By Paula MacDonald

SeafoodFest-Logo-2014 copyEarly November is an exciting time for SouthShore residents, not only with the arrival of the cooler fall weather, but the anticipation of the flavor and fun of Southern Hillsborough County’s largest annual event, the Ruskin Seafood Festival, taking place Saturday, November 1 and Sunday, November 2.

Now in its 26th year, this year’s festival will bring about 25,000 people to the shores of beautiful E.G. Simmons Park in Ruskin. In addition to a multitude of vendors who prepare seafood in almost every way imaginable (all delicious), there are also arts and crafts, health and wellness vendors, kids activities with interactive entertainment, and an even larger boating and outdoor sports area this year.

This year new to the festival is a Seafood Festival 5K, which will be held pre-opening ceremonies on Saturday morning (sponsored by chamber member, Crossfit Apogee).  The run will take place at E.G. Simmons Park. For more info on the 5K, contact Apogee at 508-8862 or

For those who love music, the Ruskin Seafood Festival will keep the Clam Jam Stage jamming during extended hours on Saturday evening. Festival goers will have the opportunity to enjoy the food court and Sand Bar while moving to the grooves of Spy vs. Spy reggae band on the shores of Tampa Bay.

The Ruskin Seafood Festival is a pet friendly event, and leashed pets are welcome. Hours of operation for the festival are Saturday, November 1, 10 a.m.–5 p.m. with the fun continuing after hours at the food court, Sand Bar and Clam Jam Stage from 5 p.m. –8 p.m.; and Sunday, November 2 from 10 a.m.–4 p.m.

Admission to the festival is $5 per person (kids 12 and under are free). Active military with identification will enjoy free admission, as well. There is a $2 per car fee to enter the Hillsborough County Park. The Ruskin Seafood Festival will be held at E.G. Simmons Park, 2401 19th Ave. N.W. in Ruskin.

Sponsorship opportunities are still available for businesses that are interested in promoting their products or services in one of the fastest growing areas in Hillsborough County. For more information, call 645-1366 or visit

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