The Seafood Fest in the Isle of Wight County has reclaimed its standing in the community with a successful event held Sept. 11. This is a far cry from the event held in previous years, especially in 2010 when there were long lines and unhappy seafood lovers.

That year’s fest ended with Devon Butler, Seafood Fest Chair with the IOW County Fire and Rescue Association, apologizing to the community in a letter to the editor published in a local newspaper.

“Due to unforeseen circumstances that were beyond our control, people had to wait in line for food and beverages,” Butler said.

Butler said he is aware the long wait times made that year’s Seafood Fest less enjoyable for patrons than in previous years. He also said those organizing the event would work on resolving problems so they wouldn’t occur in future festivals.

Butler said the festival is significant in raising money for the group, but is also a fun time for the entire family.

“The Seafood Fest has always been a time for our association to raise funds to support our organizations and to provide a family event where everyone can relax and enjoy themselves,” he said.

Butler said he wants to create a relaxed atmosphere every year.

Seafood Fest is hosted annually by the Fire and Rescue Association and is held in conjunction with the county fair, which is organized by the fair committee. However, Seafood Fest is a separate event from the fair. Although the fair committee helps with Seafood Fest as it can, the sole responsibility for the fire rescue event belongs to the Fire and Rescue Association, according to Butler.

“Again many thanks go to everyone who supported the Seafood Fest this year, and I sincerely apologize for any inconveniences anyone experienced during this event,” Butler stated in his 2010 letter.

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Seafood Fest had a tough go last year as well as hurricane force winds threatened the event. The Isle of Wight Fair cancelled because of the weather but the firefighters continued with the seafood event.

Advanced admission tickets and midway tickets were refunded last year.

This year’s event was well attended with food served between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. It featured all-you-can-eat for dine in guests and there were to-go plates offered at one of the gates.

Captain Bob’s Catering provided the food that included fried fish and chicken, steamed shrimp, Cole slaw, baked beans and hush puppies to round out the meal. Hickory Knoll provide musical entertainment for the meal.

The Seafood Fest was held one day prior to the opening day for the fair. The fair opened Sept. 12 and ran through Sept. 15 at the Joel C. Bradshaw Fairgrounds in Windsor.

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Seafood Fest is a fundraising event for Isle of Wight County Fire and Rescue Association. The county provides emergency services through a unique combination of career personnel and volunteers. There are 100 full and part-time career emergency services staffers and more than 300 volunteers that provide emergency services to the county. That includes five independent volunteer fire departments and two volunteer rescue squads.

There are more than 5,000 calls every year that crews answer. Emergency crew personnel also provide for other services including disaster preparedness presentations and CPR classes for the community.

Windsor is an incorporated town located at the crossroads of Routes 460 and 258, known as the Gateway to Hampton Roads. Boasting of a 2,600 population, the town is informally called the “jewel of the Western Tidewater.” Situated close to highways, the railroad and the port of Virginia, Windsor offers a lot of advantages for industries and businesses.

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