It's Oyster Festival Weekend!
As busy as August is here in Wellfleet, the Oyster Festival brings in more people than there are on an average day in that busy month. Last year the estimated attendance was 20,000 people over the two days with about 13,000 attending on Saturday. Approximately 100,000 Wellfleet oysters were consumed at the festival. Projections this year are for 25,000 people to attend. Since the weather is beautiful and each year there seems to be more publicity about the festival, I'd say that's a pretty fair projection.
Opinion in the town is somewhat divided between those who think the festival is great and those who would like it to go away. Not surprisingly, most of us in the business community think it's great. It brings in tons of people who spend money on lodging, food and souvenirs and it's a week later than the traditional "end" of the season, which was Columbus Day weekend.
The festival organizers have been pretty well organized as far as parking, restroom facilities and clean-up are concerned. Considering the festival is only in its seventh year and the growth between years 2 & 3 was HUGE, I've been pretty impressed at how well the logistics have been handled. Year 3, which had the first really big influx of people for the festival, was a bit rough but the organizers clearly took the lessons learned that year to heart. Kudos to them. On Monday morning it will be difficult to tell that anything out of the ordinary happened in the center of town.
We have a great group here for the festival. Most of them were here last year and they really enjoyed each others' company. Most of them are staying a third night this year, which is lovely as well. As for me, my cleaning chores are done and I hear the oysters calling...