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World Famous Blue Crab Festival

The poor, beleaguered blue crab gets a bad rap. Although correctly characterized as nice and tasty, the species Callinectes sapidus is often portrayed as crabby and curmudgeonly.

But as the World Famous Blue Crab Festival in nearby Little River proves, the misunderstood crustacean knows how to throw a street party. More than 25,000 visitors and residents invade this sleepy little fishing village for this two-day soiree along the waterfront. This year’s 34th annual event is set for Saturday and Sunday, May 16-17, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day.

Situated between North Myrtle Beach, the North Carolina border and the Intracoastal Waterway, Little River welcomes a wide range of crab lovers and festival-goers and offers a broad selection of activities in the area surrounding Mineola Avenue. Of course, the blue crab takes the spotlight, with lots of crab cakes, crab chowders and steamed crabs on the menu throughout the venue, and cold beverages are available to wash down the sweet claw meat of the tasty blue crab. Plenty of “landfood” options, such as hot dogs, burgers, and desserts, are also on hand for the anti-crab crowd.

Live music plays on the main concert stage, and this year’s lineup will once again have patrons dancing in the street. Country artist Jill Charles opens the show at 9 a.m., Saturday, followed by Gary Lowder and Smokin’ Hot at 11:30 a.m., and classic beach music by the Carolina Breakers at 3 p.m. On Sunday, local youth dance troops perform at 9 a.m., followed by country-rockers The Hip Pocket Band at 11:30 a.m. Jim Quick & Coastline will close the festival by performing beach music favorites.

More than 200 arts and crafts vendors from all over the East Coast are on hand to shop their works at the World Famous Blue Crab Festival, and children have lots of activities and entertainment options, including carnival rides and games. Family-friendly fun and attractions for all ages are part of what makes this one of the most popular annual festivals in the Carolinas.

Be sure that you set time aside during your North Myrtle Beach vacation to head over to the Blue Crab Festival and dig your claws into the food, fun and festivities!