Map
Providence, United States | (401) 273-1155
John Nickerson/WaterFire Providence

Before prime-time TV was a thing and smartphones ruled our waking lives, entertainment was achieved through communal events—dance halls, concerts, parades. Throwback merrymaking is at the core of WaterFire, a unique outdoor festival that draws close to a million participants each year. On designated evenings throughout summer (check the website for exact dates), a chain of 80 metal basins are safely lit on fire and floated down the Providence River, set to an invigorating soundtrack of world music. The scene goes late—crowds linger along the water’s edge until well past midnight, when the final blaze is extinguished.

Close
Things to Do
WaterFire

Before prime-time TV was a thing and smartphones ruled our waking lives, entertainment was achieved through communal events—dance halls, concerts, parades. Throwback merrymaking is at the core of WaterFire, a unique outdoor festival that draws close to a million participants each year. On designated evenings throughout summer (check the website for exact dates), a chain of 80 metal basins are safely lit on fire and floated down the Providence River, set to an invigorating soundtrack of world music. The scene goes late—crowds linger along the water’s edge until well past midnight, when the final blaze is extinguished.