March 24, 2009

13th Annual Pleasure Island Chowder Cook-off April 18th

Gates Open at 11:30
11:30-4:00pm-Chowder Tasting & Live Music
5:00pm-People and Judges Choice Awards
Cost: $5/person

[EDIT- 04/18: Click here to see who won]

Wilmington, NC – March 2009 – With warmer temperatures and money-saving shoulder season specials and packages, springtime is ideal for an affordable getaway to Wilmington & NC’s Cape Fear Coast. Need another good reason to visit the coast this spring? Consider planning a trip to Carolina Beach during the 13th Annual Pleasure Island Chowder Cook-off on Saturday, April 18th. A modest admission charge of $5 will get you into the tastiest festival in town where you can savor the flavors of the area’s best seafood chowder.

One of the best ways to experience the flavor of a destination is to sample its regional foods and music. The 2009 Pleasure Island Chowder Cook-off is all about delicious food, good music, and family fun, so bring the kids along to this family-oriented event. Chefs from southeast North Carolina’s finest restaurants will prepare the region’s best seafood chowder recipes between the hours of 11:30am and 5:00pm. Folks can sample a taste of Cape Fear during this friendly chowder competition held at Carolina Beach Lake Park in Carolina Beach. Children can enjoy the park’s playground and a Kidz Zone with face-painting, balloon art, a giant inflatable slide, contest, and more. And for an additional fee, there will be paddleboat rides for the entire family.

During the chowder festival, enjoy live music and chowder-tasting (and voting) between 11:30am and 4:00pm, but make sure to arrive early while the chowder is abundant. Area restaurants that have already committed to participate this year include: Jack Mackerel’s Island Grill, Harbor Masters Restaurant, Michael’s Seafood Restaurant, Olde Salty’s, Seaside Grill at Courtyard by Marriott, Tangerine Caribbean Grill, and Rucker Johns restaurants. The day-long chowder showcase also features live entertainment at the park’s Stingray Amphitheater by the bands Category 4 and Triple Play. At approximately 5:00pm, be sure to join in the celebration of People’s and Judges’ Choice awards.

Want to go? Gates open at 11:30am. Admission fee is $5 (children 6 and under are free). No coolers permitted, as beverages and food will be available for sale. Chairs, blankets and children are welcome, but please leave pets at home. Park for free at the Federal Point Shopping Center, then ride the free trolley to Carolina Beach Lake.

Festivals and events provide a fun and affordable way to experience the history, culture, and food traditions of a region. This annual event is one of many presented throughout the year by the Pleasure Island Chamber of Commerce. For additional information on the 2009 Pleasure Island Chowder Festival and other events, please call 910-458-8434 or visit For a free 2009 Visitors Guide, please call the Wilmington/Cape Fear Coast Convention & Visitors Bureau at 1-866-266-9690 or 910-341-4030. Please visit website for a complete Calendar of Events.
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