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August 26, 2014
For immediate release

PEI Shellfish Festival announces line up to headline the largest East Coast Kitchen Party in Atlantic Canada

Fisheries, Aquaculture and Rural Development

From September 18th to 21st the Charlottetown Event Grounds will become home to the 19th annual Prince Edward Island International Shellfish Festival. For the third consecutive year, this leading culinary event will be hosted by Food Network Celebrity Chef and PEI Food Ambassador Chef Michael Smith.

The days will be jam packed with exciting culinary activities and live competitions. Expect cooking demonstrations and cookbook signings with Chef Michael Smith. Watch as the world's best oyster shuckers, finest chefs and hardworking mussel and oyster growers compete for over $25,000 in cash prizes. Chefs from around the world will compete live in the tent as part of the Garland Canada Shellfish Chef Challenge and face live elimination as they compete for $10,000 cash. As well, the new Shellfish House Band will keep the energy high all day long as copious amounts of clams, mussels, oysters, lobster and other culinary delights are served up from noon til night in the large Festival tent.

Feast and Frolic will return on Thursday, September 18. Sold out for three consecutive years, Chef Michael and The Culinary Institute of Canada have put a beach party spin on this popular event and revamped the menu for returning guests. This event has sold out year after year and tickets are already limited. At night that is when the party gets started. The Festival packs the stage with the best entertainment the East Coast has to offer and combines it with the comedic antics of Festival host, Rob Barry. The Halifax based rock music group, The Stanfields, will headline the party on Friday and a crowd favourite, Signal Hill, will rock the stage Saturday. Other acts include More Soul, Shanneyganook, Leon Gallant and Friends, and Sunday Punch. Sunday is Islander Day presented by Eastlink, and Sunday's line-up features the best of the Island's entertainers including Richard Wood & Gordon Belsher with dancer Juliette Roberts, The Celtic Ladies, The East Pointers and Dylan Menzie.

Quick Facts:

• The PEI International Shellfish Festival is a joint effort of the PEI Aquaculture Association and the PEI Shellfish Association

• The Festival started in 1996 as a one-day event to celebrate the PEI shellfish industry

• The largest Signature Event of the PEI Fall Flavours Festival, Feast and Frolic held Thursday September 18 has sold out for the past three consecutive years at 500 attendees

• Over 7,000 patrons attend the Shellfish Festival annually

• Over $25,000 dollars in cash prizes are handed out during live competitions in the Festival tent

• Chowder Championships: PEI Potato Chowder Championship Heat 1 Friday September 19 at 4:40 p.m. & Heat 2 Saturday September 20 at 2:00 p.m. Atlantic Superstore International Chowder Championship Sunday September 21 at 11:45 a.m.

• Oyster Shucking Championships: Shiny Sea PEI Oyster Shucking Championship Saturday September 20 at 3:00 p.m. Raspberry Point International Oyster Shucking Championship Sunday September 21 at 2:10 p.m.

• Industry Competitions: Tie One On Mussel Competition Preliminaries Saturday September 20 at 11:00 a.m., Finals Saturday September 20 at 4:20 p.m. Oyster Grower of the Year Thursday September 18 6:00 p.m.

• Mott's Best Caesar In Town Competition Preliminaries Thursday September 18 at 7:00 p.m. at Peake's Quay Restaurant & Bar, Finals Friday September 19 at 6:45 p.m.

• Five official Charlottetown hotels offer special rates to patrons of the Shellfish Festival including Best Western Charlottetown, Rodd Royalty, Rodd Charlottetown, Hotel on Pownal and The Holman Grand Hotel

• The Festival is supported by the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency; Prince Edward Island Departments of Tourism and Culture, Agriculture and Forestry, Innovation and Advanced Learning, and Fisheries, Aquaculture and Rural Development; and the City of Charlottetown

• Tickets are available online, at the Eastlink Centre Box Office or by calling 1 866 955 2003


“The PEI International Shellfish Festival has an impressive and successful history. Our Government is pleased to support this Festival which helps extend the Island’s tourism season into the fall and highlights Prince Edward Island’s wonderful hospitality and strong fisheries and aquaculture industries.”

- Gerald Keddy, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Revenue and for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency, on behalf of the Honourable Rob Moore, Minister of State (ACOA)

“It is an exciting year of growth and change for the Prince Edward Island International Shellfish Festival,” says Liam Dolan, Festival Chair. “After selling out the tent last year on Saturday, we have increased the size of the tent to accommodate more people as well as to provide dedicated space for a Culinary Pavilion. As well, based on guest feedback, we have made major changes to the format in that the daytime will offer our guests and visitors a culinary experience, while the evenings will offer the high energy kitchen party that the festival has become famous for. With increased capacity and a new format, we anticipate record crowds again at this year's festival.”

- Liam Dolan, Chair of the 2014 PEI International Shellfish Festival

“I love inviting the world to enjoy the flavours and fun of Prince Edward Island! We've become one of the leading culinary tourism destinations on the globe and the Shellfish Festival is one of the biggest reasons why. The event’s tight connection to our hard working fishermen gives it an authenticity you just can’t find anywhere else!”

- Chef Michael Smith, PEI 2014 PEI International Shellfish Festival Celebrity Chef

“The PEI International Shellfish Festival continues to be recognized as a world class event that celebrates and promotes the high quality and distinctive flavour of our Island seafood products. The Province of Prince Edward Island will continue to support initiatives that maintain, foster, and develop opportunities for Island seafood products in national and international markets.”

- The Honourable Ron MacKinley, PEI Minister of Fisheries, Aquaculture and Rural Development

“The International Shellfish Festival continues to be a wonderful tradition in the City of Charlottetown. The organizers should be commended for doing such a fantastic job promoting East Coast music, culinary talent and PEI’s world-renowned seafood. We’re pleased to once again be a sponsor of this event, especially this year as we celebrate the 150th anniversary of the 1864 Conference together. We encourage all Islanders and visitors to come celebrate with us at the 19th annual festival.”

- His Worship Clifford Lee, Mayor of Charlottetown

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Media Contact: April Gallant
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