Even though we had four inches of snow this past Monday, the crocuses keep growing up through the post-winter April mud. Thankfully, the snow melted as fast as it fell, so Tuesday was a grey rain day. Our flowers must be loving all this water! Meanwhile, we’re keeping our eyes peeled for the first daffodils to sprout. Our annual Daffodil Days begin next weekend. Till then, enjoy every day – sunny days are just ahead!
TOUR GUIDES TIP OF THE WEEK
Without speaking, you are telling your guests what you think and how you are feeling. Your body language is a big give-away. How you stand, where you hold your hands, the type and size of smile you have on your face, and fifty other subtle movements and tics send out a silent stream of information about your mood and attitude. So, what are the rules? There are no rules, but there are practical and best practice guidelines.
Here are five to remember: 1) Stand up straight. 2) Hold hands down at your sides and keep them out of your pockets. Hands in pockets send a message of “bored,” “tired,” and “lazy.” Your hands should always be ready to help, not hidden in your pockets. 3) Your face should have a relaxed, peaceful smile – mouth closed, teeth hidden. 4) Eyes should be open and alert. Look your guests in their eyes. 5) If you are sitting, always stand to greet guests and engage in conversation.
BOTTOM LINE: With a little thinking, you can use your body language to send out positive messages.
NEW LISTINGS AND EVENTS: For more information to prepare you to be the best tour guide & greeter ever, read and learn about the following updated listings and previews of the busy season ahead for residents and visitors alike.
TOURISM JOBS – PREPARE TO BE HIRED
April is here! Lots of jobs are still open, including tour guides, greeters, harbor cruise staff, ticket sellers, bus drivers, and support staff. This time of year is a preview of the upcoming summer season. Get your resume polished and find a perfect match for your interests and skills so you can spend the upcoming season working in the City-by-the-Sea!
- Greater Newport Works! Career & Job Fair: Friday, April 6; 1-4 pm at the Newport Campus of the Community College of Rhode Island. Free parking. Info at: newportchamber.com/events/
- Newport Daffodil Days Festival: Volunteers still needed for a variety of activities and events. Get Daffy and join the fun. Check in at www.facebook.com/Newportdaffydays/.
- The Preservation Society of Newport County has several job openings, including Associate Tour Guides (part-time). Check with them directly (newportmansions.org) for current information about job openings for the upcoming season.
- Gansett Cruises: Check in with the Gansett Cruises crew for current job openings. A fun company with two great boats in Newport Harbor. Go to: gansettcruises.com
- Sightsailing of Newport seeks outdoor front desk reservations and sales staff. www.sightsailing.com
- Newport Hospitality is looking for greeters and a variety of support staff to help host the upcoming Volvo Ocean Race Newport event that begins May 8th. For more information, call 401/848-2264.
REMEMBER: Most of the city’s largest tour and cruise businesses accept job applications year-round.
SPEAKERS & SPECIAL EVENTS THIS WEEK
Check out the wide selection of lectures, exhibits, talks, classes, and workshops to add to your knowledge and increase your understanding of the people and history of greater Newport.
THURSDAY, APRIL 5 – Rough Point Re-Opens Today!
The Newport Restoration Foundation’s (NRF) historic Rough Point mansion re-opens on Thursday, April 5th for Guided Tours. The Foundation will celebrate its 50th anniversary this year. This year its exhibitions, as posted on its website (newportrestoration.org) will be: “‘To Preserve and Restore’: Newport Restoration Foundation at 50,” and “A Hand in Design: Exquisite Drawings of Jewelry and Architecture for Doris Duke.” a collaboration between NRF and David Webb New York, jewelry designer to Duke and many other prominent figures from 1948 to the present.” Rough Point will be open for tours through November 11th. Don’t miss this amazing home.
THURSDAY, APRIL 5 – LECTURE: “GRAPPLING WITH LEGACY”
The Newport Historical Society and Emmanuel Church will host author Sylvia Brown, a descendant of Rhode Island’s famous Brown family (think “Brown University”) for an interesting lecture at Emmanuel Church (42 Dearborn Street, Newport), 5:30 pm. The evening is titled, Grappling with Legacy: A Lecture with Sylvia Brown on Rhode Island’s Brown Family and the American Philanthropic Impulse. Admission is free. Donations accepted. RSVP: 401/841-8770.
FRIDAY, APRIL 6 – GREATER NEWPORT WORKS! CAREER & JOB FAIR – FREE – OPEN TO THE PUBLIC
This Career & Job Fair, while focused on college students and future graduates at the Community College of Rhode Island (CCRI), it is open to all job seekers and offers additional work opportunities. This event will be held from 1-4 pm at the Newport campus of CCRI, One John H. Chafee Blvd., Newport. Free admission. Free on-campus parking. Campus tours will also be offered. Sponsored by the Newport County Chamber of Commerce. Get more information at: newportchamber.com/events/
THURSDAY, APRIL 12 – MUSICAL PIONEERS: HAYDN, BACEWICZ AND GEORGE WALKER
A program of chamber works will be presented by the Newport String Project on April 12th at 7 pm at Old Colony House (82 Touro Street, Newport). Also hosted by the Newport Historical Society. Admission by donation. Info: newportstringproject.org
SATURDAY, APRIL 14- SUNDAY, APRIL 22, 2018 – NEWPORT DAFFODIL DAYS FESTIVAL
This is the 5th Annual Newport Daffodil Days Festival that is the highlight of Newport’s Spring season. Visitors and residents will thrill to the 866,500 daffodils blooming all over the city. A multitude of events (Visit: www.newportdaffydays.com for the full schedule and times) and fun activities will celebrate all things daffodil and raise money to buy and plant more daffodils – the goal is ONE MILLION DAFFODILS! So, Get Daffy and join the fun. Tell all your guests and visitors, too! Check for updates & weather at www.facebook.com/Newportdaffydays/.
MONDAY, APRIL 16 – A DANDY SPRING FLING – 6:00pm – 7:30pm
This is the classic Spring Fling celebration with hors d-oeuvres, live music and a complimentary toast to Mother Nature while overlooking the hundred of daffodils set against Easton’s Bay at the award winning Chanler at Cliff Walk (117 Memorial Blvd, Newport). $30 donation. Tickets at Newportdaffydays.com. All proceeds support Daffodillion’s free bulb give-away in October. Don’t miss this event!
COMING IN MAY
TUESDAY, MAY 8 – SUNDAY, MAY 20 – VOLVO OCEAN RACE NEWPORT
Tell your guests and visitors to get ready for the arrival of the Volvo Ocean race fleet, arriving in Newport this month on one leg of their round-the-world sailing race. The opening of the Race Village at Fort Adams is Tuesday, May 8th at 4 pm. Get updated information at www.volvooceanracenewport.com
MAY 19 & 20 – BOWEN’S WHARF NEWPORT WATERFRONT OYSTER FESTIVAL
11 am – 5 pm. Enjoy a festive weekend eating oysters. Rhode Island is home to more than 45 oyster farms. The flavors are distinctive to each farm. The festival will offer 13 kinds of oyster all in one festive atmosphere! Growers will be shucking alongside a select group of local restaurants under festival tents. Tickets are available online at: http://www.bowenswharf.com/newport-oyster-festival
COMING SUMMER EVENTS: JUNE, JULY & AUGUST
Share these dates and events with your guests and visitors. Sell and promote our future activities and invite everyone to return here again and again.
THE NEWPORT FLOWER SHOW — COTTAGES SMART & SMALL – JUNE 22-24
Martha Stewart will be a featured guest and speaker at this year’s show. The annual flower show adds the current trend of tiny homes and combines them both as livable spaces, functional & beautiful, and the prettiest plants and flowers ever. Rosecliff. Information & tickets: NewportFlowerShow.org
NEWPORT MUSIC FESTIVAL – JULY 4-22, 2018
This annual music festival will celebrate its 50th anniversary this summer. A number of special guests and new experiences for the audiences will be included among the festival’s summer season. Performance sites include The Breakers and the Newport Art Museum. More information, schedules, and tickets are available at newportmusic.org. Box Office: 401/849-0700.
BLACK SHIPS FESTIVAL – JULY 12-15
The Black Ships Festival celebrates the friendship between Newport and their sister city Shimoda, Japan. It offers a variety of events emphasizing both Japanese art and culture. More Info: http://www.blackshipsfestival.com/
NEWPORT FOLK FESTIVAL – JULY 27-29
This is the big folk festival of the summer. A number of other events surround this 3-day weekend. Location: Fort Adams, Newport, RI. Tickets: email@example.com
THE NEWPORT SHOW ∙ JULY 28-29, 2018
The annual Newport Antiques Show has a new name this year, The Newport Show. This luxury show will, as it has since 2007, feature antique furniture, fine art, jewelry, and unique vintage items from more than 40 dealers. Watch for more details about this show in the coming months. The Newport Show will again be held at the St. George’s School Ice Rink, 375 Purgatory Road, Middletown, RI, and will run July 28 and 29, 2018. Updates at www.TheNewportShow.com. Proceeds benefit the Newport Historical Society and the Boys & Girls Clubs of Newport County.
NEWPORT JAZZ FESTIVAL – AUGUST 3-5, 2018
This is the big festival everyone asks about. May already be sold out, but keep the dates in mind for those who ask. Location: Fort Adams, Newport, RI. Tickets and more information: http://www.newportjazz.org/
A WEEKEND OF COACHING – AUGUST 16-19, 2018
Every three years, aficionados of horse-drawn 19th century road coaches gather in Newport for a big summer Weekend of Coaching. This year marks the third year since the last event. During the weekend of August 16-19, 2018 the Preservation Society of Newport County will host the biggest Weekend of Coaching ever. The weekend will feature driving exhibitions, viewing of the historic coaches as they drive around the streets of Newport, and tickets to a formal dinner dance at the Breakers on Saturday, August 18th. The weekend is led by Honorary Chair Linda Lindh with co-chairs Kenneth Lindh and Beverly Little. Ted Eayrs is the Chair of Coaching. Event updates and ticket information is available at www.newportmansions.org/events/a-weekend-of-coaching
DRIVING EXHIBITION – SATURDAY, AUGUST 18 – 10:30 AM – THE ELMS
This free event, part of the Weekend of Coaching, will take place on the grounds of The Elms (367 Bellevue Avenue, Newport). It will feature many of the coaches and their drivers who are part of the weekend celebration of this unique and historic sporting tradition. More Information: NewportMansions.org
PREVIEW OF AUTUMN IN NEWPORT
NEWPORT SECRET GARDEN TOURS – SEPTEMBER 7-9
Here’s one of Newport’s great events to share with your guests to encourage them to return here after the busy summer season. The September Newport Secret Garden Tours will offer ten incredible private gardens for the public to visit and enjoy. This self-guided tour program will raise funds for the Art Education programs in the island’s public schools. Tickets may be purchased in advance online at www.secretgardens.org for a discounted rate of $20.
NEWPORT INTERNATIONAL BOAT SHOW – SEPTEMBER 13-16
The Newport International Boat Show encompasses thirteen acres of Newport’s downtown waterfront. Exhibitors from near and far offer a full range of new powerboats and sailboats, plus a medley of marine products, services and accessories to enhance the nautical lifestyle. Special events, seminars, and in-water boating courses for the whole family are offered on all show days. Not to be missed is the exciting Newport For New Products program – showcasing boats and boating products making their first-ever debut in the United States. Newport Yachting Center, 4 Commercial Wharf, Newport. More information: http://newportboatshow.com/
NEWPORT MANSIONS WINE & FOOD FESTIVAL – SEPTEMBER 20-23
This festival features a world-class variety of tastings, seminars, and events over a four-day weekend. Held at The Elms, Rosecliff and Marble House. Tickets & more information: http://www.newportmansions.org/events/wine-and-food-festival/tickets-events
BOWEN’S WHARF SEAFOOD FESTIVAL – OCTOBER 13-14
11 am – 5pm. Free event. Honoring the harvest of the sea, this Festival offers fresh local seafood, continuous live music and family fun. Bowen’s Wharf, Newport. More Information: http://www.bowenswharf.com/events
EXHIBITS & TOURS NOT TO BE MISSED
SOMETHING TRULY SPECIAL
Go visit the newest exhibit at the Galleries at Rosecliff, Bohemian Beauty: The Aesthetic Movement & Oscar Wilde’s Newport. Preservation Society Curator Ashley Householder has gathered a breathtaking collection of furniture, ceramics, wallpaper, clothing, accessories, and ephemera about the aesthetic movement (1870-1890) and the era’s major promoter, Oscar Wilde (1854-1900). The colors, patterns, and shapes of this “art for art’s sake” movement and the influence of Irish writer, playwright, and impresario Wilde will whisk you away to another time. Go and see this unique and truly wonderful exhibit. Open daily through November 4th. 9am until 5pm. Additional information available at: newportmansions.org
BENEATH THE BREAKERS TOUR
The Breakers tour, “Beneath the Breakers,” begins hourly on the half hour from 9:30 am – 4:30 pm and is one hour in length. Info: newportmansions.org
SERVANT LIFE TOUR AT THE ELMS
At The Elms, their world-famous guided “Servant Life Tour” is offered hourly on the half hour from 10:30 am – 4:30 pm. The tour is one hour. Info: newportmansions.org
PRINT & DIGITAL RESOURCES
The very best leaders, guides, and managers of historic sites, mansions, and tour companies read constantly to know the most about the places they work and to learn the latest research about the history, artwork, and artifacts of the places they talk about to their guests. Tour Guides & Greeters should be aware of this online app. Best of all, it’s free!
Broaden your knowledge of Rhode Island history with this free app. Rhode Tour is a statewide mobile historical smart phone application. It offers captivating places, intriguing people, and exciting events that are all part of Rhode Island’s history. Rhode Tour offers a new way to interact with these untold tales of the state’s past. Using stories, sounds, and images, history comes alive on Rhode Tour. The site offers more than 200 stories of food, culture, community from throughout the state’s 39 cities and towns. Download the app for your smart phone at the iPhone App Store or Google Play. A website version is also available at rhodetour.org.
KENNETH PROUDFOOT is a documentary film producer, international & Newport tour guide, and author of The Official 2018 Newport Tour Guides & Greeters Handbook (Shoreline Press (RI), 2017).