & Cranston Street, Cranston South County Hot Air Balloon Festival Exact schedule is wind dependent URI Athletic Fields, Kingstown $10 Kenyon’s Grist Mill Summer Tour Weekend // 10am-5pm 21 Glen Rock Road, Usquepaugh (South Kingstown)


July 25 - July 31

7/26-7/30 7/29-7/31 7/29-7/31 7/29 7/30-7/31 7/30-7/31

Providence Fringe Festival Check website for full schedule $5-$10 Newport Hellenic Fest 4pm-12am Fri, 12pm-1am Sat, 12pm-6pm Sun St. Spyridon Church - Thames & Brewer Streets, Newport Foster Old Home Days 5-10pm Fri, 8am-10pm Sat, 8am-5pm Sun 181 Howard Hill Road, Foster $5 Alpine Festival // 6-9pm Ocean House - 1 Bluff Avenue, Westerly $49 Providence County Kennel Club Dog Show // 8:30am The Ryan Center - 1 Lincoln Almond Plaza, Kingston $8 Cultural Survival Bazaar // 10am-5pm Tiverton Four Corners Art Center 3852 Main Road, Tiverton

Providence Fringe Festival

There’s something for everyone, they say, and if your thing is watching women throw skillets then you’re in luck! Foster Old Home Days is essentially the Providence County fair, and there really is a ladies skillet-throwing element, whatever that means. If that sounds too weird, stay downtown for the Providence Fringe Festival. For something more continental, check out Hellenic Fest in Newport, or a new celebration of Swiss Independence Day at the Ocean House in Westerly. Tiverton once again hosts the fair trade Cultural Survival Bazaar, while canine aficionados can check out the twoday Providence County Kennel Club dog show at URI’s Ryan Center.


August 1 - August 7


Providence Dominican Festival // Octavio Gomez Photography


August 1 - August 7 It’s a big weekend for food events, with Farm Fresh RI’s Local Food Fest fundraiser and Charlestown’s massive Seafood Festival. For something that doesn’t involve quite so much eating, check out Opera Providence’s sunset performance at Blithewold or, at the other end of the spectrum, monster trucks and drag racing at the Seekonk Speedway’s Thrill Show Thrill Show. Cumberlandfest takes over the Blackstone Valley, while Providence’s colorful Dominican Parade runs from Broad Street to the Temple to Music.

8/2 8/3 8/5-8/7 8/5-8/7 8/7 8/7

Local Food Festival // 5pm, 4pm for VIP ticket holders Castle Hill Inn 590 Ocean Drive, Newport $100 (VIP tickets $150) Opera Providence // 6-8pm Blithewold, 101 Ferry Road, Bristol $7 Charlestown Seafood Festival 12-11pm Fri, 11am-11pm Sat, 11am-10pm Sun Ninigret Park, Charlestownt $9 Cumberlandfest 6pm-11pm Fri, 12pm-11pm Sat, 12pm-10pm Sun Diamond Hill Park - 4097 Diamond Hill Road, Cumberland Dominican Parade and Festival // 10am-7:30pm 10am parade begins on Broad Street, Providence Festival follows at Roger Williams Park Temple to Music Thrill Show Thrill Show // 5pm Seekonk Speedway – 1710 Fall River Avenue, Seekonk, MA $20- $25


August 8 - August 14 500 swimmers will dive in for the 40th annual Save The Bay Swim from Newport to Jamestown. Charlestown hosts both the Narragansett Pow Wow as well as an all-night viewing of the Perseid Meteor Shower, which last year drew hundreds of stargazers. Providence hosts the unique Urkupiña Festival, commemorating an 18th century sighting of the Virgin Mary in Bolivia. All week long it’s the Rhode Island International Film Festival, and the weekend wraps up with Foo Fest, AS220’s annual blowout street party.

8/9-8/14 8/12-8/13 8/12 8/13 8/13 8/13-8/14

Rhode Island International Film Festival Check website for schedule Narragansett Pow Wow // 12pm-7pm Indian Church Road, Charlestown $6 Perseid Meteor Shower // 6pm-dawn Note: best after the moon sets at 1:18am Frosty Drew Observatory & Sky Theatre 61 Park Lane, Charlestown $1 (suggested) Save The Bay Swim for Narragansett Bay // 9:15am Newport Navy Base, Newport to Potter Cove, Jamestown $50 to swim, free to watch Foo Fest // 1pm-1am Empire Street, Providence $10 Urkupiña Festival Location tba


August 15 - August 21

Dot Air / photo by James Lastowski

It’s year 50 for Richmond’s Washington County Fair, while in Pawtucket the Dot Air experimental music festival turns three. The Looff, East Providence’s art festival, is back for a second year, while Field of Artisans wraps up its first season of monthly night markets on Broadway. North Attleborough has good food for a good cause at the Seeds of Hope Dinner, benefitting On Common Ground. Newport Volleyball Club’s New England Championships feature men’s, women’s, and coed teams competing on the beach all day for cash prizes and a trip to the national finals. Newport Polo hosts its annual USA v. Jamaica match, followed by a jerk grill dinner. 8/17-8/21 8/18 8/19 8/20-8/21 8/20 8/20 8/20

50th Annual Washington County Fair Schedule tba - Check website for details 78 Richmond Townhouse Rd, Richmond $10 Field of Artisans X Providence Share Space Night Market 5pm-9pm Share Space Providence – 140 Broadway Seeds of Hope Farm To Table Dinner // 6pm-10pm Attleboro Farms – 491 Hickory Road, North Attleborough $50 Newport Volleyball Club New England Championships Easton’s Beach - 175 Memorial Boulevard, Newport The Looff // 11am-6pm 700 Bullocks Point Road, East Providence USA v. Jamaica // 5pm - gates open at 1pm Newport Polo Grounds - 250 Linden Lane, Portsmouth $12 polo / $38 dinner Dot Air // 4pm-late Pawtucket (details tba - Check website for details)


August 22 - August 28

Daily 8/25 8/27 8/27-8/28

Birds From Down Under // 10am-5pm Roger Williams Park Zoo, Providence $3 + regular admission Movies On The Block: Days of Heaven // 7:30pm Westminster & Union Streets, Providence Pomham Rocks Lighthouse Tour 575 South Water Street, Providence $45 (by reservation only) S.A.M. Fest // 11am-5pm Slater Mill, Pawtucket

Birds from Down Under

You’d expect folks to cram in lots of events right before Labor Day, but this weekend is oddly very quiet for feasts and festivals. For something to do, check out Slater Mill for S.A.M. Fest, Slater’s Art and Manufacture Festival. To feel like a tourist in your own town, the Providence River Boat Company is offering two-hour tours that land on Pomham Rocks Lighthouse. The boat picks up by the Hot Club and yes, you’re allowed to carry your drinks on board. Alternately, check out one of the ongoing events happening all summer: it’s last call for the Birds From Down Under exhibit at the zoo – they all fly south after Labor Day. Movies On The Block in Providence has a stronger than usual schedule this year, and this week it’s Terrence Malick’s 1978 epic Days of Heaven.


August 29 - September 5

LONG WEEKEND!

Lucinda Williams // Rhythm & Roots Festivalt

The Brown Men’s Water Polo team kicks off its fall season with a bang: they’ll play five matches in two days at the Bruno Classic, taking place Saturday and Sunday. (The women’s team has its own version of the classic in February.) Providence hosts its annual Guatemalan Festival in India Point Park, while Lucinda Williams is the Saturday headliner for the weekend-long Rhythm & Roots Festival. For something completely different, how about the Weekapaug Inn’s Phosphorescent Jelly and Plankton Paddle, led by the luxury hotel’s resident naturalist? Finally, it’s last call for the PawSox regular season. Their September 4 game against the Buffalo Bisons concludes with some Labor Day fireworks.

9/2-9/4 9/3-9/4 9/3 9/4 9/4

Rhythm & Roots Festival 5pm-12am (Fri), 12pm-12am (Sat/Sun) Ninigret Park, Charlestown $50 (Fri.), $70 (Sat. & Sun) Bruno Classic // 8am-10pm Sat, 7:50am-4pm Sun 235 Hope Street, Providence Phosphorescent Jelly & Plankton Paddle // 8pm Weekapaug Inn - 25 Spray Rock Road, Westerly $40 Festival Guatemala // 12pm-7pm India Point Park, Providence Pawtucket Red Sox v. Buffalo Bisons // 6:05pm McCoy Stadium – 1 Columbus Avenue, Pawtucket $9-$13


September 6 - September 11

9/9-9/11 9/10-9/11 9/10 9/10 9/11

Cranston Greek Festival Church of the Annunciation 175 Oaklawn Avenue, Cranston Raptor Weekend // 10am-4pm Audobon Environmental Education Center 1401 Hope Street, Bristol $15 Narragansett Calamari Cookoff // 11am-5pm Veteran’s Park (by the Towers), Narragansett Heritage Day // 12pm Roger Williams National Memorial 282 North Main Street, Providence Surftown Half Marathon & 5K // 7:30am Misquamicut Beach, Westerly $80/$30 to run (until 8/31), free to watch

Surftown Half Marathon

Summer unofficially ends on Labor Day, but why? The ocean’s warmer in September than it is in July, and the calendar says there’s still two more weeks to go. Take that, naysayers! Predatory birds will tear you apart with their beaks and razor sharp talons, but that’s no reason to skip the Audobon Society’s Raptor Weekend. Meanwhile, it’s the multicultural Heritage Day at the Roger Williams National Memorial on North Main Street. The Narragansett Calamari Cookoff happens by the Towers, and the Surftown Half Marathon happens at Misquamicut Beach. Finally, eat spanakopita and drink cheap wine by the bottle at the Cranston Greek Festival.


September 12 - September 18 Writing this in May, it’s hard to imagine anyone rushing into fall before it’s absolutely necessary. But Coggeshall Farm is hosting an 18th century Harvest Fair while Misquamicut holds its preequinox Fall Fest. (Heretics!) Follow the Woonasquatucket for up to sixty miles at the Woony River Ride Bike-a-Thon fundraiser. For something different, cross into Connecicut for the Olde Mistick Garlic Festival, which promises over 70 vendors offering “garlic related activities or products,” including garlic fried dough.

9/16-9/18 9/17 9/17-9/18 9/17-9/18

Misquamicut Fall Fest 5pm-11pm (Fri), 11am-11pm (Sat), 11am-5pm (Sun) $7 Woony River Ride // 8am-11:30am start times Check website for route details $50 Harvest Fair // 10am-5pm Coggeshall Farm – 1 Colt Drive, Bristol $5 Olde Mistick Garlick Festival 11am-7pm (Sat), 11am-6pm (Sun) 27 Coogan Blvd., Mystic


September 19 - September 25

9/22-9/25 9/23 9/24 9/24-9/25 9/25

Newport Mansions Wine and Food Festival Check website for details and ticket info Marble House and Rosecliff, Bellevue Avenue Empty Bowls // 5:30pm-8:30pm Rhodes on the Pawtuxet - 60 Rhodes Place, Cranston Harvest Festival // 12pm-4pm Smith’s Castle at Cocumscussoc 55 Richard Smith Drive, North Kingstown St. George’s Maronite Catholic Lebanese Festival Cranston Street & Haven Avenue, Cranston Rhode Island Antique Fire Apparatus Society Annual Show 10am-3pm 1 New England Tech Boulevard, East Greenwich

Rhode Island Antique Fire Apparatus Annual Show

...and the season concludes with a trio of very different culinary delights: there’s the elegant post-season Newport Food and Wine Festival, a small but very delicious Lebanese Festival in Cranston, and the Empty Bowls benefit for the Rhode Island Food Bank, where guests can take home handmade bowls at the end of the evening. Smith’s Castle is also hosting its annual Harvest Festival. Finally, wrap up the season with the annual show of the Rhode Island Antique Fire Apparatus Society.


BEACHES


BEACH GUIDE Rhode Island’s coast is something to behold, and there’s something for literally everyone to be found on over 400 miles of shoreline. 20 of Rhode Island’s 39 cities and towns border the coast, and every one of those municipalities offers a variety of options for waterfront activity, whether it’s beaches, parks, or (in the case of East Greenwich) just a loony waterfront bar scene. Here are 70 of the best coastal options.

ISN’T 70 KIND OF A HUGE NUMBER? People use the coast for different reasons: swimming, boating, sunbathing, birdwatching, fishing, photography, surfing, and all kinds of other things. The ideal beach to take your toddler is not the ideal beach to take someone on a romantic date. Some people like the safety of lifeguards on a sunny afternoon, and some people want a quiet place to read a book after work. So yes, “70 of the best” is correct.

ARE ALL OF THESE BEACHES OPEN TO THE PUBLIC? SOME OF THEM SOUND WEIRD. All but two of these beaches are open to the public for free. You’ll have to pay $8 to get on Narragansett Town Beach and Watson Farm charges a $6 fee, but that’s about it.


WAIT, WHAT DO YOU MEAN? YOU HAVE TO PAY $15 TO PARK AT SOME OF THESE PLACES! Yes, that is true. It’s free to access state-owned beaches but you’ll have to pay to park, unless you take the RIPTA bus for the 16 measly days that it’s actually running. Prices vary by beach and sometimes by day, but bring $20 (in cash) per carload and you’ll definitely be fine wherever you end up. You’ll probably even have money left over for clamcakes or whatever.

SO ALL OF THESE PLACES HAVE PARKING? EVEN THE WEIRD DIRT PATHS AT THE END OF SIDE STREETS THAT YOU KEEP RECOMMENDING? All except for Moonstone Beach, yes.

HOW CAN I GET MORE INFO ABOUT SPECIFIC BEACHES? Ha! That’s a good one. Some of these are city owned, some are town owned, and some are run by nature preserves and non-profit organizations and, as a result, there’s no one central place to get that kind of info. Your best bet is shoreline-ri.com, a very handy website managed by the Rhode Island Sea Grant at URI. Their 2004 guide to the coast is also available as a PDF, and it’s extremely useful.


WESTERLY Westerly has a lot to offer. The historic downtown boasts a stunning park attached to (and maintained by) the town library – the Colonial Theatre is doing Hamlet in the park this summer – while just blocks away the old Savoy hotel has been repurposed as the state’s newest (and maybe loveliest) bookstore. If you’re hungry, just north of downtown is Noodle Revolution, a surprise finalist in Law And Order Party’s March Restaurant Madness, or cross over into Hopkinton to get picnic food at Back In Thyme.

WESTERLY EVENTS Virtu Art Festival (May) Independence Day Beach Ball (July) Alpine Fest (July) Phosphorescent Jelly and Plankton Paddle (September) Surftown Half Marathon (September) Misquamicut Fall Fest (September)


WESTERLY TOP 5 1. NAPATREE POINT CONSERVATION AREA The Watch Hill Fire District owns Rhode Island’s southwestern tip, a mile-long stretch that’s like a busy airport for birds. You can also swim there. 2. MISQUAMICUT STATE BEACH Though it’s not for everyone, Westerly’s mini Jersey Shore is great for people watching. It’s also the beach that feels the most like an affordable resort, full of large, rickety bars where you can drink headache-inducing frozen cocktails out of plastic cups. 3. BLUFF AVENUE / EAST BEACH You have to park down the road a ways, and forget it on weekend afternoons, but one of the state’s best public beaches is hidden in between Taylor Swift’s Watch Hill summer place and the ritzy Ocean House. (Don’t let your GPS confuse this with East Beach in Charlestown, which is a totally different beach.) 4. WUSKENAU TOWN BEACH A town-owned beach that runs down both sides of Atlantic Avenue, Wuskenau is similar to Misquamicut but the waves are better for surfing, and there’s weekly movie screenings on the beach. 5. RIVER BEND CEMETERY It would be rude to don your bathing suit and plunge into the Pawcatuck River with all those dead people watching, but this 19th century riverside cemetery is worth a stroll.


CHARLESTOWN Charlestown is a sleepy hamlet with a unique coastline, thanks to Rhode Island’s abundance of shallow coastal salt ponds. Ninigret Pond, the largest, runs parallel to the ocean, so the state’s longest beach (East Beach) is actually a barrier beach, surrounded by water on both sides. A pair of breachways (Charlestown and Quonochontaug) leads from ponds into the ocean.

CHARLESTOWN EVENTS Charlestown Seafood Festival (August) Perseid Meteor Shower (August) Narragansett Pow Wow (August) Rhythm & Roots Festival (September)


CHARLESTOWN TOP 5 1. EAST BEACH The finest of Rhode Island’s seven state-run beaches, East Beach is a mile-long stretch of sand bordering a salt pond and a nature preserve. A steep drop and relatively few lifeguard chairs make for a relatively kid-free scene, while a teensy parking lot ensures everyone gets plenty of space to stretch out. Late afternoons are your best bet for getting a spot on the weekend. 2. QUONOCHONTAUG BREACHWAY Fox Mulder’s mom had a place in Quonochontaug, but even native Rhode Islanders might think that X-Files writers invented this tiny coastal village. It’s pretty out there. The state-owned breachway features a boat ramp and a wetland area popular with quahoggers. 3. CHARLESTOWN BREACHWAY The parking lot fills up quickly – a recurring theme, you’ll notice – but this breachway contains a nice beach, an RV area, a boat ramp, and actual wetlands. Follow a path through some tall grass to access the wetlands. Just be sure to check for ticks afterwards. 4. CHARLESTOWN TOWN BEACH Right up the road from the breachway, the town beach is like East Beach’s younger, more popular sister. The waves are big but not too big, and the crowds are a little more densely packed. The environmentally friendly changing rooms are relatively elegant. 5. NINIGRET PARK Ninigret Park is heavily programmed, with volleyball nets and basketball courts and hiking trails and swimming in a small freshwater pond. The park hosts a number of large festivals.


SOUTH KINGSTOWN South Kingstown plays the big spoon around little Narragansett, bordering it to the north and also the west. South Kingstown (with a W) includes Wakefield and Peacedale, as well as the village of Kingston (no W), where URI is located. They’re all linked by a pleasant bike path. Wakefield has some solid arts venues (Hera Gallery, Contemporary Theatre Company) and some good college town food (Phil’s), but the most popular options are the Ocean Mist’s boozy brunch and dinner at the Matunuck Oyster Bar.

SOUTH KINGSTOWN EVENTS Best Native Plant Sale (June) South County Hot Air Balloon Festival (July) Kenyon’s Grist Mill Summer Tour Weekend (July) Kingston Chamber Music Festival (July) Providence County Kennel Club dog show (July)


SOUTH KINGSTOWN TOP 5 1. TRUSTOM POND NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE Trustom Pond is one of nine salt ponds dotting Rhode Island’s south coast, and the only one free of shoreline development. This national wildlife refuge is home to some 300 bird species, and it also features observation towers for checking out the fauna. 2. MOONSTONE BEACH Nudity is forbidden on all Rhode Island beaches, but many years ago nude sunbathing was allowed at Moonstone Beach. That was before the beach was closed to the public, in a measure to protect endangered piping plovers. Moonstone is open again, sort of, or at least part of it is, if you aren’t afraid to walk or bike there. There’s no parking anywhere remotely nearby. 3. EAST MATUNUCK BEACH East Matunuck is a popular state-operated beach located off of Succotash Road. Don’t confuse it with South Kingstown Town Beach, which most people call Matunuck. (In bar terms, this is the beach by the Matunuck Oyster Bar, not the one by the Ocean Mist.) 4. PETTAQUAMSCUTT PARK Located above the Narrow River, Pettaquamscutt Park is where the British originally “bought” the region from the Narragansetts in 1657. The park features trails and makes a nice picnic spot. 5. ROY CARPENTER’S BEACH Heavily damaged by Sandy, Carpenter’s Beach is a free private beach off Card’s Pond Road. Surrounded by 377 private summer cottages, the old-timey resort was built shortly after the hurricane of 1938. There’s parking at the neighboring South Kingstown Town Beach.


NARRAGANSETT If there’s one beach to avoid at all costs, it’s Scarborough State Beach. Between the huge crowds and the loud soundsystem announcing misplaced children every few minutes, it’s just disappointing all around, especially when there are better, quieter options all around it. If you’re hungry, skip the wildly overrated Crazy Burger and grab Indian at Maharaja or casual middle eastern at Markos.

The RIPTA Express Beach Bus runs for eight weekends (June 18 - August 8) and picks up at North Providence Town Hall and Cranston City Hall, taking beachgoers to three Narragansett beaches. The $2 bus ticket is all you have to pay to access the beach.

NARRAGANSETT EVENTS Narragansett Art Festival (June) Rhode Island Red Chick Hatch (July) RI Philharmonic Summer Pops (July) Narragansett Calamari Cookoff (September)


NARRAGANSETT TOP 5 1. POINT JUDITH STATE PARK (CAMP CRONIN) Take the road between Aunt Carrie’s and Iggy’s to reach this unassuming state park, featuring a long rock wall that’s a favorite for fishermen. Parking is free, which is nice, although the lot suffered considerably after superstorm Sandy. 2. HAZARD AVENUE A residential street with a few parking spots at the end, Hazard Avenue leads down to a majestic view of waves pounding against big rocks. There’s no sand, but this hidden gem is an ideal place to bring a blanket and a book. 3. POINT JUDITH LIGHTHOUSE Another rocky outpost where you can’t swim, but that’s not the point. When the waves are right, you can scamper down to watch some of the region’s best surfing. 4. SALTY BRINE STATE BEACH Newcomers might assume that this beach is named after the water quality, but Salty Brine was actually the name of a beloved local television personality (1918-2004). Located in Galilee, you can sit on this beach and wave to all the people taking the Block Island Ferry. (For what it’s worth, it’s also the best of the three stops on the RIPTA Express Beach Bus.) 5. NARRAGANSETT TOWN BEACH Located right by the town’s iconic towers, the beach is a crowded but relatively pleasant alternative to Scarborough. Non-residents have to pay to get $8 on the beach during the day.


NORTH KINGSTOWN Wickford Village is pleasant enough, but massive Quonset hogs a big chunk of the North Kingstown shoreline. Oddly enough, the complex actually has public beaches – like BLUE BEACH – if you’re looking to tan with a view of an industrial park. For something completely different, follow the trails down to the bay at CHAFEE NATURE PRESERVE. This spot is actually very popular in the winter, when folks spy on the harbor seals that hang out there.

If you don’t drive, you can take the MBTA Commuter Rail from Providence to Wickford Junction for just $3.50. The best part is there’s only one stop along the way.

NORTH KINGSTOWN EVENTS Strawberry Festival (June) Wickford Art Festival (July) Smith’s Castle Harvest Festival (September)


EAST GREENWICH East Greenwich has a couple of rights-of-way if you want access to the water, including a public boat ramp, but that’s about it. The town’s got some good restaurants and some waterfront dining options, though to be honest the two are pretty mutually exclusive. Still, the bar scene is something: dude bands play covers of hits from the 70s, 80s, 90s, nothings, and today, while young adults drink watery beers with their parents’ generation in a way you don’t really see outside of boating communities.

EAST GREENWICH EVENTS Rhode Island Antique Fire Apparatus Society (September)


WARWICK Wrapping around Greenwich Bay, Warwick actually has a pretty extensive shoreline, a fact you might forget if you only go there to shop at the Target or the other Target. Unfortunately, the water’s not so great this far up the bay: Oakland Beach and the Goddard Park beach were closed more than any others last year due to unsafe water quality. Still, the city’s got some interesting points that are worth checking out.


WARWICK TOP 5 1. ROCKY POINT STATE PARK Rhode Island’s newest state park is located on the grounds of a beloved old amusement park. This is a passive use park, meaning you won’t find any amenities or fancy activities, though a 5K schlep through the park is scheduled for late June. 2. WARWICK CITY PARK This beach doesn’t reliably have before you go if you want to get across Buttonwoods Cove to check the site of a nineteenth-century

safe water, so wet. After the out a historic Baptist summer

check DEM reports beach, drive neighborhood on colony.

3. GASPEE POINT You have to take a staircase through an empty yard to access this beach, where locals torched a grounded British ship in 1772. It’s located within a fascinating cottage community that’s owned by city historian Henry Brown. 4. SALTER GROVE The water is gross and the cats are feral, but it’s fun to promenade along the long rock wall just beyond Pawtuxet village. 5. CONIMICUT POINT This bayside park is worth visiting mainly for its unique southern view of the Providence skyline.


CRANSTON According to the City of Cranston website, the city’s official slogan is “We’re On The Move!” Who knew? East of Roger Williams Park, coastal Edgewood makes up a small section of the city, but the bayside neighborhood is popular with families. Folksy Pawtuxet Village straddles Cranston and Warwick, with a waterfall dividing the two. Don’t go in the water, but park on Broad Street and meander over to the small park at the end of hook-shaped Seaview Avenue. Afterwards, stop by Dear Hearts for ice cream or, if it’s Tuesday, visit Jacky Boy Public House for live (acoustic) karaoke.

CRANSTON EVENTS Gaspee Days (June) Drum and Bugle Corps Competition (July) Saint Mary’s Feast Fireworks (July) Cranston Greek Festival (September) Empty Bowls (September)


PROVIDENCE Resting at the tippy top of Narragansett Bay, Providence has a surprising shortage of waterfront dining options. You can drink at the touristy Whiskey Republic or the gracefully aging Hot Club, the deck of which is quite nice despite the cliques of bikers and politicians that hang out there. If the giant heap of scrap metal by the highway isn’t enough of a red flag, heed this advice: don’t even dream about going in the water.

PROVIDENCE TOP 3 1. SAVE THE BAY Tucked behind the Johnson and Wales Harborside Campus, the Save The Bay headquarters features a visitors center and nice campus for a bayside picnic. 2. INDIA POINT PARK A popular, heavily programmed park, India Point can be accessed by car or by pedestrian bridge from Fox Point. Now that construction’s completed, this once again marks the start of the East Bay Bike Path. 3. BLACKSTONE PARK This park has been a sexy cruising ground for at least half a century, but if that’s not too off-putting you can get a nice view of the Seekonk River.


PROVIDENCE EVENTS Climate Anxiety Counseling PVDonuts Opening (May) Knock Out Homelessness (May) PVDFest (June) MAP Homecoming Gala (June) Cirque du ¡CityArts! (June) Day of Portugal Parade (June) RI Rebellion v. Bucks County Sharks (June) All of Everything Dance Party (June) Zoobilee! Feast With the Beasts (June) Ocean State BBQ Festival (June) World Refugee Day (June) Womanimation! (June) Revival Fest (July) Cape Verdean Independence Day (July) Providence Fringe Festival (July) Dominican Festival (August) Foo Fest (August) Urkupiña Festival (August) Rhode Island International Film Festival (August) Field of Artisans X Share Space (May-August) Birds From Down Under (May-August) Movies On The Block (August) Pomham Lighthouse Tour (August) Bruno Classic (September) Festival Guatemala (September) Heritage Day (September) Woony River Ride (September)


EAST PROVIDENCE Despite the lofty name, the East Providence Yacht Club is both divier and livelier than the Hot Club, and you’re less likely to find yourself inexplicably surrounded by politicians. The bay isn’t safe or clean here for swimming, but if you’re in desperate need to look at some water there’s a few options: the EAST BAY BIKE PATH winds along the shoreline from Fox Point to Bristol, CRESCENT PARK has a carousel that’s run continuously since 1905, and there’s even a public beach located at the end of BEACH ROAD, if you’re pressed for time and desperate for sand beneath your toes. It’s only fifteen minutes from downtown Providence.

EAST PROVIDENCE EVENTS The Looff (August)


BARRINGTON Barrington Public Library is one of the state’s great resources, and it regularly runs great series of film screenings and nature walks. Besides that, um… Barrington is mostly just a high-falutin’ suburb. Visit Table for French food or Tong D for Thai, or just drive a few minutes to Warren for more interesting options. Barrington technically has plenty of places to see the water, but most of them don’t have parking, and the town beach and nature preserve are both restricted to residents only. Hmmph. RISD owns Tillinghast Farm, although it’s technically private and the beach can get pretty muddy. If you must, there’s HAINES MEMORIAL PARK, which you can access via the East Bay Bicycle Path.


WARREN Warren’s three rivers – the Warren, Palmer, and Kickemuit – give the low-lying town a real seaside feel, even if the beaches themselves aren’t particularly exciting. Fishing is possible from the end of BARKER ROAD, located at the top of the Kickemuit River. Warren is home to some of the Rhode Island’s trendiest restaurants – Eli’s, bywater, Chomp, and Metacom Kitchen chief among them. For something to do, 2nd Story Theatre does productions all summer. After the show, cross into Swansea for ice cream at Eskimo King.


BRISTOL Home of the country’s oldest 4th of July Parade, quaint Bristol is surrounded on three sides by water. Brave the lines at the Beehive Café for breakfast – it’s worth the wait – then stay in town for Portuguese dinner at Café Central (not to be confused with French bistro Le Central, also in the town.) For culture, the Bristol Art Museum at Linden Place is your best bet.

BRISTOL EVENTS Opera Providence (July) Raptor Weekend (September) Coggeshall Farm Harvest Fair (September)


BRISTOL TOP 5 1. BRISTOL TOWN BEACH Located at the edge of Colt State Park, Bristol Town Beach has made concerted efforts recently to minimize runoff from parking lots. The complex also features tennis and basketball courts, as well as a skate park. 2. PLATT STREET The Kickemuit River runs along Bristol’s east side, and a staircase at the intersection of Platt Street and King Phillip Avenue leads down to a park overlooking Mount Hope Bay and, in the distance, Fall River. Below that you can descend to a small rocky beach. 3. INDEPENDENCE PARK The end point of the East Bay Bike Path, the beach at Independence Park is popular with fishermen. On street parking can get dicey on sunny weekend afternoons. 4. COGGESHALL FARM Located on the grounds of Colt State Park, Coggeshall Farm is a working farm that hearkens back to the 18th century. You can look at the water here, but can’t access it directly from the farm. 5. ASRI ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATION CENTER Located on a 28-acre wildlife refuge, the Audobon Society’s Visitors Center offers access to a number of different fresh and salt water marshes.


TIVERTON Most of New England is overrun with Dunkin Donuts franchises, but Tiverton is the heart of Sip’n Dip country. That’s the donut chain where you can get sloppy pulled pork caçoila sandwiches with your coffee. All in all, Tiverton’s a pretty bipolar town, with gritty Portuguese Fall River on one side and bucolic WASP-y Little Compton on the other. Tiverton Four Corners has some interesting galleries, like Arch Contemporary, while the Sandywoods Center For The Arts has a robust folk music program. For views of the Sakonnet River, try the EMILIE RUECKER NATURE REFUGE, and for swimming you should skip past crowded Grinnell’s for the north facing FOGLAND BEACH.

TIVERTON EVENTS Garden and Herb Festival (May) Cultural Survival Bazaar (July)


LITTLE COMPTON From Providence, Little Compton’s only a few minutes further away than Charlestown, but the drive itself makes all the difference. South County is all boring highway, while the rustic drive down Route 77 is winding and lovely. Unfortunately, the town shuts up like a clam in the summer. Beautiful Sakonnet Point is open only to residents, leaving just a few options for beachgoers: TAYLOR’S LANE ends with a dirt path leading to a small, sandy beach. With its westerly view, this is a pleasantly off the grid place to watch a sunset. Then there’s SOUTH SHORE BEACH, Little Compton’s town beach, and just beyond it the Nature Conservancy’s GOOSEWING BEACH. (They share a parking lot. Actually, the divide is unmarked, though a brook separates the two.) Goosewing is lovely, though summer afternoons can get surprisingly windy. Call the town to reserve a firepit at South Shore Beach.


PORTSMOUTH The northern third of Aquidneck Island features nearly two dozen points to access the water, though they’re mainly fishing spots. Head to the end of MOUNT HOPE VIEW ROAD and follow a dirt path to a quiet beach with an unusual northern view of the bay. Alternatively, you can take TALLMAN AVENUE to a set of stairs leading to a cobble beach on the Sakonnet. If you’re looking for an actual beach with changing rooms and picnic tables and stuff, try SANDY POINT BEACH. Oh, and don’t forget PRUDENCE ISLAND. The bay’s third largest island (Population 125) is 70% nature preserves. The island is maintained by the town of Portsmouth, though the ferry to get there departs from Church Street Pier in Bristol.

PORTSMOUTH EVENTS Newport Polo: USA v. Jamaica (August)


MIDDLETOWN Located in the middle of Aquidneck Island – that’s where the name comes from – Middletown only has coastal access on its eastern shore. For hikers and bird watchers, the most interesting places of note are SACHUEST POINT WILDLIFE REFUGE, adjacent to popular Second Beach, and NORMAN BIRD SANCTUARY, which rises above the beaches. To watch surfers, head to HANGING ROCK ROAD PARKING AREA, a spot where you can also access the cliff views from PURGATORY CHASM. And if you’re really desperate to escape the summer throngs, follow an obscure dirt path off TUCKERMAN AVENUE, right by the exclusive Clambake Club, for a great view.

MIDDLETOWN EVENTS St. Columba’s Garden Party (June) 10th Annual Norman Bird Sanctuary 5K (June)


NEWPORT Touristy Newport can be great, but it can also be awful if you’re not in the right mood. There’s tons of great restaurants, and a number of food options that are overpriced and ho-hum. The galleries cater almost exclusively to the throngs, but the Newport Art Museum has an interesting collection of contemporary work by local artists. The NewportFILM documentary festival takes place on the island’s fabulous lawns every Thursday from June 30 through September 1. During the day everyone is quite genteel, while at night Thames Street is overrun by boozy ladies trying, to navigate the cobblestone streets in high heels.

NEWPORT EVENTS Miantonomi Watchtower (May) SVF Foundation Visitors Day (June) Newport Storm Brew.S. Open (June) Secret Garden Tours (June) Newport Flower Show (June) Newport Art Museum Beaux Arts Ball (July) Tennis Hall of Fame induction (July) French In Newport (July) Black Ships (July) Newport Music Festival (July) Great Friends Dance Festival (July) Newport Hellenic Fest (July) Farm Fresh RI Local Food Fest (August) Save The Bay Swim (August) NVC New England Championships (August) Newport Mansions Wine and Food Festival (September)


NEWPORT TOP 5 1. 40 STEPS / CLIFF WALK Narragansett Avenue ends with a dramatic granite staircase that’s been dubbed a National Historic Landmark. At the bottom of the steps, you can access the great 3.5-mile long Cliff Walk, located above the eastern bay. 2. REJECT’S BEACH Over a hundred years ago, Newport’s elite founded the private club that still maintains the super-exclusive Bailey’s Beach. But at the end of Bellevue Avenue, the beach’s southeastern tip, there’s a very nice public access point known among locals as Reject’s Beach. 3. FORT ADAMS Newport’s sprawling Fort Adams hosts the city’s historic Folk Festival every July, but if you can’t get tickets to that pick any other weekend of the year to check out the giant park and beach. 4. BRENTON POINT STATE PARK The island’s southwestern tip features a grassy park on the grounds of a former estate. It’s got a beach area that’s popular with mussel and lobster fishermen. 5. EASTON’S (FIRST) BEACH First Beach sits near the start ritzy Chanler hotel. This one’s metered street parking, you may weekend unless you know a local

of the Cliff Walk, just beneath the very, very popular. While there’s not even want to bother on the with a driveway you can park in.


JAMESTOWN Conanicut Island is home to one of Rhode Island’s smallest and most insular communities, full of families that have inhabited the land for centuries. It’s a very quiet town. The Jamestown Art Center does interesting programs, but that’s about it for culture, and there’s no nightlife whatsoever to speak of. Public beaches are few and far between, so the real draws are the parks and old forts on the southern end of the island.

JAMESTOWN EVENTS Rose Island Summer Solstice Cocktail Party (June) Blanc de Blanc Summer Soirée (July)


JAMESTOWN TOP 5 1. BEAVERTAIL STATE PARK If you’re not put off by signs warning about deer ticks, meander through the trails to find a number of isolated coves that are great for sunning and swimming. Just be careful not to intrude on any of the young couples taking advantage of the privacy. The lighthouse also offers tours. 2. FORT WETHERILL A former Coast Guard fort, this state park offers great views of Newport. It’s not good for swimming, although the area is popular with scuba divers. 3. BROAD STREET The only easy shore access on the north side of the island, a tiny parking lot leads to a quiet, rocky beach on the site of an old ferry landing. 4. WATSON FARM Cows and sheep graze on this 265-acre beachfront property, maintained by the non-profit Historic New England. Visitors are welcome to take self-guided tours along paths that wind to the shore. The property is open to the public Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday afternoons, and admission is $6. The farm also sells its own beef, lamb, and wool blankets. 5. FORT GETTY You can still see remnants of the military fortifications at Fort Getty, a town-owned park with a rocky public beach.


NEW SHOREHAM (BLOCK ISLAND) The island municipality of New Shoreham has a population around 1,000 for most of the year, but in the summer months on Block Island the population swells to twelve times that. You can ferry over from Galilee, Newport, Fall River, New London or Montauk. If you feel like splurging, take the 12-minute flight from Westerly. (It’s $99 round trip.) Either way, be sure to check out the stateorganized public art exhibitions at the airport. Also visit the recently restored Empire Theatre, a historic cinema and playhouse that opens for the season on May 27. It’s showing the new X-Men movie, of course.


BLOCK ISLAND TOP 5 1. BLOCK ISLAND NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE The island’s northern tip includes a sandy cobble beach that’s ideal for watching the seagulls who roost in the tall dunes. Just don’t go in the dunes – they’re fragile and legally protected. And don’t swim there either. Those currents are serious. 2. MANSION ROAD Follow Mansion Road to the cul-de-sac and you’ll find a right-ofway leading to a beach. There’s plenty of parking if you need it, and it’s safe to swim (although there aren’t lifeguards). 3. MOHEGAN BLUFFS The southeastern corner of the island plunges rather abruptly into the ocean, but a long wooden stairway leads beachgoers 150 feet down from a parking area to the beach. The views are dramatic and the surf is intense. 4. CHARLESTOWN BEACH This beach on Audobon Society property faces west, meaning it’s perfect to watch the sun set over the water. You can’t drive there, but you can ride your bike and take the path off Coast Guard Road. 5. COAST GUARD STATION / COAST GUARD ROAD Take Champlin Way to the end, just to the west of the Coast Guard Station, and you’ll find a small but popular swimming beach at the edge of Great Salt Pond.


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RI Summer Guide 2016  

Law And Order Party 2016 Summer Guide – 102 Events // 70 Beaches

RI Summer Guide 2016  

Law And Order Party 2016 Summer Guide – 102 Events // 70 Beaches

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