Sponsored by: Greater Charleston Restaurant Association
It’s pretty tough to beat a wintertime oyster roast in Charleston. There’s a chill in the air, the beer is cold and the oysters are steamed and ready for shuckin’. For more than 30 years, Charleston area residents have been gathering to celebrate the mighty – and delicious – oyster at the Lowcountry Oyster Festival .
The 34th annual festival is set for Jan. 29 at Boone Hall Plantation. If you’ve never attended, it’s a festival not to be missed. Eating delicious oysters is reason enough to put this event on your calendar. But if you need a little more convincing, here are 10 reasons to shuck and sip at the Lowcountry Oyster Festival.
1. This is the world’s largest oyster festival. An oyster festival of this size is one for the record books, so don’t wonder what all the fuss is about – find out for yourself.
2. There are a lot of oysters. And by “a lot,” they mean 80,000 pounds. So, don’t worry about whether there will be enough oysters to go around.
3. This event has been named one of the “Top 20 Events in the Southeast” by the Southeastern Tourism Society.
4. You can’t pass up legendary entertainment like oyster shucking and oyster eating contests.
5. Live music – because everyone loves dancing after eating oysters.
6. You can feast on locally sourced oysters at the Good Catch 'Local' Oyster Tent this year provided by St. Jude Farms.
7. Food that’s not oysters. Oddly, some people don’t love oysters. They don’t like the taste or the texture or maybe they just don’t like the work that goes into getting them out the shells. Luckily, the festival has plenty of food trucks and local restaurants serving up tasty eats.
8. No need to waste time trying to find a babysitter. Bring the kids along to the oyster festival so they can enjoy the Pluff-a-Pallooza Children’s Area, a celebration of the natural habitat of oysters. Activities include crafts, balloon animals, cookie decorating, limbo with local mascots, an interactive noise play area, plus face painting and oyster shell puppet making.
9. Be a VI(O)P – that’s very important oyster person. VIP admission is $100 and includes access to the VIP lane at the entry gate and VIP tent with food, beverages and oysters.
10. Eat oysters and feel good about it. The Lowcountry Oyster Festival is a charity fundraiser benefiting The Ronald McDonald House, Hollings Cancer Center, Shriners Hospitals for Children and Charleston County Schools Science Materials Resource Center.
The Lowcountry Oyster Festival is 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. General admission is $17.50 in advance and $25 the day of the event. Children 10 and under are free with paying adult. All food and beverage tickets are sold separately. The festival is a rain or shine event. No pets or coolers allowed.