Originally appearing: https://cranstononline.com/stories/autumn-marketplace-with-feel-of-gaspee-days,156091?
By: Cranston Herald Staff
Posted: Wednesday, October 14, 2020


It was October, but it could have been Memorial Day weekend in Pawtuxet Park on Saturday as more than 1,000 people – all wearing masks, as best could be seen – turned out for the first Autumn 2020 Outside Marketplace.

There was no mistaking the feel of a Gaspee Days Arts and Craft Show – usually the kickoff to the Gaspee Days celebration and summer – as people visited one booth after another to look at and purchase crafts and homemade goods. In total, explained Debbie Wood, one of the vendors and the marketplace organizer, 60 vendors had signed up for the event made possible with a $40,000 “Take it Outside” grant from the Rhode Island Commerce Corporation. The Autumn 2020 Outside Marketplace will be held every Saturday form 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the village park through Dec. 12.

And what about inclement weather and the autumn cold?

Russell Moore of the city of Warwick’s Department of Economic Development and Tourism, said Saturday there’s no reason to concern. He pointed to a large, grassy area bordering the playground where the city plans to erect a 6,000-square-foot tent capable of accommodating 24 vendors with the proper distancing requirements.

Moore said grant funds would enable the acquisition of the tent as well as heaters. Vendors were charged $25 for Saturday’s event with the funds going to the Warwick Police Department K-9 unit.