Jekyll Island’s Shrimp Festival an annual favorite
by Special to the Banner
Jul 20, 2014 | 615 views | 0 0 comments | 12 12 recommendations | email to a friend | print


Located directly on the Georgia coast, Jekyll Island is a shrimpers haven.

“Shrimp & Grits: The Wild Georgia Shrimp Festival,” presented by Southern Living, will be held Sept. 19 to 21 on Jekyll Island. This family-friendly, three-day event is the only festival dedicated to celebrating wild Georgia shrimp and its place as a signature ingredient in Southern cuisine.

Chefs and foodies from across the Southeast flock to the food-centric festival — either to try their hand at creating the event’s best shrimp and grits recipe or to eat their way through the plethora of dishes available. Set under the cover of live oaks in the Jekyll Island Historic Landmark District, the festival provides a laid-back, relaxed Southern atmosphere for savoring delicious coastal cuisine and classic country, Americana and early rock bands. Powerhouse Backbeat Boulevard will be rocking the festival lawn on Friday night. For some good country music, Shane Bridges Band keeps it real on the main stage Saturday evening.

Don’t miss Southern Living Test Kitchen professional, Vanessa Rocchio, who will be on hand to demonstrate her favorite shrimp and grits recipe and provide delicious free samples.

Guests will be treated to an intimate performance of “Songwriters in the Round” with Nashville-based artists Rob Crosby, James Dean Hicks, and Billy Montana, returning this year.

Flocking to Jekyll Island from across the nation, talented new and returning artisans will sell their handcrafted wares throughout the festival grounds.

While exploring the many offerings throughout the Jekyll Island historic district, stop by the official Wild Georgia Shrimp Festival gifts tent and treat yourself or purchase a special Jekyll Island gift for friends and family.

To kick-off the weekend, $3 Sample Night will be offered from participating vendors selling their signature shrimp and grits dishes on Sept. 19. Sample and then vote on your favorite one. Saturday and Sunday, the festival will host an amateur Cooking Competition and the Professional Chef Cooking Competition, plus cooking demonstrations with guest chefs. For sport and health enthusiasts, the Flippenout Extreme Trampoline Show features top athletes — U.S.A. Olympic Medalists, National Champions, National Team Members, Olympic Hopefuls, and top tier show professionals — who travel worldwide and perform complex acrobatic routines to music. Check out this extreme entertainment with shows on Saturday and Sunday.

From Mr. Moonwalk’s zipline at the Family Fun Zone and ongoing cooking demos, to the shrimp eating contests and never-ending assortment of tasty finds, the 2014 Shrimp & Grits: Wild Georgia Shrimp Festival, promises to dish up a good time for the whole family!

General admission to the festival is free. A $6 per vehicle parking fee is required for entry onto Jekyll Island. For more information, visit www.jekyllisland.com.