The Arcata Bay Oyster Festival

The Arcata Bay Oyster Festival is the the largest one-day event in Humboldt County. Every year over 12,000 voracious festival-goers gather on the Arcata Plaza to celebrate our local aquaculture, and savor the delicacies that have earned us the reputation as the Oyster Capital of California.

Food lovers’ taste buds will be lured by the siren song of sublime oyster flavors, and then it’s bottoms up with pints of local craft beer served in waste-reducing commemorative steel cups. Also new this year –  hard apple cider, plus two different wine booths will proudly pour locally-made wines, many with locally grown grapes.

Local chefs will be competing for the coveted Best Raw and Cooked Oyster and Non-Oyster awards, while dancers frolic on the grass to local music. Parents – let your kids take you on a wild Treasure Hunt, including a special kids area by the new Fire Department, but don’t miss the quirky Oyster Calling Contest (now with 30 second calls!) at noon. At 2pm contenders will be slamming down bivalves in the Shuck-n-Swallow Contest.

In 1990, Arcata wanted to create a new event that would showcase aquaculture and community – that’s when Oyster Festival and Fred Oystaire were born. Our mascot and master of ceremonies will guide us as we revel in this momentous commemorative 25th Oyster Festival celebration.

Oyster Festival is about celebrating the North Coast culture where our merchants, restauranteurs, volunteers and guests embrace locally grown and prepared foods, drinks, and art. When you leave the Arcata Plaza, you’ll take a renewed appreciation for our home, our marshes, and our bay with you. You can also take away some cool gifts from our Oyster Fest Gift Shop!

Thank you for taking part in our quarter century milestone on June 20. Now let the fun, food and frolic begin!


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