Island festival doesn’t skimp on the shrimp
Boil it, broil it, bake it, sauté it or deep fry it. Along the Gulf Coast, shrimp is king and a staple of cuisine and industry.
The Galveston Island Shrimp Festival — Sept. 25-27 — celebrates the crustacean with such events as Mardi Gras-style Lil’ Shrimps Parade; a vendor show for outdoor enthusiasts; and cook-off competitions for pros and amateurs.
Here’s a glance at the festival by the numbers:
20,000 revelers — Organizers estimate last year’s festival netted 20,000 revelers — about three-fourths of whom trekked over the Galveston Causeway and onto the island for shrimp’s sake.
1,000 pounds — Galveston Shrimp Company is donating at least a half-ton of shrimp to the festival. About 500 pounds will hit the fryer for a VIP sponsor party Friday night. The rest is divvied up between amateur and pro teams for the festival’s cook-off competition.
1,000 runners — It’s an ambitious goal, but organizers hope at least this many runners try out a new downtown route for the 5K Fun Run. Previously, about 400 participants, some wearing shrimp-themed garb, ran along a seawall route.
35 vendors — The list is still growing, but that’s how many craft and merchandise vendors set up shop at the festival last year. For fishing, hunting and camping enthusiasts, the Outdoors Show continues throughout the festival.
15 gallons — Each pro cook-off team must offer at least 15 gallons of its best shrimp gumbo for roaming taste testers during the Gumbo Stroll. Sprinkle in gumbo samples from amateur cooking squads and The Strand will be a melting pot of the Creole cuisine.
Visit www.yagaspresents.com/shrimpfestival/schedule.html for a schedule of events.