After 30,000 music lovers say goodbye to the Newport Folk Festival and before the jazzy set pours into the city for the Newport Jazz Festival®, the party continues July 31-August 3 at Bridgefest®, the annual celebration of Jazz, Folk and Newport’s rich musical community.

Newport Festivals Foundation, Inc. will welcome a dozen local artists, clubs, restaurants, theaters, museums and other organizations to Bridgefest® 2017. Bridging the gap between the iconic Newport Folk Festival (July 28-30) and Newport Jazz Festival (August 4-6), 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.

The 2017 Bridgefest schedule* includes:
Bowen’s Wharf, 13 Bowen’s Wharf / (401) 849-2243
Busking at Bowen’s
Panoramic View (Caribbean Steel Drumming)
6:00-9:00 pm FREE
Artful Lodger Inn, 503 Spring Street / (401) 847-3132
The Artful Lodger Inn Garden Party
2:00-5:00 pm / FREE
Refreshments provided compliments of the Artful Lodger and Friends, BYOB
Jimmy’s Saloon, 37 Memorial Blvd. / (401) 846-5121
Lorri Shankar Presents: A Songwriters’ Showcase ft. A Retro Country Experience
8:00 pm / $5 at door
Bowen’s Wharf, 13 Bowen’s Wharf / (401) 849-2243
Busking at Bowen’s
Improm2 (Jazz Duo)
6:00-9:00 pm / FREE
Aquidneck Growers’ Market, Memorial Blvd. b/tw Chapel & Edgar / (401) 932-9007
Music from Judy Hestnes
2:00-6:00 pm all ages welcome / FREE
Newport Art Museum, 76 Bellevue Avenue / (401) 848-8200
Notes on Jazz,an improvisational discussion led by Jay Sweet, Executive Producer of Newport Festivals Foundation, and Danny Melnick, producer of the Newport Jazz Festival
5:00 pm
Jane Pickens Theater, 49 Touro Street / (401) 846-5252
Chasing Trane: The John Coltrane Documentary  
Live Music featuring C Note Missionaries
7:00 pm, Music; 8:00 pm, Film $10
Jo’s American Bistro, 24 Memorial Blvd. W, (401) 847-5506
An Evening of Jazz at Jo’s with Joanne Rodino, John Monllos, Stefan Griffin and Steve Johnson
7:00-10:00 pm / FREE
Bar and the communal area, first come first serve
Table reservations for dinner guests only
Bowen’s Wharf, 13 Bowen’s Wharf / (401) 849-2243
Busking at Bowen’s
Bubble Visor (Folk/Rock Music)
6:00-9:00 pm / FREE
Great Friends Meeting House, 21 Farewell St. / (401) 846-0813
Live Local Music and Arts Festival
Doors: 11:00 am
Shows: 11:45 am-8:45 pm / $15 online (; $20 at the door
Fort Adams State Park, 90 Fort Adams Drive / (401) 847-2400
A Bridge Together,an international music and dance event that connects Jazz, African Beats and Indian Carnatic music featuring Riya & Sara KapoorRez AbbasiGuru Swati BhiseMaguette Camara and more (A Newport Jazz Festival Extra)
6:30 pm / FREE
Bowen’s Wharf, 13 Bowen’s Wharf / (401) 849-2243
Busking at Bowen’s
Thatcher Harrison (Guitarist)
6:00-9:00 pm / FREE
*Schedule Subject to Change
More information on the four-day celebration is available
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 include The Avett Brothers; Wilco; 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. For additional information, go to
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; Vernon Reid; and Flying Toward the Sound: For Geri, with Love featuring Esperanza Spalding, Terri Lyne Carrington, with Vijay Iyer, Jason Moran and Christian Sands. For tickets and additional information, go to
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

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.