The Shrimporee Festival in Aransas Pass? is a big money-making event for the town. However this year’s festivities are especially important for vendors and nonprofit organizations selling food and other goodies.
That’s because some nine months ago, Hurricane Harvey ripped through the area, damaging many homes and businesses in its path.
One business that suffered hurricane damage was Carrie’s Grill & Treats in Ingleside. Carrie Smith, the owner, said said her business wasn’t recognizable after Harvey.
"The next day when I came here, it was horrible," Carrie said. "My whole front end of the building was ripped off."
Carrie’s restaurant shut down for a week after the hurricane. The restaurant has since reopened, but now, her and other vendors are hoping the Shrimporee will give them more reason to celebrate.
"All of us businesses coming together and still being able to support the Shrimporee — we’re going to succeed and this one devastation ain’t going to stop us," Carrie said.
However the devastation did impact the Aransas Pass Panther Athletic Booster Club. Wanese Butler, the club President, says the Shrimporee is their biggest money-making event of the year.
"The more successful Shrimporee is, the better kickoff that we’re going to have for the upcoming school year," Wanese said.
Wanese says Harvey made it difficult for the Aransas Pass community, a community that’s still recovering, to donate to their club. The collected money goes toward things like scholarships, equipment, funds for playoffs and banquets.
That’s why vendors and nonprofits are hoping to serve as many shrimp creations as they can.
"You folks are out there and you’re getting hungry? Come by the food vendors," Wanese said. "These nonprofits really need your support."
Click here for more information about this year’s Shrimporee.