Rise Together: Building a stronger & more equitable Rhode Island - The Raimondo Administration
Rise Together: Building a stronger & more equitable Rhode Island - The Raimondo Administration

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Governor Raimondo Announces Schedule for Governor's Bay Day, Along with Free Beach Parking

PROVIDENCE, R.I. - Governor Gina M. Raimondo signed an Executive Order today and announced the schedule for the annual Governor's Bay Day celebration on Sunday, July 26, 2015. The day includes family-friendly activities, and free parking at all Rhode Island state beaches, as well as fishing in Rhode Island salt waters without a saltwater fishing license. The Rhode Island Public Transit Authority (RIPTA) will also waive the roundtrip fare on all service to South County Beaches on Route 66 (URI/Galilee).

"Celebrating Governor's Bay Day is a chance for all Rhode Islanders to enjoy our great beaches and parks," said Raimondo. "We are so lucky to live in a state where some of the best fishing, hiking and boating are in our backyard. I am hopeful many people can take advantage of this time and relax with family and friends."

"Rhode Island's beaches are second to none, and Governor's Bay Day provides a great opportunity to highlight the many ways to enjoy these magnificent settings," said First Gentleman Andy Moffit. "Whether you make memories at a favorite spot on Bay Day, or visit somewhere new, we encourage all Rhode Islanders to get out and get moving in the Ocean State."

Governor's Bay Day encourages families to enjoy Rhode Island's outdoor public spaces and engage in an active lifestyle while also highlighting the economic value of our natural resources. Rhode Island state beaches attract more than six million visitors each year, contributing significantly to the State's $5.8 billion tourism industry. Parking will be free at all state beaches:

· Charlestown Breachway, Charlestown, RI

· East Beach, Charlestown, RI

· East Matunuck State Beach, South Kingstown, RI

· Misquamicut State Beach, Westerly, RI

· Roger W. Wheeler State Beach, Narragansett, RI

· Salty Brine State Beach, Narragansett, RI

· Scarborough State Beaches (North and South), Narragansett, RI

Saltwater fishing is also an important driver for the state's economy. Rhode Island's marine recreational fishing industry contributes $219 million to the State's economy, and supports more than 1,900 jobs. While the free fishing day provides an opportunity for everyone to fish without a license, it also serves as reminder that saltwater licenses are required on every day except on Bay Day, and that the license program provides vital support for Rhode Island's recreational fishing interests.

"Narragansett Bay is the heart of Rhode Island, a vital resource that supports our economy and way of life," said DEM Director Janet Coit. "Rhode Islanders have stepped up and supported strong laws to protect our waters, and I am proud of the progress we have made in cleaning up the Bay. It is important to come together to celebrate our beautiful bay, and I encourage Rhode Islanders and visitors to join us on July 26th."

In conjunction with Governor's Bay Day, DEM will host its third event of the 2015 Rhode Island Great Outdoors Pursuit from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Rocky Point, Rhode Island's newest state park.

Governor's Bay Day is open to the public and will feature a host of free activities at Colt State Park, Rocky Point State Park, Roger Wheeler State Beach, and Scarborough State Beaches.

The Governor's team will share information on this event using the hashtag #GovBayDay on social media.