Weekapaug, Rhode Island

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A photo of Weekapaug showing the breachway, jetty, channel, Fenway Beach, and numerous ocean front homes

Weekapaug is a small fire district in southern Washington County, Rhode Island. It is part of the town of Westerly, Rhode Island, and is a small beachfront community that is also a census-designated place.[1] Weekapaug lies in the Eastern Time Zone and observes daylight saving time.

History[edit]

Weekapaug has many private roads running through it and isn't as well known as neighboring Watch Hill, Rhode Island. It has had summer cottages since 1877. Weekapaug was known as Noyes Beach from 1701 to 1899. It was named after Reverend James Noyes who had purchased 300 acres (1.2 km2) of what was to become Weekapaug. Weekapaug is a Native American word meaning "end of pond". Niantics, Pequots, and Narrangansetts lived in this area before early settlers arrived.

In 1899, Frederick and Phebe Buffum opened the Weekapaug Inn for a first summer season of guests.

On September 21, 1938, The Hurricane of 1938 swept the barrier beach clean of houses and irreparably damaged the Weekapaug Inn. See Fredrick C. Buffum's first hand account.[citation needed] The Weekapaug Inn was rebuilt and reopened for guests in June 1939.

Geography[edit]

Two large saltwater ponds, Winnapaug Pond and Quonochontaug Pond, dominate the map of the area. The area just west of the breachway and channel that lead to Winnapaug pond defines the western area of Weekapaug and the breachway that leads to the Quonochontaug Pond is the eastern edge of the fire district. Both breachways are lined with rock jetties. Most of the rock is granite which was readily available in Westerly and used to be its number one industry. The breachway and jetties on Winnapaug were completed on May 5, 1954. The permanent breachway leading to Quonochontaug was completed on October 31, 1961.

In popular culture[edit]

The song "Weekapaug Groove" by the band Phish is named after the area. The song does not appear on any of their studio albums, but does appear on many of their live albums, such as Slip Stitch and Pass.

In several episodes of Family Guy, cutaways mention Weekapaug as the location of a fictional establishment, "Al Harrington's Wacky Waving Inflatable Arm Flailing Tube Man Emporium and Warehouse".

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 41°19′51″N 71°45′18″W / 41.33083°N 71.75500°W / 41.33083; -71.75500