Oysterfest, the best holiday of the entire year, the one that kicks off the entire grand holiday season, has come and gone.
Many oysters were eaten.
Pork rinds were consumed.
Surprisingly enough, my entire fried food quotient this year was one bag of pork rinds, despite the allure of so many over the top fried delicacies.
This year’s winner for the the most over the top fried treat?
Deep fried cinnamon rolls, rolled in bacon bits.
That bacon didn’t look nearly as good as the bacon we had back on the grill.
I’m pretty sure Ryan grilled meat from the time he arrived Friday until they left Sunday morning.
Ryan brought a cooler of lamb & pork he’d raised, Dave brought rockfish he’d caught, there was even some Ankole sausage courtesy of Rieman’s father. There was also the usual gathering of crockpots, breads, biscuits and other treats made by the sisterhood to round out the meat, oysters and fried foods.
The girls have gotten big enough to pitch in too, with Edie and Abigail baking a coffee cake Saturday morning. Why yes, that is a bread knife Abigail is using to cut the butter. She grabbed the first knife she saw laying around.
This year’s stellar bloody mary table was also a staging area for the nearby grill.
Or perhaps you like a hunk of meat in your drink?
No wonder someone thought this was a great event to have a free health screening at.
There were plenty of our usual traditions, like the Fire Truck Parade Friday night, where the kids try to sit as close as possible to the loudest parade you’ve ever heard. (Don’t worry, we all wear ear plugs)
There is the Saturday afternoon parade, full of Shriners.
There is she crab bisque from the church on Main Street that is not to be missed.
We added the oyster shucking competition this year to things we do at Oysterfest.
Those ladies were serious about their oyster shucking.
And we were serious about eating them.
This little guy, the newest addition to the Smiley clan, kept the sisterhood from hitting the bar Friday night, but it did get us a free ticket to wander around the fest by ourselves (accompanied by young Walker of course) Saturday afternoon. We were going to hit the wine garden, but the line was too long. And we had wine at home.
We also enjoyed some quiet time to ourselves in this year’s back yard fort, as always, courtesy of Brooke, in the form of a pop-up camper that made for a most excellent grown up hide out.
There was plenty of the usual piles of kids and us trying to get them all to gather for one nice picture, whether posed or not posed.
The swords were Ryan’s Sunday morning craft project.
When we got home last night, I found Edie curled up asleep in the den, clutching it, her souvenir of a good weekend.
They even ate in a pile, declaring this chair the “Mac and Cheese Chair”.
There were plenty of other moments that make the weekend so special, year after year.
The most notable moment comes Saturday afternoon, after the parade where someone realizes it’s only 3:30, how can it only be 3:30 when it feels like at least 5:30? Good god, how are we ever going to make it to put the kids to bed, can’t they go to bed at 5?
Saturday of Oysterfest is the longest day of the year.
Oysterfest isn’t just about a grill full of meat all weekend, or piles of kids or fried food or parades, it’s the official holiday of the bromance.
The entire group of men have a very strong bromance. And every last one of the operates on the assumption that if you have a bromance with one of them, well then, you will have a bromance with all of them.
There’s a lot of love between those boys.
So much so that there is an entire holiday based on it.