The Rotary Club of Annapolis is gearing up for its 70th annual Crab Feast scheduled for Friday, Aug. 7, 2015, from 5 to 8 p.m. at the Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium in Annapolis. This special event is a major fund-raiser which benefits local community and cultural organizations.
Crab Feast Information
The 70th crab feast is being held in memory of the late George Phelps, a Rotarian since July 1983, who died in February after a lengthy illness. His contributions to the community and Rotary are well-known (See annapolisrotary.org/crabfeast).
In addition, the Rotary Club of Annapolis has joined hands with the HERO Foundation. The HERO Campaign for Designated Drivers® seeks to end drunk driving tragedies by promoting the use of safe and sober designated drivers. So while the club wants everyone to have a good evening of fellowship and good crabs, it also asks people to be a HERO and be a designated driver.
The feast is all-you-can-eat and drink, including large and #1 male crabs (the big ones) plus Maryland vegetable crab soup, sweet Maryland corn on the cob, beef barbeque sandwiches, all-American hot dogs, watermelon, draft beer, and assorted sodas and water. A bake sale and cake raffle can finish your feast with sweetness. National and regional Watermelon Queens will slice and serve free fresh watermelon, thanks to the Maryland Department of Agriculture and the Mar-Del Watermelon Association. Also for sale will be Crab Feast souvenir T-shirts.
Nearly 2,500 people are expected to attend and finish off 320 bushels of crabs, 3,400 ears of corn, 100 gallons of crab soup, 1,800 hot dogs, 150 pounds of beef barbeque, and hundreds of gallons of soft drinks and beer. The event will be held rain or shine, as most of the tables are protected from the weather.
Annapolis Green, a local environmental group, is working with the Rotary Club of Annapolis for the second year to compost all the crabs and other food, utensils, and beverages at crab feast. The two groups want to make this charitable fund raiser a zero waste event. Last year the two groups held one of the largest recycling and composting events they have conducted. One of the largest challenges is completing the job so the stadium is clean and ready for the next day’s activities.
About 20,000 pounds of food waste will be collected. In just about two months after the crab feast, the watermelon rinds, corn cobs, brown paper, and even the crab shell bits will turn into compost that will benefit gardens all over the area. Plastic will be collected, too, to reach the event goal of sending nothing to a landfill.
Crab feast vendors are doing their part, too. Responding to Rotary and Annapolis Green, they are replacing polystyrene or Styrofoam – which is not recyclable – with containers made of paper. It’s all part of a campaign to feast responsibly.
An excellent way to entertain special clients and guests or to recognize the hard work of loyal employees is the Preferred Dining area at the event. Participants can use a private entrance, and enjoy guaranteed seating in one of the Preferred Dining tents and a wait staff that will bring the crabs to their table. Tables of 10 or 12 are available, as well as individual seating. To order, contact Pam Urnowey at 850-619-1645 or e-mail [email protected].
Parking for the crab feast at the stadium is free. No containers, drinks, backpacks, large bags, coolers or similar items will be allowed into the event.
“While it is an all-you-can-eat affair, and you can take all you want, please eat all you take. If you have more crabs than you need, please share with a neighbor. This will reduce waste and help preserve a precious natural resource,” said Crab Feast chairman Jim Campbell.
Annapolis Rotary members pay all their own administrative costs for the operations of the club, so all funds raised are donated to local charities. Last year’s crab feast contributed more than $68,000 directly to 29 local charities and non-profit groups. More than $1 million has been awarded since the first Annapolis Rotary Crab Feast in 1946.
Tickets are $65 for adults, $20 for children ages 3 to 12, and free for children under the age of 3. Preferred Dining is $130 per person.
To purchase, visit http://annapolistickets.showare.com/crabfeast or call 1-877-333-9667 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. For ticket questions, e-mail [email protected]. All online and telephone sales will end at noon on Aug. 7. Tickets will go on sale at the Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium box office starting at 4 p.m. on the day of the event. Cost of tickets at the door is $75