Day one of the North Carolina Seafood Festival kicks off Friday.
It’s the 33rd year of the festival, except for 2018 when the devastation of Hurricane Florence forced organizers to cancel the event.
Organizers instead created a second event shortly after the storm to raise money for the community to rebuild.
Vendors, organizations, and carnival rides are all back. Clark Jenkins, a director of N.C. Seafood Festival says the emphasis was put on personal experiences such as interactive tents like Cooking with the Chefs.
Jenkins thinks some vendors did not return this year because of the concern of hurricane season, but day one has proved to be positive.
“I’ve been doing this for nine years, it’s the biggest Friday turnout we’ve seen since I’ve been doing this. I’m just fired up about it,” said Jenkins.
Festival proceeds are shared with community organizations who donate their efforts to the event. Since 1987 almost two million dollars have been dispersed among nonprofit groups.