Ben Tuff finishes a 19-mile swim from Block Island to Jamestown on August 1, 2021 in nine hours and nineteen minutes. Photo Credit: Clean Ocean Access

On July 22, Jamestown resident Ben Tuff will swim 25 miles from Providence to Newport, in an endurance effort to raise money for Clean Ocean Access. 
 
This marks the third marathon swim for Tuff, who has raised more than $160,000 to date for Clean Ocean Access, an Aquidneck Island-based environmental non-profit.
 
In August 2020, Tuff swam around Conanicut Island, a 23-mile distance he completed without a wetsuit, enduring jellyfish stings but supported by well-wishers around the island to raise $54,000.

[Read More – Ben Tuff swims 23 miles around Conanicut Island to bring awareness and raise over $54,000 for Clean Ocean Access]

Last year, he swam from Block Island to Jamestown, completing the 19-mile event in 9 hours and 19 minutes while facing the threats of cold water and sharks. He raised over $106,000 thanks to the generosity of friends, family and lovers of the ocean during this feat, while also becoming the first person in history to complete both achievements.

[Read more about Tuff’s 2021 swim, and the work of Clean Ocean Access, here]
 
This year, Tuff plans to jump in the water in south Providence and emerge at the Newport Folk Festival, according to a press release annoucning the swim . He estimates it will take him about 14 hours to complete.
 
Tuff trains 2 hours a day for these marathon swims, preparing for the rigors of the body and mind. “Hours 6 to 10 are the worst,” he says of the solitude. To help pass the time, Tuff thinks of “anything and everything,” including the health of the ocean and the health of friends facing challenges they cannot control, such as cancer.
 
According to the press release, becoming sober 10 years ago gave Tuff control over his well-being, a story covered in an upcoming documentary called “Swim Tuff: How I Swam My Way Out of the Bottle.” Tuff barely knew how to swim before he went through recovery from alcohol, and a sponsor suggested he try the sport. He says he’s not a great swimmer, but thrives on undertaking swimming feats.
 
“I wish that more people would just embrace trying something new later in their lives,” says Tuff in a sample of the video footage. “Because they might just surprise themselves.”

Ryan Belmore is the 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 - https://whatsupnewp.com/2021/09/letter-from-the-publisher-some-personal-news/

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 ryan@whatsupnewp.com and 401-662-1653.