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Find your

GREEN THUMB with these tips & tricks! Try out these


inspired outfit ensembles! Learn more about


Gina Clapprood




table of



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4 6 10 12 18 20 22 26 39


Oc e a n S tate C a l e n da r

JENNIFER TURCOTTE Oc e a n S tate Ar t i st


Oc e a n S tate Au t h o r

FINDING YOUR GREEN THUMB Oc e a n S tate La n ds c a pe

BRAD SMITH PHOTOGRAPHY Oc e a n S tate We ddi n g

THREE LOOKS FOR THE 4TH! Oc e a n S tate Fa sh i o n


Oc e a n S tate Re sta u ra nt s


M e rc e de s A M G- GT

DEALER DIRECTORY Oc e a n S tate Au to




Join us for the 234th Bristol Fourth of July Parade! The Fourth of July will step-off at the corner of Chestnut Street and Hope Street at 10:30am. Dates: July 4, 2019 Location: Bristol, RI Address:Downtown Bristol Time: 10:30AM Price: Free


The Alliance Brass opens Newport Music Festival’s 2019 Summer Season with a rousing free Fourth of July Extravaganza to celebrate America’s birthday. It begins with the National Anthem and includes an array of familiar tunes honoring members of the U.S. Military, and presents selections from composers whose experiences in this country are reflected in their music. From Teichler’s Triumphal Fanfare to Copland’s Rodeo, Gershwin’s Summertime to Freddie Mercury’s Bohemian Rhapsody, this concert will delight listeners young and old. The night closes with Smith’s National Anthem once more as a final salute to our great country. Presented By: Newport Music Festival Dates: July 4, 2019 Location: King Park Address: 125 Wellington Avenue, Newport, RI 02840 Time: 7:30 PM


Stroll historic downtown Wakefield, listen to the sensational vibes of featured musicians, visit shops,



restaurants and local artisans while sparkling bonfires are lit along the Saugatucket River. RiverFire will run every Thursday June 20 through Aug. 22, with volunteers lighting braziers along the river and a new band performing each week. There’s no cost to visitors, but nonperishable food donations will benefit the Jonnycake Center of Peace Dale. Keep the flames burning and the pantry full! Learn more on the Wakefield Village Association Facebook page or Presented By: Wakefield Village Association Dates: June 20, 2019 August 22, 2019 Recurrence: Recurring weekly on Thursday Location: Downtown Wakefield Address: 327 Main Street, South Kingstown, RI 02879 Phone: (401) 474-4700

ARMORY 2019 FARMERS MARKET The Armory farmers market takes place on Parade Street along the Dexter Training Grounds, located near the historic Cranston Street Armory building in Providence’s West End. The market is open every Thursday, 3:30-7pm (or dusk) — June 6 through October 31, 2019. Join us! Shoppers at the market can purchase items using cash, credit or debit card, SNAP/EBT card, WIC, and Senior coupons. And for those using SNAP (supplemental nutrition assistance program) benefits, Farm Fresh RI provides a 100% BONUS! Dates: June 6, 2019 - October 31, 2019 Recurrence: Recurring weekly on Thursday Location: Ebenezer Knight Dexter/ Dexter Training Ground Address: 85 Parade St, Providence,

RI 02903 Time: 3:30 PM to 7:30 PM


Fresh food, live music, and awesome children's activities make the Weaver Library Farmers' Market a destination for families on Thursday afternoons. Dates: June 20, 2019 - September 12, 2019 Recurrence: Recurring weekly on Thursday Location: Weaver Library Lawn Address: 41 Grove Avenue, East Providence, RI 02914 Phone: (401) 434-2453 Time: 4:00 PM to 7:00 PM Price: Free


The Frances Fleet offers Nature/Whale Watch Excursions in July and August. Off the coast of Block Island is a perfect area for whales to feed during the summer months. Possible sightings include, humpbacks, finbacks and minke whales. Also dolphins, sharks, sea turtles, sunfish and many different species of bird life. Whale Watches depart at 1:00 p.m. on T, Th, F and Sat. Tuesdays & Fridays are Family Days Presented By: Frances Fleet Dates: July 2, 2019 - August 31, 2019 Recurrence: Recurring weekly on Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday Location: Port of Galilee Address: 33 State Street, Narragansett, RI 02882 Phone: (401) 783-4988 Time: 1:00 PM to 5:30 PM


7 p.m. Performers love the acoustics, dancers love the wooden dance floor, and everyone loves the looking-out-overthe-ocean view from the third floor of the Towers. This summer, make the Towers a Thursday night stop. See website for scheduled bands. Presented By: The Towers Dates: 6/27/2019, 7/4/2019, 7/11/2019, 7/18/2019, 8/15/2019, 8/22/2019, 8/29/2019 Location: The Towers Address: 35 Ocean Road, Narragansett, RI 02882 Phone: (401) 782-2597





1. Tell us about your work: My works varies from glasses (drinking, wine, martini, etc.) to ceramics (mugs, bowls, etc.) to home décor (vases, oil jars, etc.) and are all hand painted personally. Each piece is therefore one of a kind and generally painted to order. The paint that I use is specifically suited for glass and ceramic which, after curing for a few days, is able to be fired to set the paint. Every piece is completely custom and unique but is durable for everyday use, though I would suggest washing by hand. 2. Is there a story behind the name of your business?


Ocean State Artist & owner of Jennifer Turcotte Handcrafted Designs! Website: Instagram: @jenturcottehandcrafteddesigns

I wish I had a creative story but I wanted to keep the “name” relatively to the point….maybe someday I will come up with a craftier name! 3. How did you come to be a professional artist/crafter/designer? From as far back as I can remember I have been an artist and painter. I have been a full time architect since I graduated college in 2012 but continued to paint during my down time. While most of

Erika Smith moved to Rhode Island in 2008 and immediately began exploring. With the launch of I {heart} R h o d y i n 2 0 1 0, s h e continues to find the fun in her new home state, and share it with her r e a d e r s . i h e a r t r h o d y. c o m



my life I painted in the traditional sense, on canvas with oil and acrylic, I started to expand my "palette" a few years ago when many friends were buying their first homes or renting their first apartments

and I wanted to give them a unique and

My favorite items to paint, by far, are the

personalized housewarming present. As I

champagne flutes because typically they

continued to get great feedback I thought

are purchased for an upcoming wedding

that this may be a great hobby and way to

or celebration. I really love the idea that

flex by creative muscle but really be able to

one of my painted pieces will help to make

share it with others through useful, every

those special events a little more unique

day items.

and memorable. Primarily for weddings and bridal showers, I love creating palettes that

I began with a pair of wine glasses and my

match the bride’s colors.

first set of glass paint and I carefully chose my color scheme. Color, especially that

6. What's your best seller?

bright POP of color, can liven any space, so

Best sellers actually vary depending on

I had to choose wisely what would best suit

where I’m selling. I sell at some local Rhode

my gift (as well as the gift recipient). From

Island stores (currently at Serendipity in

then on I expanded my products to mugs,

Wickford and previously in Narragansett)

plates and various ceramic items that will

where I have had great success with the

brighten any kitchen or dining table.

painted champagne flutes and stemless

4. Where do you draw your inspiration? More often than not, aside from the custom orders I put together, I draw my color inspiration from the seasons. While living in a coastal community I tend to lean more towards blues, white and greens and even these color choices vary in tone with the changing seasons. During the summer months I find myself gravitating toward lighter, pastel colors with sprinkles of white and sunny yellow while during the Fall I really enjoy experimenting with different metallic colors and rich purples and navy. 5. What's your favorite item to create?



glasses. My Etsy shop has had great success

unbeatable and never disappoints! Bristol,

with custom orders, including custom de-

Rhode Island would certainly be a close sec-

signs and colors. My ceramic mugs are also

ond for many of the same reasons!

one my top online best sellers. 10. Any advice for new/wannabe makers? 7. How long have you been in Rhode Is-

The best piece of advice I can give to new/


wannabe makers would to be creative and

I initially came to Rhode Island for college in

experimental. Explore your creative ability

2006 where I studied architecture at Roger

and test out different options, whether that

Williams University. I immediately fell in love

be trying different color combinations, using

with the charm of the state and wanted to

different materials or trying different tech-

stay and make roots here. I have been here

niques. Through my experience as a maker

ever since!

I have offered many different handpainted items in a variety of color combinations but

8. What do you {heart} about

have really looked to my buyers market for

Rhode Island?

what is the most successful and adjusted my

I {heart} Rhode Island’s vibrancy and the di-

inventory based on these findings. Remain-

versity of experiences it offers. For such a

ing open to change and modification is super

small state Rhode Island has such a wide va-

important and “listen� to what your buyers

riety of areas and communities that all have

are telling you.

their own flavor. I love that you can drive only a couple of minutes and pass by the wide expanse of beaches, through cozy rural communities and into the bustling city of Providence. 9. Favorite place to take out-of-towners? My favorite place to take out-of-towners would certainly be Newport because of the great downtown and opportunities for sightseeing, shopping and the general scenery. Aside from the typical spots, such as the Newport mansions and the beaches, I also love bringing visitors to the scenic Brenton point/Ocean Avenue area for the spectacular views. The food scene in Newport is also









GINA CLAPPROOD Read this inspirational and motiva-

tional work of literature by local Ocean State Author & Intuitive Life Coach! An anthology of stories written by inspirational women on their struggles, their comebacks & their commitment to putting themselves first

Have you ever experienced a defining moment that would forever change your life? In just two weeks this book became a bestseller on Amazon! The Queen B is relatable with its fearless humor and honestly. It will make you laugh; it will make you cry, and it will make you feel inspired. These 32 women GET REAL on how to give yourself grace as you navigate through the struggles without giving up and keeping your eye on the comeback. Inspiring, thought-provoking, FB: @thequeenbbook Insta: @thequeenb_book

and eye-opening. The Queen B shares deeply intimate stories written by thirty-two real women on their struggles, honoring their comebacks Gina is an Intuitive Life Coach and was recently named one of the “New

themselves, they had to put themselves first.

Fierce Female Modern Healers” by

Grab a copy and maybe find a piece of yourself in

Organic Spa Magazine for her focus on integrating holistic and spiritual

these real-life inspirational experiences on how to

modalities in her work. She is promoter

find your HAPPY again. The Queen B exemplifies

of believing in oneself and the mindset needed for self-love. Through her work

how to live your life with passion and stay true to

with others, Gina found commonalities

yourself. You deserve to be the happy, confident

with her clients, family and friends regarding the guilt they would feel

woman you were meant to be … You deserve to be

when they thought about putting

The Queen B. You can get your copy on Amazon,

themselves first. Whether they were

Barrington Books, Stillwater Books and Inkfish

single, married, moms, bosses, etc., Gina found that she would give similar advice in each situation- and the idea to write about it was born.

10 OC E A N S TAT E JULY 2019

and realizations that in order to remain true to






Finding your green thumb can be tough. Some of us are convinced that we are natural born "plant killers" when in reality, all it takes is a little practice and some educational tips to really help you thrive outside! Now I don't want you to be under the impression that I am some type of plant care

My n a m e is J e n n a n d I am t h e gir l b e h in d Dre ss e d in B le s s in gs. I a m a p a r t t ime fa sh io n , m a ke u p & life st y le b lo g g e r ; h owever, in my d ay to d ay life I a m a fu ll t im e Gra p h ic De s ig n e r ! I h ave a p a s s io n fo r n o t o n ly d e s ig n b u t I a ls o love p h o to g ra p hy & v id e o g ra p hy. I a m a t wenty t h re e ye a r o ld o n a b u d g et & love to sh a re a ll of my sh o p p in g t ips & t r ic k s! Fo llow a lo n g o n in s ta g ram @ dr es s edi n b l es s i n g s for m o re fu n a n d h e lpfu l t ips !

12 OC E A N S TAT E JULY 2019

guru, and I quite honestly can't take care of plants very well myself: but I know someone who is a master in lawn and garden care. I wrote this article in collaboration with my father who has been a landscaper for over 25 years, so know that these five tips you are about to read are coming from a true expert. These tips are short, sweet and to the point, and will make an immense difference in your outdoor space!

1. Choose your plants wisely

yard that is vibrant and thriving, regularly

When choosing plants for your garden,

watering is your best bet. Keep in mind to

it is important to pay attention to the

monitor weather patterns when creating

caretaking details that go along with each

your weekly watering schedule, and take a

plant. For example some plants may

break on rainy days.

need full sun exposure, some may need partial exposure and others may need

3. Cultivate the soil in your flower beds

no sun exposure whatsoever. Make sure

This step is extremely important and

that when you are planting them that you

should NOT be missed. Cultivating the soil

are in accordance with these facts. As

in your flower beds will help to properly

an example, Hostas thrive in full shade

prepare your beds for planting which is, of

whereas hyrdangeas thrive whilst fully

course, extremely beneficial to the growing

exposed to the sun.


2. Regularly watering your plants

4. Add Fertilizer

This one seems like a no brainer, but you

After cultivating the soil, add fertilizer to

would be surprised how many people

your plants. Some people may choose to

simply forget to water their plants and

not fertilize their plants; however, try to look

water them well. Set a reminder on your

at it this way. You can water your plants

phone if necessary. If you want to have a

daily but you are not giving them food.


Just like a human being, we can sustain ourselves for some time with water but we need food to live. Plants also need food to live and thrive and that is why fertilizer is so important! 5. Add mulch to your plant beds. Adding mulch to your plant beds can prevent weeds from cropping up but even more importantly it holds in moisture! Mulch can also help to keep the soil in your plant beds cool. All of these are extremely beneficial to the life span of your plants and as an added bonus, mulch also gives your plant beds a beautiful and cohesive looking finish.

14 OC E A N S TAT E JULY 2019

These are carefully curated tips that can help gardeners of any and all experience levels. Whether you are looking to add a small flower bed to your yard or if you are looking to overhaul your lawn altogether, these tips will truly help you along and hopefully make the process much easier for you and the end result very fruitful too! If you try out these tips, jump over to my blog, or visit my instagram page @dressedinblessings and let me know how everything went! I can't wait to hear all about your gardening and lawn care advenutres. Wishing you the best of luck and a great summer too and hoping you find your green thumb along the way. Happy gardening friends!


16 OC E A N S TAT E JULY 2019




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First comes the beautiful and elegant ceremony, but after that, it's time to party! Brad Smith is no stranger to capturing a perfect party moment. He will capture snapshots of all of the fun and exciting moments the evening has to offer, giving you memories to cherish for a lifetime.

I p h o to g ra p h w ed d in g s a nd have a d arn g o o d t i m e d o i ng it . I en joy g e t t i ng to k n o w t h e co up l e s I w o rk w it h , a nd b e i ng w elc o med i nto t he i r w ed d in g s as family. Th i s fa m i l i a r i t y is w h at let s me d o c u me nt t he d ay u n o b t ru s ively, an d c apt ure g e nui ne mo ment s as t h ey u n fo l d , a l l o wi ng yo u to remain fo c u s ed o n t he p res ent mo ment .





THREE LOOKS FOR THE 4TH! I’ve been a tad MIA on the blog for a while; I’ve been too busy killing it at my internship! Speaking of which, I have a journalism portfolio coming out, as soon I’m ~less busy~ which we all know is probably not going to happen, any time soon. But don’t worry, I’ll let you know. It’s one of my most favorite times of the year: Independence Day! I live in Bristol, home to the oldest Fourth of July celebration. Needless to say, everything gets pretty crazy, especially the style! I remember my first summer here, I donned cowboy boots with jean shorts and flannel…… yikes! This picture was taken today at the Bristol Fourth of July Parade. Here, I am wearing a red and white pinstripe off-the-shoulder Ap r il Fe d e r ic o is t he vo ic e b e h in d T h e Ap ril D ia r ie s. S h e g re w u p in Me d f ie ld , MA b u t m oved to t h e love ly B r istol, RI t h re e ye a r s a g o ! S h e c u r re nt ly at te n d s Ro g er Willia m s U n ive r s ity w h e re sh e is e a r n ing h e r B . F. A in Cre at ive Wr it in g w it h min o rs in Ar t s Ma n a g e m e nt an d V isu a l Ar t s. I n a d ditio n to b lo g gin g a b o u t lifes tyle, h e a lt h , fa sh io n , a nd fo o d , s h e is a p u b lis h e d p o et , a r t is t , a n d jo u r n a lis t .

20 OC E A N S TAT E JULY 2019

dress with rose-colored vans, complete with a cross-body bag (because you seriously don’t want to carry a big metallic bag like mine to a parade — such a hassle!) And especially in this heat, a water bottle of any kind is essential.

This next style features a simple navy short-sleeved top tucked into my favorite kind of pant… guess which ones… PALAZZO PANTS! If you look closely the pants have stripes and small polka-dots on them. I’m also wearing my new sandals from my new favorite store, Zara. This is a perfect combination of the famous red, white and blue — also appropriate for the Beach House dinner right on the water (where you can also catch a perfect glimpse of the Bristol July 3 Fireworks). I swear, people must’ve seen my Fourth of July article for RIM because I mention the Beach House! I’m also rocking the sunburn, lol!

This is a simply stylish white-jeans and speckled peplum blouse outfit. I got this top as an early birthday present for myself (was that really two months ago!?) at H&M. I wanted an outfit that would be appropriate for the office (and for getting a root beer float, afterward.) This outfit screams for both ice cream and summer! Today, I also documented the Roger Williams University Orientation Advisors’ appearance in the parade — float and all (which won ‘most original’). I must say, it is fun taking charge of social media; I felt like Katy Bellotte in her latest YouTube video ☻Last Saturday, I had the amazing privilege of meeting Maria del Carmen Mercado, a local fashion designer. As she and I chatted for two whole hours, I learned a lot from her that I think all millennials (and Gen-Z) should follow. But I’ll save that for another blog post. JULY 2019 O CEANSTATE 21

RESTAURANT DIRECTORY Your go-to guide for the best restaurant's in the Ocean State. Make this Restaurant Directory your on-hand guide for a fun night out or when planning your next date night!


MILL’S TAVERN $ $ $ 101 N Main St Providence Seafood, Steakhouses, Salad


Address885 Oakland Beach Ave Warwick, RI 02889-9616 Phone: (401)-737-2895

TOP OF THE BAY Address: 898 Oakland Beach Ave Warwick, RI 02889-9617 Phone: (401) 921-3663

HIGH TIDES Address: 373 Richmond Street Providence, RI 09303 Phone: (401) 441-6070

RED STRIPE $ $ 465 Angell St Providence Bruch, Steakhouses

437-6950 22 OC E A N S TAT E JULY 2019

THE TREEHOUSE TAVERN & BISTRO Address: 1094 Centerville Rd Warwick, RI 02886-4209 Phone: (401) 821-1105



Address: 343 Thames St Newport, RI 02840 Phone: (401) 619-4100

Address: 3000 Chapel View Blvd, Cranston, RI 02920 Phone: (401) 944-4900



Address: 2275 Warwick Ave Warwick, RI 02889 Phone: (401) 921-5005

Address: 378 Mains St East Greenwich, RI 02818 Phone: (401) 398-8855



Address: 90 Hillside Rd Cranston, RI 02920 Phone: (401) 942-2900

Address: 1689 Post Rd Warwick, RI 02888 Phone: (401) 738-9830



Address: 223 Main St East Greenwich, RI 02818 Phone: (401) 398-0727

Address: 38 Water St East Greenwich, RI 02818 Phone: (401) 884-6363



Address: 1 Masthead Drive Warwick, RI 02886 Phone: (401) 884-3000

Address: 1350 Jefferson Blvd Warwick, RI 02886 Phone: (401) 738-3334

ON THE BORDER MEXICAN GRILL & CANTINA Address: 650 Bald Hill Rd Warwick, RI 02886 Phone: (401) 262-4899


BEEHIVE Address: 10 Franklin St. Bristol, RI 02809 Phone: (401) 396-9994

MASSIMO BISTRO 22 Address: 22 Midway Rd Cranston, RI 02920 Phone: (401) 383-6400

MARCHETTI'S Address: 1463 Park Ave. Cranston, RI 02920 Phone: (401) 943-7649

BLU ON THE WATER Address: 20 Water St. East Greenwich, RI 02818 Phone: (401) 885-3700

ROGUE ISLAND LOCAL KITCHEN & BAR Address: 65 Weybossett St. Suite 108, Providence, RI 02903 Phone: (401) 831-3733

THE REVIVAL CRAFT KITCHEN & BAR Address: 50 Miller St. Warren, RI 02885 Phone: (401) 245-4500

24 OC E A N S TAT E JULY 2019

Address: 134 Atwells Ave. Providence, RI 02903 Phone: (401) 273-0650

ELLIE'S Address: 61 Washington St. Providence, RI 02903 Phone: (401) 563-3333

AIDAN'S PUB Address: 5 John St. Bristol, RI 02809 Phone: (401) 254-1940

WATERMAN GRILLE Address: 4 Richmond Squ. Suite 100B, Providence, RI 02906 Phone: (401) 521-9229

QUITO'S RESTAURANT Address: 411 Thames St. Bristol, RI 02809 Phone: (401) 253-4500

LEO'S RISTORANTE Address: 365 Hope St. Bristol, RI 02809 Phone: (401) 253-9300




THE RANGE ROVER VELAR Images courtesy of Land Rover USA

I’ve always admired salesmen. Not

Land Rover lineup. Fitting between

specifically car salesmen, but the

those two modern icons of the

kind of folks who travel around the

brand not in terms of price, but in

country, selling chrome-laden blenders

size, is the model in question today.

or something. The sort of fellow who

Entirely new for this model year, the

could sell ice to an Inuit, if you will. It

Range Rover Velar poses a curious

seems as if Land Rover needs a car

question. Can Land Rover pull off

in the $50-80k price bracket the way

the car it didn’t need to make, and

England needs more clouds and rain.

sell it to the buyer who didn’t know

A quick visit to the manufacturer’s

they needed it?

website reveals that it’s not at all difficult to spec either the lower-tier

To distinguish itself from the rest of

Evoque or the bourgie Range Rover

the lineup, Land Rover describes

Sport to cover that sector.

the Velar as “the avant-garde Range Rover,” and it’s immediately

But if you look beyond the number at

apparent why. This car is beautifully

the bottom of the window sticker, there

shaped, and every line in the

is in fact a luxury SUV missing from the

exterior design seems purposeful.

26 OC E A N S TAT E JULY 2019

Slim LED headlamps look premium and

ring knobs are the real party piece here, changing

even slimmer LED tail lights add an elegant

their function in accordance with what menu

visual touch to the rear end. The rear fascia

is displayed on that bottom screen. By allowing

pinches up, making the car look smaller and

those controls to serve more than one function,

faster, while no-doubt improving the Velar’s

Land Rover is able to provide tactile feedback for

off-road departure angle. Exterior door

the functions that need it most without crowding

handles sit flush against the vehicle’s profile

the center console with loads of switchgear

when locked or moving, which draws the eye

the driver may never use. (Ahem, Porsche.) I

to the unbroken line running the length of the

experienced zero glitches in the system during

car rather than the hardware used to open

my eight hours with the car and it’s a highlight of

it up to passengers. My favorite detail is one

the Velar experience.

many owners will never glimpse. Just ahead of the rear spoiler, Land Rover carved out

Major touchpoints are excellent here. The

two rather handsome air scoops. According

standard perforated black leather lining the

to the press material these pay aerodynamic

seats, armrests, and steering wheel feels supple

benefits as well as helping to maintain a dirt-

and expensive, and don’t get me started on the

free rear window, but gosh do they look good.

interior door handles. They’re sculpted in a way

The emphasis on design carries over to the interior. I adore the rubberized diamond cut dashboard trim. It looks worlds better than a fingerprint-magnet piano black finish and doesn’t create glare like aluminum or metallook trim, nor does it look out of place in a goanywhere 5000-pound SUV the way carbon fiber does. This car’s infotainment system is new for Land Rover this year and it’s a real improvement over the brand’s previous efforts. Two high-resolution 10” touch screens sit stacked in the center console. They respond quickly, if not quite up to the high standard set by our ubiquitous pocket supercomputers. A dime-sized volume knob sits in the center of the lower screen, flanked by textured ring knobs on either side. Those


that fits the door and the hand. As the last thing

I had a chance to preview our tester’s powertrain

a Velar occupant will touch on their way out,

when I drove it in Land Rover’s corporate brother

it’s a great detail. Not every bit of switchgear is

Jaguar’s XE sedan last year, and it made a

perfect. I wish the push-button ignition in this

memorable impression. It doesn’t appear that

vehicle had been executed with more thought.

this car’s 500-pound weight penalty over the

At least from the perspective of someone new

Jag has done much to retard the poke of this

to the car, it proves difficult to find in its nook

supercharged 3.0-liter V-6. Land Rover claims

behind the wiper stalk, and it lacked the sense of

a zero to 60 mph time of 5.3 seconds for the

occasion fitting of a car like this.

V-6-equipped Velar, just 0.5 behind Jaguar’s

The 11-speaker Meridian stereo however,

statistics for the XE. That’s genuinely quick, and

standard on our V-6 equipped tester, really

mighty impressive for a two-ton SUV. Those

impresses. I didn’t push the system to much

impressive acceleration figures are as usable

more than half its maximum volume but the

in the real world as they are on the test track.

crispness of the door-mounted tweeters

Torque comes early in the rev range for quick

and the power and depth of the subwoofer in

acceleration off the line and power remains

the rear has me fantasizing about the $3500

strong all the way to the engine’s 6500-rpm

optional sound package. It packs twice as many

redline, enabling the Velar to effortlessly

speakers and five times the power, and it sounds

overtake the economy cars slowing down your

delightfully gluttonous for those who get excited

morning commute. The industry-standard

about that kind of thing.

8-speed ZF gearbox is relatively responsive to drop a few gears in passing scenarios, though flicking the rotary gear selector into Sport mode provides an extra level of control. Appropriately sized paddles positioned just behind the leatherwrapped steering wheel provide quick shifts and complete authority over the transmission. The textured plastic shift paddles in our tester wiggled a bit but articulated nicely. Noise, vibration, and harshness levels are good but not quite industry best. The V-6 can be a tad gruff on restart when pulling away from a stop, though a quick button press can disable the auto start-stop system and improve the experience. A small amount of tire hum did infiltrate the

28 OC E A N S TAT E JULY 2019

cabin on the highway, an issue likely magnified

is certainly there from a power perspective

in Velar’s specced with one of Land Rover’s

though, and our car’s air suspension

larger wheel options.

minimizes body roll and excess pitch and dive. This example’s all-season Michelins mounted

Driving the Velar quickly is a strange but not

on 19” wheels provide plenty of grip to have

unpleasant experience. Forward visibility is

fun with and give ample aural notice before

great, due in part to the yacht-like high driving

surrendering any stick. Steering is slow and

position, but visibility out the back is slightly

light but exceptionally direct, making the Rover

compromised by thick B-pillars and a rear

easy to place on road and off, if requiring a bit

window encroached upon by the Velar’s

more steering angle than you might expect.

coupe-like sloping roofline. It’s athletic and respectively accelerative, though I got the

Off-road performance is impressive, though

feeling all the action was taking place a foot

we don’t get the impression that our bumpy

or two below my derriere because well, it was.

little adventure did much to push the Velar

Like one of those circus-bound high-frame

to its limits. The mid-sized Rover traversed a

bicycles, it’s hard not to feel seperated from

particularly lumpy stretch of dusty fire road

the mechanical bits. That’s an expected

without a hint of exertion, thanks in part to the

trade-off for a seating position high enough to

selection of its Mud-Ruts drive mode within

look down on much of traffic. The capability

the vehicle’s Terrain Response system. The


V-6 car’s standard air suspension elevated the body an extra inch or two above the ruts and roots, and 19” wheels provide a magnitude more sidewall cushion than a Velar R-Dynamic rolling on 22s. The predominant feeling driving the Velar down a path away from pavement is one of effortlessness. That I didn’t feel even the slightest apprehension taking someone else’s $70,000 SUV through this kind of terrain speaks more to the Velar’s capability than it does to my own recklessness. Optioned to around seventy grand the way our tester was, I think this car is especially wellplaced in the Land Rover lineup. Would I take a well-specced Velar over a cheap Range Rover Sport? Yes, I think I would. And I’d buy the 2.0-liter base car in our tester’s $0 Arctic White paint job over a loaded Evoque as well. Since it first arrived on dealer lots late last year, sales of the Velar have been outstanding for Land Rover, outselling its little brother the Evoque as well as the family monarch, the full-sized Range Rover. Given my experience with this car, that success should continue for some time. If the Velar was a chrome blender, I’d sure buy it.

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Profile for Discover Rhode Island

Ocean State Magazine, July 2019  

It's why we love Rhode Island

Ocean State Magazine, July 2019  

It's why we love Rhode Island

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