Fun at the Volvo Ocean Race Stopover in Newport, RI

We told my parents that we were headed to Newport, RI for mother’s day weekend and they asked if we were going to the Volvo Ocean Race. We had never heard of it so we went to their website and after a little research we decided to check the event out while we were in town. Well, it was SO fun. I hadn’t even intended on blogging about it but you know when you have exactly zero expectations about something and it turns out great and that makes it even greater? That’s sort of what happened with the Volvo Ocean Race Stopover event in Newport, RI at Fort Adams National Park.

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First, the Volvo Ocean Race is basically a group of 7 sailing teams racing around the world (actual ships are pictured above). There are 9 legs of the race with 11 ports (the only port in the US this year is Newport). In each port they set up a race village where you can learn more about the boats, the teams, and have a little fun with the activities. The village at Fort Adams in Newport, RI will be set up through May 17th so there is still time to go!

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The event is for all ages, we were pleasantly surprised to find a decent amount of fun activities for kids like this one – M sure did love “driving” this little Volvo truck through the course.

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There is an area where you get carded (children are allowed in) that was just lovely – all sorts of lounge areas set up, each one based on one of the countries where the stopovers are with coordinating games. They sell food, beer, champagne, and yummy mixed drinks. Again, we had NO expectations of this event so we ended up bringing in our own food (which you’re welcome to do) but the menu looked great (this area sold higher end food like flatbreads and fresh burgers, another food area had clam chowder and hot dogs).

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It was great to sit, eat, have a drink, and let Z play some of the games they had set up.

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Also, she was obsessed with this pirate on stilts (who was there to promote the rum sponsor)!

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Of course the event is really all about the sailing. It was neat to visit the cross-section model of one of the ships that’s racing. Once you took your shoes off you were free to roam through, see where they sleep (tiny bunk beds!), work (tiny desk!), and basically crawl around the hull to get everywhere.

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The last fun area was within the actual fort on the park. There were life size chess and checker boards, giant Jenga, and more. There was also this little bumper boat area for kids to “sail” their own boats, which was great for us since Z had been asking to ride a boat all morning. She jumped right in and zoomed around the pool, it was pretty hilarious.

The Volvo OCean Race Stopover event in Newport was really very fun. The event is free to attend and you’re welcome to drive, take a boat shuttle, ride your bike, etc… to get to Fort Adams. We drove and it was only $10 to park (next weekend will be $20 to park but free if you drive a Volvo). Next Sunday is when the ships take off for leg 7 on their way to Lisbon. Let me know if you go!

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