2013 Johnny Cake Festival: Oct. 19 & 20 ~ Sat. & Sun., 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Free: Parking, Tours, Food & Beverages Samples, Old World Demos, and Live Music
Explore what Rhode Island has to offer and celebrate the autumn harvest at Kenyon's Grist Mill in the quaint village of Usquepaugh. Enjoy samples of local food, beverages, Johnny Cakes, sweets, wine, craft beer, and more. Take a tour of the historic mill, learn about Rhode Island's history and heritage, and enjoy a colonial encampment. Listen to live music, visit with the alpacas, sheep, and goats. Meet special guests, and watch a variety of old world demonstrations along the scenic Queen’s River and waterfall.
Purchase: Over 100 Local Vendors ~ Food/Sweets, Wine/Beer, Art/Gifts, Farmer's Market & More
Support the community and local businesses by purchasing from area farms, artisans, and restaurants.
Promoting Local Culinary Specialties, Agriculture, Art, History, and Education
We are very excited about this year's event! It will mark the 3rd Annual Original Johnny Cake Festival since the 70s and 80s. Each year, the event gets better and even more organized. We thank everyone who was involved and supported local organizations last year. If you are interested in participating in 2013, click here. Look below for more information. Updated photos, vendor listings, featured items, and entertainment schedule will be posted soon...
For an updated 2013 participant list, click here. We are currently updating it constantly! All vendor locations are in walking distance, are relatively close to one another, and will have a mix of food and art.
1) Around the Mill Building ~ Mill Yard, Mill Front, Glen Rock Road, and Mill Shop
2) By the Waterfall & Spillway (North End) ~ Old Mill Site, Earthen Dam, and Colonial Home Site
3) Along the River & Near Main Stage (South End) ~ Pasture, Old Usquepaugh Road, Hen Yard, and Deep End
Where is Usquepaugh, Rhode Island?
Usquepaugh is pronounced ‘uhs-kah-pog’. What does it mean? ‘Usque’ means fire, life or spirit and ‘paugh’ means water. Just as hundreds of towns and villages are named by local Native American Indian origin, you might hear us say that Usquepaugh is somewhere between Quonochontaug and Escoheag! Although that is very true, it may be easier to explain that Usquepaugh is in the town of West Kingston, which is in South Kingstown, which is in South County, which is in Rhode Island. This quaint town, surrounding the Queen’s River is located off Route 138, 5 miles from Route 95 and 5 miles from the University of Rhode Island. Click here to learn more about the history of the property.
Directions & Free Parking
Our old-fashioned mill and property is located in a scenic, residential area of the village of Usquepaugh. This vintage setting is not equipped with a large cement-slab parking lot or a parking garage to accommodate a crowd. Our vendors will be set up in our usual parking areas, as well as three separate locations in walking distance along the Queen's River. Therefore, parking at and around the mill and Route 138 is prohibited. Free parking will be exclusively at the Washington County Fairgrounds. Free shuttle buses will be running continuously throughout the event. The narrated bus ride only takes a few minutes. The drop off is in the center of the festivities. Come and go throughout the day as you please. This transportation doesn't come free on our part, but it allows us to respect our neighbors, prevent traffic blockages, and preserve the tranquility of the event... a much better experience for all. Take a step back in time... listen to the birds and waterfall and relax by the beautiful Queen's River. We are excited about more buses and excellent organization this year. For detailed directions & more information, click here or call 800-7-KENYON.
Admission & Free Samples
This year, the admission is only $3. Children 5 and under are free. For more information on admission and a list of free samples, click here.
Food and/or Clothing Donations ~ Jonnycake Center
Volunteers will be collecting donations of canned goods and non-perishable food items, as well as warm clothing, and cash donations for the Jonnycake Center. This non-profit organization helps to eliminate hunger in our community. The organization was founded in 1973 and named after Jonnycake Meal, a basic necessity in colonial days. The donation collection area will be at the Washington County Fairgrounds, before you step on the bus. Please consider donating. Anything can make a difference! To learn more, click here.
Mill Tours & Grinding Process ~ Saturday & Sunday / Narrated, Half Hour Tours
10:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m., 1:30 p.m., 2:30 p.m., 3:30 p.m., and 4:30 p.m.
Doors will be open for viewing in-between tours. For more information on free mill tours, click here.
Live Music/Entertainment Schedule
An updated schedule on the mill stage and the main stage will be provided soon. We also have many special guests to add!
Mission & History
The Johnny Cake Festival is similar to the story of Stone Soup. At Kenyon's Grist Mill, in the small village of Usquepaugh, we build a fire, add some water and put in the stones. This creates a venue where local businesses can come together, join a support system, and show off what they do best. This old-fashioned recipe creates a delicious stew that can be enjoyed by all. In the past few years, the event has grown exponentially. It originated in 1973 and ran until 1985. After a series of small open houses at the mill in 2009, the event exploded into a festival again in 2011. The mission is to strengthen the community and local businesses by working together, networking, assisting, cross marketing, and promoting each other. The festival is proud to source all logistics from local companies. This includes buses, security, ATM, facilities, signage, media, decorations, volunteers, and so much more. The event promotes local culinary specialties, agriculture, handmade art, history, and education. The outreach is to those who value the importance of supporting local products. Click here for additional history and photos from the past. Sponsor logos and more information will be coming soon. If you are interested in becoming a 2013 supporter, please click here. We are also seeking volunteers! Join the fun and networking.