In Alabama, it’s not often that football is replaced as the primary topic of conversation in fall months. But Auburn, Alabama and high school pigskin feats take a back seat on the second full weekend in October to an unlikely usurper – shrimp.
Since 1971, that’s the weekend that approximately 300,000 people will make their way to Gulf Shores to take part in the Annual National Shrimp Festival™ presented by Zatarain’s. The dates this year are October 11 to 14.
Featuring four days of fresh seafood, more than 80 hours of musical entertainment, a dedicated Children’s Activity Village and almost 200 fine art and arts and crafts vendors all nestled along the sugar white sand beaches of the Gulf of Mexico, the Festival is one of the top fall attractions in the Southeast.
Patrons can walk along the beachfront boardwalk eating fresh Gulf shrimp prepared in ways that would even impress Bubba Gump while enjoying the sounds of music ranging from acoustic harmonies to country twangs to Motown and classic rock. In recent years the Festival has featured such musical luminaries as Miranda Lambert, Eddie Money, Lee Ann Womack and former Foreigner frontman Lou Graham.
Families can enter the annual sand sculpture contest. Kids can take part in a myriad of activities in the Children’s Activity Village, including face-painting, karaoke, the soon-to-be-world-famous Candy Cannon and much more. Runners and walkers can enter the 10K and 5K races to help work off some of the great food at the Festival and the weather is still warm enough for swimmers to take to the blue-green waters of the Gulf and sunbathers to work on their tans.
Produced by the Alabama Gulf Coast Area Chamber of Commerce, the Annual National Shrimp Festival™ presented by Zatarain’s has something for everyone. Mark your calendars for the second full weekend in October and go on down to Gulf Shores for Alabama’s Original Beach Party and a taste of the best the Gulf Coast has to offer.
Click on the Festival’s website at www.nationalshrimpfestival.com for more information.
For more information about top events in Alabama take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Alabama.