51st Annual Shrimp Festival Update
Recently, the Fernandina Beach Rotary Club enjoyed an update on the Isle of Eight Flags Shrimp Festival by 2014 Chairman Mark Deaton and Publicity and Promotions Chair Judie Mackie. These long-time festival volunteers said the theme this year – the 51st anniversary of the event – is “Home of the Shrimpers.” Grand Marshall Captain Teddy Cook will open the festivities during the Pirate Parade – returning to the Thursday night before the festival – at 6 p.m. on May 1. As in years past Deaton said, the award-winning festival will boast some 300 booths displaying fine arts and crafts. More than 50 local non-profit organizations will offer everything from seafood gumbo to shrimp ice cream to tempt the taste buds. Popular attractions for the 100,000-plus visitors such as the Kids Zone, Miss Shrimp Festival and Best Beard contest will be joined by an outstanding line-up of musical attractions featuring Edwin McCain, the FBHS Jazz Band, the Swinging Medallions and local celebrity songwriter Woody Mullis. Mackie also announced that Edgar Hansen of the Discovery Channel’s series “Deadliest Catch” will speak about the importance of buying wild-caught seafood and sign autographs on Saturday May 3. Deaton closed by saying the nationally acclaimed festival would not be possible without the hard work of the 40-plus volunteers or the support of sponsors, including the City of Fernandina Beach, Publix, Vystar Credit Union, Florida Public Utilities and many more.