A Destin Tradition Where Fish Reigns Supreme: Destin Seafood Festival Oct. 7-9

One of the locals’ favorite times of year is the Destin Seafood Festival, now in its 44th year! So popular is this exciting, delicious, delectable event that more than 60,000 locals and visitors are expected to walk through Destin Harbor and the Harbor Boardwalk on Harbor Boulevard (Hwy. 98) during the weekend. The 2019 Festival included more than 110 food and craft vendors, in addition to local restaurants.

Happening Friday through Sunday, Oct. 7-9, the Festival kicks off October’s month-long Destin Fishing Rodeo. You need no ticket to attend and you’ll get the opportunity to take in some of the best local and coastal musicians at the beach with four stages beckoning you to a variety of live rock, reggae, country, tropical tunes and more. Local Destin restaurants and eateries will serve up their scrumptious seafood specialties on the docks and along the new, pedestrian-friendly Harbor Boardwalk. Cold drinks, including beer and wine, are available and will keep you cooled off while you take it all in. You can stroll along the Destin Harbor enjoying the arts and crafts where artists and vendors display their jewelry, clothing, sculpture, glass, watercolors, oil paintings, designs and more. And don’t forget your seafood festival T-shirt!

New for 2022 is the Call To Chef – A local seafood experience that brings back the flare of local seafood to our Destin Seafood Festival. Located inside the larger festival, the Call to Chef will require a paid ticket to browse the local restaurant tents, sample their flavors and vote for your favorites. The winning chefs will be invited to/honored at a village supper at a later date.

For more information on participating as a chef or being a sponsor for this great event, email info@destinseafoodfest.com.

All the yum and fun began in 1978 when the Destin Charter Boat Ladies Auxiliary decided to establish a festival to celebrate local fishermen. Now a Destin tradition, it used to be only a one-day festival on “Kelly’s Hill,” where folks could overlook the Destin Harbor, the current site of HarborWalk Village. It has always been held in conjunction with the Destin Fishing Rodeo during October.

Portions of the proceeds are donated to the Destin Fisherman’s Fund to help those in need and today is hosted by area businesses in conjunction with sponsors and countless volunteers. While the festival has grown into its new home on the Destin Harbor Boardwalk, the Destin Seafood Festival remains the primary fundraiser for the non-profit, Destin Charter Boat Association formed in 1954.

This year’s musical entertainment, with four different stages, will feature local bands playing throughout the festival. Harbor restaurants and bars will offer a full lineup of local favorites as well, performing throughout the day and evening. You can bring a chair and chill or don your dancing shoes! Bands and schedule TBA. Visit DestinSeafoodFestival.com.
There are Kids Zones for all ages. The East Pass Marina Kids Zone has pony rides, a petting zoo and kids’ games geared towards younger kids and toddlers. There is a seating tent nearby so you can take a break and cool down while the kids play. The HarborWalk Kids Fun Zone has Hamster balls, a rock-climbing wall and a zip line. There is a seating tent nearby also. Kids will delight in face-painting and tattoos as well.

Parking will be available at Heron Harbor, the HarborWalk Village, the Destin Community Center and the Destin Fishing Museum.

Admission is totally free or you can go as a VIP with passes that include a private VIP seating area that overlooks the Destin City Stage, complimentary unlimited food and refreshments that include a variety of seafood, gumbos and catered treats, soft drinks and bottled water. To purchase a VIP pass, visit the official Destin Seafood Festival website.
For a site map, to become a vendor and other information, visit DestinSeafoodFestival.com.
Email info@destinseafoodfest.com.

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