For several decades, the Cortes Island Seafood Association (CISA) has put on a seafood festival to celebrate our heritage from the sea.
The purpose of the festival is to bring together those Cortes Islanders who make their living from the sea with the larger community, to promote a mutual understanding and appreciation of aquaculture farming, and to celebrate the bounty of the ocean. CISA is a non-profit society whose mandate is to monitor the water quality of the area surrounding Cortes Island, and who uses funds raised from the festival to conduct a water testing program in local waters.
Seafest 2019 will again be held at the Gorge Harbour Marina on Saturday May 18 with the help of more than 75 volunteers drawn from seafood workers, our organizational partner the Whaletown Community Club, and a very helpful Cortes community. We begin serving at 11:30 and anticipate fixing approximately 700 gourmet lunches on camp stoves and barbecues. Just watching the oyster shucking and cooking show is worth the attendance, even if you are planning to enjoy the non-seafood offerings from many vendors.
Adult tickets are $22 for a feast of three cooked and three barbecued oyster dishes, prawns, clams, little potatoes, artisan salad and toasted garlic bread. All oysters are fully cooked and certified safe to eat. There will be a kid’s menu and prices. Advanced tickets are not necessary, but if you want a ticket, they will be available at the Cortes Natural Food Co-op, Squirrel Cove Store, and the Gorge Marina store up until festival day.
A free shuttle will meet every ferry arriving at Cortes. You don’t need to call for a reservation, just step off the ferry and your ride awaits, or will be right back. Each year we have more vendors and organizations requesting space for their tables. We ask for 10 per cent of your day’s sales if you are for-profit. There is no fee for non-profit organizations.
If you want to be a vendor or promote your organization’s passion, email Kristen at email@example.com or call 250-935-6464 to reserve your space. And believe it or not, there is always room for a few more volunteers.