Portsmouth 375th busy on Saturday

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PORTSMOUTH — It will be another busy weekend for the Portsmouth 375th celebration.

First, the 375th Steering Committee is helping to promote the Portsmouth Free Public Library's annual spring fund-raiser, "Touch-a-Truck," which starts at 10 a.m. Saturday, May 4, at Glen Park.

The event gives youngsters a chance to get up close and personal with all kinds of big and fascinating vehicles. Giant trucks and equipment volunteered by municipal and commercial organizations will be on display. In addition to the truck display, there will be fun activities for the children and food will be available for purchase from the Portsmouth Lions Club. A martial arts demonstration by Villari’s Martial Arts Center will be from 1-2 p.m.

The donation is $3 per person and proceeds will go toward library purchases.

From 10 a.m. to noon Saturday, the Portsmouth Garden Club and Girl Scouts will lead a cleanup of Founders' Grove, where the town settlers first arrived in 1638.

Fort Butts, a key position during Rhode Island's only major Revolutionary War land battle in 1778, is the subject of a talk and tour Saturday. The Rhode Island Marine Archaeology Project will discuss its plans for Fort Butts at a meeting open to all at noon at Town Hall. The tour begins at 1:30 p.m.; use the north parking lot at the high school (next to the turbine). You don't have to attend the meeting in order to take the tour.

On Sunday, there will be a "Birthday Par-TEA" celebrating Portsmouth's 375th year from 2-4 p.m. at the Glen Manor House, 3 Frank Coelho Drive. This tea for "ladies of all ages" is an opportunity for mothers, daughters, grandmothers and friends to enjoy each other's company and to support the preservation of the Manor House. Little ladies will enjoy making party hats, seeing a fashion show of party dresses by Groovy Gator, and watching a performance by Steppin' Out Dance Studio. A French tea catered by Blackstone Caterers will follow in the ballroom.

The cost is $25 if registered after April 25. For more information, visit www.glenmanorhouse.com.

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Jim McGaw

A lifelong Portsmouth resident, Jim graduated from Portsmouth High School in 1982 and earned a journalism degree from the University of Rhode Island in 1986. He's worked two different stints at East Bay Newspapers, for a total of 18 years with the company so far. When not running all over town bringing you the news from Portsmouth, Jim listens to lots and lots and lots of music, watches obscure silent films from the '20s and usually has three books going at once. He also loves to cook crazy New Orleans dishes for his wife of 25 years, Michelle, and their two sons, Jake and Max.