bowens wharf seafood

Bowen’s Wharf will host their 27th annual Bowen’s Wharf Seafood Festival on October 14th and 15th on the Downtown Newport waterfront.

Honoring the “Harvest of the Sea,” this ever-expanding event features lobster dinners, clam chowder, stuffed quahogs, clam cakes, shrimp, scallops, raw oysters and clams as well as a few dishes for landlubbers and kids in a festival atmosphere along the waterfront. Check out the list below and keep these little things in mind to make sure your Bowen’s Wharf Seafood Festival experience is the best it can be!

Bowen’s Wharf 27th Annual Seafood Festival
Hours: Saturday, October 14th from 11 am to 6 pm and Sunday, October 15th from 11 am to 5 pm.
Admission: Admission is free, food and beverages can be purchased at vendor booths.

Note: The event is rain or shine.

The Do’s:

Do – Go! Named one of the “10 Fabulous Fall Festivals on the Coast,” by Coastal Living Magazine, this event is an open invitation to come back to the Newport waterfront after the rush of the summer season! Honoring the “Harvest of the Sea,” the Bowen’s Wharf Seafood Festival offers fresh, local seafood. Fish tacos from Diego’s Restaurant, signature cocktails, and cold New England beer accompany the continuous live music, and family fun, all beneath the Wharf’s colorful tents.

Do – Bring the kids! The event usually features face-painting, interactive water and art activities, touch tanks and plenty more alongside Oliver Hazard Perry, RI’s 200-foot official sailing education vessel.

Do – Drink yummy craft beer, wine and creative cocktails from Whalers Brewing and other liquor partners. Definitely indulge, responsibly.

Do – Give yourself enough time to taste, see and listen to everything, this really is an all-day/all-weekend affa, r! Also bring your patience and politeness, you might need it around the 8,000 – 10,000 other seafood lovers who will be on hand.

Do – Bring cash, not only does it just always seems to make everything easier and faster for all involved – but most vendors only accept cash.

Do – Shop! Bowen’s Wharf Seafood Festival is all about the food, music, beverages and fun but don’t forget to spend some time visiting the wonderful shops in, around and near historic Bowen’s Wharf, after all Christmas and the holiday’s are coming!

Do – Leave the dogs and pets at home! Although it’s not a rule of the festivals, we recommend based on the crowd size, noise and energy that it’s best to leave the pup at home.

Do – Recycle and reuse wherever and whenever you can! We shouldn’t have to explain why on this one.

The Don’ts:

Don’t- Eat beforehand. Bowen’s Wharf restaurants, neighboring restaurants and fisherman’s associations will be serving up their most celebrated seafood dishes (lobster dinners, clam chowder, stuffed quahogs, clam cakes, shrimp, scallops, raw oysters and clams, as well as a few dishes for landlubbers and kids). Desserts will include tempting pies, ciders, and other baked goods. Cafe-style seating is set up throughout the Wharf.

Don’t – Dress like you’re visiting Bowen’s Wharf in August. The event is held rain, snow, cold weather or shine. Be prepared for the possibility of a cool breeze off of the water.

Don’t – Forget that parking meters and public parking lots run in Newport until November 1st. Pick a place you can park for multiple hours without having to worry about a time limit. Better yet, walk or bike down to Bowen’s Wharf!

Don’t – Feel like after having a few adult beverages and a fun afternoon that you have to drive home. Make a weekend out of it and stay at one of Newport’s great downtown hotels or bed & breakfasts!

Don’t – Take your adult beverage for a stroll around town, there are specific areas that you have to stay within with your beverage down on Bowen’s Wharf. Trust us, a $600+ fine for open container won’t be fun.

Don’t – Smoke under the tents or near the food booths. Use your cigarettes, vapes or e-cigs to somewhere away from the crowds.

Don’t – Miss the live music and entertainment. As you savor fresh dishes, sit back and enjoy the beats from area bands. Under the music tent, live folk, Celtic, and blues music are just a taste of what you’ll hear. Bring your dancing shoes, because these bands promise to get your feet moving!

Here’s the live music schedule;

Saturday, October 14th, 2017  

11 am – 1 pm: The New40 Soulful groove with a twist

1 pm – 3 pm: Cee Cee & the Riders Blues, Old Time Rock n’ Roll, Favorite Covers

3 pm – 6 pm: Chelley, Bill & Dyl Cool Jazz, Soulful R&B, with a Touch of Country!

Sunday, October 15th, 2017  

11 am – 1 pm:  The TeleDynes Surf Rock

1 pm – 3 pm: Panoramic View Caribbean Energy

3 pm – 5 pm: The Copacetics Reggae & Ska

NOTE: There will also be great live music at The Landing, Lobster Bar, Saltwater Clarke Cooke House and The Wharf Pub throughout the weekend.

For more information, 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.