Rhode Island has a big celebration coming up and the time to get tickets for the fund-raising gala is dwindling down.
Three and a half centuries ago, Rhode Island struck a blow that would ripple around the globe when England granted the colony a charter that for the first time in the modern world set up a government that gave absolute religious freedom to citizens.
This colonial charter of 1663 established the philosophy of Roger Williams, our state’s first white settler, and was notable in an age marked by wars of religion and the persecution of people for their religious beliefs.
The state will celebrate with an event at the Statehouse on Saturday, June 22, with a public celebration at the capitol, followed by music and exhibits at the nearby Roger Williams Memorial in Providence. The celebration is free and open to the public.
John Barry, the Providence native who wrote the acclaimed book, ``Roger Williams and the Creation of the American Soul’’ will speak at the Statehouse at 11 a.m. The celebration will also unveil a new mini-museum to display the original charter in Room 143 at the Statehouse.
In the evening, Gov. Lincoln Chafee, First Lady Stephanie Chafee, Lt. Gov. Elizabeth Roberts and her husband, Thomas Roberts, and Secretary of State A. Ralph Mollis will host a gala fundraising reception to at the Statehouse to raise money for the museum. There will be a $350 per person VIP reception at 6 p.m. to honor sponsors and at 7 p.m. there will be a $100 per person event with Hors d’oeuvres, an open bar and dancing to the Black Tie Band. All the money raised will benefit the historic preservation of the 1663 charter. Tickets can be purchased at livelyexperiment.org For more information, call 401-222-3130