A festival to honor the mighty little shrimp, down in Beaufort

Image by Flickr user travorpittman It's time to get your shrimp on.

Fans of the Lowcountry shrimp season should take note of the festival taking place this weekend just down the road in Beaufort.

Fried, boiled, on a roll, with seasoning, on a skewer, or in a pot: It doesn't matter how you like your shrimp, there'll be no shortage this weekend as the 18th annual Beaufort Shrimp Festival arrives on Friday, October 5, and Saturday, October 6, at the Henry C. Chambers Waterfront Park (map).

The festivities kick off at 6 p.m. on Friday and include live music by Stud Farm and several area restaurants, which will be previewing their shrimp dishes for Saturday's competitions.

All restaurants will be using SC Wild Caught Shrimp.

The festival's 5K Run (USATF certified course) and Walk Through History will begin at 8 a.m. on Saturday morning. The Popcorn Shrimp Run for ages 7 and under will begin at 8:45 a.m. at the corner of Bay and Newcastle Streets (registration details here).

Saturday's events continue at 11 a.m. with live music, children's games and activities and arts and crafts. Local restaurants will put their unique spins on fresh local shrimp, available to attendees, and will compete for the "Best Shrimp Dish" and "Best Booth Decoration" voted by a panel of judges, and the "People's Choice", chosen by festival attendees.

The overall winner  will be awarded the "Silver Cup" and adults will be able to participate in a shrimp heading competition and children in a shrimp peeling competition for various prizes.

Alternative foods will be available for the shell-fish intolerant.