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Santa Barbara Harbor & Seafood Festival Casts Wide Net for 11th Year
Locals and tourists alike gathered Saturday for the annual Santa Barbara Harbor & Seafood Festival. The tradition, in its 11th year, featured live music, cooking demonstrations and seafood favorites from harbor restaurants.
“It’s to bring people down and showcase the harbor,” Santa Barbara Waterfront director and organizer Scott Riedman said of the festival. “It’s also about the fishermen.”
According to Riedman, the festival is held on the second Saturday of October to coincide with the opening of more fisheries and the start of lobster season.
“Our signature thing is the lobster,” he said.
Food dishes included clam chowder from harbor mainstay Brophy Bros. and barbecued albacore from the Commercial Fishermen of Santa Barbara Inc. The Santa Barbara Fish Market and Josefina’s Paella also served seafood specialties. Cooking demonstrations from Chuck’s Waterfront Grill and fresh sea urchins were popular sights.
Volunteers from Santa Barbara High School, Santa Barbara City College’s Culinary department and UCSB supported festival operations. This year, 42 volunteers assisted festival efforts throughout the day, volunteer coordinator Alejandra Gutierrez said.
The festival, in all its efforts, paid tribute to the city’s beautiful harbor. Riedman said the daylong event ran smoothly.
“It’s been great,” he said. “We’ve got some really good food offerings and good musicians.”
Upward of 12,000 people were expected to visit the festival this year, Riedman said. Last year, approximately 13,700 guests attended.
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