Vets park has been taken over by billowing tents of oysters. Well, not exactly. But the Oyster Festival kicks off tommorow through the week end.
Chris Shays has decided to have a table this year, which means local Republicans will be out in force. Local Dems do not plan on having a table.
More on the festival by Marcia Powell:
From its beginning in 1978, the annual Norwalk Seaport Association Oyster Festival has provided opportunities for area nonprofit organizations to raise funds that are returned to the greater Norwalk community through scholarships, programs and services. Thousands of volunteers from the Norwalk Seaport Association and more than two dozen other non-profits will be working at the 30th annual festival on Sept. 7, 8 and 9.
All the International Food Court vendors are nonprofit groups, who last year raised an estimated $200,000 during the festival.
Six organizations that participated in the first NSA Oyster Festival: The Exchange Club of Norwalk, Flotilla 72 Corporation, United States Coast Guard Auxiliary, Norwalk Athletic Association, Norwalk Jaycees, Rotary Club of Norwalk and Sons of Italy, still run food booths. Other Food Court participants this year include the Darien/Stamford Chapter, American Red Cross, East Avenue United Methodist Church, Huntington Congregational Church, and Norwalk Firefighters Local No. 830. The Norwalk Seaport Association also runs three food booths.
The Norwalk Seaport Association contributes $40,000 annually to 12 community service organizations and school groups by hiring them to work at the Oyster Festival. These include the Band Parents, Football Boosters, Parents Club, Post-Graduation Party Committee, and Soccer Team from Brien McMahon High School; the Marching Bears Inc., Football Team, Post-Graduation Party Committee and Connecticut 81st Air Force Junior ROTC from Norwalk High School; American Chemical Society from Sacred Heart University; Boy Scout Troop 19 from Norwalk; and Stratford Eagles (Civil Air Patrol).
The Oyster Festival is the major revenue source for the nonprofit Norwalk Seaport Association, which raised $150,000 from the 2006 Oyster Festival to continue its responsibilities for preserving and restoring the1868 Sheffield Island Lighthouse and to incorporate this Fairfield County treasure into its educational programs for students from throughout the area.
The Norwalk Seaport Association is wholly responsible for the organization and costs of the each year’s Oyster Festival. No city tax dollars are used for the festival and the Seaport Association pays almost $90,000 for city services related to the festival.