Autumnfest becomes 501-C-3

The Autumnfest Steering Committee has announced that their application to the Internal Revenue Service has been approved and the organization has officially become tax exempt and tax deductible effective on April 29, 2020. All donations that have been received after that date now qualify for tax benefits for donors.

“This is a great way to kick off Autumnfest 2021 with this new 501c3 status,” said General Chairperson Garrett Mancieri. “Our committee has worked extremely hard over the past few years to make the changes necessary to obtain this certification and to represent a true community service organization that prides itself in the work we do to unite our region and give back to the community that we all love.”

This change marks the first time that Autumnfest has achieved this tax exempt and tax deductible status – changing from a 501c4 to the 501c3. Autumnfest will be announcing our 2021 Steering committee as well as our fundraising programs in January of 2021.

Rhode Islanders invited to #walkoff2020 on New Year’s Day

The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management is inviting residents to #WalkOff2020 and celebrate the New Year by getting outdoors with their immediate household members during the holiday weekend.

Starting New Year’s Day, people are encouraged to visit state parks with their household members — physically distanced from other groups and masked — during regular park hours to explore and enjoy the outdoors.

First Day Hikes are part of a nationwide initiative led by America’s State Parks to encourage people to get outdoors. Last year nearly 85,000 people rang in the New Year, collectively hiking over 176,366 miles throughout the country on the hikes.

This year, instead of having a scheduled guided hike at a single location, DEM is encouraging people to visit state parks across Rhode Island to prevent crowding. If you arrive at a favorite park location and find that crowds are forming or the parking lot is full, officials ask that you leave and choose a different location, or return at another time or day.

A limited number of commemorative pins engraved with “Fort Adams State Park” will be available for self-pick-up at designated locations within the specified state parks, while supplies last. Prior to the Covid-19 public health crisis, DEM planned to host the annual Day Hike at this popular waterfront park. The list of RI state park locations is located at

The following state park locations will offer commemorative 2020 first-day hike pin pick-ups: Burlingame Campground, Charlestown; Colt State Park, Bristol; Fort Adams State Park, Newport; Goddard Memorial State Park, Warwick; John H. Chafee Nature Preserve, North Kingstown; and Lincoln Woods State Park, Lincoln

DEM urges the public to be respectful of the environment and our natural spaces by properly disposing of masks, gloves, and cleaning wipes. DEM reminds Rhode Islanders that all DEM properties have a Carry In/ Carry Out policy, and that visitors are responsible for their own trash.

With Rhode Island’s small game and deer hunting season open, DEM reminds all users of state management areas, and all hunters statewide, that they must wear at least 500 square inches of solid daylight-fluorescent orange material through the end of the season, February 28. The fluorescent orange must be worn above the waist and must be visible from all directions. Visit for more information about orange safety clothing requirements and for an interactive map of locations that allow hunting.

Free ice skating

Keep Blackstone Valley Beautiful  is welcoming skaters to enjoy free skating under the lights around their large Christmas tree at the Central Falls Landing.

Visitors can bring your own skates, or slide around with boots. The skating area is large enough to hold 10 people at a time, so families can enjoy together.

Skating is open daily from 5 to 7 p.m. through Sunday, Jan. 3 weather permitting. Masks and hand sanitizer will be available at no charge, and masks are required while skating.

Those with questions or who want to check how crowded the rink is are asked to email

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