Newport Tour Guides & Greeters News #65: John James Audubon at Roseliff & Quahog Week

Quahog Week

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A new exhibit opening this week at Rosecliff is sure to please our guests who are outdoorsy and nature lovers. Titled, “JOHN JAMES AUDUBON: OBSESSION UNTAMED,” it opens on Saturday, March 30th in the second-floor exhibition hall at Rosecliff (548 Bellevue Avenue, Newport). This new exhibit promises to be something special. A longer description of the exhibit appears below.

For all our seafood loving visitors, this is the wrap-up of QUAHOG WEEK. This annual celebration (March 25-31) of the ubiquitous hard clams harvested in our state is designed to increase the promotion of this hardy and delicious bivalve with its own week.  Have you had some little necks on the half shell, or ordered a plate of clams casino, or tucked into a half dozen of our ever-popular stuffies yet? Well, there’s still time to order and enjoy as many as you can during QUAHOG WEEK.  Enjoy!

TOUR GUIDE TIP OF THE WEEK: EVERYONE IS A NEWPORT AMBASSADOR

If it were possible, I would hand out diplomatic license plates to each one of our city’s hundreds of tour guides, greeters, managers, concierges, groundskeepers, security people, taxi and bus drivers, and all our first responders because all of them are like the best diplomats representing a nation.  They may be often overlooked or taken for granted, and they may not even be aware of their role, but every day each one of them is performing a great diplomatic service for all of us. They are the true Ambassadors for the city and people of Newport. You included. Bravo!

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NOTABLE & QUOTABLE

DO YOUR BEST ALWAYS

Daily life is always extraordinary

when rendered precisely.

-Bonnie Friedman

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NEW EXHIBIT AT ROSECLIFF — JOHN JAMES AUDUBON: OBSESSION UNTAMED

A new exhibit, JOHN JAMES AUDUBON: OBSESSION UNTAMED, opens on Saturday, March 30th in the second-floor exhibition hall at Rosecliff (548 Bellevue Avenue, Newport). This new exhibit promises to be something special. The Preservation Society of Newport County has published the following brief synopsis of the exhibit and the man.

“John James Audubon: Obsession Untamed” colorfully explores the naturalist’s relentless pursuit of the birds of America and his singular determination in seeing his beautiful artworks published. In 1820 Audubon embarked on what would become his life’s work as “portraitist of all the birds of America.” This witness to America’s Heroic Age translated his obsession into a successful business venture that resulted in arguably the most enduring images associated with the modern conservation movement. His role as a frontiersman capturing a then-young America’s wilderness while traveling the principal interior flyway along the Mississippi epitomizes the spirit of the age. The exhibition draws upon the Preservation Society’s collections as well as significant loans from private collections and institutions. Highlights include over 20 beautifully framed hand colored double elephant folio-sized aquatints from Birds of America, exquisite ladies’ hats and fans illustrating the early-20th-century craze for feathers that lead to initial conservation efforts, as well as Audubon’s life mask and snuff box. Hours at the mansion are 9 am to 5 pm, with the last admission at 4:00 pm. Info and tickets: 401/847-1000; newportmansions.org

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CONTINUING PROGRAMS & EXHIBITS

NOW THROUGH JUNE 2 — HORSELESS TO HORSEPOWER: GILDED AND GOLDEN AGE AUTOMOBILES

This exhibit opened February 9th featuring some of the most extravagant and beautiful vehicles ever produced. Come and see for yourself the amazing elegance and styling of these classic automobiles. Open daily, 10 am – 4 pm. 222 Bellevue Avenue, Newport. Info: 401/856-4420; audrainautomuseum.org

NOW THROUGH SEPTEMBER 20, 2019 – “MY SMALL ABILITY” – THE LIFE AND WORK OF WILLIAM CLAGGETT

This exhibit at the Newport Historical Society Resource Center (82 Touro Street, Newport) features the story of 18th century master clockmaker, William Claggett. The exhibit tells us more than just the life of this craftsman by bringing alive other aspects of Newport including trade, artistry, aesthetics, science, religion, and culture through an examination of the life of Mr. Claggett. Additional Info and hours at 401/846-0813; newporthistory.org

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TOURS, SPEAKERS, & SPECIAL EVENTS

Check out the wide selection of lectures, exhibits, talks, classes, tours, and workshops to add to your knowledge and increase your understanding of the people and history of greater Newport.

THURSDAY, MARCH 28 – UNDRESSING HISTORY: ACTIVE PURSUITS, WOMEN’S SPORTSWEAR, c. 1900

One in a continuing series of lectures from the Newport Historical Society. Join Quinn Burgess, professional costumer, as she dresses in reproduction historical sportswear from 1885 to 1925, and explains the ensembles for tennis, ice skating, bicycling, croquet, and swimming. She will discuss the cultural context of women’s participation in athletic activities during this time as well as the garments themselves, including how they functioned while being worn. All this and more at this stimulating presentation. Held at the Newport Historical Society Research Center (82 Touro Street, Newport). 5:30-6:30 PM. Admission: $1-$5. RSVP: 401/841-8770; newporthistory.org

THURSDAY, MARCH 28 NEWPORT RUN & CHUG – 6:30 PM

This is a running group that does a 5K run every week (3.1 miles). Run is led by firefighter Eddie Valen. Meet at the Fastnet Pub (1 Broadway, Newport) at 6:30 pm. Run is followed by a meet-up (and Chug) at the Fastnet Pub. Info: 401/845-9311.

SATURDAY, MARCH 30 – SAVE THE BAY SEAL TOUR – 10:00-11:00 AM & 11:00 AM – NOON

One-hour tour to view seals on Citing Rock with experts from Save The Bay. Tour leaves from Bowen’s Ferry Landing, 18 Market Square. Tickets: $17-$22. Register at: savebay.org/seals.

SATURDAY, MARCH 30 – NEWPORT FOODIES WINTER STROLL – MEETS AT THE ARMORY — 5:30 PM

Cozy up this Winter and enjoy a three-course meal accompanied by selected wine pairings at three of Newport’s exquisite restaurants. This progressive stroll will last several hours along Newport’s Historic Thames Street and will encompass a total of .75 miles. Tours run Friday and Saturday evenings beginning at 5:30 P.M. Meet Tom and Sue, your tour guides, in front of the Armory (365 Thames Street, Newport). Book your tickets and get more information at: 401/619-3019; newportfoodiesstroll.com

SUNDAY, MARCH 31 – SAVE THE BAY SEAL TOUR – 10:00-11:00 AM & 11:00 AM-NOON

One-hour tour to view seals on Citing Rock with experts from Save The Bay. Tour leaves from Bowen’s Ferry Landing, 18 Market Square. Tickets: $17-$22. Register at: savebay.org/seals.

TODAY THROUGH MARCH 31, 2019 – QUAHOG WEEK

Quahog Week continues – bigger & better than ever! Quahog Week highlights the many restaurants, markets, fishermen, and food-based businesses committed to growing Rhode Island’s local food economy, with special emphasis on quahogs. From today through March 31st, restaurants and markets across Rhode Island will celebrate this sustainable resource and its year-round availability by featuring a quahog dish on their menu. Info: www.seafoodri.com  

MONDAY, APRIL 1, 2019 – ROSE ISLAND LIGHTHOUSE RE-OPENS FOR OVERNIGHT GUESTS

Rose Island Lighthouse located one mile from Newport, RI and listed on the National Register of Historic Places, is one of only a few operating lighthouses maintained by working vacationers who sign on for a week at a time as part of Rose Island’s environmental education program. Overnight guest visits begin April 1st.  Day trips via ferry begin Memorial Day weekend. Info: 401/847-4242; info@roseisland.org

MONDAY, APRIL 1, 2019 – ROAD TO INDEPENDENCE WALKING TOUR – 10:30 AM

One of several excellent walking tours of Newport offered by the Newport Historical Society. Riots and rebellions, enemies and allies! Learn about Newport’s role in the American Revolution. This tour leaves at 10:30 am from the Museum of Newport History, 127 Thames Street (Newport). Info and reservations at: newporthistorytours.org

TUESDAY, APRIL 2 – ROUGH POINT RE-OPENS — BEYOND FORTUNE: THE LIFE & LEGACY OF DORIS DUKE

Rough Point re-opens for the 2019 season on Tuesday, April 2. A new exhibition in this Gilded Age mansion poses the question, “What do we really know about Doris Duke?” Using historical documents and photographs from the Doris Duke Historical Archives at the David Rubenstein Library at Duke University and items from the Rough Point fine art and fashion collection, visitors are invited to learn more about Doris by looking honestly at her interests, complexities, and eccentricities to see beyond the myths and legends often associated with her life. This exhibit will continue through November 17, 2019. At Rough Point (680 Bellevue Avenue, Newport). Info: 401/847-8344; newportrestoration.org.

THURSDAY, APRIL 4 JOHN JAMES AUDUBON: OBSESSION UNTAMED

The final program in this 2019 Winter Lecture Series at Rosecliff will be held at 6:00 pm. Members: $10; General Public: $15. Info and Reservations: 401/847-1000; newportmansions.org

APRIL 5-14TH – NEWPORT RESTAURANT WEEK – SPRING 2019 EDITION

Newport Restaurant Week, part of a nationwide movement, debuted here in 2006. Two editions of Newport Restaurant Week take place each year in the spring and in the fall. More than 50 participating restaurants offer extraordinary two-course prix fixe lunches for $20, three-course prix fixe dinners for $35, and a three-course premier prix fixe dinner for $50. For a list of participating restaurants: discovernewport.org

FRIDAY, APRIL 5 – ROGUES & SCOUNDRELS WALKING TOUR – 10:30 AM

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 – pirates, criminals, and more — leaves at 10:30 am from the Museum of Newport History, 127 Thames Street (Newport). Info and reservations at: newporthistorytours.org

SATURDAY, APRIL 6, 2019 – 34TH RHODE ISLAND STATEWIDE HISTORIC PRESERVATION CONFERENCE

If you love historic preservation, you’ll want to attend this annual conference, focused on Preservation, Recreation and Sport. Keynote speaker is Brent Leggs, Director of the African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund at the National Trust for Historic Preservation. Mr. Leggs will reflect on the importance of preserving historic places where Americans play and watch sports. The event, including 12 preservation workshops and 12 tours by boat, bus, bicycle, and foot, will be hosted this year in historic East Providence, RI. Info & Registration:  preservationconferenceri.com; 401/222-2078.

SATURDAY, APRIL 6 – DISCOVER COLONIAL NEWPORT WALKING TOUR – 10:30 AM

This is one of several wonderful walking tours offered throughout the year by the Newport Historical Society. This tour features stories of entrepreneurship, African American heritage and religious diversity during Newport’s colonial period. Tickets $15; Children $5. 10:30 AM – 11:45 AM. Tour leaves from the Museum of Newport History, 127 Thames Street (Newport). Info and Reservations at: newporthistorytours.org

SATURDAY, APRIL 6 – SAVE THE BAY SEAL TOUR – 1:00-2:00 PM & 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM

One-hour tour to view seals on Citing Rock with experts from Save The Bay. Tour leaves from Bowen’s Ferry Landing, 18 Market Square. Tickets: $17-$22. Register at: savebay.org/seals.

SUNDAY, APRIL 7 – GOLDEN TO GILDED WALKING TOUR – 10:30 AM

This tour ties together the city’s many exciting periods of its history. 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

SUNDAY, APRIL 7 – SAVE THE BAY SEAL TOUR – 1:00-2:00 PM & 2:00-3:00 PM

One-hour tour to view seals on Citing Rock with experts from Save The Bay. Tour leaves from Bowen’s Ferry Landing, 18 Market Square. Tickets: $17-$22. Register at: savebay.org/seals.

THURSDAY, APRIL 11-13, 2019 – TRAVELS ACROSS AMERICA: ART, NATURE, AND THE PURSUIT OF BEAUTY

The 2019 Newport Symposium kicks off with this lecture and opening reception at Rosecliff at 5:30 pm. For info: 401/847-1000, ext. 178; newportmansions.org

SATURDAY, APRIL 13, 2019 – DAFFODIL DAYS FESTIVAL OPENING CEREMONIES – 1:00 PM -THE CLARKE COOKE HOUSE

Join your fellow Newport residents, visitors, and guests for the annual kick-off and opening ceremonies for the 2019 Daffodil Days Festival at The Clarke Cooke House on Bannister’s Wharf.  This will mark the beginning of the 6th annual festival and nine days of activities all over the City-by-the-Sea. Info: www.newportdaffydays.com

APRIL 13-21, 2019 — 6TH ANNUAL NEWPORT DAFFODIL DAYS FESTIVAL

With over one million daffodils planted the past twelve years, Newport has become the self-proclaimed Daffiest City in New England. To celebrate the bounty that will bloom forth, Festival organizers have announced initial plans for the 6th Annual Newport Daffodil Days, April 13-21, where visitors to the City by the Sea are encouraged to “plant” themselves in town and go daffy, enjoying over twenty different events in nine days.  Get ready to shake off the winter doldrums and have a bloomin’ great time!  Info: www.newportdaffydays.com

MONDAY, APRIL 15 – DAFFY DELIRIUM AT THE CHANLER – 6:00-7:30 PM

Daffodillion’s annual Spring Fling event will be held at the award-winning The Chanler at Cliff Walk (117 Memorial Blvd., Newport)! Daffodillion will celebrate the planting of over one million daffodils. Enjoy hors d’oeuvres, live music and a complimentary toast to Mother Nature while overlooking hundreds of daffodils set against Easton’s Bay. Tickets: $35.

FRIDAY, APRIL 19, 2019 – NEWPORT ART MUSEUM EXHIBIT OPENS — GERTRUDE VANDERBILT WHITNEY: SCULPTURE

Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney, daughter of Alice & Cornelius Vanderbilt II, is best known as an art patron and founder of New York’s Whitney Museum of American Art.  She also had a significant career as a sculptor, exhibiting throughout the United States and Europe and receiving major commissions and prizes. This is the first exhibition of Whitney’s art since her death in 1942.  More info: 401/848-8200; newportartmuseum.org

NOTES ON THIS SCULPTURE EXHIBIT: “Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney: Sculpture” will showcase rarely seen works from private collections, examining the remarkable variety of the artist’s work—from her earliest classical sculptures to her more symbolic public monuments, from her bleakly Realist depiction of the tragedy of World War I to her late Art Deco work.  The exhibit was organized by The Norton Museum of Art and curated by Ellen E. Roberts, the Norton’s Harold and Anne Berkley Smith Curator of American Art.

SATURDAY, APRIL 20, 2019 – BEACH CLEAN-UP AT CLIFF WALK

Go green & spend your Saturday cleaning up one of Newport’s most breathtaking locations. Join us at the Cliff Walk on Saturday, April 20th from 12:00pm to 2:00pm to volunteer with a view! Sponsored by Clean Ocean Access. Coffee provided by Empire Tea & Coffee so BYO Mug.  Info: 401/236-2561; cleanoceanaccess.org

MEMORIAL DAY WEEKEND — BOOTS ON THE GROUND FOR HEROES MEMORIAL – FORT ADAMS STATE PARK

In 2016, Operation Stand Down Rhode Island (OSDRI) launched the Boots on the Ground for Heroes Memorial with the widely acclaimed and dramatic display of nearly 7,000 military boots. Each boot is adorned with a name placard and an American flag representing each American service member killed in action in the Global War on Terror. The first of its kind, the display has taken place at Roger Williams State Park over the last three years.  This display will take place at Fort Adams State Park during the Memorial Day Weekend. Info: 401/383-4730; osdri.org

MEMORIAL DAY WEEKEND – JAMESTOWN NEWPORT FERRY SEASON BEGINS

The 2019 season for the Jamestown Newport Ferry begins Memorial Day Weekend. Stops include Rose Island, Fort Adams, Ann Street Pier, and Perrotti Park. Ferry leaves from the docks at the end of Narragansett Avenue in the village of Jamestown. Info & Tickets: 401/423-1556; jamestownnewportferry.com

UPCOMING 2019 SPECIAL EVENTS

SATURDAY, JUNE 1, 2019 – NEWPORT INTERNATIONAL POLO SEASON OPENS

The Newport International Polo Series 28 begins on Saturday, June 1, 2019, 5:00 pm, at the Newport International Polo Grounds, 250 Linden Lane, Portsmouth, RI.  Box Office opens to the general public on March 15. Info: 401/846-0200; nptpolo.com

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 5, 2019 – OPENING NIGHT – NEWPORT GULLS BASEBALL – 6:35 PM

The Newport Gulls will welcome the Mystic Schooners to kick off the 2019 collegiate baseball season at Cardines Field (20 America’s Cup Avenue, Newport) on June 5th. Info & Tickets: 401/845-6832; https://bit.ly/2RxDm0D

SATURDAY, JUNE 8, 2019 – SWISS VILLAGE FARM FOUNDATION ANNUAL VISITORS DAY – 9 AM – 3 PM

Swiss Village Farm (SVF) Foundation’s annual visitor’s day will allow members of the public to learn more about the Smithsonian & SVF Biodiversity Preservation Project. SVF is a nonprofit farm working towards the collection and preservation of genetics from rare breeds of livestock. Visitors can peek into their facilities and meet the laboratory, veterinary and animal husbandry staff. Attend live cryogenics and sheep shearing demonstrations. Enjoy Julian’s Omnibus food truck serving local heritage breed burgers and munchies! This event is free to the public. Parking will be available at Fort Adams State Park and free trolley transportation will be provided from 9am to 3pm. No parking available at SVF. Info: 401/848-7229; email for info@svffoundation.org

SATURDAY, JUNE 8, 2019 – NEW YORK YACHT CLUB’S 2019 SEASON BEGINS – LEUKEMIA CUP

The New York Yacht Club has announced its 12-event 2019 sailing season that begins on June 8 with the Leukemia Cup race, followed by the club’s 165th Annual Regatta (June 14-16), and ending on September 29 with the Melges IC37 national championship races (September 27-29). Info:  401/846-1000; nyyc.org

JUNE 15, 16, 17, 2019 – NEWPORT COUNTY DAYS AT THE NEWPORT MANSIONS & HOSPITALITY EMPLOYEE DAYS

This weekend is the second of four annual weekends called Newport County Residents Days at the Newport Mansions. Any Newport County resident will receive free daytime admission to all Preservation Society of Newport County (PSNC) properties currently open (The Breakers, Marble House, Rosecliff) as guests of the PSNC.  Proof of residency (driver’s license, utility bill, etc.) must be presented. This weekend will also feature Hospitality Employee Days with other Newport cultural attractions participating.  Info: 401/847-1000; newportmansions.org

JUNE 21-23, 2019 – THE NEWPORT FLOWER SHOW – AUDUBON ARTISTIC ADVENTURES – ROSECLIFF MANSION

The 2019 Newport Flower Show will feature design and horticulture exhibit, a Home & Garden Marketplace, Oceanside Boutiques, outdoor garden displays, lectures, and demonstrations by the top experts in the field. The Opening Night Party will take place from 6-9 pm on June 21.  Info: newportmansions.org

JULY 8-13, 2019 – INTERNATIONAL 12 METRE CLASS 2019 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP — NEWPORT, RI

The International 12 Metre Class’ 2019 World Championship will be held in Newport, Rhode Island (USA) from July 8- 13, hosted by the Ida Lewis Yacht Club and the 12 Metre Yacht Club. It will be the largest-ever gathering of 12 Metre yachts in the United States featuring more than two-dozen boats from seven countries. International teams comprised of elite sailors including America’s Cup veterans and Olympic medalists will represent Australia, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Italy, Norway and the United States. The 2019 12 Metre World Championship fleet will span the years 1928 -1987, include seven America’s Cup defenders and challengers, and be sailed on Rhode Island Sound, the site of nine America’s Cup competitions from 1958-1983. Info: http://www.12mrclass.com

JULY 26-29, 2019 – NEWPORT FOLK FESTIVAL – FORT ADAMS – NEWPORT, RI

This famous festival, launched in 1959, will celebrate in a 4-day music extravaganza July 26-29 at Fort Adams, overlooking the mouth of Newport Harbor.  Tickets and more information at newportfolk.org.

FRIDAY, AUGUST 2, 2019 – NEWPORT JAZZ FESTIVAL CONCERT – INTERNATIONAL TENNIS HALL OF FAME

A special concert will be presented at the Newport Casino at the International Tennis Hall of Fame (194 Bellevue Avenue, Newport) on Friday night, August 2nd. Tickets go on sale March 27th. Ticket prices: $50-$110. Tickets and more information at: newportjazz.org.

AUGUST 2-4, 2019 – NEWPORT JAZZ FESTIVAL – FORT ADAMS – NEWPORT, RI

Since 1954, the greatest jazz musicians on the planet have played before the most loyal and appreciative jazz aficionados and fans in the world at the largest coastal fort in America, Fort Adams. They’ll do it again this August 2-4, beginning with a concert at the International Tennis Hall of Fame on Friday, August 2.  Don’t miss any of the music, the fun, and the food! Tickets and more information at: newportjazz.org.

SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 1, 2019 – IYRS NEWPORT CLASSIC YACHT PARADE – 10:30 AM

This parade wraps up the weekend of the 40th Annual Newport Classic Yacht Regatta presented by IYRS (NCYR) which will take place over Labor Day weekend, Friday – Sunday, August 31 – Sep 1. The Organizing Authority for the NCYR is the Ida Lewis Yacht Club.  Info: events@iyrs.edu

SEPTEMBER 6-8, 2O19 – NEWPORT SECRET GARDEN TOURS

The annual Newport Secret Garden Tours opens its gates to a plethora of stunning gardens in historic Newport, Rhode Island. Join the Benefactors of the Arts on September 6-8 for this self-guided tour featuring at least 10 incredible gardens. These private gardens are shared with the community to help raise funds for the Arts Education programs in the Island’s public schools. The tour runs daily, 10 am until 5 pm, and tickets are good for any or all days of the tour, allowing for inclement weather, schedule conflicts, or just a late start. Info and tickets: secretgardentours.org

SEPTEMBER 12-15, 2019 – 49TH ANNUAL NEWPORT INTERNATIONAL BOAT SHOW

Mark your calendar for the 49th annual Newport International Boat Show on the famed downtown Newport waterfront from September 12th to 15th this year. More Information: http://newportboatshow.com/

SEPTEMBER 19-22, 2019 — THE NEWPORT MANSIONS WINE & FOOD FESTIVAL

This is one of the East Coast’s most sophisticated and anticipated events of the year. It is scheduled for September 19-22 at The Elms, Rosecliff and Marble House. Enjoy magnificent wines from around the world, fabulous food from local, regional and national chefs, artisanal food purveyors, cooking demos and interactive activities in an unforgettable setting. To learn more about the schedule of events, or to purchase tickets, visit newportmansions.org

OCTOBER 3-6, 2019 – AUDRAIN’S NEWPORT CONCOURS & MOTOR WEEK – INAUGURAL EVENT

The Audrain Automobile Museum presents the inaugural Audrain’s Newport Concours & Motor Week coming to Newport, Rhode Island on October 3 -6, 2019. Audrain’s Newport Concours & Motor Week 2019 will be the first of an annual event which aims to enliven the story of the automobile and its racing history in the northeast region of our country. With all this history, and help from their Event Chair, world renowned collecting, restoration, and culture expert, Jay Leno and their Concours Chair, Donald Osborne, noted classic car historian, consultant, writer and television personality, the Audrain Automobile Museum adds another chapter to Newport’s extensive book of automotive and sporting fascination. With the support and assistance from the Preservation Society of Newport County, the International Tennis Hall of Fame, Salve Regina University, along with car enthusiasts, luxury car brands, venue partners, and supporters in Newport, Audrain plans to execute one of the highest quality events that the community has ever seen and raise money to increase the local economy. Info: 401/856-4420; audrainautomuseum.org

OCTOBER 3-7, 2019 – ROGUE ISLAND COMEDY FESTIVAL – VARIOUS LOCATIONS – NEWPORT, RI

For auditions, show information, and tickets, contact: rogueislandcomedyfestival.com

OCTOBER 13-15, 2019 – VISITOR EXPERIENCE CONFERENCE (VEX) – PHILADELPHIA, PA

This is an annual industry conference that should be of special interest to tour guides, greeters, tour operators, chambers of commerce, and all those whose goal is to create a memorable experience for their guests and visitors. The 2019 Visitor Experience Conference is a recognized platform for experts to share best practices in the Visitor Experience sector and provide specialized knowledge to take museum organizations to the next level. VEX offers a range of professional learning opportunities. From keynote and panel sessions, behind-the-scenes tours, half-day workshops, and lots of social events to meet and talk with colleagues. The conference takes place in the history-rich city of Philadelphia.

Attendees include museum professionals at all levels of their career, mainly in the Visitor Experience and Visitor Services field, but also consultants, exhibition developers/designers, volunteer managers, ticketing and database companies, and more.  Past VEX attendees have included The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Johns Hopkins University, Arizona State University Art Museum, Museum of Modern Art, National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian, Longwood Gardens, National Trust (England), Columbus Museum of Art, The Historic New Orleans Collection, Tacoma Art Museum, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and more from around the world. Info & Registration: https://visitorexperience.group/conference

STILL A GREAT TIME TO EXPERIENCE THESE BEHIND-THE-SCENES TOURS!

BENEATH THE BREAKERS TOUR – MARCH SCHEDULE

The Breakers tour, “Beneath the Breakers,” is still offered daily.  Tours are now offered at 10:30 am, 12:00 pm, 2:00 pm, and 3:30 pm. Tour is one hour. Info: newportmansions.org

SERVANT LIFE TOUR AT THE ELMS: FOUR TOURS DAILY!

Considered by many to be the best tour in Newport, the world-famous 1-hour guided “Servant Life Tour” at The Elms is back and better than ever.  Tours are now offered at 10:30 am, 12:00 pm, 2:00 pm, and 3:30 pm. Info and updates: newportmansions.org

JOB OPENINGS – TOUR GUIDES · GREETERS · SUPPORT STAFF

HIRING SEASON IS IN FULL SWING NOW!

UPDATE: Employers are now actively seeking and interviewing people for the upcoming 2019 season. Several new jobs have been posted on the web sites of the biggest tour employers listed below.  Go directly to their sites for further details and requirements. Now – March/April – is the time to follow up on new job postings. If you want to break into the 2019 tour guide and hospitality industries, now is the time to get more aggressive to find and secure a position at your preferred organization.

HERE’S A SAMPLE OF THE LATEST LISTINGS

  • The Preservation Society of Newport County seeks a part-time candidate to work a flexible schedule up to 30 hours per week in season, seasonally. One weekend day is required. Occasional special events may require work outside of this time frame. Contact: www.newportmansions.org

As March winds up, continue to use this time to fine tune your resume, practice your interviewing skills, and do some networking with the Newport Chamber, Rhode Island Hospitality Association, and other industry groups.

Scan the openings and current job listings on the websites of the city’s biggest employers of tour guides and greeters.

  • Preservation Society of Newport County. This is the largest owner and operator of historic mansions in Newport. Open year-round. They hire tour guides, housekeepers, and security guards. Check out their web site for current job openings.  Info: newportmansions.org
  • Newport Historical Society. This organization offers the largest variety and greatest number of walking tours in the city.  Tours offered year-round. Info: newporthistory.org
  • Newport Restoration Society. This non-profit operates Rough Point mansion (680 Bellevue Avenue, Newport). Seasonal. Info: newportrestoration.org

For continuous and updated job listings, please go to www.whatsupnewp.com.

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HANDBOOK FOR NEW TOUR GUIDES & GREETERS

If you’re new to Newport and/or new to this field, get your copy of THE OFFICIAL 2018 NEWPORT GUIDES & GREETERS HANDBOOK [Direct from the author or via Amazon.com] to help you become a master hospitality ambassador for our city.  It also lists many of the best tour companies and hospitality organizations hiring seasonal and year-round people here.  Consider working in ticket sales or other support positions at one or more of these tour companies. It will give you some visitor services experience and make you aware of tour guide and greeter jobs as they become available during the season.  Handbook includes greetings in 18 of the most frequently spoken languages heard in Newport.

————————————————————————————————————————-KENNETH PROUDFOOT, a Newport Tour Escort and Guide, is the author of The Official 2018 Newport Tour Guides & Greeters Handbook (Shoreline Press (RI), 2017).   

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