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About Providence, Site of General Assembly 2014

Providence combines the accessibility and friendliness of a small town with the culture and sophistication of a big city. With a thriving arts community, vibrant and diverse neighborhoods, outstanding hotels, a renowned restaurant scene and so many things to do, Providence is the perfect place to visit. The city's compact size and convenient location make it easy to get to and hard to forget. Nearby Warwick offers bountiful shopping and 39 miles of coastline, while the scenic beauty and rich history of Rhode Island's other regions are a quick drive away. Historic and hip, sophisticated and small-town, Providence packs the best of New England into one convenient and colorful package.

According to a 2012 poll by Travel + Leisure, ranks No. 2 for overall dining, as well as No. 2 for pizza and No. 5 for high-end cuisine. Ask any foodie - Providence is one of the top culinary destinations in the U.S. Home to the world-class culinary school at Johnson & Wales University, Providence boasts more degreed chefs per capita than any other city in the United States. Enjoy zesty favorites on Federal Hill, one of the nation's top Little Italy's. Dine on seafood fresh from Narragansett Bay. From elegant to edgy, the depth and breadth of Providence's famed restaurant scene will please any palate.

The Moshassuck and Woonasquatucket Rivers snake through the city and converge to become the Providence River, the head of Narragansett Bay. These rivers are edged by cobblestone walkways, flanked by park benches, trees and flowering plants, and bisected by a series of graceful Venetian bridges connecting downtown Providence to the city's East Side. In keeping with this old-world flair, visitors may glide lazily through the waterways in one of the city's gilded gondolas. The centerpiece of this revitalization is WaterPlace Park, which boasts a stone-stepped amphitheater for summer concerts and serves as the starting point for Providence's world-renowned WaterFire, a multi-sensory art installation of more than 100 dancing bonfires that wind along the Providence River.

Providence also boasts a flourishing cultural and academic community. Students and alumni of Brown University, Providence College and Rhode Island College bring vitality to the city's intellectual life. The famous Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) lends the city a hipster cool, with many young artists coming to study and staying to begin their careers. The Museum of Art at RISD is one of New England’s premier centers for art and design.

It can be a bit overwhelming, those first moments inside the Providence Athenaeum (251 Benefit St.). Books and busts burst from floor to ceiling. Ladders and serpentine shelving offer untold knowledge, nooks and crannies. But be brave, intrepid intellectual. This storied sanctum (est. 1753) is free and open to the public. 

Whether it’s the leafy, elm tree-lined Benefit Street or the green, white and red striped thoroughfare of Atwells Avenue, every city corner has a story to tell. Learn more at the Providence Convention and Visitors Bureau, info @ or (800) 233-1636.

Most General Assembly events will be held in the Rhode Island Convention Center, 1 Sabin St, Providence, RI 02903.

Google Map of the Convention Center area.

For more information contact generalassembly @

This work is made possible by the generosity of individual donors and congregations. Please consider making a donation today.

Last updated on Thursday, September 26, 2013.

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Benefit Street, Providence, RI

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Del's Frozen Lemonade is a Rhode Island staple.

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Providence Anthenaeum

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