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Seven Seas Sponsors Community Oyster Roast

Posted By: Chris Conklin | January 23, 2012 7:53 AM

Thursday, Jan. 19, 2012


Inaugural Lowcountry Oyster Roast and BBQ on tap in Murrells Inlet

By Gregg Holshouser - For The Sun News



We’re right smack dab in the middle of the `R’ months, meaning that treasured tradition of oyster roasts along the South Carolina coast is in full swing.

Thus the brainstorm of Chris Hawley, Chairman and State Board Representative of the Waccamaw Chapter of the S.C. Coastal Conservation Association, and Leslye Beaver, owner of The Beaver Bar, to start a tradition of their own in Murrells Inlet – the first annual Lowcountry Oyster Roast and BBQ Dinner.

The inaugural event will be held outside at the Beaver Bar on Saturday, January 28 at 4 p.m. Attendees will enjoy local oysters provided by Seven Seas Seafood and BBQ provided by The Beaver Bar. The $25 admission will include all-you-can-eat oysters and BBQ with the fixins’ plus an open bar (beer and wine).


The event exemplifies the South Carolina Oyster Restoration and Enhancement (SCORE) program in action. One of the numerous S.C. Department of Natural Resources’ oyster shell recycling trailers will be on site for the leftover shell from the oyster roast to be piled on and then returned to its rightful place – in a local estuary.

CCA South Carolina is very active in the SCORE program through its Topwater Action Campaign, with a mantra of “Habitat Today Equals Fish For Tomorrow.”

“We are very excited to finally host an event in the Murrells Inlet area where folks can come together and enjoy the best local oysters, but then have the satisfaction of knowing that the shells will be recycled here through our Topwater Action Campaign,” said Hawley. “It’s very rewarding – really a win-win situation for everyone involved. It will be great food and a great cause.”

SCORE’s purpose is to restore and enhance oyster habitat along the Palmetto State coast by planting recycled oyster shells in the intertidal environment to form new, self-sustaining oyster reefs.

Returning the used shell to the state’s estuaries is ultra-important because oyster shell is the preferred and natural surface for spat, or oyster larvae, to attach to, creating new oysters and in turn new oyster beds, thus the program’s slogan of “Oysters Are Habitat-Forming.”

According to S.C. DNR, oyster populations are on the decline, meaning the work done through SCORE is of the utmost importance in South Carolina’s estuaries. Volunteers play a big role in the program, which is where CCA South Carolina comes in.

“All of the oyster shell CCA collects goes to the SCORE program,” said Gary Keisler, CCA State Board Member and Chairman of the Topwater Action Campaign.

Since its inception in 2001, SCORE has constructed 188 oyster reefs at 35 sites along 200 miles of coastline from Murrells Inlet to Hilton Head. The SCORE program has bagged over 40,000 bushels of shell overall while CCA has collected over 400,000 pounds of shell in the last three years. Over 8,000 volunteers have helped with the SCORE program, contributing more than 26,000 volunteer hours.

Not only will the used shell from the oyster roast return to the estuaries, proceeds from the event will go to CCA and help fund the oyster shell recycling efforts.

Other sponsors of the event include Pawleys Island Outdoors and Williams Knife Company.

A slick Williams Knife Company original handcrafted Edisto Oyster Knife valued at $250 will be one of the items raffled off at the event. Attendees will be automatically entered into the raffles with their ticket stub.

Williams Knife Co. was the overall winner in Garden & Gun Magazine’s 2011 Made In The South Awards.


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