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Superior shell shuckers sought in Coast Day oyster contest

Superior shell shuckers sought in Coast Day oyster contest

Photo by Evan Krape

Delawareans invited to compete for swiftest oyster shucking time in Oct. 1 contest

Approximately 35.5 million pounds of oysters are harvested and consumed in the United States each year, according to the Natural Resources Defense Council.

Oyster connoisseurs prize the delicacy for various reasons, including smell, texture and saltiness. The Eastern Oyster, found on the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts, is the most widely consumed type of oyster.

Shucking oysters requires fast fingers, deftness with a knife, and attention to detail. Superior oyster shuckers can showcase their skills in a friendly competition on Oct. 1, when Coast Day returns to the University of Delaware’s Hugh R. Sharp Campus, located at 700 Pilottown Road in Lewes, Del.

Coast Day, the UD College of Earth, Ocean, and Environment (CEOE) and Delaware Sea Grant’s (DESG) premier celebration of the sea, is usually held on the first Sunday in October.

UD students and other interested community participants are invited to register to participate in the third annual Coast Day Oyster Shucking Contest, where contestants will compete to see who can shuck a dozen oysters the fastest.

To register, participants must complete an entry form and waiver by Monday, Sept. 25.

The event will begin at 3 p.m. at the Food Festival during Coast Day on Sunday, Oct. 1.

Timekeepers will be on-hand as participants compete, with the fastest shuckers of the East Coast oysters — provided by Chesapeake and Maine —moving on to subsequent rounds. The winner of each initial round will earn $50, with the top two or three competitors from each round competing in a final round.

Contestants will be judged on “speed and quality,” with penalties for broken shells, cut oysters, incorrect number of oysters and presentation. The overall contest winner will be awarded a $250 cash prize. Second and third-place winners will receive $150 and $100, respectively.

Visit the Coast Day website for a full rundown of contest rules and regulations.

More about Coast Day

Coast Day is sponsored by UD’s College of Earth, Ocean, and Environment (CEOE) and Delaware Sea Grant (DESG) and serves as a celebration of the sea.

This year’s event takes place Sunday, Oct. 1, at the University of Delaware’s Hugh R. Sharp Campus, located at 700 Pilottown Road in Lewes, Del. 

The community event attracts thousands of attendees each year to participate in fun and educational activities promoting marine stewardship and environmental awareness.

In addition to the oyster shucking contest being sponsored by Chesapeake & Maine, this year’s Coast Day is sponsored by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Delaware Municipal Electric Corporation, Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control, Edible Delmarva, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Overseas Shipholding Group, and WMDT-47.

 

 


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