Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum
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Events > Oysterfest
Admission to OysterFest is $15 for adults, $12 for seniors,and $6 for children between the ages of six and 17.
On Saturday, October 25, the Chesapeake’s oyster will be celebrated at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum’s (CBMM) OysterFest in St. Michaels, MD. The event features live music oysters and other local fare, children’s activities, boat rides, oyster demonstrations, harvesting displays, retriever demonstrations, cooking demonstrations, documentary films, and an oyster stew competition among regional chefs.
TCWA volunteers will be serving freshly caught and shucked Chesapeake Bay oysters. Aquaculture raw oysters, steamed oysters, oyster fritters, and fried oyster sandwiches will also be available. For those who prefer to celebrate oysters rather than eat them, pit beef, hot dogs and hamburgers, along with cold beer, caramel apples, warm apple cider, and more will be offered. Festival-goers can take part in or just watch an oyster slurping contest, while others enjoy sampling oyster stew by local restaurants and chefs beginning at 11am and while the limited tastings last.
The stew competition takes place along the museum’s Fogg’s Cove side of campus, with bragging rights awarded to the chef who gets the most votes among participants. Local restaurants will also perform cooking demonstrations of signature oyster dishes throughout the day. OysterFest boasts plenty of family-friendly, educational, and fun waterfront activities designed to help kids to know how important the oyster is to the Chesapeake Bay. Families can play “Oyster Jenga,” explore an oyster nursery, participate in a scavenger hunt or face painting, or watch dip-net making and knot-tying demonstrations. Build-aboat activities provided by the Model Guild will be available for a $3 fee. Even dogs can have fun, with retriever demonstrations taking place along the Museum’s waterfront, and don’t miss the scenic river cruises and on-the-water oyster tonging demonstrations with Chesapeake watermen.
Conservation groups including Tilghman Islanders Grow Oysters, Chesapeake Bay Foundation, Oyster Recovery Partnership, and The Nature Conservancy will be on-hand to discuss efforts to clean and preserve the Bay. In addition, Phillips Wharf Environmental Center’s Fishmobile will offer visitors the opportunity to see live sturgeon, diamondback terrapins, horseshoe crabs, and other Bay creatures.
The event is generously sponsored by Maryland Public Television (MPT) with two MPT documentaries screened in the Van Lennep Auditorium during the event. Festival-goers can explore the CBMM’s exhibit buildings, including Oystering on the Chesapeake and Waterman’s Wharf, where visitors can try their hand at tonging or nippering for oysters. CBMM’s bugeye, Edna E. Lockwood, an 1889 log-bottomed oyster dredge boat and National Historic Landmark, will be dockside on display.
The festival takes place from 10am to 5pm on Saturday, October 25. Admission to OysterFest is free for CBMM members and children five years and under, otherwise it’s $15 for adults, $12 for seniors, and $6 for children between the ages of six and 17. Food and boat rides are an additional cost. Visit www.cbmm.org/oysterfest or call 410-745-2916 for more information.
Click on the icons below to learn more about this year's sponsors.
CBMM Legacy Sponsor:
CBMM Rosie Parks Sponsor:
Read about Fordham's Rosie Parks Oyster Stout and take a tour of Fordham Brewery.
Interested in becoming a vendor? Contact Events Coordinator Ida Heelan at 410-745-4944.
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OysterFest_02.jpg (Photo by Tracey Munson)
CBMM_OF11_TalbotWatermenVertical.jpg (Photo by Tracey Munson)
CBMM_OF11_EducationOyster.jpg (Photo by Tracey Munson)
CBMM_OF11_HalfShells.jpg (Photo by Tracey Munson)