Providence has often been defined as a college town and extremely versatile. Not only is it a huge town full of college students but it is the most heavily populated city in Rhode Island! The city is bustling with design students from Rhode Island School of Design, business students at Providence College, medical students at Brown University, and advertising and marketing communications students at Johnson and Wales University. Fun fact: Johnson and Wales University was founded as a business school in 1914 and also has one of the top culinary arts programs in the world. Providence is a creative capital for a reason!
Aside from being a creative capital, Providence is also one of the best cities for foodies. Whether you’re in the mood for Mexican, Chinese, American Style, or Italian, this tasty city will suit your needs. Along the strip of a spot called Federal Hill which is bustling with college students you will find all the options mentioned above plus more. Some of these restaurants include Sienna, a beautiful Italian restaurant also serving seafood, Bob and Timmy’s Grilled Pizza which serves an exotic pizza in all different flavors, Pastiche Fine Desserts which feature crapes that are out of this world, Andino’s which was voted the Most Creative during the Federal Hill Stroll of 2016, and the Green Apple which has the best couscous in all of New England. Federal Hill is only one of the many food stops to explore around Providence.
If you are visiting or have family members who go to college in Providence, then you will be able to browse the many restaurants located just at your fingertips around the college campuses. For example, Johnson and Wales University has many restaurants where students can go and grab a $10 lunch. Right on the JWU campus is U-melt, which serves a variety of grilled cheese sandwiches and soups and salads. Right down the street is a new hot spot called Say Cheese which serves a variety of Mac and Cheese bowls and sandwiches with cool names, for example, ‘The Jersey’. Yesterday they served a special which half the proceeds went to funds for children with Leukemia. The best part about Rhode Island as a whole is that it has over 6,000 nonprofit organizations as of 2015.
Some of these virtuous organizations include Save the Bay which offers volunteer programs which give individuals the opportunity to explore Narraganset Bay and the Power to Protect it, the Ronald McDonald House of Providence which provides programs that directly improve the health and well-being of hospitalized children and their families and Artist-Student mentoring program and gallery on Westminster street.
Now let’s talk about art! AAS20 is a creative facility and artist run organization committed to providing an unjuried and uncensored forum for the arts. The vision of AAS20 is “Just a world where all people can realize their full creative potential.” Some of the performers who have participated at AAS20 have been poets, artists, students, dancers, and models. In addition, some of the best art galleries in Providence are The Vapor Lounge R.I., A-1 Restaurant Supply, RISD Works, Gallery Belleau, Providence Art Club, Providence Picture Frame, Yellow Peril Gallery, Green Side Up Gallery, The Stairwell Gallery, OPM, Chabot Fine Arts Gallery, and Jb Cleaning Flea Market. Most of the artistic work in Providence is student made and is featured all over the city in original ways.
Not only does Providence have art and food but it also has fantastic concerts! Some of these venues are held at Lupos Heartbreak Hotel, The Dunkin Donuts Center, and the Convention Center. Specifically, some of the concerts going down this summer will be The Neighbourhood, Awolnation, Vox Urbana, Mark Milloff, and Eve Six. Not only does Providence hold great concerts but plays are also performed at the very own Providence Performing Arts Center. This September 21-October 8 Wicked is performing in Providence. There’s a reason why they use the phrase wicked good in Providence!
If you’re looking for a more scenic environment don’t neglect the fact that there are 30 parks in Providence. Roger Williams, founder of Rhode Island even has a park named after himself in Providence called Roger Williams Park. Right near that park is a botanical center which includes two connected greenhouses filled with plants, fountains, a fish pond, and a small waterfall which opened in 2007. If you’re looking to go on a run along the lake then India Point Park in Providence is the way to go. It is a beautiful scenic area which features a lot of the history of the small, dynamic city.
Whether you’re looking for tasty food, a good night out, a peaceful, scenic spot to relax, a place to volunteer, or a timeless play to be entertained by Providence is just like an Everything bagel, it has it all! Manhattan, New York and Providence, Rhode Island have many of the same customs but they are also very different and dynamic in their own way. Providence is a city full of opportunities at your fingertips!