No need to get crabby — the peninsula’s ever-popular seafood festival is almost here.
The 18th Dungeness Crab & Seafood Festival returns to downtown Port Angeles Oct. 11-13 for a weekend of sea-faring cuisine.
Centered around the Port Angeles City Pier and Red Lion Hotel, the event not only celebrates food but the aquaculture, agriculture and maritime traditions of the Olympic Peninsula, as well as Native American culture, art, music, and children’s activities.
Event organizers anticipate serving up more than eight tons of Dungeness crab pulled from local waters for festival-goers. Whole Dungeness crab dinners will be served in the 12,000-square-foot Crab Central tent, along with fresh corn and cole slaw.
Inside Crab Central are eight restaurant booths, adult beverages and live music. Get cooked-and-cleaned Dungeness crab to go on the City Pier. The festival offers a “crab kit” so attendees can eat crab on the pier or take home.
Throughout the grounds, 14 local and regional restaurants serve an array of seafood including crab cakes, Alaska scallops, halibut, paella, Taylor Shellfish and Jamestown oysters, seafood gumbo, clam chowder, fish and chips, fish tacos, calamari, crab Rangoon, crab mac & cheese, crab quiche, Uli’s sausages and non-seafood and vegetarian dishes, as well as local apple, blackberry and pumpkin pie for dessert.
New this year, Jamestown Seafood offers geoduck ceviche, sashimi and chowder, while Kokopelli Grill will offer new lobster corn dogs.
Olympic Peninsula Wineries will feature wines from nine regional wineries. Local and regional beers, hard ciders and other beverages will also be available.
The festival features two live music stages, two live oyster bars, local beer and wine, a chef demonstration stage featuring local and regional culinary talent, and a Grab-a-Crab Crab Derby for the family.
Activities on Oct. 12 include a Welcoming Ceremony with the Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe, a U.S. Coast Guard Air and Sea Rescue Demonstration, an Olympic Peninsula Rowing Association demonstration and a Peninsula College 5K Fun Run.
A non-denominational “Crab Revival” and the Captain Joseph House Foundation Chowder Cook-Off will take place on Sunday.
CrabFest was named the Best Food Festival in Washington State by the Daily Meal, and one of the Top 100 Events by the American Bus Association. It has also been recognized by Coastal Living Magazine, GQ Magazine, Saveur and others as one of the top seafood festivals in North America.
Presenting sponsors include Black Ball Ferry Line, Kitsap Bank, Peninsula Daily News, Port Angeles Regional Chamber of Commerce, and Red Lion Hotel Port Angeles. More than 40 sponsors and community organization make the festival happen each year.