Reprinted from the Island Free Press
HATTERAS — The annual Day at the Docks, a celebration of Hatteras Island watermen, will start with a roundtable discussion on Thursday evening, Sept. 18, and conclude with events from early morning into the evening on Saturday, Sept. 20, in Hatteras village.
Day at the Docks was started to celebrate the “Spirit of Hatteras” when the village recovered from Hurricane Isabel in 2003 as an intact community, anchored by the commercial and charter fishermen. The celebration, which now features events over three days, is a confirmation of the strength of community, heritage and the living traditions of the island’s watermen.
Now in its ninth year, it has become a true celebration of the Hatteras Island way of life.
The event is supported by a grant from the Outer Banks Visitors Bureau.
You can learn how to prepare fresh N.C. seafood at the Day at the Docks in Hatteras. Photo: Island Free Press
Thursday evening with “Talk of the Villages: Local and Underloved” at the Hatteras Civic Center. The roundtable discussion, featuring four speakers from around the country, will center on what it means to eat local sustainable seafood, as well as how consumers and the seafood industry can help protect healthy oceans and support local fishing communities.
On Friday, the Hatteras Island Ocean Center on N.C. 12 in the village will be hosting an open house from 11:30 to 1:30 with refreshments.
On Friday afternoon, from 2 until 4 o’clock, meteorologists from The National Weather Service in Newport will host a “Hurricane Awareness Town Hall.” It will be at the Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum near the ferry docks and is sponsored by NOAA, N.C. Sea Grant, WRN (Weather Ready Nations) and the National Weather Service.
The Lee Robinson General Store will host the third annual Taste of North Carolina, Hatteras Style at 4 p.m. on Friday. Donations will be accepted to support N.C. Watermen United.
The full day on Saturday, Sept. 20, will begin with a new event, the Day at the Docks 5k race or fun dash, sponsored by the Hatteras United Methodist Church, where both will start and end
The Fishy 5K race will begin at 8 a.m. and the Dock Dash fun run and walk will begin at 9. Pushing strollers is allowed, but not pets. The entry fee is $30 for Fishy 5K and $15 for the Dock Dash. All finishers of the Fishy 5K will receive a unique finisher medal. You can register online. Registration can also be done weekdays at Hatteras United Methodist Church. Call Linda O’Neal at 252-986-2149 for more information.
After the race and fun run, the celebration moves to the village’s working waterfront, where there will be non-stop activities from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m.
Here are some of the highlights:
- Music on the main stage behind Village Marina off and on all day, featuring Dave Densmore, Bob Zentz, Clifford Swain, Dixie Browning, Elvin Hooper, James and Linda Charlet, and others.
- Seafood preparation demonstrations at the food tent in Oden’s Dock parking lot by Amy Huggins Gaw, Sharon Peele Kennedy, Steve Bailey, Smith Island Crab Pickers and Michael Jenkins from the Mad Crabber restaurant.
- Seafood Throwdown at 1 p.m. at the food tent in Oden’s Dock parking lot. Chefs Seth Foutz from Ketch 55 Seafood Grill in Avon and Eric Gill from Breakwater Restaurant in Hatteras will prepare dishes using a local seafood ingredient that will be revealed only when the event gets underway. The chefs will have one hour to prepare dishes that will be scored on taste, originality, presentation and use of the entire fish.
- The skipjack Ada Mae all day at Oden’s Dock. The skipjack was built in 1915 at Rose Bay by Capt. Ralph Hodges and named for his youngest sister who loved to keep him company while he worked, chatting and singing along with his sea chanteys. Ada Mae was used as an oyster dredger and brought oysters to coastal waterfront communities during the early 20th century. Between the late 19th and early 20th centuries, there were close to a 1,000 of these distinctive vessels sailing the waters of the Chesapeake Bay, Pamlico and Albemarle sounds and the rivers of coastal North Carolina. Today there are only a few of these vessels left in left. Ada Mae is the only remaining skipjack that was built in North Carolina.
- The N.C. Coastal Federation will be giving Marsh Exploration Tours four times between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m.
- Crab races, a concrete marlin contest, and kids’ fishing tournament with times to be announced.
- The Coast Guard Auxiliary will be giving harbor tours throughout the day from Village Marina’s boat ramp. The Coast Guard will be at Hatteras Harbor Marina with its 47-foot Motor Lifeboat and some kids’ activities.
- The Hatteras Island Cancer Foundation will have its annual Chowder Cookoff. Everyday cooks and restaurant chefs compete for the title of the island’s best chowder. For a donation, you can sample the entries.
The day will end with a parade of workboats into the harbor and blessing of the fleet at 6 p.m. in the harbor at Village Marina.
The celebration will continue into the evening from 8 until 11 with a lawn party at the Community Center with live music by the Cashmere Jungle Lords of Richmond, Va. The event is free.