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Providence Community Library “Great Checkout” Fundraiser


Friday, March 22, 2013 • 7PM to 10PM
Rochambeau Library, 708 Hope Street, Providence

What’s happening
delicious hors d’oeuvres, refreshing cocktails, fine conversation, and a raffle of “living books”

Ticket prices: $125 Patron • $75 Reader
Each ticket includes one entry in the Living Book Raffle.

Yes, you can check out a “living book” at PCL!
Modeled on the newest concept in library services — borrowing people with your library card — the raffle at The Great Checkout will allow library supporters to “check out” real life experiences with well-known Rhode Island entertainers, scientists, elected officials, historians, artists, and other fascinating people. It’s an easy and fun way to learn — with a Living Book!

Buy tickets or enter the raffle.


City of Providence seeking Christmas Tree

Providence, 1st Snow Storm of 2007

City of Providence Searching for a Perfect Tree

Arts Culture + Tourism, Parks Department put out casting call for tall evergreen to star in annual tree lighting ceremony

PROVIDENCE, RI – The City of Providence will host the annual Christmas tree lighting ceremony on Saturday, December 1 at the Bank of America City Center. To complete preparations, the City needs a tree and is asking residents to nominate their own 35-foot to 45-foot spruce or fir trees that they wish to remove from their property.

Residents can nominate their tree by sending an e-mail with a description or photo of the tree to Deb Dormody, the City’s Cultural Affairs Manager in the Department of Art, Culture + Tourism at

The Department of Parks and Recreation will cut the winning tree down and haul it away free of charge. The tree will be displayed on the steps of City Hall throughout the holiday season. The winning tree owner will be photographed with Mayor Taveras in front of the tree during the lighting ceremony. Submissions must be received by Wednesday, November 14.

This year’s tree lighting ceremony will be emceed by Mayor Taveras and Michaela Johnson, host of WPRI’s The Rhode Show. The ceremony will feature performances by RPM Voices, the 18 Wheelers and the Brown University Skating Band. Skate for Joy will partner with local and regional figure skaters, as well as members of Team USA, for a figure skating demonstration.

Members of the Johnson & Wales University chapter of Phi Sigma Kappa are selling ornaments to decorate the tree to benefit Hasbro Children’s Hospital. Stanley Tree Service is donating crane service for the trees.

Later this month, the City will kick off the annual Buy Providence + Buy Art campaign to encourage support for local businesses and artists during the holiday season.


Providence Provision, July 15

Providence ProvisionProvision is a mealtime gathering of community members hungry for both delicious food and new creative projects. We offer a dining experience that includes homemade soup, bread, dessert, and entertainment – and the chance to democratically fund emerging projects in Rhode Island.

Our next Provision will be Sunday, July 15, at the Southside Cultural Center, on the corner of Bridgham and Broad Streets (393 Broad St., Providence, RI, 02907). There is off-street parking available in the lot behind Trinity Church.

Doors will open at 5:30PM, dinner will start promptly at 6PM. A vote + dinner = $10; beverages are available a la carte.

Continue Reading →


Last CBC wine tasting of the season!

Need some ideas as to what to serve this holiday season?

On Thursday, December 1 at 7:30pm, the Providence Community Boating Center is hosting the last of its 2011 wine tasting events at the boat house. This months varietal: Sparkling Whites

If you’ve never been to a CBC tasting event before, this is a great opportunity to try some wines that might be appropriate for the holidays. It goes like this:

  • Your team of up to 3 people bring 3 bottles of the same wine*
  • We serve 2 of them (blindly) and put 1 in the prize pool
  • At the end of the night, vote on your favorite wine
  • If your wine gets voted as most favorite, you win all the 3rd bottles. The more people that come, the bigger the prize pool – Tell your friends!

*We specify the varietal, the rest is up to you. This month the varietal is “Sparkling Whites,” perfect for the holidays. Please bring 3 bottles of the SAME Sparkling White.

For the rest of the details, check out the CBC event page, or find a team mate and RSVP at this facebook event.

We suggest a donation of $10 per person upon arrival.


Beer tasting event at the CBC boathouse Thursday

The deck at the Community Boating Center overlooking Providence Harbor

On Thursday, October 20th at 7:30pm, the Providence Community Boating Center is hosting another of its 2011 tasting events at the boat house. This month, we’re switching things up a bit and having a beer tasting! Our beer varietal will be Brown Ales.

If you’ve never been to a CBC tasting event before, these events are a fun way to get to see the boathouse and meet some people. Unlike your typical tasting, we have a bit of a contest:

  • Your team of up to 3 people bring 2 6-packs of the same beer*
  • We’ll serve them in numbered pitchers and put a portion of unopened bottles in the prize pool
  • At the end of the night, you vote on your favorite beer
  • If your beer gets voted as most favorite, you win all the remaining bottles. The more people that come, the bigger the prize pool – Tell your friends!
  • If your beer gets voted least favorite, you have to bring your bottles home with you

*We specify the varietal, the rest is up to you. This month the varietal is “Brown Ales.” Please bring 2 six-packs of the SAME brown ale.

For the rest of the details and schedule of future tastings and events, check out the CBC event page, or find a team mate and RSVP via facebook.

We suggest a donation of $10 per person upon arrival.

For questions or more info about CBC, email


AIDS Care Ocean State seeks summer clothing donations

Photo (cc) Thing Three

AIDS Care Ocean State is seeking clothing donations, especially summer clothing. Their donation center at 603 Elmwood Avenue, Providence is open 8am to noon tomorrow, Saturday the 23rd.

Donate your summer or any clothing to the clients of AIDS Care Ocean State! Please Help!

AIDS Care Ocean State’s Donation Center is in need of SUMMER clothing! Donate any gently used shorts, t-shirts, dresses, and other summer items! Donations can either be dropped off at our center, or please call Keith Dube at (401) 781-5565 to arrange a pick-up of your items. Thank you for your help!

The donation center is located at 603 Elmwood Avenue, Providence. For more information, please call (401) 781-5565.

The donation center will be open this Saturday July 23rd from 8:00am to noon to accept donations!

We are always in need of:

  • Used Clothing any size and gender
  • Children’s clothing
  • Used household Items
  • Used furniture
  • New personal care items such as soap, shampoo, deodorant, and baby powder Diapers in all sizes

Help Springfield

Damage from the June 1, 2011 tornado which struck Downtown Springfield and neighboring communities
Photo from

By now everyone is surely aware of the two tornadoes that touched down yesterday afternoon in the Springfield, Massachusetts area. There was significant damage to homes and business in the Springfield area.

The Springfield Republican reports that The Pioneer Valley Chapter of the American Red Cross is accepting donations to help storm victims.

Visit or call 1-800-RED-CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

Contributions may also be sent to the American Red Cross Pioneer Valley Chapter at 506 Cottage St., Springfield, MA 01104 or to the American Red Cross, P.O. Box 37243, Washington, DC 20013.


2nd Annual RI Kosher Chili Cook-Off, June 5

The Second Annual Rhode Island Kosher Chili Cook-Off
Sunday, June 5 • 11AM to 4PM
Jewish Community Center of Rhode Island • 401 Elmgrove Avenue, Providence

Second Annual Rhode Island Kosher Chili Cook-Off Scheduled for June 5

PROVIDENCE – The Second Annual Rhode Island Kosher Chili Cook-Off will take place on Sunday, June 5 from 11 AM to 4 PM at the Jewish Community Center of Rhode Island, 401 Elmgrove Avenue, Providence. Twenty teams representing different community organizations will once again compete for the title of “Best Kosher Chili in Rhode Island.” All chili will be glatt kosher, and there will be meat, turkey, and vegetarian options. Admission is $10 for adults and $5 for children with a max of $30 per family and includes chili tastings, voting tickets, live music, and children’s activities including bounce houses, a climbing wall, crafts, games and more. Expected attendance – over 500. An assortment of beers in a beer garden, soda and food concessions will also be available for purchase. All proceeds benefit family programming of the Jewish Alliance of Greater Rhode Island.

Elite panel of judges include:

  • Chef Nemo Bolin of Cook and Brown
  • Frank Terranova from Johnson and Wales University & Cooking with Class on Channel 10
  • Anne Marie Bouthillette of Blackbird Farms
  • Karl Guggenmos – University Dean of Culinary Education at Johnson and Wales University
  • Chef Walter Potenza of Walter’s Ristorante d’Italia

For more information, go to


An Evening by the Bay

Back in January, Rhode Island suffered a terrible loss when the Edgewood Yacht Club burned. More than just a landmark building, the club, the neighbors, and the community all feel the loss of this Edgewood institution.

Since the fire, the Edgewood Sailing School has determined to press on. Much of the fleet and docks survived, but most of the necessary equipment need to be replaced, and they could use your help.

This weekend we will be holding our fundraiser at the house of George and Stephanie Shuster in Warwick. This is our community event to raise money to replace what the school lost in the fire of January 2011 at the Edgewood Yacht Club.

Since the fire, all this spring our board, volunteers and staff have been hard at work to rebuild the Sailing School. We have been raising money, collecting donated equipment and marketing our programs to youths and adults in the area – sending a strong message that we will be on the water again this summer. Likewise, the Yacht Club is also making a strong push towards being ready to open on time.

The community is responding. The support is generous. And, with some classes already full to capacity, the Sailing School has a Youth program enrollment that is as strong as it has ever been.

At this moment we are filling the coffers so that we can go forward and purchase items that we lost in the fire. This fundraiser event is one important step in helping us to rebuild. We hope that you will enjoy the occasion. We need your help. Please consider coming.

This Saturday’s event is from 5-7 PM. You may see more details and RSVP here.


Dining Out for Life, April 28

Dining Out For Life is coming Thursday, April 28, 2011! Put this date on your calendar, round up your friends, and dine out to support AIDS care and prevention services.

How it works: Participating restaurants donate 25% of your purchases on this one special evening to AIDS Project Rhode Island, for HIV/AIDS care and prevention services.

Get involved: Become a Restaurant Ambassador. Help us fill a restaurant! Recruit 25-30 of your friends, family, and colleagues to fill the seats. You’ll be in the restaurant throughout the evening thanking people and encouraging them to make personal donations.

Captain a Table: Plan to bring a party of 5 or more to one of the participating restaurants. Encourage them to make individual donations.

Spread the Word: “Like” us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, and then share the details with your social networks!

Dine Out: Make plans to eat out on Thursday, April 28th! SIGN UP TO VOLUNTEER NOW! Please contact Neil at 401-831-5522 x3196 or by email

Participating Restaurants


Youth4Change: Why Winter Is a Nightmare for Providence Youth and How You Can Help

This post was submitted to Greater City: Providence by Youth4Change. It is a quite timely message given the condition of the sidewalks across Providence this morning. Above is a photo from my 1 mile walk to work this morning.

I remember being a kid and jumping for joy when I saw my first snowflake of the season. The thrill of seeing beauty fall from the sky, the hope for snow days, and the desire to drop down and make snow angels returns to me this time of year. But for many of Providence youth, snow brings on the feeling of dread not joy. The dread and disgust comes from the thought of walking miles to school in the frigid New England temperatures. Wet shoes, cold ears and frost bitten fingers are not the way most of us want to spend our mornings day after day, however, for many Providence high school students, this is the reality every winter.

Currently in the city of Providence, high school students who live within 3 miles of their school are not provided transportation and are expected to walk, get a ride, or in the case for most students, pay their own bus fare. Recent RIPTA fare increases now force many students to pay $5 a day to get to and from school. This expense does not include travel to after-school activities and jobs, opportunities known to increase a student’s academic performance and increase their odds of receiving college acceptance and scholarships. The $5 or more a day students spend in bus fare is clearly a financial burden for families in a district where 82% of students qualify for free or reduced lunch (Providence Public Schools, Fact Sheet 2008-2009). For families who can’t afford the expense, students must either walk in the cold or bunk school. If it were you, which would you choose?

Youth 4 Change (Y4C), an alliance led by four non-profit youth organizations|Direct Action for Rights and Equality (DARE), Providence Youth Student Movement (PrYSM), Young Voices, and Youth In Action (YIA)|has been pushing for more youth voice and influence in public policy and decision making. Their Transportation 4 Education campaign is aimed at decreasing student barriers to attending school and assuring youth right to accessible transportation.

This month, Y4C was selected by The Pepsi Refresh Project to compete in a national competition to receive $50,000 to implement a public awareness campaign. The Pepsi Refresh Project is an evolution of the Refresh Everything initiative Pepsi launched in 2009. In an effort to support those who generate innovative, optimistic ideas, the Pepsi Refresh Project has awarded more than $13 million in 2010 to move communities forward. Organizations can apply for grants to benefit a variety of projects and supporters can vote for the best ideas for funding.

Y4C is in the running for a $50,000 grant to fund their Transportation 4 Education public awareness campaign. This campaign will include youth-produced and youth-designed billboard ads, radio ads, and television commercials about student barriers to attending school.

Y4C is in competition against 1,000 businesses and organizations. The top ten will receive the funds to implement their idea. Y4C needs YOUR VOTE to win!

How you can help:

  1. Vote Every Day!
    – Online: Go to and click Vote For This Idea
    – Text: Send 104586 to Pepsi (73774)
  2. Share this Post! – Include the Y4C video and voting information
  3. Encourage a Friend to Vote!
  4. Learn more about Y4C!
    – Visit and text Y4C to 313131 to sign up for text message alerts and updates

Y4C gets nothing if enough votes aren’t gathered. Vote today! Each vote gets Y4C closer to their goal. Voters can login or text everyday. The contest ends Dec. 31st.


Riverzedge Industrial Ball (Oct. 1)

The Riverzedge Arts Project hosts the Industrial Ball on October 1st at Hope Artiste Village in Pawtucket.

The event will include a green auction, table robot wars, DIY screen-printing, local food, music, and dancing. Tickets are $60 in advance, $75 at the door and benefit Riverzedge’s art, business, work-force development, and environmental programs for disadvantaged teens.

Tickets available online at Riverzedge, and at New Harvest Coffee, Craftland, and Frog & Toad.


Ice-Breaker Daedalus

Photo borrowed from WaterFire’s Facebook Page

WaterFire crews are battling ice in the Basin at Waterplace to ensure that they can pull off a lighting this New Year’s Eve.

WaterFire has helped Bright Night secure funding to ensure another wonderful New Year’s celebration in Providence.

Both organization as always are seeking donations to help pay for the events.

And while you’re in the giving mood, AIDS Care Ocean State is seeking donations for their Adopt-a-Family program:

For a donation of $50, you can help a local family in need and provide food, gifts for children during the holidays, along with warm clothing and heat for their homes throughout the winter months!

No donation is too small. All proceeds raised through this campaign will directly benefit ACOS families.

AIDS Care Ocean State | Adopt-a-Family


Clothing drive for Samoan Tsunami relief

samoa_tsunamiI’m sure you’ve heard about the Earthquake which lead to the Tsunami that destroyed many villages of Western and American Samoa. The wave rolled in knocking down houses and ripping up foundations. As the wave receded it took with it possessions and people. The land in Samoa is resilient but I fear the minds of many will suffer for quite some time. I feel that bringing them basic human necessities will help mend mind, spirit and body.

Please Help my family and friends so far away!

We’re looking to collect T-shirts, light button up shirts, light pants, flip flops, sandals, bedding, towels and toiletries. Any money donations will go towards shipping costs and a small amount given directly to my family for burial costs.

THE BLACKSTONE: 10/7-10/14
From Wednesday, October 7th to Wednesday, Oct 14th The Blackstone will be accepting donations of clothing and money. Those donating will have their door prices discounted.

Then on Wednesday the 14th starting @ 6pm, there will be music by SPOGGA, Josh Willis, Josh Fulford, Sam Lerner, Rich Cullen, Cole Alexander, Keith Braaten, Dennis Ensley, Adam Newell, Steve Turner, Matt Tarpy and more. There will be Food, Art and Projected Entertainment.

Then on Saturday, October 17th @ 7pm a closing party will be held at The Spot On Thayer (286 Thayer Street). There will be a Raffle, Auction, Art, Food, Music and Entertainment.

Please inform all interested parties.

I have already received so much support but we have a long way to go before the donations get to where they are needed, in the hands of the unfortunate people in Samoa.

Any additional questions can be addressed to Josh Willis.


AIDS Walk returns to downtown – October 29, 2009


AIDS Project Rhode Island’s annual AIDS Walk is moving from Roger Williams Park to Downtown this year, to help boost the visibility of the event. The walk was also moved from June to October so that it takes place when college students are in town and so they can participate. Both good moves I think.

Slightly confusingly, they are moving from Roger Williams Park, to Roger Williams National Memorial Park.

For more information and to register a group, visit APRI.


“Not About The Buildings” Spelling Bee – June 22, 2009

From Not About The Buildings:

For the third year in a row, tensions are mounting in Providence as some of the city’s best spellers gear up for a fierce night of competition to benefit local literary organization Not About The Buildings. The battle begins promptly at 9pm on June 22nd at AS220 (115 Empire Street).

Founded in 2006, Not About The Buildings strives to build a vibrant literary community in Providence; initially, its focus was on the struggling library system, but more recently it has branched out into events, small-press publishing, and art installations. (An exhibit in the Washington Street windows of the URI Library, part of the Providence Art Windows, opens June 18th, and June 21st a joint fundraiser with Providence Books Through Bars will be launching.)

The Spelling Bee is both its largest annual fundraiser and its biggest draw. Last year’s bee attracted thirty-seven spellers and nearly a hundred spectators. This year, the winner can expect to receive about two hundred dollars’ worth of donated prizes.

“My favorite part of the bee,” says Matthew Lawrence, founder of Not About The Buildings and host of the event, “is the way it draws really different groups of people together. There was probably a forty-year span in the contestants’ ages, and it was really fun seeing college professors hanging out with punk kids and the everybody from Blue State and Urban Outfitters. We’ve also had two married couples squaring off against one another.”

After fourteen rounds of competition, Maureen Reddy won the 2008 competition with the word ‘caesura,’ a literary term referring to a break in a line of Old English poetry. (Perhaps not surprisingly, Reddy is the Chair of the English Department at Rhode Island College.)

She will be returning this year as a judge, alongside JP Reader, Umperor of the Providence Kickball League.

Proceeds go to maintaining Not About The Buildings, and are raised in two ways: the Bee costs five dollars to enter (though it’s free to watch); additionally, people are encouraged to donate money on behalf of their favorite spellers, with prizes going to whoever puts the most money on the winner.