McGrath Clambakes & Catering is celebrating its 50th anniversary on August 29th with a public clambake at The Eisenhower House from 6 to 9 pm.  Tickets are $50 per person.

The evening will include a reception hour overlooking Narragansett Bay with Rhode Island clear broth chowder and “stuffies” – both made from a family recipe.  Guests will then be invited to view the opening of the clambake.  McGrath Clambakes & Catering is one of the few companies that continues to utilize the traditional cooking process passed down from early New England Colonists.

This process begins when crews gather fresh “rockweed” off the local coast.  A bonfire is built at the event site with alternating layers of wood and rock. The fire heats the rocks to very high temperatures. Well-tended, the fire settles down to a bed of hot coals and rocks which provide the heat needed to bake the food.  The rocks are then covered with mounds of rockweed.  The bubbles in the rockweed burst when heated, emitting seawater that steams and seasons the food. The clambake crew then works quickly to nestle racks of food into the rockweed and cover it with layers of canvas. After baking for several hours, the bake master peels back the layers of canvas, a billowing cloud of steam rises, and the perfect summer meal is revealed!

The evening’s menu will be served buffet style and includes a summer salad of baby spinach, roma tomatoes, fresh avocado and roasted red peppers with a strawberry scallion vinaigrette, Spinney Creek Maine soft shelled steamed clams, Prince Edward Island mussels, drawn butter, local sweet corn on the cob, red bliss potato, chourico (Portuguese spicy sausage), barbecued chicken 1 ¼ lb. Rhode Island lobster and watermelon.  Ragged Island Brewery will provide beer and DJ Bells will be spinning tunes.

Tickets for the clambake are $50 per person and available on the company’s Facebook page (McGrath’s 50th Anniversary).  The deadline to purchase tickets is August 27th.

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.