Start your Father’s Day with some fresh air and a hike of Ballard Park. At 11 a.m. on Sunday, staff from Friends of Ballard Park and Rhode Island Families in Nature will lead event goers on a leisurely hike through the park as they search for wildlife, learn about the history and ecology of the park, and take in the spectacular views the park has to offer.

The hike is a great opportunity for children to “take Dad out” and give Mom a break, although she is welcome to join!  As the group hikes through the one-plus mile of trails, Friends of Ballard Park staff will point out some unique features of the park. Ballard Park was once a working quarry and provided rock to build a myriad of structures, including Doris Duke’s Rough Point and the rock slide at Murphy Field.

Those interested in attending should meet at the Hazard Road entrance. Plug in 1 Ocean Heights Road into your GPS. The entrance to the park is directly across the street. There is a $10 suggested donation per family for this event. Attendees should wear sturdy shoes as the trails are steep and uneven in places.

On Monday, June 20th Friends of Ballard Park is offering a guided a hike through the thirteen acre nature preserve as part of the Attraction’s Council’s “Newport Days”.  The hike is free to Newport County residents and hospitality employees.  Meet at the Hazard Road entrance for this one as well.

Friends of Ballard Park is a nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting, maintaining and promoting Newport’s Only Nature Preserve. Cultural events and educational programming help to promote stewardship of the park and decrease negative park activities. Visit for more information or call 401.619.3377.

Ryan Belmore is the Owner and Publisher of What'sUpNewp. 
Belmore has been involved with What’sUpNewp since shortly after its launch in 2012, proudly leading it to be named Best Local News Blog in Rhode Island by Rhode Island Monthly readers in 2018, 2019, and 2020 and an honorable mention in the Common Good Awards in 2021.

Born and raised in Rhode Island, Belmore graduated from Coventry High School and the Community College of Rhode Island. In addition to living in Newport for 10 years, he has lived in Portsmouth, Coventry, Providence, Smithfield, Burrillville, and East Greenwich.

Belmore currently serves as Vice President of the Board Of Directors for Fort Adams Trust and on the Board of Directors for Potter League For Animals. He previously served on the Board of Lucy's Hearth and the Arts & Cultural Alliance for Newport County.

Belmore and his wife, Jen, currently live in Alexandria, Virginia, a move they made in 2021. Read more about that here -

Belmore visits Newport every couple of weeks to support the 12+ paid contributors What'sUpNewp has on the ground across Rhode Island, a place he called home for 39 years.

Belmore is a member of Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers, Society of Professional Journalists, and the North American Snowsports Journalists Association.

In 2020, Belmore was named Member of the Year by LION and won the Arts & Cultural Alliance of Newport County's Dominque Award.
Belmore can be contacted at and 401-662-1653.