The 70th annual Shrimporee continued on Saturday with crowds filling the event for some food, fun, music and of course, shrimp. It was the largest event held in seaside Aransas Pass since Hurricane Harvey.
The festival has been a staple of the community for 70 years, beginning as a way to honor the start of shrimp season and the city’s biggest industry.
Each year, crowds gather for plenty of shrimp, carnival rides, live music, local goods and artwork. The festival runs through the weekend and draws tourists far and wide for what organizers call the biggest shrimp festival in Texas.
This year, however, the business that comes along with those crowds of festival growers is even more important. The very ground that Shrimporee stands on this weekend looked a bit different just a few short months ago; when mountains of debris from Hurricane Harvey still covered the public land.
Despite the makeover, the nearby community continues to struggle with the storm’s aftermath. But with Shrimporee, many local businesses hope to get an economic boost.
"We’re getting a lot of good feedback. People are excited to be here," explained Rosemary Vega, with Aransas Pass Chamber of Commerce. "A lot of these people are return visitors, and they’re amazed at how well we could put everything back together. They’ve seen the stories on this section being the debris site, and can’t actually believe how far we’ve come."
More than 60,000 visitors are expected this weekend, with the festival running Friday through Sunday. If you havn’t stopped by yet, or need another helping of shrimp, head out to the festival in Aransas Pass from noon to 6 p.m. on Sunday.