WARWICK, RI — Fair weather, families, businesses and a wide variety of food, music and activities and a parade greeted patrons of the city’s inaugural Rolling, Strolling Apponaug Winter Festival, a good augur for an event Mayor Frank Picozzi said he hopes will be an annual event.
“The Strolling Rolling Winter Festival went above and beyond our expectations. I can’t thank the planning committee, countless volunteers and city employees enough who all made this happen,” Picozzi said early this week.
Prior to the event, all signs pointed to success, with streets circling the City Hall blocks cordoned off, the parade participants in position on Veterans Memorial Parkway, food trucks, a heated picnic table food court and tables of craft and local services vendors spread between the points. Inside the Apponaug Branch Warwick Public Library, crafts were being led by Apponaug Branch Supervisor Diane Iacono, and Directors Ellen-O’Brien and Aaron Coutu-Jones greeted visitors at the door. Crafts were also underway next door at the Warwick Center for the Arts.
Across the street, inside the Central RI Chamber of Commerce headquarters, kids and parents lined up for a brief audience and photo with Santa and Mrs. Clause, who brought up the rear of the parade once it had navigated Apponaug’s eastern-most roundabouts before ending on Post Road in front of City Hall, where the bulk of the crowd had packed both stretches of sidewalk.
“We’re excited to have a family-friendly, festive event,” said Sue Baker, business development planner/coordinator with the tourism department, .who co-led the funding and organization of the event with Elizabeth Dunton, Warwick’s acting director of tourism.
The city and the (event) committee, the whole team, have really done an amazing job,” said Central RI Chamber of Commerce Director Lauren Slocum as the day got started.
Rob has worked as reporter and editor for several publications, including The Kent County Daily Times and Coventry Courier, before working for Gatehouse in MA then moving home with Patch Media. Now he's publisher and editor of WarwickPost.com. Contact him at [email protected] with tips, press releases, advertising inquiries, and concerns.