Providence is the capital and most populous city in Rhode Island. Founded in 1636, it is one of the oldest cities in the United States. Providence has a city population of 177,994. Providence was founded by Roger Williams, a religious exile from the Massachusetts Bay Colony. He named the area in honor of "God's merciful Providence". During the summer months, the city regularly hosts WaterFire, an environmental art installation that consists of about 100 bonfires that blaze just above the surface of the three rivers that pass through the middle of downtown Providence. Providence is home to an 1,100-acre (4.9 km1) park system, notably Waterplace Park and Riverwalk, Roger Williams Park, Roger Williams National Memorial, and Prospect Terrace Park.