Museum Benefits from Fishery Relationships


Jay Barrett/KMXT
If you’ve ever passed through Seattle – and really, who hasn’t? – you are likely familiar with Ivar’s, the Puget Sound seafood chain. This week you won’t have to go nearly as far to get some of its famous deep-fried fish and chips or its classic clam chowder, as it’ll all be available at the Kodiak Maritime Museum booth during Crab Fest.
As the Maritime Museum’s Executive Director Toby Sullivan explains, Ivar’s and the museum were brought together by the connections each had to Alaska Leader Fisheries.

— (Ivars 1 26 sec “It came about because the Alaska Leader fisheries group started selling cod fish to Ivar’s this spring. They signed a contract with them, so they have a business relationship with Ivar’s and I think they talked to Ivar’s about Alaska Leader’s own foundation that supports non-profit causes in Western Alaska. And I think they asked Ivars if they’d like to help out with that and Ivar’s was open to the idea and so they decided to help out with our booth.”)

Sullivan said the museum’s booth used to be operated by Alaska Leader for its own foundation:

(Ivars 2 31 sec “They had always run it themselves. I mean Richard Thumble ran it for at least 10 years. And I think he loves doing it, but I think he needed a little more time with his family during Crab Fest. They never saw him during Crab Fest; he was in the booth from early in the morning until late at night. So part of it was trying to have someone else take over the operation of the booth. And my understanding is they actually offered the booth to another non-profit but they just didn’t have the capacity to do it with manpower and things like that.”)

As a result of the deal, Sullivan says Ivar’s is shipping up a supply of its deep-fried fish batter and the company’s clam chowder.

— (Ivars 3 21 sec “There is a connection between selling cod fish, which come from the Bering Sea in order to support a maritime museum whose mission is to tell the stories of fishermen out of Alaska and the Bering Sea. So there’s sort of a narrative circle there that may have been completed by the whole serving cod fish to fishermen to tell their story kind of a thing.”)

Crab Fest starts on Thursday at noon, just in time for the lunch crowd.

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