The Dish on Smith’s Castle’s Strawberry Festival

All ages are invited to the event, which features Colonial games and lots of strawberry shortcake.
Smith's Castle
Photograph: Angel Tucker

Did you know strawberries were the favorite fruit of the indigenous people and colonists of Narragansett? Smith’s Castle in Wickford keeps the berry’s local history alive by inviting people of all ages to partake in the annual Strawberry Festival. On June 16 (rain date June 17) from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., visitors can enjoy homemade strawberry shortcake for $5 apiece. Denise Boule, president of the Castle Association and a co-chairperson of the event, describes the festival as “one of the most popular public events” for the castle and “a nice family day.” Kids will enjoy watching marionettes, playing games and dressing up in Colonial garb, as well as face painting, live music and pony rides. Vendors, local farmers and master gardeners will be on site, offering soil testing for visitors. There will be free tours of the garden and castle throughout the day. All those involved with the festival are volunteers, who help “bring the community in and see us at our best,” Boule says. As one of the longest-running strawberry festivals in Rhode Island, Smith’s Castle is preparing for a day where people can have their shortcake (topped with plenty of fresh strawberries and whipped cream) and eat it, too. Cost of admission is $8 for adults and $3 for children older than six. Children younger than six are free and there is also a military discount available.