Annual Events

The Blackstone Valley Tourism Council has created and operates several annual events including:

Tourism Promotion of RI's Blackstone Valley

Blackstone Valley Tourism Council is the state-designate tourism office for Northern Rhode Island where we lead the effort in sustainable tourism development and tourism promotion to attract visitors to our region
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Blackstone Valley Polar Express Train Ride

This popular event attracts over 20,000 passengers to downtown Woonsocket to share in the holiday spirit. 2019 Dates: Weekends Nov. 15 - Dec. 22
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Cherry Blossom Project

Our Cherry Blossom Program includes both the beautification project along Roosevelt Avenue, as well as the crowning of RI's Cherry Blossom Princess to represent our state in Washington DC. 2020 Dates and Info: TBD
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Blackstone Valley/Amber Valley Compact

A formal twinning agreement between the Blackstone and Amber valleys and Pawtucket and Belper, stipulating a continued commitment to work on international economic development, cultural and social ties and land use issues. 2020 Info: TBD
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W&H GAC 2018

Keep Blackstone Valley Beautiful

As RI's only Keep America Beautiful affiliate, KBVB leads the effort for litter clean-ups, beautification, and recycling education 2020 Event Dates: TBD
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Explorer River Tours

Tours that expose the nature and heritage of the Blackstone River Valley. 2019 Dates: Through Oct. 22 from Woonsocket
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Blackstone Culinaria Food Tours

For over 10 years, Blackstone Food Tours have offered a rare opportunity to meet the individuals running some of the most unique and delicious restaurants in Rhode Island. 2020 Dates: TBD
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A hands-on outdoor environmental educational experience that can be specialized according to teacher’s requests and grade level needs
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RI Chinese Dragon Boat Races & Taiwan Day Festival

A celebration of culture along the banks of the Pawtucket River with exciting races, traditional Taiwanese & Chinese performances, and the popular dumpling eating contest. 2020 Date: TBD
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Train Excursion through the Blackstone Valley

Day-long train trip from Woonsocket, RI to Putnam, CT for a fun-filled fall experience
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Blackstone Valley Heritage Golf Tournament

Annual charity tournament that benefits Blackstone Valley Tourism Council youth environmental education programs. 2020 Date: TBD
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Blackstone Valley Tourism Council's Annual Awards Celebration

A celebration of Blackstone Valley that's an opportunity to recognize the Tourism Council's accomplishments and award our partners that are making positive change in the region 2020 Date: TBD
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Other Events

  • Pawtucket Arts Festival: Created in part by the Council in 2001, the Council continues to provide administrative and promotional support for the annual festival.
  • Rhode Island Music Hall of Fame and Annual Induction Ceremony: Created by the Council in 2012, the Council continues to provide administrative and promotional support for the Hall of Fame and its annual induction ceremony held annually at the end of April.
  • Samuel Slater Canal Boat: British-style canal boat provides chartered tours and a full bed & breakfast to the public. Due to work being done with Central Falls Landing, the Canal Boat will be discontinued until further notice.

Current Projects

In addition to the annual/ongoing events, current planning and development projects and attractions and promotional projects and activities include the following:

Planning and Development Projects

  • Blackstone River Cleanup and Waterfront Development:  Supported early efforts and promotes continued cleanup of the Blackstone River, development of the Pawtucket Festival Pier, and Central Falls Landing.
  • Blackstone River Bikeway (Bike Path) Development:  Supported creation of and promotes continued development of the Blackstone River Bikeway and continues to support completion of the project, including connection to other statewide and Massachusetts bike paths.
  • Paths to Progress RI:  Created and supports statewide network to advocate for continuous bike path throughout the state.
  • Rhode Island Music Hall of Fame: Assisted with creation of the Rhode Island Music Hall of Fame.
  • Environmental Cleanup and Beautification: Promotes Keep America Beautiful thru Keep Blackstone Valley Beautiful including annual environmental cleanups, recycling education and beautification projects throughout the Blackstone Valley as well as other cleanups and environmental activities.
  • Blackstone Valley and Amber Valley Compact.  Created and supports the twinning of Blackstone Valley with the Amber Valley in England and Pawtucket with Belper, England. This year marks the 25th anniversary of the Compacts.
  • Chocolate Mill Overlook: Created a park that celebrates chocolate manufacturing in Central Falls including a canoe and boat launch.
  • Blackstone River Valley National Park: Supported successful legislation to create National Park status in several portions of the Blackstone Valley and supports and advocates for its future growth.
  • Broad Street Regeneration Initiative:  Created and provides administrative support for the regional planning project with Pawtucket, Central Falls and Cumberland to develop cooperative solutions to some of the issues plaguing Broad Street.
  • Hachiko Monument: Promotes the movie and relations between US and Japanese culture.
  • Blackstone Monument: Developing monument commemorating the founder of the Blackstone Valley and City of Boston, Rev. William Blackstone.

Education, Information, Promotion

  • Visitor Center Management: Manages the Pawtucket and Lincoln Visitor Centers including developing and administering several events in Pawtucket.
  • Distribution Network: Distributes brochures and other information to several visitor and other sites throughout Rhode Island
  • Riverclassroom: River education for students aboard the Explorer Riverboat
  • Sustainable Tourism Lab: Promotes sustainable tourism throughout the world through workshops and other activities, in addition to offering consulting services to planning and government agencies.
  • Educational Tourism Programs: Offers a number of education programs for students to learn about tourism.
  • Networking Workshops: Workshops bring together individuals from different segments of the community to network and receive training and educational information.
  • Promotes attractions, events, resource and other information in Rhode Island’s Blackstone Valley.
  • Online calendar of events located in Rhode Island’s Blackstone Valley
  • Promotes canoeing and kayaking on the Blackstone River.
  • Detours:  Maps depicting various tours and attractions.
  • Blackstone Alert: Provides flooding and other disaster information in Rhode Island’s Blackstone Valley.