Warren Quahog Festival and Art Show returns this weekend

By Manny Correira
Posted 9/20/22

The Quahog Festival will return in a new format, and the Art Show returns for its 29th year.

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Warren Quahog Festival and Art Show returns this weekend


After skipping the last two years because of the COVID-19 pandemic and its aftermath, the 38th Warren Quahog Festival and  29th Warren Art Show will take center stage at Burr’s Hill Park this coming weekend, Sept. 24 and 25.

The event, held in conjunction with the Warren-Barrington Rotary Club and the Jay Barry Cultural Arts which is open to the public, will take place on Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and on Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Unlike past years, when this popular event was held during some of the hottest days of summer, the 2022 version is expected to greet visitors in much cooler weather conditions.

“That’s one of the main reasons we moved this event to late September,” said veteran Quahog Festival chairman Tim Pray. “We used to hold the festival the third weekend in August when the weather is so unpredictable, but then we decided to move it back to the middle of July. We had to endure some extreme heart the last 10 years, so it was decided to hold the event the last weekend in September.”

Traditionally, the Quahog Festival and Art Show attracts anywhere from 6,000 to 12,000 people with most of the members of Rotary handling to food chores for both days.

“This year, the festival will have food trucks on the premises,” said Pray. “The Rotary Club doesn’t have a large enough membership to handle the amount of food previously…We will have ice cream, lemonade, kids’ entertainment with Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts, treasures from the sea, mermaid baubles and nautical crafts. There will also be a beer garden and live bands performing in the Band Shell at Burr’s Hill Park both days.”

Mr. Pray has been helping orchestrate this popular event for more than 35 years and says being a part of it all has been very gratifying.

“It’s pretty routine,” he offered. “I have a lot of support from Rotary Club members. It’ll be a lot easier this year without the food production. This is a more modern way of doing things.”

As in the past, the Art Festival will be held on the upper level of Burr’s Hill Park, while the lower level will feature the Quahog Festival. Parking is also plentiful in and around event grounds.

“Part of our funding comes from a trust at JP Morgan Bank,” said Kate Barry, who along with local artist Kathy Kittell, have done much to help make this event such an overwhelming success.

Arts Festival returns for its 29th annual year
The 29th Annual Warren Art Festival will be held on Saturday, Sept. 24 from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and Sunday, Sept. 25 from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

For 28 years the festival was held the third weekend of July. However, due to the extreme heat the past several years, a decision was made to permanently move the event to September.

Artists will show and sell their fine art in the categories of Painting (oil or acrylic), Watercolor, Graphics, Photography, and Sculpture. Warren residents who are participating include Deborah Green, Gary Heise, Richard Kaiser, Kathy Kittell, Butch Lombardi, Mike Marino, and Bill McLane.

David Harrington is the judge of this year’s festival. Harrington holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Arts and a Bachelor’s Degree in Architecture from Rhode Island School of Design. He studied pottery in England and opened and operated his own pottery studio for 15 years. He is currently the curator at Linden Place in Bristol.

Cash awards, ranging from $35.00 to $250.00, will be given in each of the five categories as well as Best of Show, Suzanne Hassell Memorial Award, and an award given in memory of Don Primiano who organized the first art festival in Warren in the sixties. 

During the festival there will be three free artist demonstrations under the large white tent on the hill. Warren resident Richard Kaiser will conduct one in watercolor on Saturday from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. Mike Bryce will follow with an acrylic demonstration from 2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.

On Sunday Warren resident Bill McLane will give an oil painting demonstration from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. 
The art festival committee is also sponsoring the bands on Sunday, Sept. 25. Former Warren resident Kirk Feather will head up the Kirk Feather Quintet which will perform from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Repercussions, with Warren resident Jack Ezikovich, will follow from 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.

The Warren Art Festival will be held in conjunction with the Warren Quahog Festival, which is sponsored by the Warren Barrington Rotary Club.

The Quahog Festival will have live music, food, and a variety of vendors. 
The Warren Art Festival is sponsored by the Jay Barry Cultural Arts and the Idalia C. Whitcomb Trust. For more information about the art festival, email k.kittellart@gmail.com or call (401) 527-2748. You can also find the Warren Art Festival on Facebook.

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