Despite the forecast of clouds and occasional rain, we woke up to sun and warmth on Block Island.

Peter and I enjoyed our morning coffee al fresco while the ladies slept in.

Last Sunday at the Church In The Pines, Pastor Joel asked me about “the old Church on the hill” on Block Island so we headed out to snap some photos.

It’s called The Harbor Church and it seemed to be doing quite well. There was a big rummage sale going on with lots of locals trying to turn junk into cash to complete the renovation.

Pastor Joel had interned at this church as a young man and to my surprise, we were able to locate the Lead Pastor he worked for many decades ago.

Even more surprising, he had the same name as my good friend from Mattapoisett – Tony Pappas!

Eventually our sleeping beauties woke up and we had breakfast at Ernies, home of the best corned beef hash anywhere!

Mrs. Horne has become very dedicated to fitness and after breakfast she coaxed us into taking the one hour walk to Payne’s in New Harbor.

Along the way I found the “blown out flip flop” Jimmy Buffet lost in the third verse of Margaritaville…

Off To Newport

As we walked back into Old Harbor, we could see the fog rolling in. I could tell Mrs. Horne’s anxiety level was climbing after Friday’s scary ride over. I told her we’d be fine, it’s only an hour, and we’ll be going downwind.

Sure enough, about a mile out of Block Island we once again hit pea soup.

Once again I fired up the radar and started looking for red blips. Unlike Friday, when we only saw one other boat, there were dozens of boats out fishing.

And also unlike Friday, the crew sat out back and enjoyed a low stress trip over.

About halfway over the fog burnt off and Point Judith emerged from the haze and the Newport Bridge came into view.

The Newport Folk Festival is this weekend. Becky at Dockwa had said it was a great concert to hear from your boat, but I didn’t believe her.

I was dead wrong. Not only could we clearly hear the music from outside the anchored boats, we could even see the singers on the giant video screen.

I made “note to self” that next year we’ll be back and plan on dropping anchor, picnicking, and spending the afternoon enjoying the music.

I think you have to get there pretty early if you want a good spot. There were a ton of boats anchored and people swimming in floats.

The West End of Newport

Since this trip to Newport was only planned on Wednesday, my regular marinas were sold out. Fortunately, West Wind Marina had one spot left and with that we got to experience the west End of Newport.

West Wind is more of a Boat Basin than a dock.

Festival goers heading for the launch to the music festival…

By now it was 1:00 so time for lunch (6:00 somewhere?). I noticed West Wind had a restaurant called The Deck and although the yelp reviews weren’t great, it was 500 feet from Vigilant!

Maybe the yelpers didn’t love it, but we did. In fact, due in large part to The Deck, this will probably become our #2 Newport Marina (after Bowens).

I’ll do a full review later, but I can report that the oysters may have been the best ever.

They’re from Island Cove in Middletown; huge, fresh, and very plump.

Live Music All Day Long

As you may know, I love live music, especially in the afternoon. The Deck has live music from lunch through 9:00 at night (then it’s a DJ for the younger dance crowd).

Yesterday we were treated to a couple of sets from the very talented James Grande.

Stoneacre Tapas

After a relaxing afternoon on the deck, we took the 900′ walk to a new restaurant called Stoneacre Tapas.

It’s a wine bar specializing in small plates. Mrs. Horne was not happy that they did not have a full bar, but the rest of us enjoyed our wine. Eventually she let me pick out a CBC light beer which turned out to be spectacular!

As usual, a full review will follow, but I’ll tell you my dinner was incredible.

I had the Wagu Skirt Steak which was served in a Chimichurri sauce. Since it was a small plate, it was only $16.

As a side I ordered the Crispy Potatoes ($8) with an aioli that included dill, garlic, and Parmesan. And they were super crispy.

After Dinner Party

Our friends Tony and Liz were in town for dinner. We had loose plans to hook up before or after dinner.

They had dinner at Bouchard’s and Liz texted me photos of there meal that looked incredible.

No sooner did we return to the boat and I got a text from Liz telling me they were at the gate.

I let them and their guests in and showed them to Vigilant.

At the same time Peter’s old neighbors Jim and Nancy appeared as well. They’re followers of My Buzzards Bay and they had seen my afternoon report and came down to see us.

For the first time we had 10 people on the aft deck for a little impromptu party with cocktails and cookies.

Liz, Tony, Lydia, and Bob
Nancy and Mary Lee
Jim and Peter
Mrs. Horne and Liz

After our guests all left, I suggested we go back to The Deck to see if we could find another John Brazile or James Grande.

Alas, it was after 9:00 (well after) and it was DJ Dance Music time.

We saved the $40 cover charge by not going into the Dance Hall and stuck to The Deck.

Peter tried to buy a round of drinks for some Servicemen, but they declined his offer.

I did catch them crashing the dance floor “A Night At The Roxy” style.