Newport Festivals Foundation, Inc.invites local artists, clubs, restaurants, theaters, museums and other organizations to participate in Bridgefest® 2017, the annual celebration of Jazz, Folk and Newport’s rich musical community. Bridging the gap between the iconic Newport Folk Festival® and Newport Jazz Festival®, the series of events – including concerts, films, educational programs and music-related activities presented by area venues and promoters – will take place across Newport County July 31-August 3.
 
Venues and artists interested in participating must register their events through the submission form on the Bridgefest website at www.newportbridgefest.com by 5:00 pm on Thursday, June 1. Artists interested in being a part of Bridgefest need to find a local venue to present them.  Inquiries received from artists without a location will be passed on to participating venues for consideration. Applicants will be notified within five business days if their event has been accepted.
 
Participating events, which can be free or paid admission, will be listed on the Bridgefest website and included in advertising and social media. More information on the four-day celebration and additional submission details are on the website.
 
Now in its second year under the banner of the Newport Festivals Foundation, Inc., Bridgefest was founded in 2009 by the Arts & Cultural Alliance of Newport County.
 
The 2017 Newport Folk Festival, which is sold out, is set for July 28-30 at Fort Adams State Park. Artists to date include The Avett Brothers; John Prine; Fleet Foxes; The Head and the Heart; Drive-By Truckers; American Acoustic; Regina Spektor; Angel Olsen; Dr. Dog; Ben Gibbard; Nikki Lane; Rhiannon Giddens; Alone & Together featuring Kevin Morby, Sam Cohen, Eric D. Johnson (Fruit Bats), Joe Russo and Josh Kaufman; Mandolin Orange; and Michael Kiwanuka. Stay tuned for more artist announcements soon.  For additional information, go to www.newportfolk.org.
The 2017 Newport Jazz Festival presented by Natixis Global Asset Management takes place August 4-6 at Fort Adams State Park and the International Tennis Hall of Fame at the Newport Casino. Artists include The Roots; Béla Fleck & The Flecktones; Snarky Puppy; Andra Day; Branford Marsalis Quartet; Maceo Parker; Rhiannon Giddens; Maria Schneider Orchestra; Hudson: Jack DeJohnette, John Scofield, John Medeski & Larry Grenadier; Christian McBride Big Band with Special Guests; Cécile McLorin Salvant; Naturally 7; Leslie Odom, Jr.; Philadelphia Experiment: Questlove, Christian McBride, Uri Caine; and Geri Allen, Terri Lyne Carrington, Esperanza Spalding. More artist announcements are coming soon. For tickets and additional information, go to www.newportjazz.org.
Newport Festivals Foundation, Inc.™ was founded by George Wein in 2010 to build and continue the legacies of the famed Newport Jazz Festival® and Newport Folk Festival®. Under the auspices of the Foundation, the Newport Jazz and Folk Festivals present performers who respect and honor jazz and folk music traditions, and at the same time reflect the changes in today’s musical trends. In addition, the Foundation presents programs to educate young people about jazz and folk music as presented at the annual festivals. For more information, please visit www.newportfestivalsfoundation.org.

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 - 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.