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Best things to do in Rhode Island this week: May 12-19

This week: Springfest in Misquamicut, Ocean Race happenings, The Temptations and The Four Tops, Mother’s Day market, and more

The Newport-based 11th Hour Racing team won Leg 4 of this year's race from Brazil to Newport. It was the first leg the team has won in this year's race.Sailing Energy / The Ocean Race

Boats. Mimes. Chicken and waffles. The Temptations. Jugglers. Cupcakes and beer. The Four Tops… No, I didn’t just have that weird dream again. This is all really happening. Here in the Ocean State. In the next seven days. Let’s roll, neighbors.


It’s go time. The Ocean Race boats began arriving in Newport on May 10, with Newport’s 11th Hour Racing winning Leg 4 of the race, from Brazil to Newport. Boats likely will arrive through May 12. On May 13, Ocean Live Park — a nine-day festival of ocean-themed fun — kicks off at Fort Adams. The park opens daily 10 a.m.-7 p.m. through May 21.


Some event highlights: You might sail onboard a Sail Newport J22 with a skipper; experience a “multi-sensory holographic show” via the One Blue Voice Immersive Experience. Discover the Exploration Zone’s many wonders. Plus food, live music, cocktail cafes, kids activities, photo ops, among many other events.

Calendar highlights: The opening parade and ceremonies kick it all off 11 a.m.-1 p.m. May 13. Catch a classic car exhibition May 16. Enjoy a Genova Pesto Championship and a Friday Night Lights High School Sailing Regatta on May 19… I’ll stop there. See full event schedule here; more details here. Admission is free with $25 parking at 72 Fort Adams Drive; $20 on May 15-16. Buy parking passes online or on-site.


Another doozy of a listing: SpringFest at Misquamicut State Beach runs May 12-14 with carnival rides, food trucks — from Del’s to kettle corn, vegan fare to meatballs — beer and wine garden, live music, craft vendors, classic car show, martial arts demo, mime, juggler, and more. For a sense, check their photo gallery. May 12, 5-11 p.m., May 13, 11 a.m.-11 p.m., May 14, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tickets $12 per day, kids under 7 free. Ride tickets vary. Details and directions here.



Newport Live presents two shows in their “Indigenous Voices Series” this week: The Cary Morin Duo (Cary Morin and Celeste Di Iorio) play May 12. According to Morin’s website, he plays “roots-infused Native Americana with hints of bluegrass, folk, blues, and rock.” For a sense, see here and here. Learn more about the artists here. $25. 7:30 p.m. at the Jamestown Arts Center, 18 Valley St., Jamestown.

On May 13, catch Raye Zaragoza: a “Japanese-American, Mexican, Indigenous woman” whose bread-and-butter is “feminist anthems and fearless protest folk,” according to her website. Fun fact: Zaragoza also writes songs for the Netflix kids show “Spirit Rangers.” For a sense, see here. Learn more about the artist here. $35. 7:30 p.m. At Newport Classical Recital Hall, 42 Dearborn St., Newport.


Newport Folk faves The Lone Bellow return to the city-by-the-sea to play the Jane Pickens Theatre & Event Center May 13 at 8 p.m. Now touring on their fifth full-length album, “Love Songs for Losers,” these poppy folk-rockers can have you stomping your feet, then slow it down to a zen-out vibe. Tickets from $41. 49 Touro St., Newport. 401-846-5474. Details here. Learn more about the band here.


I’m a book lover and Ocean Stater. Rhody has so many talented authors and bookstores that I’ve started a little subsection of this column, “Rhode Reads.” If you’re a local author or a bookstore hosting a local signing, hit me up and you might get featured. In this week’s Rhody Reading News…


“Kids Reading Across Rhode Island”— Rhode Island’s One Book, One State program for kids — kicking off its 14th year with “The Aquanaut,” by Dan Santat. The program encourages Rhody kids in grades 4-6 to read the same book, and engage in community discussions and programs. This 2022 middle-reader graphic novel from Caldecott Medalist Santat will help mark the first in-person Kids Reading event since 2019. Kids can meet Santat, score a free copy, and enjoy hands-on activities. May 13, 2-4 p.m. at the State House. Learn more here.


Step aside, Coachella. The cool kids are headed to Foodchella. Yup, right across the border in Somerset, Mass., Southcoast Open Air Market hosts “Foodchella 5,” their fifth food fest, with live music, beer, wine — and plenty of Rhody vendors. Find Friskie Fries — because fries can be a meal. Think “Dirty Daug” fries with NY system weiner bits, meat sauce, diced onion and mustard, or “Tiger King” general tso’s chicken, mandarin oranges, scallions — along with PVD’s Hometown Poke, Cranston’s Lulu’s Little Pancakes, The Hot Potato RI truck and more. May 13, 3 to 9 p.m. 100 Slades Ferry Ave. Details here and here.


Old 97′s fans, take note: Rhett Miller plays PVD’s Askew May 13 with special guests: Boston troubadours Will Dailey and CE Skidmore. I’ve been a 97′s fan since “Champaign, Illinois.” For a taste of Miller solo see here . Learn more about artists here, here and here. From $25. Doors 8 p.m., show 9 p.m. 150 Chestnut St. Details here.



Four cool things: plants, desserts, brews, moms. Bristol’s Pivotal Brewing Company combines them with “Mothers’ Day Succulents and Sweets.” Sarcastic Sweets pops up with sweets from 1:30-4:30 p.m., while Coastal Blooms offers a build-your-own succulent station from 3-5 p.m. Plus a “special release Mommy Juice.” Free admission. Noon-5 p.m. 500 Wood St, Building 111. Details here and here.


Tiverton celebrates Rhody moms with their 3rd annual Mother’s Day Market May 14 from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Find some 50 vendors — from jewelry and pottery, to garden furniture, flowers, plants and veggies, plus live tunes. You never know what you’ll find at this market. Free. At Tiverton Middle School, 10 Quintal Drive. Details here.


If Mom loves beer, brunch and cupcakes, head to LineSider Brewing on May 14. The East Greenwich brewery is hosting two Mothers’ Day events:

Brunch, via South County Barbeque, runs 10 a.m.-1 p.m. with two prix fixe offerings. One: biscuits & gravy, smoked deviled eggs, pork-belly mac & cheese and blueberry cornbread. Two: smoked chicken and waffles, smoked deviled eggs, pork belly mac & cheese and blueberry cornbread. ($25)


From 10 a.m.-6 p.m. it’s beers and sweets via Silver Spoon Bakery. Mom can pair a Banana Fosters hefeweizen with a banana cream-filled caramel cupcake, a gingerbread stout with gingerbread cupcake topped with cream cheese buttercream; a cranberry sour with Fiori di Sicilia cupcake topped with vanilla buttercream and cranberry compote; and a double New England IPA with a lemon curd-filled lemon dream cupcake. Now that says love. $25. 1485 South County Trail. Details here.


Attention, foodies: The Rhode Island Historical Society hosts “Spring Forward: Around the World in 80 Trays” at PVD’s historic Aldrich House May 18.

The evening will spotlight Rhody’s “global food culture” according to billing. The main event kicks off at 6:30 p.m. with drinks and fare from dozens of local restaurants offering tastes of Central and South America, the Caribbean, West Africa, the Middle East, Central and South Asia, Southeast Asia, and Europe, according to the Historical Society. Plus live jazz, pastries, tea, and coffee. $75 non-members. 110 Benevolent St. Details here.


Beep beep! Legend alert! This is not a drill, people. The Temptations and The Four Tops are headed to PVD for an epic double-billing at The Vets May 19. If you haven’t lived under a rock, you know all the hits: “My Girl,” “Baby I Need Your Loving”, “Just My Imagination”, “I Can’t Help Myself (Sugar Pie, Honey Bunch), “Ain’t Too Proud To Beg” (which just turned 57.) … This is going to be a night of Rhody fans singing together. Doors 6:30 p.m., show 7:30 p.m. Tickets from $63. 1 Avenue of the Arts, Providence. Details here.


The Players at the Barker Playhouse in Providence kick off the 114th season with 2004 Tony-winner “Avenue Q” May 19. The musical comedy featuring puppets and humans is a “Sesame Street” parody, with “adult-oriented themes,” according to the Players’ billing.

According to a 2012 Globe review, characters “Princeton and Kate have a date that leads to hot sex (graphic, too — this show is not for kids), but then he has commitment issues and takes up with Lucy the Slut.” After Princeton loses his job, he sings “It Sucks to Be Me.” The Globe noted: “The only satisfied character, Trekkie Monster, is addicted to Internet porn.” Ticket prices vary. Runs through May 28. 400 Benefit St., Providence. 401-273-0590. Learn more here and here.

Until next week, Rhody: Keep rockin.’

Lauren Daley can be reached at ldaley33@gmail.com. Follow her on Twitter @laurendaley1.