• Scenes from the fifth annual Sitka Seafood Festival


ssflogo2Beautiful weather greeted the fifth annual Sitka Seafood Festival on July 31-Aug. 3, with a nice sunny day on Saturday, Aug. 2, when most of the events took place.

Saturday’s events included a marathon and half-marathon, parade, fish tote races, Island Highland Games, marketplace, cooking demonstrations, and a Fish To Schools recipe contest at the Sheldon Jackson Campus/Sitka Fine Arts Camp.

In addition, there was a garden tour and showing of the film Red Gold on Thursday, the annual five-course banquet dinner on Friday, a concert featuring the Yup’ik soul group Pamyua on Saturday night, and a golf tournament on Sunday.

Below is a slideshow featuring scenes from Saturday’s events.

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• Tickets available for fifth annual Sitka Seafood Festival; volunteers needed all week

salmon boat header

ssflogo2The fifth annual Sitka Seafood Festival is finalizing its schedule for July 31-Aug. 2 at various locations around Sitka, but tickets have gone on sale for its three main events — the VIP cocktail hour on Friday night, the five-course banquet on Friday night, and the headline entertainment concert by the Yup’ik soul group Pamyua on Saturday night (link to Pamyua’s Facebook page).

The major events for the Sitka Seafood Festival will take place on Friday and Saturday, Aug. 1-2, but there are some additional events set for July 31 (a wine bottle-signing and a garden tour). A full festival schedule is available here.

On Friday, Aug. 1, the VIP cocktail hour takes place from 5:30-6:30 p.m. at the Harrigan Centennial Hall Exhibit Room, and the cost is $35 per person. The five-course seafood banquet prepared by guest chefs starts at 7 p.m. at Harrigan Centennial Hall (doors open at 6:30 p.m.). The banquet costs $65 per person, or you can buy a whole table for $600 (10 seats per table). There are Friend of the Festival tables available for $800 that feature special bartender service, are close to the stage, and feature gift bags).

The tentative menu for Friday’s banquet features (according to an email from event founder Alicia Haseltine):

  • Amuse Bouche — herring roe, finger lime, baby fennel, cucumber, bulls blood
  • First Course — ricotta gnocchi, sea asparagus (pesto), foraged mushroom xo, tat soi oil, brown butter
  • Second Course — scallops, pistachio crumble, fromage blanc, yellow squash puree, snap pea coulis, pancetta
  • Third Course — rockfish, spruce tip nage, lemon ash marshmallow, arugula, whole barley, carrot
  • Fourth Course — salmon, tomato jam, scallion potato puree, black garlic aioli, leeks charred
  • Fifth Course — cocoa praline rocks, chocolate soil, sudachi curd, huckleberry, merlot caramel, bergamot cloud mascarpone and cream base

On Saturday, Aug. 2, the day opens with tote races at 11 a.m. at Crescent Harbor, followed by the parade at 11:30 a.m. from Crescent Harbor Shelter to the Sitka Fine Arts Camp/Sheldon Jackson Campus, and the marketplace from noon until 7 p.m. There will be a variety of entertainment from noon until 4 p.m., and the Scottish Highland Games are from noon to 6 p.m., both at the Sitka Fine Arts Camp/Sheldon Jackson Campus. The headline entertainment concert by Pamyua starts at 7 p.m. at Allen Hall at the Sitka Fine Arts Camp/Sheldon Jackson Campus, and tickets are $20 per person.

Volunteers are needed all week for the festival, which includes event set up and tear down. To learn more, contact Sitka Seafood Festival Director Carolyn Kinneen at (907) 222-8422 or email sitkaseafoodfestival@gmail.com. Parade participants should contact Linda Olson at 747-6985. Scottish Highland Games participants are welcome to practice at 5:30 p.m. on Wednesdays and Sundays at the Moller Field Track


• Vendors sought for fifth annual Sitka Seafood Festival Marketplace on Aug. 2


ssflogo2The Sitka Seafood Festival seeks vendors for the all-day marketplace that takes place from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. at the Sitka Fine Arts Camp/Sheldon Jackson Campus. The all-day marketplace is one of the highlights from the fifth annual Sitka Seafood Festival, scheduled for Thursday, July 31, through Sunday, Aug. 3, at various locations in Sitka.

“Last year we had an overwhelming amount of people show up, and the vendors sold out of food early,” said festival founder Alicia Haseltine. “This year we are ready for you, Sitka! We are currently accepting vendor applications for food, merchandise, educational booths, or any other ocean- or seafood-related activity.”

The Sitka Seafood Festival helps Sitka celebrate its seafood heritage with a variety of events. The 2014 schedule still is being finalized, but in 2013 the festival included a sea poetry contest, native plants garden tour, pasta cruise, book signings, VIP banquet, marathon and half-marathon, parade through downtown, all-day marketplace, crab races, Scottish Highland games, fishhead toss, fishhead bobbing, blind-folded tote rates, live entertainment, and a golf tournament. Click this link and scroll to the bottom to see a slideshow of scenes from the 2013 Sitka Seafood Festival.

For more information or to register as a vendor, please contact Mary Helem at oceanfront@gci.net. You also can download a registration form below or at http://www.sitkaseafoodfestival.org (note, please send your forms to Mary, the Sitka Local Foods Network is a separate organization than the Sitka Seafood Festival). See you at the festival.

• Sitka Seafood Festival 2014 Marketplace Vendor App Pages 1-2

• Sitka Seafood Festival 2014 Marketplace Vendor App Page 3