Best Bets

Weekend Best Bets

We can't believe it's December either. Luckily there's a lot happening this weekend to help ease us into the spirit of the season.


On Saturday, Downcity comes to life for the holidays. We’re talking food trucks, a Providence Flea’s mini-flea at Aurora, music, an appearance from Santa at Grant’s Block and a special holiday Movies on the Block screening of Elf. It’s basically everything you love about Downcity happening on one convenient day.
Saturday, 10am-6pm. Grant’s Block, Providence. More info...

Wynton Marsalis and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra
Renowned jazz trumpet player Wynton Marsalis leads the country’s preeminent jazz orchestra for an evening of Big Band Holiday tunes. We’re all braced for a long month of “Grandma Got Runover By a Reindeer,” why not inoculate yourself to bad holiday music with a New Orleans spin on familiar jingles?
Friday, 7:30pm. $28-$100. The Vets, 1 Avenue of the Arts, Providence. More info...

If jazz isn’t your thing. The Vets will also be hosting an intimate evening with Matisyahu. The evening of stripped down performances will find Matisyahu revisiting the music that launched his career.
Saturday, 8pm. $35-$55. The Vets, 1 Avenue of the Arts, Providence. More info...

Providence Flea
If you can’t get your fix of the Flea on Saturday, head to Hope High School for the first of two special holiday Fleas on Sunday. Featuring 50 vendors, this eclectic, summer in the city tradition gets a bit of a second wind just in time for the holidays.
Sunday, 10am-4pm. Hope High School, 324 Hope Street, Providence. More info...

Downtown Jingle 5k
Lace up those running shoes and hit the pavement for downtown 5k to benefit Toys for Tots, the Rhode Island Community Food Bank and Project Undercover. Runners and walkers of all ages are welcome.
Sunday, 10am. $18-$35. Rhode Island Convention Center, 1 Sabin Street, Providence. More info...

RISD Alumni and Student Holiday Sale
The annual holiday favorite is back to help us all get a little more creative with our holiday shopping. Showcasing the works of over 200 RISD alumni and current students, you’d be hard pressed to leave empty handed.
Saturday, 10am-5pm. $8. Rhode Island Convention Center, 1 Sabin Street, Providence. More info...

Barrington Tree Lighting
Barrington’s brightening up the weekend for families with its annual tree lighting. Town hall will be screening kid favorite holiday movies and hosting some fun arts and crafts. Meanwhile, Ballet Prestige will be next door at the Barrington Library performing scenes from The Nutcracker. Santa will be there too (natch) and local groups will be singing carols on the town hall steps until the official tree lighting at 5pm.
Saturday, 2pm. 283 County Road, Barrington. More info...

Bristol Breakfast with Santa
The big guys has his work cut out for him this weekend. Bring the kiddos to Mt. Hope High School for a breakfast meet and greet with St. Nick, arts and crafts and a magic show. Kids under five get in for free.
Sunday, 8-11am. Mt. Hope High School, 199 Chestnut Street, Bristol. More info...

Jimmy’s Saloon 
Rock and roll at Jimmy’s Saloon with two nights of great local shows. First up on Friday are Wild Sun, Avenues, Homeless Apians and Steve Volkmann. If that isn’t enough for you, No Plateau, Blind Revision, Truth Divides and Bandwagon Inferno will be taking the stage on Saturday. Both shows are 21+.
Friday and Saturday, 9pm-1am. 37 Memorial Boulevard, Newport. More info...

Wickford Festival of Lights
Now in its 30th year, the Wickford Festival of Lights is quintessential holiday cheer. Thousands of lights illuminate the streets for strolling from one local business to the next. The overbooked Santa Claus will arrive by boat (how Rhode Island is that?) and other highlights will include the elf parade, ice sculptures and more for the whole family.
All weekend. Downtown Wickford. More info...