The North Carolina Seafood Festival is Carteret County’s annual seafood celebration and the second largest festival in North Carolina. On the waterfront of downtown Morehead City, a crowd of 200,000 plus people flock towards the smell of fresh, local seafood and the arts and crafts of various vendors every year.
The festival was founded in 1987 and is known to be Carteret County’s premier event each year. The festival takes place the “First Weekend in October” every year. The 3-day long celebration impacts the community’s economy by nearly 32 million dollars. People from all over the state and the east coast come to sample North Carolina’s greatest, as well as tastiest natural resource – seafood!
The Seafood Festival has been around for almost 25 years now and a lot has changed in society as time has passed. Therefore, the festival itself had to make some changes to keep up with the times. Set up in a parking lot across from a Morehead City landmark, The Sanitary Restaurant, is a stage that hosts several bands and artists as they play their music for the festival attendees. Next to the stage is a large digital screen. Displayed on the screen are text and picture messages that people send to the provided phone number. These texts consist of anything from who their favorite college sports team is to how much they loved the cajun shrimp pita pocket at the St. Egbert’s booth at the festival. This allows the crowd to interact with the rest of the surrounding audience. Although the Seafood Festival purpose may be to primarily provide shrimp, oysters, crab, gator bites, funnel cakes, corn dogs, etc., does not mean that it is not tuned in with the current technology outside from deep fryers and broilers.