May 21 @ 11:00 am - 5:00 pm
First Strike Festival
Nearly 200 years ago, one hundred women weavers walked out of the textile mills in the village of Pawtucket, beginning the first industrial labor strike in America. On May 21, 2022, Blackstone River Valley National Historical Park will co-host The First Strike Festival with The Haus of Glitter. The National Park Service will offer an exciting lineup of free performances commemorating that historic moment in American history, cohosted by the Rhode Island dance company The Haus of Glitter.
The First Strike Festival is centered around celebrating spring weather, honoring the struggle for labor rights, acknowledging the complexity of American history, and welcoming rest and peace. The entire event is free and family friendly.
On the main stage, check out performances from the Capeverdean American Community Development Association, Eastern Medicine Singers, Mark Cutler, Mystic Garland Dancers, Rhode Island Black Storytellers, and more. Bring a blanket and picnic to enjoy hours of rest, renewal, and history.
Throughout the day, park rangers will offer free tours inside Slater Mill. Outside, partners from the Old Slater Mill Association, Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor, Blackstone Collaborative, Metamorphosis Dance Company, RI Spinners Guild, URI Master Gardeners, and others will offer fun, family-friendly activities.