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Charlestown (RI) Seafood Festival

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Hey all, thinking of planning a weekend to Newport and saw the weekend I was looking at has the Seafood Festival going on in Charlestown at the same time. Can anyone comment on the quality of the festival - both food and atmosphere/booths/etc?

Anyone know if there is decent public transportation that would possibly get me around between Charlestown and Newport? Grazie-

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  1. I called RIPTA, the bus service that serves Rhode Island, not that long ago. There unfortunately is no public transportation that either goes to or within Charlestown.

    1. The food selection is very good. Execution varies by booth/vendor, as at most of these types of things. Atmosphere is minimal - it's held on the runway of a retired Naval Air Station, which fortunately means free parking. There are carnival rides for the kiddies. It doesn't hold my attention for more than a few hours, but it's great for a meal. Come by for a while after the beach, eat, check out some music, and it's a grand day out.

      1. There is a water shuttle between Newport and Jamestown, not sure if they will expand to Charlestown for something like this.

        3 Replies
        1. re: trufflehound

          The ferry would have to get through the Charlestown Breachway, there's no dock at Ninigret Park, and Ninigret Pond is only 6-8 feet deep or so, at its deepest. Unfortunately, it's strictly drive yourself or take a (very expensive) cab.

          1. re: Bivalve88

            Thanks for all the comments. Unfortunately I probably won't make it this year, mainly because transportation is turning out to be a mess. I was willing to pay for a rental car, but none of them in Newport are open on the weekends, and I would be arriving too late Friday night. You'd think there might be some sort of shuttle running for this festival, but I guess not, perhaps next year.

            1. re: fishermb

              Are you arriving in Newport, Providence or at the Airport? If it is Providence or the airport, there are rental cars

        2. The Charlestown Chamber of Commerce Seafood Festival. This is probably the worst dog show I have ever been too, ONCE. They state the food is sold by local vendors, most of the vendors are from Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and are on the carnival circuit. It is held in a local park on about 130 acres and they put everything in one area of about 250 ft long and 50 feet wide. It is very crowded. Since this is Rhode Island safety is not a primary concern. This is area is too crowded for the people they are looking to draw. They want a family crowd. It is an unsafe situation. I believe the Charlestown Chamber of Commerce follows the fire code for the state of Rhode Island. But these are Rhode Island standards they are not American standards which means they are what you would expect in a third world nation. Again it is all about the money. Yes people have to be paid for their work and risk of loss but the people going to this festival need to safe from a stampede if a fire in one of these fry carts does occur. If a fire does occur it will go from one fry cart to the next one with how tightly parked together. There are gas tanks and the hot oil. It is a dangerous situation. They have picnic tables right in the middle of this 50 foot walkway between the vendors. The tables are perpendicular to the vending booths. If you are getting a picture think very crowded and small places to walk through, just like another Rhode Island tragedy which did happen. The Station!
          I would love to see Rhode Island run as a first rate state but when all you do is want to shake down visitors and potential customers the only people you get are Rhode Islanders. Most of you don't know there are better ways or are afraid to try something new or go somewhere and see how it is done right.