Dig Into This: Learn How to Harvest, Prepare Quahogs This Summer

PORTSMOUTH, R.I. — The Department of Environmental Management (DEM) is hosting a series of recreational clamming workshops this summer.

The workshops, led by DEM’s Aquatic Resource Education (ARE) program, are opportunities for participants to learn how to dig for clams and the management strategies that have kept Rhode Island in the clamming industry for so long.

“Clamming has a rich history in Rhode Island as a beloved family pastime, a staple of local food traditions, and a significant contributor to the state’s commercial fishing industry,” said DEM Director Janet Coit. “DEM’s clamming workshops are among our most popular offerings to the public and we’re delighted to offer them in convenient locations in the East Bay, West Bay, and South County. Nothing could be more fun than spending a summer day on the water with a local quahogger learning to harvest and prepare quahogs!”

The following public workshops are scheduled:

Monday, June 17 | 12 PM-3 PM North Kingstown Town Beach, North Kingstown

Tuesday, July 2 | 12 PM-3 PM Colt State Park, Bristol

Tuesday, July 30 | 11 AM-2 PM Rocky Point State Park, Warwick

Thursday, August 1 |1 PM-4 PM Colt State Park, Bristol

Friday, August 30 | 12 PM-3 PM Rocky Point State Park, Warwick

Saturday, September 28 | 12 PM-3 PM North Kingstown Town Beach, North Kingstown

The workshops are perfect for families to spend time together. DEM encourages people of all ages to participate. Space is limited and registration is required.

Fee is $5 per person for registrants 8 years of age and older. To register, fill out the registration form on DEM’s website and mail the form, along with a check made payable to ‘ARE Program’ to the Division of Fish & Wildlife, 1B Camp E-Hun-Tee Place, Exeter, RI 02822, Attn: ARE Program. Participants will be notified by email of their registration status. For questions or more information, call the Division of Fish & Wildlife Outdoor Education Office at 539-0019 or email Kimberly.sullivan@dem.ri.gov.

All equipment and materials will be provided. DEM’s ARE program sponsors the Come Clam With Me workshops and a host of recreational fishing opportunities for the public as well as marine science programming for educators.

More than 22 million quahogs with an off-the-boat value of $4.7 million were harvested from Narragansett Bay and local coastal waters in 2018. In recognition of the economic and cultural value of shellfish, Governor Gina M. Raimondo, along with many partners, launched the Rhode Island Shellfish Initiative in 2017. Through it, state agencies, industry, academia, and community partners collaborate and compound their efforts to sustainably manage local shellfish stock, promote economic growth and jobs, and celebrate Rhode Island’s unique food cultures.

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