When the sounds get louder and the lights get brighter, that must mean downtown PVD is back on with a whole new fuel of fire! Where the wheels grind and the good vibes bind, the pulse starts at the center of the city, or rather, the BankNewport City Center, also known as the Providence Rink.
As the air gets warmer, the people get cooler, but it starts with a throwback for the rad cats to catch: The Roller Disco. People of all ages and backgrounds lace up and roll out onto the rink with groovy tunes under the glowing moon. What started last year is brewing to be bigger and better, bringing together a multi-skilled community.
“It brings out this funky group of people that are down to skate and teach each other moves,” said Sami Leigh, downtown Providence parks programming supervisor. “There’s like a massive community aspect that comes out for roller disco. It’s really cool!”
Running June 2 through October 29 on Thursday, Friday and select Saturday nights, the BankNewport City Center will host the popular Roller Disco. Open to all, the rink not only provides the hip vibe but offers rentals on skates, helmets and lockers to store your belongings. Just past the lights and disco ball at the entrance, the music will be spun rink-side by a variety of local DJs and be performed at the adjacent Trinity Beer Garden with live bands, flipping back and forth, festival style.
Trinity Beer Garden has also been upgraded and expanded with more tables, chairs, a stage and of course a nice selection of ales and cocktails from the Trinity Brewhouse gang. The grub will be provided by local food trucks that have partnered up with the Providence Rink.
The masterminds behind the disco nights are looking to embellish them on select nights in conjunction with other huge community events such as PRIDE and PVDFEST, further building on the spirit of the city. Also partnering up are a crew all too familiar with wheeling around the flat track, the furious and the friendly of Providence Roller Derby. After having a couple of years off, the league is looking to come back bigger and better. PRD skaters will be at the discos selling merch, answering questions and recruiting new skaters, referees and non-skating officials. Brake by if you dare!
“It’s been so awesome to watch people that don’t know each other, from all walks of life, come together in the center of the city and teach each other, and enjoy each other, and have a good time,” said Leigh. “It’s so cool to provide that for people and watch it grow.”
Beyond just skating, the City Center has upgraded its event calendar with monthly film features, bringing back the vibes of the former Movies On The Block. Setting up the big screen, they offer reserved seating for up to 64 attendees and general admission with provided benches, or you can just bring your own accommodations. Upcoming films include the musical In The Heights and Halloween favorite Hocus Pocus.
For those looking for other exercise options, the City Center operates Monday through Wednesday in tandem with the Super Fun Activities Club, which hosts league games in Volleyball, Dodgeball, Pickleball, Soccer and Roller Hockey. Sign-ups are periodically open on the rink’s website: www.theprovidencerink.com.
But the fun doesn’t stop there! Their website and social media are about to unleash a flurry of events all summer and fall currently known as “In The Parks.” Says Leigh, “We’re establishing a lot of new programming outside of the City Center as well [including the 15 parks], to be announced.”
To keep up with rink happenings, follow their social media @BankNewportCC.