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Montauk Reels In Inaugural Seafood Festival

Two-day festival kicks off Saturday with food, games for the kids, and tips from Montauk fishermenn.

Pail of lobster Credit: Montauk Seafood Festival
Pail of lobster Credit: Montauk Seafood Festival
Seafood lovers, rejoice: The first ever Montauk Seafood Festival is slated for this weekend.

Presented by the Kiwanis Club of East Hampton and Montauk Friends of Erin, the groups hope to make this an annual celebration of Montauk's best commodity.

Laura Mastandrea, the festival director, said the two organizations were talking about putting together a festival for quite some time. Upon announcing the festival, she said the positive feedback has been overwhelming. Many have said, 'This is about time,' and 'How do we not have this?'," she said. "We've had enough momentum from day one to know this is going to be an annual event."

The festival, which takes place Saturday and Sunday at the Montauk Marine Basin from noon to 5 p.m. will offer all of Montauk's delicacies. Restaurants and caterers will serve up signature dishes, such as lobster rolls, raw seafood bars, seafood crepes and wontons, Ahi tuna sliders, sushi, ceviche, crab cakes, fish tacos, and much more.

Businesses taking part are 360 East Caterers, Montauk Pearls, Sloppy Tuna, Atlantic Terrace Café, HamptonSeafood Co., Andrra Restaurant, Gurney’s Inn, Sammy’s Restaurant, Zakura Restaurant, Montauk Brewing Co., Duckwalk and Pindar Vineyards and My Earth Water.

There will also be a Snapper Derby (the festival will supply the poles and bait), Goldfish racing and fish prints on the dock for the kids, live music, and raffles. The fish hatchery will also be on hand with live specimens. Every hour on the hour, a Q&A will be held where one of several local fishermen — Rick Etzel, Stuart Vorpahl, Carl Darenberg, and Ken Bouse — will offer up tips and tricks.

While admission is free, those wishing to chow down will have to purchase coupons at the entrance in $2 and $5 increments. Twenty percent of the proceeds will be donated back to the organizations.

Proceeds from the event will go toward Toys for Tots, pediatric trauma causes, and the Montauk Friends of Erin St. Patrick's Day parade, and scholarships.

Park up and down West Lake Drive, or park in the harbor and walk to the Montauk Marine Basin, Mastandrea said.

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