4th Annual "Kent Field Reunion" - Friday November 28TH - BOVI's
The Field "Kids" - Many in their 50's-60's now - Keep the flame burning!
"It gets bigger and better every year," said Kent Field reunion organizer James Vierra. "It is an informal gathering of "the kids from the 60's and 70's who used to frequent Kent Field often, back in the day," added Vierra. This year marks the fourth consecutive year for the group's gathering which starts at 7 PM on Friday night, November 28th at East Providence's iconic unofficial reunion pub, Bovi's Tavern. The party has expanded with just about any friend of the era stopping by to reminisce about growing up in East Providence during the sixties and seventies.
It was an era of vinyl lp's, 45's and stereo receivers. The music of the day would vary from Jimi Hendrix to the Beatles to the Grateful Dead and Janis Joplin or Led Zepplin. No one had cell phones or computers or iPods, etc. In East Providence, in the 60’s and 70’s, this group of young people would often meet at “The Field” every day after school and on week-ends. Kids came from all over the city, not just the Kent Heights neighborhood. Although a friendly rivalry existed between those who ‘hung out’ at “The Rec” in Riverside and Pierce Field, all paths crossed eventually at Kent Field. Many references in yearbooks from the era mentioned “The Field” as a good time memory.
Sports were a big reason for many at “The Field”. There were daily football, baseball, basketball and street-hockey games - depending on the season. It was a throwback to sand-lot sports not generally done any more. A lot of the sports centered on spirited games of whiffle-ball played on the basketball or tennis courts. These kids from the 60-70‘s didn’t have uniforms, there were no umpires and nobody particularly in charge. They just showed up and played ball, usually until after dark. It wasn’t all sports as many came by just to ‘hang’ or play cards and knock-hockey board games and listen to music.
James Vierra, who still lives in the Kent Heights neighborhood, has been a major force behind “The Field” Thanksgiving Friday get-together. Vierra created the ‘Friends of Kent Field’ Facebook page as a way of organizing and contacting old friends of “The Field” who may not live in the area now in addition to those still in EP. “This will be an informal reunion, if you will, just a get together of old friends from the “Field” days. Nothing fancy, just a good time at Bovi’s Tavern on the Friday night before Thanksgiving,” Vierra told the Reporter. Facebook posts have come in from Florida and other states. Jim Lyons, who lives in Alabama now, was a frequent member of the "Kent Field Kids". "I'm coming in and I'll be in EP soon for the holidays. Looking forward to going to my 4th Field reunion," said Lyons. Bovi’s plays a major part in Townie history as historically, many high school classes and groups of friends have always met there to keep old friendships alive. Thanksgiving week-end, in particular, is a time when many locals and those who live out of state, get together and look to meet up with old friends. There will be talk of Townie football for sure and the league's new format and as always the thrill may be a rekindling of “The Field” magic from years ago.