As estimated 500 locals and visitors headed to the edge of Odens Dock in Hatteras village on Saturday afternoon to take part in a shell-ebration that has been going strong for seven years.
The North Carolina Coastal Federations annual Hatteras Island Oyster Roast has become one of the most highly anticipated events of the traditionally quiet winter season, and this years afternoon roast was no exception.
This year was the fastest we have ever sold out of tickets, said Michael Flynn, Coastal Advocate at North Carolina Coastal Federation (NCCF.) We have talked about expanding the event in the past, simply because it has gotten so popular, but we like keeping it at a sustainable size. It makes it a true community event.
The sense of community spirit was contagious throughout the chilly afternoon, as old friends connected after a dormant winter over long tables piled high with oysters, paper towels, and plenty of hot sauce.
Locals werent the only attendees, however, as Flynn estimated that roughly two-thirds of tickets were sold to visitors from all along the East Coast. The Outer Banks Visitors Bureau is the primary sponsor, and we always hope that this event brings more tourism to [the islands] in the winter months, he said. It seems to be doing its job.
Indeed, visitors mingled with lifelong locals with ease, such as a crew of four couples from Maryland who made plenty of new friends thanks to their homemade invention, the shotski a wooden plank with four shot glasses attached so that multiple people can imbibe in a shot of beer or something stronger all at once.
This is our second year attending, and we came down to Hatteras [specifically] for the oyster roast, said Amy Williams of the boisterous group that included the Holloways, Williams, Lockwoods, and Dawickis families all from Maryland. This year, we got rooms at the Breakwater, so wed be close to the action
We just love this, she added, looking around at the big crowd. Everyone is so friendly, and theres a real [sense of] community here We hope to be back next year, too.
Food, music, and comradery were the agenda for the day, and a team of volunteers headed by Parc Greene of Risky Business Seafood tackled the lengthy food preparation, which included 55 bushels of oysters cooked on a brand new steamer that was created specifically for the NCCF and the event by students at the College of the Albemarle.
Greene stated that the crew had been up since 8 a.m. that morning to feed the hungry crowd, and that the work was ongoing. Cleaning was the big part, said Greene. It took two power washers to clean all of the oysters the cooking is easy.
Hearty cups of homemade Hatteras-style clam chowder, prepared by Breakwater Restaurant, warmed up the attendees, while Conners Supermarket in Buxton provided the cornbread. A bake sale generated more fundraising opportunities, (and provided easy and mouth-watering desserts), while a popular silent auction offered approximately 35 enticing items for sale such as a wine tasting for 12 at Trio, and a half day charter trip onboard the Albatross.
Music from acclaimed local band Blurkys Quirky Friends kept the festive atmosphere going strong all afternoon long, and all the while, local volunteers helped keep the rotation of oysters flowing, by lugging carts to the lines of tables, and disposing of the shells once the hungry diners had their fill.
All of the oyster shells from the event will be recycled and added to the waterfronts along Dare County to bolster the soundside shoreline, which provided yet another reason for attendees to dig in.
The event also attracted a number of community leaders, including N.C. Representative Bobby Hanig, Dare County Board of Commissioners Bob Woodard, Danny Couch, Steve House, Wally Overman, and Ervin Bateman, and National Parks of Eastern North Carolina Superintendent David Hallac, among many other famous local faces.
It seems to me that this has become kind of a big island event, said NCCF Board Member and owner of the Albatross Fleet, Ernie Foster. Its the first year we sold out well in advance.
Foster, along with other community representatives, later thanked the crowd and the volunteers for attending the oyster roast, and for lending a much-appreciated hand to make the event a success.
Thank you to all of our sponsors for your support we couldnt have done it without you, Foster said to the crowd. And thank you to our community volunteers who have taken time out of their day to keep us all happy and fed.
Everywhere I look, I see people having a great time So thank you all for being a part of this.
While scattered raindrops were a continual threat throughout the day, the event was a chilly celebration of all things oysters that got livelier as the afternoon lingered on. From folks who brought their own hot sauce holsters on their hips, to locals who brought along their favorite oyster knives, everyone was prepared to have a great time, and they succeeded admirably.
Proceeds from the Hatteras Island Oyster Roast benefit the North Carolina Coastal Federations oyster education and restoration programs, and additionally, a portion of the proceeds from 2020s oyster roast will be donated to support hurricane recovery efforts on Hatteras and Ocracoke islands.
To catch an inside look of the event, courtesy of the Islands Free Press live broadcast by Rory Kelleher, see https://islandfreepress.org/outer-banks-news/hatteras-island-oyster-roast-in-full-swing/
For more information on the oyster roast, as well as a selection of recipes and preparation tips from seafood expert Lynne Foster, click here.
- Roosevelt Island Operating Corp. head fired over 'racially and sexually offensive' remarks - New York Post - June 20th, 2020
- Empire Outlets, Staten Island Mall: What Phase 2 means for Staten Island shoppers - SILive.com - June 20th, 2020
- Braised in the South food truck will settle down on Johns Island this summer - Charleston City Paper - June 20th, 2020
- A phased reopening - Thegardenisland.com - June 20th, 2020
- Boch provides a boost for Island charities - Martha's Vineyard Times - June 20th, 2020
- Big Island Road Closures, June 20 to June 26 - Big Island Now - June 20th, 2020
- Diego, the tortoise who saved his entire species, finally retires to uninhabited island - CNN - June 20th, 2020
- Town of Grand Island partners with local agencies to address questions related to solar energy - Niagara Frontier Publications - June 20th, 2020
- UFC fills out first four cards for Fight Island debut in July - ESPN - June 20th, 2020
- The island with a key to our future - BBC News - June 20th, 2020
- Interisland travelers tell all - Thegardenisland.com - June 20th, 2020
- MTM On The Road: A Tour Around Mackinac Island - 9 & 10 News - 9&10 News - June 20th, 2020
- Large mass of grasses creates floating island in Muskegon - WNEM Saginaw - June 20th, 2020
- Love Island's Malin Andersson posts poignant tribute to Sophie Gradon two years after suicide - Mirror Online - June 20th, 2020
- Town Council considering ordinance to require mask wearing on island - Block Island Times - June 20th, 2020
- Think twice before booking off-island travel, says Jersey Consumer Council - ITV News - June 20th, 2020
- UFC 251 -- Which fighter faces the most pressure on Fight Island? - ESPN - June 20th, 2020
- Islands of Ireland: Whiddy in the same boat - Irish Examiner - June 1st, 2020
- Mackinac Island eases into summer season with soft, soft opening - MLive.com - June 1st, 2020
- Watch Rivers Cuomo cover Jesus Christ Superstar song for Islands In The Zoom sessions - NME - June 1st, 2020
- Hundreds gather at Brown's Island: 'We are going to protest peacefully' - wtvr.com - June 1st, 2020
- New COVID-19 case with ties to San Juan Island under investigation - SanJuanIslander.com - June 1st, 2020
- Meet kumu the whitesaddle goatfish - Thegardenisland.com - June 1st, 2020
- Cruise the Greek Islands with Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon - The New Yorker - June 1st, 2020
- No new COVID-19 cases reported on Big Island - West Hawaii Today - June 1st, 2020
- Staten Island obituaries for May 31, 2020 - silive.com - June 1st, 2020
- Staten Island ShopRite melee ignites feuding factions on masks in pandemic - silive.com - June 1st, 2020
- Allow Staten Island students to have outdoor graduation ceremonies, city official says - SILive.com - June 1st, 2020
- The island that can save America | TheHill - The Hill - June 1st, 2020
- Long wait to reopen is over for Vancouver Island gyms Vancouver Island Free Daily - vancouverislandfreedaily.com - June 1st, 2020
- A Vancouver Island Road Trip of Crisp Wines and Gigantic Trees - Cond Nast Traveler - May 15th, 2020
- Up-Island towns uneasy about summer influx - Martha's Vineyard Times - May 15th, 2020
- Rock Island County reports another COVID-19 death - Quad City Times - May 15th, 2020
- Kite-surfing and social distancing, but no Sullivans at Castle Island - The Boston Globe - May 15th, 2020
- A grand opening - Thegardenisland.com - May 15th, 2020
- Long before Covid-19, these islands were a refuge from plague - CNN - May 15th, 2020
- Booth doing 'virtual' concert to raise Trooper Island funds - WTVQ - May 15th, 2020
- Love Island's Finley Tapp creates Scottish lockdown survival kit while isolating with Paige Turley - Daily Record - May 15th, 2020
- The Womens Jail at Rikers Island Is Named for My Grandmother. She Would Not Be Proud. - The New York Times - May 15th, 2020
- Top Cuban Official Accuses America Of Committing Acts Of Terrorism Against Island Nation - CBS Miami - May 15th, 2020
- Grand Island Public Schools Foundation launching Give GIPS Week - Grand Island Independent - May 15th, 2020
- District Court judge: City of Bellevue cannot engage in 'island annexation' - Omaha World-Herald - May 15th, 2020
- Rare blue dragons are washing up on the Padre Island National Seashore - CNN - May 15th, 2020
- Staten Island Home of the Week: Privately-gated community with panoramic views, $3M - SILive.com - May 11th, 2020
- Antibody testing begins on the Big Island - West Hawaii Today - May 11th, 2020
- Hardwood logging on Manus Island has not delivered promised local benefits, report finds - The Guardian - May 11th, 2020
- Coronavirus claims 11 more Staten Islanders; more than 2K released from Island hospitals - SILive.com - May 11th, 2020
- South Padre Island properties unphased by COVID-19 housing market, realtor explains - KGBT-TV - May 11th, 2020
- Love Island's Malin Andersson felt 'shame' for staying with abusive ex after he 'beat her up' - Mirror Online - May 11th, 2020
- Love Island 2020 could be set for surprise return this Autumn after cancellation - RadioTimes - May 11th, 2020
- Tunnel to Towers Foundation working to take care of Staten Island - SILive.com - May 11th, 2020
- Staten Island obituaries for May 10, 2020 - SILive.com - May 11th, 2020
- Reveling in the Enigmatic Beauty of Easter Island - The New York Times - May 11th, 2020
- Help for parents and teachers; author gives tips - Shelter Island Reporter - Shelter Island Reporter - May 11th, 2020
- NYC's Coney Island Beach in Cyclone of Confusion for Summer - THE CITY - May 11th, 2020
- Danny Dyer says Love Island is a "pile of s**t" and leaves The Ranganation viewers - digitalspy.com - May 11th, 2020
- Island Luck CEO: No logic or rational in govt. decision making - EyeWitness News - May 11th, 2020
- Staten Island Zoo to host virtual meet and greet with exotic animals: How to attend - SILive.com - May 1st, 2020
- Artists campaign against Bristol Spike Island eviction of Howard Silverman - The Guardian - May 1st, 2020
- Coronavirus: Woman took son to Greek island to 'protect him from COVID-19' - Sky News - May 1st, 2020
- TSB investigation into Island Queen III incident issues three concerns - The Kingston Whig-Standard - May 1st, 2020
- This Tech Conference Is Being Held on an Animal Crossing Island - VICE - May 1st, 2020
- Island COVID-19 confirmed cases rise to 19 - Martha's Vineyard Times - May 1st, 2020
- VIRTUAL TOUR Island Farm: Going back in time to coastal farm life in the 1800s | The Coastland Times - The Coastland Times - May 1st, 2020
- Car thieves flocking to Staten Island during pandemic, many of them repeat offenders - SILive.com - May 1st, 2020
- Coney Island Hospital Treated To Record-Breaking Meal Donation For Staff - BKLYNER - May 1st, 2020
- Analysis: Staten Island has the highest rate of people tested in NYC for COVID-19 - SILive.com - May 1st, 2020
- John Grisham Returns to Camino Island, This Time in Hurricane Season - The New York Times - May 1st, 2020
- Naples, Marco Island beaches to reopen Thursday - Wink News - May 1st, 2020
- New confirmed case brings Island total to 18 - Martha's Vineyard Times - May 1st, 2020
- Grand Island's mayor wants to know how the feds will help, says city 'has paid a price' - Omaha World-Herald - May 1st, 2020
- Pete Davidson & Judd Apatow Movie King of Staten Island Skips Theatrical, Hits VOD This Summer - Deadline - May 1st, 2020
- ITV considers filming Love Island in Cornwall or cancelling series - The Guardian - May 1st, 2020
- Elderly fisherman rescued from Niagara River near Grand Island - Niagara Gazette - May 1st, 2020
- Bali is worlds most Instagrammed island - The Jakarta Post - Jakarta Post - April 28th, 2020
- Staten Island coronavirus hospitalizations hold steady; death toll increases by 23 - SILive.com - April 28th, 2020
- Small Island crews return to work - Martha's Vineyard Times - April 28th, 2020
- Staten Island Sports Hall of Fame will once again honor 4 at annual golf outing - SILive.com - April 28th, 2020
- South Padre Island reopens but some locals think its too soon - KXAN.com - April 28th, 2020
- Grand Island-area residents urged to avoid church services; Health Department worker tests positive - Omaha World-Herald - April 28th, 2020