After much review and deliberation the North Carolina Seafood Festival Board of Directors has made the decision to hold an outdoor event on November 3rd to benefit relief efforts for Carteret County and neighboring communities in place of having the award winning 32nd Annual Festival this year.
The Seafood Festival was postponed from its original October 5th-7th dates due to damage the area sustained from Hurricane Florence, and to give the community time to recover before holding the event. Other reasons for the cancellation of the North Carolina Seafood Festival include, but are not limited to: Area accommodations have been damaged severely and will not see full restoration for months, therefore not supporting adequate supply for visiting guests to stay overnight. The trash, utilities and recycling are currently limited. Most of the businesses in the actual footprint of the festival have been displaced, and are unable to open by the first weekend in November.
Stephanie McIntyre, Executive Director of the festival stated “The brand of the North Carolina Seafood Festival and the magnitude of impact that it brings to the area can never be replicated with a different date. This event will have a totally different look, mission and purpose. We look forward to crafting this event for our recovering community.”
The hurricane benefit event will be held on the Morehead City working waterfront. The event will focus on hurricane relief efforts with food, music, and fun for all ages. More details for the event will be released soon.
Chairperson of the 2018 Festival, Ed Stack says “The board feels that we still want to produce an element of giving back to our community after experiencing such a major devastation. We look forward to bringing this event to the area and working towards planning of the North Carolina Seafood Festival in 2019”.
The Big Rock Blue Marlin Tournament will be helping to sponsor the event with the intentions of bringing relief aid to the community.
President of The Big Rock Marlin Tournament, Dale Britt says “I’ve been seeing Carteret Strong signs all around town and I must say that it is the best description I have seen about our community and the folks that are here. On behalf of our Board of Directors, our Executive Director Crystal Hesmer and her great team we are pleased to announce that the Big Rock Blue Marlin Tournament is joining forces with the North Carolina Seafood Festival to help hold this important hurricane relief benefit on November 3rd”.
The organizations have chosen the Salvation Army as the recipient of designated funds raised from the event. The Salvation Army has a program within its framework that vets families in need of assistance to pay their utility bills.
During the press conference Major Dewey Alderson of the Salvation Army stated “What is going to happen in another month when their utilities bill is due? You have a choice to make: do I feed my family for another month or do we pay the utility bill. That is what this money is going to do. We promise you that this money is going to be spent here on utility bills, rent, and whatever else we can do in Carteret County”.
The ‘Amped Up’ event will be held from 11 AM – 11 PM on November 3rd in Jaycee Park on the Morehead City Waterfront. The event will feature non-stop music, as well as restaurants and non-profit food vendors. There is no admission fee to attend the event!