Hampton Beach Seafood Festival chance to taste the best of NH

Sunday News Correspondent
September 09. 2017 10:47PM
The Hampton Beach Seafood Festival was busy as soon as it started Friday afternoon. People from all over New England turn out for the annual event. (KIMBERLEY HAAS/Sunday News Correspondent)

HAMPTON - Thousands of people are packing the beach this weekend, filling up on tasty food, enjoying music and shopping for crafts during the 28th Annual Hampton Beach Seafood Festival.

People were lined up at the booth for Brown's Lobster Pound. The Seabrook restaurant is closed temporarily because a fire gutted the kitchen last month, but with the help of the community, employees were able to prepare their award-winning lobster rolls, fried clams and homemade onion rings for the festival.

"We used David's Fish Market. We buy a lot of product from them, and we prepared a lot of stuff there," Bruce Brown II, who is the owner's son, said.

For the Brown family, the festival is part of an annual tradition.

"We always look forward to it. We've been doing it probably since 1998, and it's just really busy. It's hectic, but it's fun, and we have a good time at it," Brown said.

The festival is also part of an annual tradition for Brenda Kelly, and her children, Katie and Ryan. They have been coming to the festival for 10 years and live in Auburn, Mass.

"For years, we have been talking about spending the weekend, and we are finally spending the weekend," Kelly said.

Kelly, who is a big fan of all the lobster dishes, said there is much more to do at the festival than eat.

"We buy a lot of Christmas gifts at the craft tables," Kelly said.

John O'Coin, of Windsor, Conn., plans his annual vacation around the festival.

"I've been here since Labor Day," O'Coin said. He and Anne Denbek, also of Windsor, Conn., were staying in a nearby campground and making day trips to other coastal communities before the seafood festival started.

The festival opens today at 10 a.m. and ends at 6 p.m. Free shuttle buses will run from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Buses will be picking people up and dropping them off from the municipal parking lot on High Street, the Old Town Hall parking lot on Winnacunnet Road, the Winnacunnet High School student lot on Alumni Drive and QA Technology Co. on Towle Farm Road, according to the festival website.

There is also free shuttle service from 8 State Park Road.

Parking costs $15 per car and $30 for RVs, according to the website.

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