Eastern Shore Christmas CardsSummer is gone, and that’s too bad. On the other hand: WELCOME TO THE SEASON OF OYSTER FESTIVALS!

Here are the October and November oyster events I’ve been able to round up so far. If I missed one in your town, please let me (and everyone else) know about it in the comments.

• The 46th annual Chincoteague Oyster Festival is coming up on Sat. Oct. 6. Last I checked, there were tickets available–but it sells out early every year, so no guarantees on availability. Details here.

• Starting Sat., Oct. 6 and continuing every Saturday in the month, you can sign on to tour an oyster farm on remote Hoopers Island, Md. and then enjoy a tasting session with libations from Snifter’s Craft Beer & Wine Bistro in downtown Cambridge. Details here.

• The Leipsic (Del.) Oyster Festival is the afternoon of Sat., Oct. 13 along Main Street. Games, family activities, and live music on top of the title attraction. Details here. (If you want to go on a morning birding trip to Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge and then head to the Oyster Festival with your new birding friends, Delmarva Birding has that trip ready for you. Details.)

• The gorgeous Mount Harmon plantation in Earleville, Md. (near Cecilton) has its annual Bull & Oyster Roast under a big tent on Sat., Oct. 13. The manor house will be open for tours. Details here.

• The Rock Hall Fall Fest on Sat., Oct. 13 is a street festival with music, crafts, vendors, and lots and lots of oysters. –fresh-shucked, fried, and, stew, etc. Details here.

• The Hot Sauce & Mollusk Festival, which is Sun., Oct. 14 in Cambridge, Md., used to be the Hot Sauce & Oyster Festival. Why the change? “Every town seems to have an Oyster Fest, but we aren’t like every other town! So, we’re having a Mollusk Fest! The Oyster will be joined by the Conch, Clam, Mussel, Cuddlefish, Snail, Octopus and many other friends to create this amazing and unique festival.” Be sure to stick around for the “Master of the Mollusk” eating contest. The great Bird Dog & the Road Kings are playing. Details here.

Eastern Shore Road Trips• The tradition of a “Big Thursday” season-opening oyster party in Bowers Beach, Del. dates clear back to 1852. They still call it Big Thursday nowadays, though the event is new held on a weekend. This year, it’s Sunday, Oct. 14. Details here.

• The annual Soule Arnold Oyster Roast sounds like a sweet bit of small-town bliss. Held in a park on Main Street in Exmore, Va. it’s scheduled this year for the evening of Sat.., Oct. 20. Details here.

• The big annual Oyster Festival at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum in St. Michaels is Sat., Oct. 27. Details here.

• The Saxis Island Oyster Roast is Sat., Nov. 3. Party starts at 5pm in the Shore Seafood Oyster House on the town dock, then moves over to Capt. E’s Hurricane Grill for karaoke and more. (You gotta love an event where the instructions go like this: “To buy a ticket, call Mayor Denise Drewer.”) Details here.

• The Oyster Jam at Phillips Wharf Environmental Center on Tilghman Island works a little differently, too. Instead of one big all-you-can-eat fee, you can purchase a smaller amount of “Oyster Bucks” and then come back and buy more if you need them. Event is Sat., Nov. 3. Details here.

• The Island House in Wachapreague, Va. will have an Oyster Roast on Sat., Nov. 3. Local beer & wine, live music, auctions, and more. Details here.

• There will be two editions of Shell Shocked, an oyster and craft beer festival at Fager’s Island in Ocean City, Md. The dates are Sat., Nov. 3 and Sat., Nov. 10. Details.

• On Sat., Nov. 10, Chatham Vineyards in Machipongo, Va. will be holding its annual Merroir and Terroir Oyster Extravaganza with raw bar, steamed clams, roasted oysters, clam chowder, live music, and more. Details here.

• The annual Brew and Oyster Brawl at the Tidewater Inn in Easton, Md. on Sat., Nov. 10 happens smack dab in the middle of the town’s humongous Waterfowl Festival weekend. Details here.

• Ducks Unlimited will be having an Oyster Roast on Sat., Nov. 17 at the Barrier Island Center in Machipongo, Va. Details here.

• The Cape Charles (Va.) Historical Society has its big Oyster Roast every year on the Saturday after Thanksgiving. That puts this year’s event on Sat., Nov. 24. Details.

Happy oystering, everyone!

–Posted by Jim Duffy on Sept. 20, 2018




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  • David says:

    I did not find a listing for the “Urbanna (VA) Oyster Festival. Since it is one of the largest in the U.S., I do not understand why it is not listed???????

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