Sunshine greeted the crowds at the 50th annual Kodiak Crab Festival, which opened today at noon. KMXT’s Casey Kelly was there and has this report. (Photo by Casey Kelly/KMXT).
Fifty years ago, the City of Kodiak proclaimed itself the King Crab Capitol of the World and started holding the Crab Festival on Memorial Day weekend. While you’d be hard pressed to find any king crab in Kodiak waters these days, the festival has continued.
This year, opening day lines were 20 to 30 people deep at some of the booths, including the Kodiak Chamber of Commerce, which organizes the event and sells the official Crab Festival clothing items. Pam Foreman is the chamber’s community relations’ director.
(Foreman 1 :15s “…everybody’s having a good time.”)
Besides an assortment of booths featuring all kinds of food, there are non-profit groups peddling information, and businesses selling their wares. There’s also carnival rides, and special events planned throughout the weekend. Foreman says this year’s festival is slightly larger than last year’s.
(Foreman 2 :13s “…so many rides into that boat.”)
Tim Baker came from Fairbanks to work the Guardian Flight booth. Like many people on the first day of the festival, he commented on the unusual appearance of the sun.
(Baker 1 :02s “…Is that normal?”)
Guardian provides medevac services all over Alaska, and Baker says the company is exploring putting an aircraft in Kodiak.
(Baker 2 :10s “…a 75 dollar a year fee.”)
Ann Barker says she’s been to nearly every Crab Festival since 1958, and there’s one good reason to come back year after year.
(Barker 1 :16s “…what haven’t I tried yet?”)
Barker, who came to opening day with her husband and son, says it’s a fun way to kick off summer in Kodiak, and she also mentioned how nice the sun was.
(Barker 2 :10s “…it’s a wonderful day.”)
The Crab Festival will last through Memorial Day. Saturday is the biggest day for special events with a parade planned for Mill Bay Road, survival suit races at the St. Paul Harbor, a marathon, the Chiniak to Kodiak bike relay and more.
I’m Casey Kelly.