There’s no denying that the folks who live in the Carolinas appreciate their annual seafood festivals. Many of these festivals happen in the fall when our seafood is simply at its best and the crowds who happily attend prove just how delicious it is! Whether you’re craving fresh shrimp, oysters, crab and more, you’ll be able to sample or dive into your favorite fare. These festivals are distinct in their own way, but you’ll more than likely find foot-tapping music, lively entertainment, a variety of arts and crafts vendors, good-spirited contests, and plenty of skilled vendors who serve up seafood in many scrumptious ways. Whether you’re hankering for steamed, raw, fried or stewed, you won’t be disappointed! There’s something fresh and delectable for everyone.
Morganton’s annual Oyster and Shrimp Festival is taking place on the Old Court House Square, 115 E Meeting Street, on October 19. From 12-7pm, the square will be filled with the aroma of freshly prepared seafood. This Morganton festival is a popular and free event run by the Burke Arts Council as a fundraiser. There’s nothing better than having a blast while supporting the local community. Continuous live music, performed by the Continental Divide, will be entertaining the crowd throughout the day while folks can choose from a menu of fried and steamed oysters, fried and boiled shrimp, salt potatoes, clam chowder, barbecue, and juicy hamburgers with all the fixings. Local craft beer and wine, soft drinks, coffee and sweet desserts made from scratch are also available.
All food and beverage purchases support a really good cause. The Burke Arts Council was founded in 1977 with a mission to “enrich the quality of life in Burke County through cultural and artistic activities.” The council encourages learning and experiences for people of all ages with art classes and workshops, as well as helping to promote individual artists with exhibitions and an artist sales gallery. They collaborate in crucial ways with local nonprofits, schools, retail establishments as well as service organizations. The October Oyster and Shrimp Festival is just one of Burke’s yearly events, bringing the community together to share wholesome fun with every penny supporting the arts council.
This is a magical time of year to visit Morganton in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Western North Carolina. It’s an easy trip from Asheville, Greensboro and Charlotte. For nearly two decades this Morganton festival has brought locals and visitors together to shuck and share some delicious food. The gorgeous backdrop contributes to the celebration in this sweet place Southern Living Magazine deemed “a small town we love.” No wonder this festival has received so much good press from respected magazines and newspapers, and as a result attendance has grown significantly throughout the years.
Besides this delectable Morganton festival that makes you feel as though you’ve entered seafood heaven, there are plenty of other reasons to visit Morganton from amazing dining and farmers markets, to live music and concerts, craft breweries, gallery crawls, unique shopping, and countless ways to celebrate fitness from yoga to outdoor recreation–not to mention plenty of festivals, carnivals, parades.
The folks who are settled into their cozy Blue Ridge Mountain homes at The Coves can hop on over to Morganton and enjoy all the town has to offer. While the leaves are turning vibrant autumnal shades, there’s nothing like a gorgeous ride in this region along the peaceful roads and parkways. Take a ride and enjoy the mountain vistas and be sure to visit The Coves Mountain and River Club where community and nature come together.
If you’re exploring the area for the first time, ask for our 84 page complimentary Western North Carolina Visitor’s Guide which provides more information about living in the foothills.