Bucerías, Nayarit, Mexico - Since oyster harvesting is the mainstay of the economy in Bucerías (which means "Place of the Divers") Nayarit, every year after Easter this laid-back seaside community hosts the Feria de Ostiones (Oyster Festival) - a celebration filled with music, partying and plenty of food and fun.
On Sunday, April 23, 2017, the festival will be celebrating its 17th annual edition as one of the local community's favorite events and a fun-filled way to say "gracías" to the thousands of visitors who enjoy the Semana Santa holidays in Vallarta-Nayarit every year.
"We want everyone to come because it's an event that showcases Bucerías' identity. It's also a great way to close out the holiday season," said David Elizondo, founder of the festival and part of the event's organizing committee.
Organized by the Fishing and Aquaculture Cooperative for Costa de Chila, La Peñita and Boca Ameca, the festival began as a way to honor of the local oyster divers and, since the yearly event is on the last day of oyster-culling season on El Punto Beach, every year the most anticipated event is the 'Biggest Oyster' contest. Contestants go after 'The Big One,' and the diver that pulls the largest oyster out of the sea is awarded. In years past, prizes awarded have ranged from cash and trophies to scuba gear.
"Our goal is to hold a family-friendly event as well as honor the divers we've lost," said Modesto Ávalos, a member of the Co-op.
This year, the Oyster Festival will begin at 5:00 pm, with the hosts welcoming attendees to enjoy thousands of oysters, as well as hundreds of kilos of ceviche - for free! In addition to all of that free food, there will also be fun cultural events, including live music and the crowning of a new Oyster Queen, who will be selected to represent the divers based on audience applause.Make plans now to come out to Bucerías on Sunday, April 23 for the 17th Annual Feria de Ostiones - you'll be glad you did!