owley Bread Group/Panera Bread Newport General Manager Danielle Natale (center), stands with Panera Bread and Children’s Friend management following Panera Bread’s annual gift drive. Eleven Panera locations in Rhode Island/Massachusetts sponsored 110 families in need through Children’s Friend in 2016.

Panera Bread Newport, located at 49 Long Wharf North, is doing its part to make the holidays brighter for local families by collecting toys for 10 children served by Children’s Friend based in Providence Rhode Island. The toys were collected by Panera employees and customers and delivered by Newport Panera Bread General Manager Danielle Natale and other volunteers on Tuesday, December 13. Eleven cafés owned and operated by Howley Bread Group, a franchisee of Panera Bread, participated in the drive, collecting gifts for 110 total families in need.
For the seventh consecutive year, Panera customers participated in the Holiday Gift Drive simply by going to their local Panera, selecting a gift tag from the display and then purchasing the wish-list gifts listed.  Each gift tag identifies a specific child, his/her age and a list of presents.  Those participating brought the gifts back to the respective cafes in a gift bag with the gift tag attached for delivery to Children’s Friend.  Participating cafes include: Cranston, East Greenwich, Lincoln, Newport, Providence, Smithfield, Wakefield and Warwick, and North Attleborough, Plainville and Seekonk, Massachusetts.

Howley Bread Group, LTD of Lincoln, Rhode Island, a franchisee of Panera Bread, owns and operates 29 Panera Bread bakery-cafes in Rhode Island, Southeastern Massachusetts and Eastern Connecticut. In 2015, Panera/Howley Bread Group’s cafes donated more than $5,700,000 in food and funds to a variety of community charities, including: The Bridge Family Center in West Hartford, Connecticut; Children’s Friend, Providence, Rhode Island; Connecticut Sports Foundation Against Cancer; Feeding America through local partners including Foodshare, the Gemma E. Moran United Way/Labor Food Center and Rhode Island Community Food Bank; B’s Mobility Ride for Muscular Dystrophy and Ryan’s Hope for a Cure Charitable Foundation. Additionally, gift card and food donations are made to local non-profit organizations through Panera/Howley Bread Group’s donations department and End-of-Day baked goods are donated to more than 80 churches and shelters across the franchisee’s bakery-cafe network.

Ryan Belmore is the 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 - https://whatsupnewp.com/2021/09/letter-from-the-publisher-some-personal-news/

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 ryan@whatsupnewp.com and 401-662-1653.