If you are heading to the North Carolina Seafood Festival this weekend in Morehead City, look for the yellow.
MOREHEAD CITY | If you are heading to the North Carolina Seafood Festival this weekend in Morehead City, look for the yellow.
More than 50 food vendors will line the streets along the waterfront, serving up the seafood that is the star attraction: shrimp, crab, fish, oysters, clams and more.
At a majority of those booths, a yellow flag will be flying to indicate they have local and North Carolina seafood for sale.
“People are coming to get the good stuff and we’ll have it for them. Just look for the yellow flag,” NCSF Executive Director Stephanie McIntyre said.
Festival officials are monitoring the weather forecast closely and as of Thursday festival activities were set to go on as planned.
“If conditions start to turn worse we will make adjustments immediately. Safety is the most important thing,” said Mindy Fitzpatrick, chairwoman of the festival board of directors.
She said the festival is working with city and county officials to monitor the weather forecast and has contingency plans if needed.
The festival will be posting updates on its Facebook page so that the public can track any changes in plans or activities.
But plans are for the festival to go on rain or shine.
McIntyre said they did a survey of festival fans a couple of years ago and of the 400 responses, there were two big requests: bigger and better entertainment and more local and North Carolina seafood.
“We’ve answered both those requests,” McIntyre said.
She said North Carolina seafood has also been a centerpiece of the festival but they pushed for vendors to serve more of it as the festival crowd has grown to more than 250,000 attendees over a three-day span.
This year, the seafood festival will also feature a ticketed concert event with country music star Dustin Lynch and special guest Emily Minor. Tickets are $30 per person or $100 for VIP seating and available for purchase on the Seafood Festival website.
Lynch’s concert has been moved to the Crystal Coast Civic Center.
McIntyre said the ticketed concerts helps cover the cost for bringing in bigger name entertainment but all other entertainment on the three festival stages is free during the weekend, including the Sunday Beach Music bash on the main stage.
Activities for the 2015 North Carolina Seafood Festival kick off at noon on Friday as stages and vendors begin to open, and rides gear up at 2 p.m.
Saturday opens at 9 a.m. with a full day of activity as seafood is served up all along the waterfront as the crowd takes in the entertainment and browses arts and crafts booths. Saturday night will feature a fireworks display at 9 p.m.
At the popular Cooking with the Chefs tent, festival goers can check out cooking demonstrations by area chefs and sample the prepared dish of fresh seafood throughout the weekend.
Eight chefs go head-to-head in the Food Lion Cooking Challenge on Sunday. The chef’s tent also provides an opportunity to sample North Carolina-made products and beverages to complement the seafood.
The festival was started to celebrate the state’s commercial fishing industry while helping to draw people to the Crystal Coast during the off season.
Sunday’s Blessing of the Fleet, held at 10 a.m. Sunday at the state port, takes a moment to reflect on the importance of the state’s commercial fishing industry.
For more information about the festival and a full schedule of activities, go to ncseafoodfestival.org or visit the festival Facebook page or Twitter site.