Love Oysters?  Don’t Miss the Ocean State Oyster Festival

Tom Robbins once equated eating an oyster with French kissing a mermaid. Others have likened it to swallowing a large wad of snot. I get both analogies, but for obvious reasons prefer the first one as it perfectly describes the sensuous nature of gulping down a bit of the sea, enjoying the salty brininess that lingers on your tongue; knowing you just consumed something sure to enhance your libido. Eating an oyster has nothing to do with eating; it’s an experience all unto itself.

oyster pic colorHere in Rhode Island, we’re fortunate to have access to high-quality fresh oysters year-round, and the 3rd Annual Ocean State Oyster Festival celebrates that fact. This year’s event will take place on Sep 23 from 1 – 7pm at River Walk Park in Providence, where oysters from 18 local oyster farms will be featured. The ticket gets you half a dozen oysters and a drink of choice (beer, wine or spiked ginger beer). This event is family-friendly (children under 12 are free) as there’s live entertainment and activities for the kids, such as face-painting, a photo booth and chill-out tent where kids can hang while mom and dad hit the bar. For those not inclined to shuck and suck, there will be food trucks from Pat’s Pastured, Smoke n’ Squeal Bbq and Mike’s Ice. In the afternoon, you can participate in an oyster shucking contest and vote for your favorite oyster – a perfect way to spend the first weekend of fall. Also, the coolest part of this already cool festival is that everything used is either compostable or recyclable. That means net zero in terms of waste.

Purchase tickets at The event is held rain or shine as there are plenty of tents. To volunteer, email

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