Photo Credit: Jonathan Clancy/Citizens Pell Bridge Run

The Citizens Pell Bridge Run returns on Sunday, October 16th for the eleventh annual event, a 4-mile run, or walk, across the Claiborne Pell Newport Bridge. The event, which runs from Jamestown to Newport, is the only day of the year that pedestrians are permitted on the bridge. The Citizens Pell Bridge Run is hosted by the Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Foundation and produced by Gray Matter Marketing.

“We’re proud to continue our partnership with the RITB Foundation, Citizens, and all of our local sponsors in producing this annual favorite event,” says Matt Gray, President of Gray Matter Marketing. “Each year, the Citizens Pell Bridge Run continues to improve — It’s inspiring to watch runners and walkers come together to support the Foundation and the event’s 30 charity partners.” 

Starting at 5:30 AM on Sunday morning, runners and walkers will be shuttled from the Newport Visitors Center to the race start line in Jamestown. The race itself will begin at 7:15 AM, with participants broken into waves based on pace. Runners and walkers will follow a course on and over the bridge, taking in the sunrise and the stunning fall vistas that the run/walk is known for. They’ll finally descend from the bridge on to Farewell Street, finishing back at the Visitors Center on America’s Cup Avenue.

“This is such a special opportunity for thousands of residents to enjoy the views atop one of Rhode Island’s most iconic structures,” says Stephen C. Waluk, RITB Foundation Board President. “Because of the popularity of this event our foundation is able to donate tens of thousands of dollars to so many well-deserving charities and community organizations.”

To date, the Citizens Pell Bridge Run and the RITB Foundation have donated more than $700,000 to non-profits through this event. This year, the Citizens Pell Bridge Run and the RITB Foundation chose 30 local non-profits that will receive donations from the event. 100% of the proceeds from the event will be donated to these charities. Individuals and teams have raised additional funds online for both the official charities and other causes of their choosing.

“We are grateful to the Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Foundation as a returning non-profit partner for the Pell Bridge Run,” says Kasha Hanflik, Executive Director at Girls on the Run Rhode Island. “Being part of one of our favorite community events each year is incredible as is being able to cheer on hundreds of runners of all ages and abilities as they cross the finish line. This is what Girls on the Run is all about. As a beneficiary of the race, we can provide scholarships so all girls can participate in our programs and they, too, can cross their own finish line.”

All finishers will be awarded commemorative finisher’s medals upon completion of the course. Local non-profits, selected by the Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Foundation, will provide volunteers at the start, along the course, and at the finish line.

Traffic will be impacted by the race: in Jamestown, East Shore Road South between Rte. 138 and Conanicus Avenue will be closed to traffic from 6:30AM until 7:15 AM. Conanicus Ave (North) access to Route 138 / Pell Bridge at the intersection with East Shore Road will be closed from approximately 7 AM until 7:20 AM. On the Pell Bridge itself, travel will be reduced to a single lane each direction. State Police detail will be on site to manage traffic. Motorists using the bridge from 7 AM until 8:30 AM should expect delays. In Newport, from 7:15 AM – 8:45 AM, Farewell Street will be closed through America’s Cup Avenue, and Van Zandt Avenue at the corner of Farewell will also be closed to traffic. Expect delays using America’s Cup and Farewell Street until 9:00 AM, when the event will conclude.

The Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Foundation grants funds to local and regional organizations with the proceeds generated the Citizens Pell Bridge Run. The Foundation partners with local communities and nonprofit organizations that positively impact the lives of Rhode Islanders, and charities are chosen by the Foundation’s committee after an open application period. 

2022 CITIZENS PELL BRIDGE RUN BENEFICIARIES

  • Boys and Girls Club of Newport County
  • Boys Scouts, Troop 1 Jamestown
  • Boystown New England
  • C. Thomas Clagett Memorial Regatta and Clinic
  • Children’s Heart Foundation
  • Clean Ocean Access
  • Day One
  • Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Center
  • Fanconi Anemia Research Fund
  • Girls on the Run Rhode Island
  • Hasbro Healing Arts Program
  • Izzy Foundation
  • James L. Maher Center
  • Jamestown Cub Scouts Pack 1
  • Looking Upwards
  • Museum of Newport Irish History
  • Nathan’s Angels
  • Newport County YMCA
  • Newport in Bloom
  • Newport Partnership for Families
  • North Kingstown Food Pantry
  • Project Undercover, Inc.
  • Providence Children’s Museum
  • Sail to Prevail
  • Samaritans
  • Save The Bay
  • Sojourner House
  • Special Olympics
  • Star Kids
  • Women’s Resource Center

More Info on Traffic Impact

The Rhode Island Turnpike & Bridge Authority provided the following information about the race and its traffic impact;

Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Foundation hosts Citizens Bank Pell Bridge run Sunday October 16th

Motorists Should Expect Delays Due to Brief Road Closures

JAMESTOWN, R.I. – On Sunday, October 16, 2022, the Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Foundation will host the Citizens Pell Bridge Run . The event is a 4-mile charity run/walk with 100% of the proceeds going to support non-profits and local community organizations. The run provides a rare opportunity for the public to cross over the beautiful Claiborne Pell Bridge on foot and enjoy stunning views of Narragansett Bay.

The event will begin at 7:00 a.m. and police will begin blocking off some roads starting at 6:30 a.m. Early morning motorists in the Jamestown and Newport area should be prepared for slight delays and traffic detours due to the run. No pedestrians other than registered athletes will be allowed on any part of the Claiborne Pell Bridge during the run. The road closures are as follows:

Jamestown

East Shore Road – From 6:30 a.m. – 7:45 a.m., East Shore Rd. will be closed between the intersection of Conanicus Avenue and the Rt. 138 on/off ramps.

Conanicus Avenue – From 6:45 a.m. – 7:45 a.m., Conanicus Ave. will be closed from the Jamestown Golf Course north to the Rt. 138 on-ramp (Claiborne Pell Bridge)

Claiborne Pell Bridge

Motoring travel on the bridge will be reduced to a single alternating lane both westbound (from Newport) and eastbound (from Jamestown) from 7:00 a.m. – 8:15 a.m. During this time, motor vehicles over 18ft combined length will be restricted from traveling over the Claiborne Pell Bridge heading eastbound.

Newport

Farewell Street – From 7:15 a.m.- 8:45 a.m., Farewell St. will be closed through America’s Cup Avenue. Expect delays using America’s Cup and Farewell St. until 9:00 a.m.

Van Zandt Avenue – Van Zandt Ave. at the corner of Farewell will also be closed to traffic.

The Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Foundation hosts the Citizens Pell Bridge Run and donates the proceeds to nonprofits, including local community and youth sports organizations. For more information, visit www.pellbridgerun.com

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 - 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.