Category Archives: History

My Rhode Island Hit Parade

Here is, in no particular order, a list of my favorite spaces and places in this beautiful state.

1.  The Spring House on Block Island.  An old Victorian grand hotel, the front porch of the Spring House is the perfect place to while away an afternoon or evening.

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2.  Napatree Point, Westerly.  Now a wildlife preserve, this spit of land was swept bare in the Hurricane of 1938, killing 15 people.   Today it’s a peaceful beach free from the crowds that swarm other local beaches.

napatree

3.  The view of Providence from Prospect Terrace Park.   I love this statue of Roger Williams gazing out over the city he founded.  I recently found out that H.P. Lovecraft frequently visited this park.

Roger Williams

4.   The Ocean Mist.  The O’Mist is a legendary beach bar, hard by the shores of Matunuck Beach.  People once played volleyball in front of the deck, but severe erosion has claimed most of this space…..pro:  you feel like you’re on a poor man’s cruise ship….con:  the future of the Ocean Mist is iffy.   Come for live music, excellent fish tacos, and a great beer selection.

oceanmist

5.  Diamond Hill Vineyards.  Yes, a winery in Cumberland is one of my favorite spots!  It’s really come a long way over the last few years, a great spot to hang out and sip wine.  This picture was taken on a beautiful December day, when it warmed up to over 60 degrees!

diamondhill

6.  The Towers, Narragansett.  The entire town qualifies for my Best Of list, but the Towers are an iconic and beautiful landmark.  Built as part of the Narragansett Pier Casino in the 1880s, they’re now a venue for private events.

narragansett

7.  Wickford Village.   Shopping and dining with views like this:

wickford

8.   THIS BARN.   I am on a quest to get a picture of it in all seasons.  Come on spring!!

scituate barn

9.   The Pawtucket Wintertime Farmer’s Market.  I can’t believe this place doesn’t get more press.  It’s bigger and better than the summertime markets.   I counted four vendors selling grass-fed meat.  FOUR.  There are fresh winter veggies, seafood & poultry, products such as herbals, honey, pickles, chocolates.  My routine is to grab an insanely delicious crepe (my fave is brie, spinach & craisins), a coffee from New Harvest, and stroll around for an overview before I buy anything.

pawtmkt

10.  The Clarke Cooke House, Newport.   Four stories of fun in a beautiful Colonial-era building, from the basement nightclub to fine dining on the top floor “Porch”….and five bars that I can think of.

clarkecooke

Well, there you have it!  Do you agree with my choices?  Am I missing anything obvious?  Be in touch and let me know!

 

 

Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas…

I know it seems a bit early but it’s only because I want you to get out there and enjoy some Christmas events!   You know if you don’t plan ahead it won’t happen.

I’m a bit of a history geek and my favorite of the living history museums is Mystic Seaport.   For the 35th year they are presenting their Lantern Light Tours, a progressive play set on Christmas Eve 1876.  Leave some time for lunch or dinner at S&P Oyster Company in downtown Mystic.

Lantern-Light-Tours-2

Old Sturbridge Village offers up Christmas By Candlelight, with a full slate of traditional activities such as caroling, roasting chestnuts and the like.  The on-site Oliver Wight Tavern offers special dinners to coincide with their Christmas events, as well as Brunch with Santa.

Strawbery Banke in Portsmouth NH is unique in that it encompasses over 300 years of American history, up to 1954 when the site was saved from urban renewal.  Sticking with the historical theme of ….candles….their seasonal event is the Candlelight Stroll.  Weekends in December bring sleigh rides, live music and seasonal entertainment along walkways lighted with wood and glass candle boxes.   This would make a fantastic weekend away, as Portsmouth is a great small city, full of shopping and dining options.

CandleLightStroll2013-17

People tend to forget about Newport once summer’s over but it’s really got a lot to offer in all seasons.  December brings Christmas At The Newport Mansions, probably the best time to see these amazing Gilded Age mansions decked out in their holiday finery.  You can’t go wrong with dinner at The White Horse Tavern; in their own words “from farm to table since 1673”.  Yes, really: 1673.

christmas-breakers-exterior

I’d like to end with a reminder that this Saturday, November 29th is Small Business Saturday.  Shop local!  Shop small!!