Contact: Karen Cooke
Marketing/Promotion Manager
South County Tourism Council
Phone: 401.789.4422
Fax: 401.789.4437        

Narragansett, Rhode Island: South County Tourism Council's 21st Annual Dinner Meeting was held at The Towers in Narragansett, Rhode Island, the evening of Thursday, September 6.   

David C. DePetrillo, RIEDC, Director of Tourism, installed incoming Board Members for 2007-2008: Pam Lyons, Charlestown; Larry Harvey, Coventry; Dale Grogan, North Kingstown; and Kara Russo, South Kingstown. 

The 2007-2008 South County Tourism Council Executive Board Members are Bill Bokon, Chairman, Richmond; Debra Fournier, Vice Chairman, Coventry; Frank Prosnitz, Treasurer, East Greenwich; Charles Beck, Secretary, Charlestown.

Michael Tokoian, Chairman of Coastal Resource Management Council, was the keynote speaker.  CRMC, to name just a few programs, manages dredging, aquaculture, habitat and wetland restoration, the Clean Marina Program and Rights-of-Way to the shore.  Among its many projects, CRMC strives to replenish beaches that suffer from erosion and other natural processes, through beneficial re-use of sand and material from other CRMC's dredging and habitat restoration projects, said Tokoian.  Mr. Tokoian also conveyed the importance of preservation, protection, restoration of the coastal areas within the state and the important link between tourism and our coastal areas.

Myrna George, president of the South County Tourism Council, which represents the towns of Charlestown, Coventry, East Greenwich, Exeter, Hopkinton, Narragansett, North Kingstown, Richmond, South Kingstown, West Greenwich, and Westerly, presented the Starlight Awards.  Starlight beautifully illustrates that TOGETHER we are greater than the sum of our parts, TOGETHER stars shine more brilliantly than alone, said George.

The South County Tourism Council Starlight Awards were presented to the following organizations:

The SCTC Starlight Award to Annual Rhythm & Roots Festival, Charlestown - Chuck Wentworth's vision of a family event with a good vibe.  South County Tourism Council nominated, and the Rhythm and Roots Festival was selected, as the American Bus Association's 2007 Top 100 Events in North America Award, in addition to being honored with the Starlight Award.  The Festival is a creation of a very good vibe, indeed.  

The SCTC Starlight Award Nathanael Greene Homestead, Coventry Stories of Nathanael and Katherine Littlefield Greene are brought to life by costumed, colonial villagers in the form of dedicated, faithful curators in residence, Gregg and Mary Mierka.  Gregg Mierka has recently authored Nathanael Greene, The General Who Saved the Revolution.   

The SCTC Starlight Award to Main Street Art Stroll, East Greenwich Easels are set-up, instruments are tuned, and artists are at the ready, providing the perfect balance of sights and sounds for visitors and residents.  Town Manager, Bill Sequino, smiles and salutes the scene created by organizer, Bruce MacGunnigle, who has created the picture perfect Main Street in East Greenwich, brimming with people and activity. 

The SCTC Starlight Award to Yawgoo Valley Ski Area, Exeter Yawgoo Valley is the only ski resort in Rhode Island, featuring 13 ski trails served by 2 chair lifts and snow tubing trails.  In the summer, Yawgoo Valley features a par-3 pitch and putt golf course, a 32-foot rock wall and water park with 750-feet of water slides.  Owners Max and Pati deWardener have been providing endless year-round fun for many years!

The SCTC Starlight Award to Ure Outfitters, Hopkinton Ure Outfitters is a second generation, family-owned business located along the winding Wood River in Hopkinton.  John and Tammy Ure provide personalized service and expertise in finding the perfect equipment for your camping, kayaking, backpacking, fishing and bird watching adventures. 

The SCTC Starlight Award to Aunt Carrie's, Narragansett  Aunt Carrie's owner, Elsie Foy, received the James Beard Foundation Award for Excellence, which was created to celebrate, preserve and nurture America's culinary heritage and diversity.  The generational pride, now carried on by her daughters, began in 1920 and has been passed from grandparents and great-grandparents providing sensational seafood. 

The SCTC Starlight Award to Wickford Gourmet, North Kingstown The Wickford Brownie created by Wickford Gourmet is a sweet, delicious, chocolate chipped treat, topped with walnuts, and was featured on the Rachel Ray Show as the Snack of the Day.  Wickford Gourmet also specializes in local products and products from around the world.

The SCTC Starlight Award to Washington County Fair, Richmond The Washington County Fair is the largest county fair in Rhode Island.  The 5-day event is hosted by the Washington County Pomona Grange and draws nearly 150,000 visitors annually.  The festivities include livestock contests, riding and roping, country western entertainment and more.

The SCTC Starlight Award to Silver Lake Cottage B&B, South Kingstown Silver Lake Cottage's proprietors, Bob and Susie Clendenon, offer a gracious atmosphere,  that is both warm and welcoming.  The Clendenon's recently hosted a writer/photographer from the German publication, Adventures in Travel, which resulted in the B&B being chosen as the Most Romantic B&B in Rhode Island. 

The SCTC Starlight Award to Department of Environmental Management, West Greenwich DEM is charged with the protection, restoration and management of the State's natural resources, including more than 14,000 acres of state park and management areas; for 8,100 parking spaces at South County state beaches; and are now providing online camping reservations.  Synergies exist throughout South County with the Department of Environmental Management. 

The SCTC Starlight Award to Misquamicut Music Festival, Westerly Featuring Eric Burdon and the Animals, performing the memorable House of the Rising Sun, is one of the many entertaining stars brought to delight visitors through the Misquamicut Business Association.