Could a better excuse exist for a festival than good ol’ Florida Gulf shrimp? We don’t think so, either.
You really haven’t lived a full life until you’ve tasted our lovely, pink Gulf shrimp steaming hot, right off the boat, so fresh it can actually be a little difficult to peel the thin shells from the meat. Yea, you can’t really find that in any restaurant.
We still have some homes and other accommodations available, all within easy walking distance, for that weekend but you’d better click here right now to reserve a place!
The festival, a highlight of the whole year on Fort Myers Beach, began in 1959 as a blessing of the fleet and has grown in scope and popularity every year since. Some people are even surprised to discover a viable and successful shrimp fleet based right here on the beach, not far inside Mantazas Pass.
Before the peelin’ and eatin’ starts, however, the fun begins at 9 a.m. on March 11 with the 5K Shrimp Festival Run through the streets of our beach community.
The Shrimp Festival parade launches at 10 a.m. and winds its way through 1.5 miles of Estero Boulevard (our main street). The Matanza Bridge closes to traffic at 9 a.m. so festival goers coming from the mainland that way should arrive early.
The Shrimp Festival Queen is crowned at 1 p.m. at Lynn Hall Beach Park, where you’ll also find the steaming, boiling shrimp!
All the shrimp you can eat and all the $13 shrimp meals you can buy (complete with cole slaw and the Lions Club secret-recipe cocktail sauce). You can even buy your meal tickets online, in advance, and skip the lines!
The shrimp get served up starting at 10 a.m. on both Saturday and Sunday and continued to be served until 5 p.m. on Saturday and until they’re all gone on Sunday. Shrimp for the 2017 festival will come straight off the shrimping vessels Penny V with Capt. Scott Cowles at the helm and Babe with Capt. Charlie Livingston bringing in the goodies.
You will certainly want to stick around Sunday for the 1 p.m. Shrimp Eating Championship.F
Fantastic Gulf shrimp, plenty of family events, music and more. Come on down, come on out and enjoy one of our finest Gulf of Mexico treasures!