There are many reasons to visit Newport, one of which is taking in the various views around town. The scenery is one of my favorite parts about living here so I’ve put together a list of my favorite Newport views to make your visit even more enjoyable.
5. Sachuest Point Wildlife Refuge: Technically located in Middletown, the Sachuest Point Wildlife Refuge offers two different walking trails, with varying views and lookout points. From one side you get a great view of Second Beach, while the other takes you down towards Third Beach. You can watch the waves crash and the boats setting sail. Since it’s a nature preserve, you’re also able to enjoy the wildlife and birds that are protected within the sanctuary. You may even run into some bunnies or a deer or two.
4. Brenton Point: Located along Ocean Drive, this offers a great view of the bay turning into the ocean as well as Jamestown across the way. This is an incredible place to sit and enjoy the sunset. You can also catch the light of the Beavertail Lighthouse in Jamestown lighting up the sky just past dusk.
3. Cliffwalk: Not only does Cliffwalk afford you great views of the ocean, but on the other side you can enjoy all the historic mansions along the way. Since the walk is 3.5 miles, the scenery changes and you can enjoy the view of the cliffs, first beach, waves crashing over rocks and a seemingly endless number of grand houses.
2. Goat Island: Various views range from the harbor downtown, to the beautiful Pell Bridge, the Goat Island Lighthouse and over to Jamestown. Right as the sun sets, head over to the Hyatt where the lighthouse is located and take in both the lighthouse and bridge. Pineapples on the Bay is an outdoor bar located at the Hyatt and you can enjoy the sunset and a nice cocktail, the best of both worlds.
1. Fort Adams State Park: Fort Adams is my favorite place in Newport, so there may be some bias in me selecting it as the best view in town. Not only is there the historic fort to lay your eyes on, but Baywalk, a two mile walk around the park, offers a variety of scenic views. You can catch a beautiful view of the downtown harbor area, a perfect view of the Newport Pell Bridge, and views all along the bay and over into Jamestown.
When it comes down to it, there are dozens of spots to see incredible views in Newport. Almost anywhere you go you’ll be able to see something beautiful, but this list will give you a starting point for your scenic exploration.
Photo Credit: Lauren Finnessey
The Newport Folk Festival recently won the 25th Annual Pollstar award for Music Festival of the Year. Pollstar is the only trade publication that covers the concert industry worldwide. For 30 years, they have been a fountain of information for concert promoters, booking agents, managers, facility execs and other live entertainments executives. Each year, Pollstar invites a group of international music professionals to come up with nominations for the Pollstar Concert Industry Awards. These awards honor artists, managers, buyers, venues and support services. Winners are determined by votes from the readership of Pollstar. This year’s awards were held on February 21st, 2014 at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville.
The Newport Folk Festival won Music Festival of the Year, beating out the Boston Calling Music Festival, Electric Forest Festival, Hardly Stictly Bluegrass, and the Treasure Island Music Festival. This is the second year in a row that The Newport Folk Festival has won this award.
The Newport Folk Festival has been around since 1959, when it was founded by George Wein. The festival became known for introducing some major stars in the Folk world, such as Joan Baez and Bob Dylan. This festival stretches the boundaries of folk music, incorporating blues, raggae, rock and indie artists to its lineup. Some of the most notable performances of the festival throughout the years have been Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash, the Pixies, Pete Seeger, and The Avett Brothers. Thanks to the work of George Wein and the Newport Festivals Foundation, the Newport Folk Festival will continue for years to come.
This year’s festival will be held July 25th through the 27th at Fort Adams. Tickets generally sell out early. The lineup for this year is still in the works, however some performers have already been announced. So far – Band of Horses, Jenny Lewis, The Devil Makes Three, Death Vessel, Nickle Creek, Shovels & Rope, Houndmouth, The Oh Hellos, Benjamin Booker, Mavis Staples and Hurray for the Riff Raff – have been added to this years lineup. Check out www.newportfolk.org for more information about the festival and additions to the lineup.
Tickets for the 60th Annual Newport Jazz Festival, one of Newport’s biggest music festivals, are already on sale and the lineup is here. Fort Adams will be bringing amazing jazz performances to Newport once again from August 1st to the 3rd. The music starts at 11:30am on Friday, August 1st and ends at 7:00pm on Sunday, August 3rd.
George Wein produced the first Jazz Festival in 1954 in order to celebrate jazz music and to make a case for its relevance. From then on, this festival has continued to showcase jazz icons and bring attention to up and coming performers. The Newport Jazz Festival has provided many memorable moment for jazz history, such as the Duke Ellington Orchestra in 1956 and the introduction of Esperanza Spalding. Performers at this festival both respect the tradition of jazz and reflect the changes in the current musical trends.
Here’s a list of the artists who will be bringing their talents to the Fort Adams stages.
Firday, August 1st – Jon Batiste & Stay Human, John Zorn’s Madasa Marathon, Miguel Zenon Big Band, Darcy James Argue’s Secret Society, Snarky Puppy, Cecile McLorin Salvant, Rudresh Mahanthappa – A Charlie Parker Project, Amir ElSaffar Quintet, Mostly Other People Do The Killing, Berklee Global Jazz Ambassadors, URI Jazz Festival Big Band
Saturday, August 2nd – Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis, Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue, Dave Holland Prism, Gregory Porter, Robert Glasper Experiment, SFJAZZ Collective, Cecile McLorin Salvant, Brian Blade & The Fellowship Band, Pedrito Martinez Group, Dick Hyman, Howard Alden & Jay Leonhart, Kurt Rosenwinkel New Quartet, Newport Now 60 Band, Stefano Bollani & Hamilton de Holanda
Sunday, August 3rd – Bobby McFerrin spirityouall, David Sanborn & Joey DeFrancesco, Dr. John & The Nite Trippers, Gary Burton New Quartet, Vijay Iyer Sextet, Danilo Perez Panama 500, Django Festival All-Stars, Ron Carter Trio, Lee Konitz Quartet, Ravi Coltrane, The Cookers, Migus Big Band, The Brubeck Brothers, George Wein & Newport All-Stars
I decided to write a piece on the top ten historical attractions in Newport RI to assist our guests if time is short. Most if not all of these landmarks are within walking distance of the Marshall Slocum Inn and/or have free ample parking. Although there are significantly more than 10 historical landmarks we decided to offer a top ten list to guide our guests when visiting Newport. For those guests who are staying longer at the bed and breakfast there are many more places and sites to see than these ten.
- The Breakers – The Breakers is undoubtably the most famous tourist attraction in Newport RI for domestic and international visitors. Completed in 1895, The Breakers is a concrete example of the Vanderbilt families exorbant wealth derived from, amongst other things, the New York Central Railroad. This National Historic Landmark consists of 70 rooms adorned with rare marble, alabaster, and gilded woods. Perhaps the most enjoyable feature of the Breakers are the spectacular views of the Atlantic Ocean and the historic Cliff Walk.
- Touro Synagogue – The Touro Synagogue is the quintessential example of Roger Williams’s promotion of religious tolerance and could be a main topic of why Rhode Island is it’s own state. Completed in 1763, the Synagogue became the first accepted active place of worship in the United States for Jewish persons. During the British occupation of Newport RI the synagogue survived burning due to it’s usefulness to the British troops as a hospital and meeting place. Recently, a beautiful new visitors center was completed giving tourists a great resource to learn about Judah Touro and his followers.
- The Marble House – Inspired by the Petit Trianon at Versailles, the Marble House is the other grand property of the Vanderbilt family. The house is ordained with gold and marble throughout which architect, Richard Morris Hunt, intended to be a statement of wealth during the infamous Gilded Age. Alva Vanderbilt, the properties owner, held her “Votes for Women” rallies at the mansion as part of her lifelong commitment to women’s rights.
- Rough Point – Rough Point is the home of Doris Duke, heiress and art collector who turned her good fortune into a life’s work in philanthropy. Most of Duke’s fortune came from the tobacco plantations owned by her family and she is said to have donated up to $400 million throughout her lifetime. Her philanthropic legacy continues today throughout the City of Newport by means of the Newport Restoration Foundation and the Doris Duke Foundation.
- National Museum of American Illustration – The National Museum of American Illustration is perhaps the most under visited and cautiously marketed attraction in Newport. Located at Vernon Court, a Gilded Age mansion on Bellevue Avenue, the building hosts the first national museum devoted exclusively to American illustration art, featuring Norman Rockwell, Maxfield Parish, JC Leyendecker, NC Wyeth, Jessie Willcox Smith, and 150 other artists.
- The Elms – A personal favorite of the staff at the Inn, The Elms was completed in 1901 as a summer retreat for coal magnate Edward Berwin and his wife Herminie. Features of the house include modern amenities that were unheard of at the time as well as floor to ceiling artwork and tapestries. Perhaps the best part of the Elms preservation is the behind the scenes tour where visitors can see the staff living quarters, boiler room, laundry room, kitchen, and the secret roof deck with expansive views of Newport and the Atlantic Ocean.
- Fort Adams – Situated in a strategic location overlooking Narragansett Bay, Fort Adams is a unique example of coastal defense systems utilized pre Revolutionary War up to World War II. Visitors can take a guided tour of the interior of the fort, the many underground tunnels, and the amazing overlook posts with 360 degree views of Aquidneck Island and Narragansett Bay. Fort Adams is also home to the Jazz and Folk Festivals which occur each summer in Newport.
- The Newport Mill – The Newport Mill is located in beautiful Touro Park and is thought to be the oldest remaining structure in Newport. There is no confusion about it’s usage from the 18th century onward but the debate rages on as to the buildings origin and purpose. Some theories point to an astronomical tool and others to an observatory for the Chinese. In a document of 1741 the tower is described as “the old stone mill” an d in 1760 the Tower was used as a haymow. During the American Revolution, the tower was used by the Americans as a lookout, and by the British to store ammo.
- The Cliff Walk – Other than the Breakers the Cliff Walk is perhaps the number one tourist attraction in Newport. Although there is not a lot of historical facts associated with the walk it offers too many beautiful scenic views and has been around since the Gilded Age to be left off this list. The 3.5 mile walk was used by the Vanderbilts and all their wealthy neighbors on walks to Easton’s Beach. In 1975 the walk was designated as a National Historic Trail, the first in New England.
- Washington Square – Two of Colonial America’s most significant structures are located at either end of Washington Square, the Colony House and the Brick Market. Built in 1741, the Colony House is one of the best maintained surviving Georgian buildings in the United States. The stately building was used for the colonial legislature during the fight for independence. Another example of classic Georgian architecture is the Brick Market built in 1762. The traditional open first level served as a marketplace for trading, much like Fanueil Hall in Boston.
The Atlantic Cup – the only dedicated Class 40 sailing race in the US – will be leaving New York on May 18th and heading to Newport for an inshore grand prix, Memorial Day weekend (May 25th and 26th). The race started on May 11th in Charleston, South Carolina, where competitors began their race to New York City, and will soon head to Newport.
A Class 40 yacht is a “monohull” racing yacht with a maximum length of 40 feet. Racers can create their own boat designs as long as they do not exceed the maximum overall size for their class. Designers can focus on technical aspects of the boats such as type of sail and mast height and weight, without being restricted. This makes for very competitive racing that is extremely close over long distances. Class 40 was established in 2004 and is designed for short-handed offshore conditions and will guarantee fast, competitive racing.
The Atlantic Cup includes both off-shore and in-shore races, which ensures that the winner is a complete sailor. This race tests competitors on two different sailing disciplines, ocean racing and buoy racing. Having two different races also helps level the field between different yacht designs, again making it a close competition.
This is the third time the Altantic Cup has come to Newport and it’ll be here from May 20th to 26th. From May 20th to the 24th, the racing boats will be open for viewing from 11am to 5pm at the Newport Harbor Hotel Marina. On the 22nd, everyone 21 and older is invited to celebrate with all the Atlantic Cup crew and teams at the International Yacht and Athletic Club. The party starts at 7pm. The actual race takes place at Fort Adams on Saturday, May 25 and Sunday May 26th between 11am and 4pm. The finish line is just off the north lawn of Fort Adams and there will be commentary, food and vendors, making Fort Adams the place to be during race time. To wrap everything up, The Landing is hosting a “Prize Giving Party” from 6pm to 9pm on the 26th.