Rhode Island, known as the “Ocean State,” is located in the New England region of the United States. It is the smallest state in the country but has a rich history and beautiful coastal scenery. Here are some fun facts about Rhode Island:
- Statehood: Rhode Island became the 13th state on May 29, 1790.
- State nickname: Rhode Island is called the “Ocean State” due to its numerous bays and inlets that make up about 14% of its total area.
- State symbols: The state bird is the Rhode Island Red (a chicken breed), the state flower is the violet, and the state marine mammal is the harbor seal.
- Smallest state: Rhode Island is the smallest state in the United States, covering an area of just 1,214 square miles.
- Newport: Known for its Gilded Age mansions and sailing culture, Newport is a popular tourist destination. The city is home to the famous Cliff Walk, a 3.5-mile path along the coast that offers stunning views and passes by several historic mansions.
- The Breakers: This opulent mansion in Newport was built as the summer residence of Cornelius Vanderbilt II. The 70-room mansion is now a museum and a symbol of the extravagant wealth of the Gilded Age.
- Oldest operating tavern: The White Horse Tavern, located in Newport, has been in operation since 1673 and is considered the oldest operating tavern in the United States.
- Oldest carousel: The Flying Horse Carousel, located in Watch Hill, is believed to be the oldest operating carousel in the country. It dates back to around 1876 and features hand-carved wooden horses.
- Brown University: Located in Providence, Brown University is one of the eight Ivy League schools and was founded in 1764. It is the seventh-oldest institution of higher education in the United States.
- WaterFire: This unique art event takes place in Providence and features over 80 bonfires installed on the city’s three rivers. The event, which occurs several times throughout the year, includes music, performances, and food vendors.
- Coffee milk: Rhode Island has its own official state drink—coffee milk. It is made by mixing the coffee syrup with milk, similar to chocolate milk, and is a beloved beverage among Rhode Islanders.
These fun facts about Rhode Island highlight the state’s rich history, coastal beauty, and unique cultural offerings, making it an interesting place to explore despite its small size.