Movies in Rocky Point Park

rockyHistory was made on June 18 in Rocky Point State Park with an outdoor screening of The Lego Movie. Not since its closing in 1995 has any company used the park for such a recreational event. Entertainment Under the Stars, a local company based in Cranston, is screening family films throughout the summer at this scenic waterfront park, and welcoming a bevy of food trucks at each screening.

For those unfamiliar with Rocky Point, a brief history lesson: Rocky Point Park was once one of the most popular attractions in RI from 1847 through 1995. After years of vandalism followed by demolitions, the future of Rocky Point was uncertain. Locals feared that the land would be sold and turned into a gated community, closed off to the public forever. A few years ago, all 82 acres were conveyed to the state in order to develop what will now be known as Rocky Point State Park.

My memories of Rocky Point, those of a millennial growing up in Warwick, are of an abandoned amusement park. A dangerous place to explore with the possibility of escaped monkeys (the park had a monkey house). A relic of what once was the hippest place to be in RI. I remember feeling melancholy about being born a few years too late, missing the opportunity to enjoy Rocky Point Park in all its glory. Luckily, a bit of that glory is coming back.

Walking into the park on a Thursday night early in the summer, I saw a picturesque scene followed by an overwhelming sense of happiness that I can only assume was communal. The turnout was abundant, confirming the love locals have for Rocky Point in any incarnation. Families, groups of friends and individuals of all ages arrived hours before the screening to explore the freshly reopened park. Families played Wiffle ball, football and Frisbee games out in the open green field that was the mid-way in its past life. Visitors took in the vast landscapes and scenery. The food trucks were slamming, dishing out great food to hungry folks. Rocky Point was alive!

After the sun set, The Lego Movie started rolling. Individuals went to the spots they had claimed earlier with chairs and blankets, cozied up and enjoyed the film under the night sky. The sense of community was clear. “Everything was awesome!”


For the first time in a long time, locals had gathered in Rocky Point for amusement, entertainment and food. The original slogan, “We’ve Got Your Summer At Rocky Point” may need to be reworked with some modern flair, but the potential this park has to offer locals is endless. The success of the first event of this kind to occur in 20 years leaves me hopeful that Rocky Point will make a comeback. It has risen from the ashes and shaken the dust off, renewed and ready for a new generation of visitors to make fresh memories while maintaining that nostalgic vibe. Snaps to Movies in the Park for getting this metaphorical ball rolling!

Screenings will go on throughout the summer, and the event and parking are free! Just bring blankets, chairs, bugspray and your appetite. It’s also a good idea to be prepared to carry out your own trash. Movies in the Park is organized by the Central RI Chamber of Commerce, presented by National Grid and sponsored by Slocum Realty Insurance and Wave Federal Credit Union.

For more information, visit the Central Rhode Island Chamber of Commerce’s website.

Upcoming shows:

  • Annie – July 16
  • Happy Feet – July 30
  • Finding Nemo – August 20