What do you get when you combine fresh seafood, live local entertainment, cooking demonstrations, casting classes and costume contests? All come together at the inaugural Key Largo Stone Crab & Seafood Festival set for Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 30-31, at Rowell’s Marina, mile marker 104.5 bayside.
On the Menu:
Stone Crab Chowder
Stone Crab Chowder
Shrimp & Lobster Ceviche
Peel n’Eat Shrimp
Caribbean Jerk Chicken
Burgers & Hotdogs
Burgers and hotdogs? The Weekly tracked down event organizer, Bob Stokey to see what promoted these menu items?
“You have to have something for everyone.” Surprisingly, some locals will eat this,” Stokey admits matter-of-factly.
As for the stone crabs, stick a wooden hammer or metal spoon in your purse! The claws will already be pre-cracked and wooden hammers will be on hand, but everyone knows the frustration if there isn’t a tool on hand to get to that delectably, rich stone crab meat. Plus, there will be plenty of mustard sauce, lemon, and butter.
Stokey says the end of January is ideal to ignite the fires for this party, “all the local seafood is in season. All of the lobster, all of the stone crabs are in season and it’s cool enough to have an outdoor festival.”
The festival, sponsored by Key Largo Fisheries and Key Largo Merchants Association, presents a delicious weekend chock full of family fun, while showcasing fishing and food from the sea. Arts and crafts, vendor booths, a Junkanoo band, fireworks and a car show also are planned.
Saturday’s scheduled highlights include a magic show, little mermaid contest (no fees to enter), fishing contest for the kids, a finger lickin’ shrimp-eating contest, and a Key Lime Pie-eating contest.
“We’re limiting this to the first ten people who make their way up stage. It’s a timed event, no hands,” explains Stokey.
Sunday, festival attendees can learn how to make (and eat!) conch egg rolls, crab cakes, lobster and conch ceviche or join in a shrimp-eating or Key lime pie-eating contest.
Black Caesar” and his pirate crew are planning an invasion amid the weekend-long live music backdrop.
Festival hours are 11 am to 8 pm Saturday, and 11 am to 4 pm Sunday. Admission is $7 per adult and $5 per child age 12 and under.
Proceeds from the event are to benefit Florida Keys Youth Sports.
For more information, visit www.fkrm.com/crabandseafood.