Saturday night saw the culmination of the first annual Providence International Arts Festival, and your roving correspondent was there. With son Billy and superbuddy Maria Ruggieri, we parked and set off down wild Washington Street on our way to WaterFire. I miss Sound Session, which closed Westminster Street for years, and look forward to the Foo Festival of AS220, which still closes Empire toward the end of summer. But a closed Washington Street offered a visual delight. As did the parking lot behind the Great Façade on Weybosset Street, next to the Providence Arcade. It was transformed into an intimate concert space – a perfect use for the site.
So did Kennedy Plaza, where RIPTA’s inartful replacement of Art Nouveau bus waiting kiosks with sterile glass and steel sheds was “covered up” by delightful demonstrations in the realm of public art. “Creative Capital,” my eye! But, hey – we’ve got music and light and color and joy! Can’t we just fuggeddabout public policy for a sec?
Downtown was magical from one end to the other, but my camera dejuiced after I took the video below just east of Washington’s intersection with Empire. Pulsation may not be my ambience of choice, but Washington certainly was lively and animated. Shot this video – Hi, Maria! – and then stopped at a lively food truck for Totally (yummy!) Buck Naked Fries – and then on (cameraless) down Washington, on through KP, over to WaterFire, and finally back to the car via a Sol Chariots pedicab and on home without liberating comatose camera from the Ruggierian purse.
But as the new adage has it, and contrary to the old adage, reportage delayed is not reportage denied! Viva downtown Providence!