River Day celebration is June 28: Paddling, music, food, raptors, more


The Westport River Watershed Alliance invites the community to celebrate River Day for fun both on shore and on the river.

It all happens from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, June 28, at the Head of Westport Landing.

Whether participants join in the family paddle up river to the festival site or arrive some other way, activities are planned from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

River Day is a free family fun-filled day. Children’s activities include face painting, tee-shirt printing with fish, stilt building, and old fashioned games. At 11 a.m., New England Raptors will present a live raptor show. At noon, poster and photo prizes will be announced, followed by a May pole dance at 12:30. Numerous exhibitors will provide information under the tent.

Special staged performances include high school jazz/rock ensemble “Moment of Clarity” who will perform at 10 a.m.. Local acoustic musicians Deb Ross and Kevin MacIsaac will play river songs at 11:20 a.m.. The Back Eddy Bluegrass Band, one of the region's premier performing bluegrass bands, will be on stage at 1 p.m. The band performs fresh adaptations of contemporary and traditional bluegrass material, its own original songs, and lively instrumentals.

Wrapping up the day will be a community sing-a-long with the band and Magnolia’s Chris Ash and friends.

For those interested in paddling, the annual family paddle will depart from Hix Bridge at 10 a.m. and head up to the Head Landing. Registration is required and paddlers save by pre-registering early on-line at www.westportwatershed.org. Paddlers can register the day of at Hix Bridge Landing at 9 a.m.

WRWA will be showing off its new home, the Head Garage, on River Day. Stop by and see plans for this historic building. The Westport Historical Society will also be offering tours of the Head of Westport neighborhood.


River Day is a day devoted to celebrating the Westport River and is possible due to the support of over 70 businesses and the Westport Cultural Council.


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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.