Thousands of oyster aficionados braved the mud, crowds, and horrendous traffic on Sunday for the Lowcountry Oyster Festival at Boone Hall Plantation. By midday, the festival grounds were a mob scene — organizers predicted 10,000 guests would attend this year, and they estimated even more showed up.
All around the plantation, people munched on treats like elephant ears, bacon-wrapped scallops, and gyros from food court restaurants like A.W. Shucks, Grindz Burgers & Brew, and Red’s Ice House. But the stars of the show, of course, were the oysters, and 10 bucks bought you a beer bucket full of them. Lines were long, and it seemed like as soon as cooks heaped a new, piping-hot pile on the table, it was gone. Servers worked hard to feed the crowd, and supply was stretched to meet the demand — reps say an extra five tons of oysters had to be hauled in by 1:30 p.m. Delicious.
DJs from stations like 95SX and 94.3 WSC made sure the masses were entertained on the main stage. At 12:30 p.m., there were oyster-eating and shucking contests, with separate competitions for women and men. Musician Dave Landeo finished the festivities with a final set. Those who weren’t basking on picnic blankets danced to his renditions of songs by the Violent Femmes and the Offspring before the chaotic rat race home commenced.