The first sailboats of the Volvo Ocean race arrived at Newport’s Fort Adams on Tuesday morning, May 8th. The Volvo Ocean Race Newport Race Village opened officially later that day. Fun is now underway. For the next two weeks — May 8-20 – the Volvo Ocean Race will be the big attraction here. Newport is the sole host U.S. stop for this 45,000 nautical mile race around the globe. You will get lots of questions as up to 200,000 additional guests and visitors flock to our City-by-the-Sea. Be aware and apprised of each of the many activities taking place. Some of the accompanying races and events are detailed below. Be ready to share your knowledge with all your guests and visitors.
TOUR GUIDES TIP OF THE WEEK – BE THE BEST
You can be hospitable. You can be friendly. You can smile and be cheerful. You can greet every guest and every visitor. You can deliver good service. You can even deliver great service. But you won’t ever be all that our guests and visitors want, all that they expect, and all that they don’t even know is possible until you finally make up your mind to be the best. Not okay. Not so-so. Not good, great, or outstanding. But the very B-E-S-T-BEST of all the R-E-S-T-REST.
Take a moment now to think about what that means. Think about whether you even WANT to think about being and becoming the best. Thinking about where you stand now and where you want to be is important. Because how you think about your work in hospitality is EVERYTHING. [To be continued…]
NEW LISTINGS AND EVENTS: For more information to prepare you to be the best tour guide & greeter ever, read and learn about the following updated listings and previews of the busy season ahead for residents and visitors alike.
TOURISM JOBS – GET HIRED IN MAY
May has arrived! Lots of jobs are still open, including tour guides, greeters, harbor cruise staff, ticket sellers, bus drivers, and support staff. This time of year is the kickoff for the upcoming summer season. See a place you’d like to work – call and ask! Get your resume polished and find a perfect match for your interests and skills so you can spend the upcoming season working in the City-by-the-Sea!
- Tour Guide & Pedicab Driver. This is a unique way to give tours and run your own business and get lots of exercise. Make $500-$1,000 per week. Rent a Pedicab and give your fares a custom tour of the City-by-the-Sea. Info: www.newportpedicab.com/drivers
- Trolley/Van/Bus drivers needed. Experienced Tour Bus/Trolley Drivers with passenger endorsement. Flexible time & Great Working Environment. $17-$24/hour. Historic Tours of Newport LLC. Middletown, RI. Info: 401/855-1942.
- The Preservation Society of Newport County still has a number of job openings, full and part-time, including Associate Tour Guides and support staff. Check with them directly online (newportmansions.org) or call 401/847-1000 for current information about work opportunities for the upcoming season.
REMEMBER: Most of the city’s largest tour and cruise businesses accept job applications year-round.
SPEAKERS & SPECIAL EVENTS THIS WEEK
Check out the wide selection of lectures, exhibits, talks, classes, and workshops to add to your knowledge and increase your understanding of the people and history of greater Newport.
TODAY THROUGH SUNDAY, MAY 20 – VOLVO OCEAN RACE NEWPORT
Tell your guests and visitors to go to Fort Adams for the many events of the Volvo Ocean Race sailboat fleet that arrived in Newport beginning on Tuesday, May 8th on the only U.S. stop of their round-the-world sailing race. The opening of the Race Village at Fort Adams was Tuesday, May 8th. The fun continues today through the 20th. Get updated information at www.volvooceanracenewport.com
THURSDAY, MAY 10 – SATURDAY, MAY 12 – 50% OFF BOOK SALE – MIDDLETOWN PUBLIC LIBRARY
Tour Guides, Greeters, and all students of history love a book sale. The Friends of the Middletown Public Library are having their 10 Year Celebration and a 50% off Book Sale featuring books, a bake sale, local artwork, note cards, and a Silent Auction for the Rosemary Day Estate Ceramic Collection. Hours are Thursday, May 10th from 1-7 pm; Friday, may 11th from 9:30am – 3:30pm; and Saturday, May 12th from 10:00am to 4:00pm, at the Middletown Public Library (700 West Main Road, Middletown). Info: 401/846-1573; middletownpubliclibraryri.org
THURSDAY, MAY 10 – GALLERY NIGHT – FREE GUIDED WALKING TOURS
From 4- 8 pm, there will be four free guided walking tours offered for this monthly night to explore Newport’s art galleries and studios. Interested people should meet for the walking tours at 4 pm at Thames Glass (insert address); 5 pm at Spring Bull Gallery; 6 pm at Art on Spring; and 7 pm at Arnold Art Gallery (
THURSDAY, MAY 10 – CHASING SHAKLETON! AN EVENING WITH ADVENTURER TIM JARVIS
Tim Jarvis, an author, filmmaker, environmentalist & adventurer, describes his journey to retrace the steps of Sir Ernest Shackleton’s famous 1916 Polar Exploration. Cocktail Reception followed by Tim’s presentation and an auction of Shackleton-related items. All proceeds benefit The Shackleton Climate Project. 5:30 pm. Casino Theatre (9 Freebody Street, Newport). Tickets ($25) at shackletonclimatenewport.eventbrite.com
THURSDAY, MAY 10 – PRESSED BOTANICAL WORKSHOP
Participants will learn the about the history of botanical use in home decor, gain decorating tips from Jenna, and enjoy small bites while creating a framed pressed botanical piece of art for your home framed pressed botanical piece of art for your home. Reservations required. Thursday, May 10 at 6:30 p.m. Museum of Newport History and Shop at 127 Thames Street, Newport. Info & reservations at: 401-841-8770.
FRIDAY, MAY 11 – ROGUES & SCOUNDRELS WALKING TOUR
Every tour guide should experience one or more of the great walking tours organized by the Newport Historical Society. This tour about some of the city’s more colorful residents leaves at 10:30 am from the Museum of Newport History, 127 Thames Street (Newport). Info and reservations at: newporthistorytours.org
SATURDAY, MAY 12 – THE ELMS GARDEN TOUR: THE BEAUX ARTS LANDSCAPE
Jim Donahue, Curator of Historic Landscapes at the Preservation Society of Newport County, will lead a guided stroll through the gardens of The Elms (367 Bellevue Avenue, Newport). 10-11 am. $15-$20. Reserve your ticket at 401/847-1000, x 178; or newportmansions.org.
SATURDAY, MAY 12 – PLANT SALE AT GREEN ANIMALS TOPIARY GARDEN
Tell your guests that rain or shine, this annual plant sale will help you have your home garden looking better than ever. The sale features topiary, bedding plants, hanging baskets, perennials, houseplants, tropicals, and vegetable plants. Sale is 10 am to 5 pm. 300 Cory’s Lane, Portsmouth, RI (off Route 114); newportmansions.org.
SATURDAY, MAY 12 – DISCOVER COLONIAL NEWPORT WALKING TOUR
Every tour guide should experience one or more of the great walking tours organized by the Newport Historical Society. This tour offers stories of entrepreneurship, African American heritage and religious diversity during Newport’s colonial period. This tour leaves at 10:30 am from the Museum of Newport History, 127 Thames Street (Newport). Info and reservations at: newporthistorytours.org
SUNDAY, MAY 13 – GOLDEN TO GILDED WALKING TOUR
Every tour guide should experience one or more of the great walking tours organized by the Newport Historical Society. On this tour you’ll get the inside skinny on the transformation of Newport and its people from its colonial Golden Age to Gilded Age summer colony. This tour leaves at 10:30 am from the Museum of Newport History, 127 Thames Street (Newport). Info and reservations at: newporthistorytours.org
THURSDAY, MAY 17 – SUNDAY, MAY 20 – IN-PORT RACES – VOLVO OCEAN RACE
Encourage guests and visitors to head to Fort Adams and the Volvo Ocean Racing Village to meet the international sailing teams and experience one or more of the in-port races on Narragansett Bay. May 17, 2pm – VO65 Pro-Am Race; may 18, 10am – M32 Sailing; May 19, 2 pm – Gurney’s Resorts In-Port race. Check updates and race participants at volvooceanracenewport.com
SATURDAY, MAY 19 – CHATEAU-SUR-MER GARDEN TOUR: ARISTOCRATS & ARBORETUMS
Jim Donahue, Curator of Historic Landscapes at the Preservation Society of Newport County, will lead a guided stroll through the gardens of Chateau-sur-Mer (474 Bellevue Avenue, Newport). 10-11 am. $15-$20. Reserve your ticket at 401/847-1000, x 178; or newportmansions.org.
MAY 19 & 20 – BOWEN’S WHARF NEWPORT WATERFRONT OYSTER FESTIVAL
11 am – 5 pm. Enjoy a festive weekend eating oysters. Rhode Island is home to more than 45 oyster farms. The flavors are distinctive to each farm. The festival will offer 13 kinds of oyster all in one festive atmosphere! Growers will be shucking alongside a select group of local restaurants under festival tents. Tickets are available online at: http://www.bowenswharf.com/newport-oyster-festival
SUNDAY, MAY 20 – VOLVO OCEAN RACE — START OF TRANS-ATLANTIC LEG 9 TO CARDIFF, WALES
Join the send-off celebration and ceremony for LEG 9 of the Volvo Ocean Race from Fort Adams and the Volvo Ocean Race Village. Times and updates at volvooceanracenewport.com
COMING SUMMER EVENTS: JUNE, JULY & AUGUST
Share these dates and events with your guests and visitors. Sell and promote our future activities and invite everyone to return here again and again.
THE NEWPORT FLOWER SHOW — COTTAGES SMART & SMALL – JUNE 22-24
Martha Stewart will be a featured guest and speaker at this year’s show. The annual flower show adds the current trend of tiny homes and combines them both as livable spaces, functional & beautiful, and the prettiest plants and flowers ever. Rosecliff. Information & tickets: NewportFlowerShow.org
NEWPORT MUSIC FESTIVAL – JULY 4-22, 2018
This annual music festival will celebrate its 50th anniversary this summer. A number of special guests and new experiences for the audiences will be included among the festival’s summer season. Performance sites include The Breakers and the Newport Art Museum. More information, schedules, and tickets are available at newportmusic.org. Box Office: 401/849-0700.
BLACK SHIPS FESTIVAL – JULY 12-15
The Black Ships Festival celebrates the friendship between Newport and their sister city Shimoda, Japan. It offers a variety of events emphasizing both Japanese art and culture. More Info: http://www.blackshipsfestival.com/
NEWPORT FOLK FESTIVAL – JULY 27-29
This is the big folk festival of the summer. A number of other events surround this 3-day weekend. Location: Fort Adams, Newport, RI. Tickets: email@example.com
THE NEWPORT SHOW ∙ JULY 28-29, 2018
The annual Newport Antiques Show has a new name this year, The Newport Show. This luxury show will, as it has since 2007, feature antique furniture, fine art, jewelry, and unique vintage items from more than 40 dealers. Watch for more details about this show in the coming months. The Newport Show will again be held at the St. George’s School Ice Rink, 375 Purgatory Road, Middletown, RI, and will run July 28 and 29, 2018. Updates at www.TheNewportShow.com. Proceeds benefit the Newport Historical Society and the Boys & Girls Clubs of Newport County.
NEWPORT JAZZ FESTIVAL – AUGUST 3-5, 2018
This is the big festival everyone asks about. May already be sold out, but keep the dates in mind for those who ask. Location: Fort Adams, Newport, RI. Tickets and more information: http://www.newportjazz.org/
A WEEKEND OF COACHING – AUGUST 16-19, 2018
Every three years, aficionados of horse-drawn 19th century road coaches gather in Newport for a big summer Weekend of Coaching. This year marks the third year since the last event. During the weekend of August 16-19, 2018 the Preservation Society of Newport County will host the biggest Weekend of Coaching ever. The weekend will feature driving exhibitions, viewing of the historic coaches as they drive around the streets of Newport, and tickets to a formal dinner dance at the Breakers on Saturday, August 18th. The weekend is led by Honorary Chair Linda Lindh with co-chairs Kenneth Lindh and Beverly Little. Ted Eayrs is the Chair of Coaching. Event updates and ticket information is available at www.newportmansions.org/events/a-weekend-of-coaching
DRIVING EXHIBITION – SATURDAY, AUGUST 18 – 10:30 AM – THE ELMS
This free event, part of the Weekend of Coaching, will take place on the grounds of The Elms (367 Bellevue Avenue, Newport). It will feature many of the coaches and their drivers who are part of the weekend celebration of this unique and historic sporting tradition. More Information: NewportMansions.org
PREVIEW OF AUTUMN IN NEWPORT
NEWPORT SECRET GARDEN TOURS – SEPTEMBER 7-9
Here’s one of Newport’s great events to share with your guests to encourage them to return here after the busy summer season. The September Newport Secret Garden Tours will offer ten incredible private gardens for the public to visit and enjoy. This self-guided tour program will raise funds for the Art Education programs in the island’s public schools. Tickets may be purchased in advance online at www.secretgardens.org for a discounted rate of $20.
NEWPORT INTERNATIONAL BOAT SHOW – SEPTEMBER 13-16
The Newport International Boat Show encompasses thirteen acres of Newport’s downtown waterfront. Exhibitors from near and far offer a full range of new powerboats and sailboats, plus a medley of marine products, services and accessories to enhance the nautical lifestyle. Special events, seminars, and in-water boating courses for the whole family are offered on all show days. Not to be missed is the exciting Newport For New Products program – showcasing boats and boating products making their first-ever debut in the United States. Newport Yachting Center, 4 Commercial Wharf, Newport. More information: http://newportboatshow.com/
NEWPORT MANSIONS WINE & FOOD FESTIVAL – SEPTEMBER 20-23
This festival features a world-class variety of tastings, seminars, and events over a four-day weekend. Held at The Elms, Rosecliff and Marble House. Tickets & more information: http://www.newportmansions.org/events/wine-and-food-festival/tickets-events
BOWEN’S WHARF SEAFOOD FESTIVAL – OCTOBER 13-14
11 am – 5pm. Free event. Honoring the harvest of the sea, this Festival offers fresh local seafood, continuous live music and family fun. Bowen’s Wharf, Newport. More Information: http://www.bowenswharf.com/events
CURRENT EXHIBITS & TOURS NOT TO BE MISSED
SOMETHING TRULY SPECIAL
Go visit the newest exhibit at the Galleries at Rosecliff, Bohemian Beauty: The Aesthetic Movement & Oscar Wilde’s Newport. Preservation Society Curator Ashley Householder has gathered a breathtaking collection of furniture, ceramics, wallpaper, clothing, accessories, and ephemera about the aesthetic movement (1870-1890) and the era’s major promoter, Oscar Wilde (1854-1900). The colors, patterns, and shapes of this “art for art’s sake” movement and the influence of Irish writer, playwright, and impresario Wilde will whisk you away to another time. Go and see this unique and truly wonderful exhibit. Open daily through November 4th. 9am until 5pm. Additional information available at: newportmansions.org
VISIT ROUGH POINT IN 2018 – NRF’s 50th ANNIVERSARY
The Newport Restoration Foundation (NRF) celebrates its 50th anniversary this year. This year its exhibitions at historic Rough Point mansion, as posted on its website (newportrestoration.org), will be: “‘To Preserve and Restore’: Newport Restoration Foundation at 50,” and “A Hand in Design: Exquisite Drawings of Jewelry and Architecture for Doris Duke.” This is a collaboration between NRF and David Webb New York, jewelry designer to Duke and many other prominent figures from 1948 to the present. Rough Point will be open for tours through November 11th. Don’t miss this amazing home.
BENEATH THE BREAKERS TOUR
The Breakers tour, “Beneath the Breakers,” begins hourly on the half hour from 9:30 am – 4:30 pm and is one hour in length. Info: newportmansions.org
SERVANT LIFE TOUR AT THE ELMS
At The Elms, their world-famous guided “Servant Life Tour” is offered hourly on the half hour from 10:30 am – 4:30 pm. The tour is one hour. Info: newportmansions.org
KENNETH PROUDFOOT is a documentary film producer, international & Newport tour guide, and author of The Official 2018 Newport Tour Guides & Greeters Handbook (Shoreline Press (RI), 2017).