In 2004 when the Little River Chamber of Commerce & Visitors Center was re-chartered, the Board of Directors decided to commemorate the new organization by creating a fall festival event for the community. As the height of the summer season wanes, an event like the Little River ShrimpFest held in the shoulder season creates opportunities for tourism and extends our economic impact.
Originally called the Little River Shrimp & Jazz Festival, the name was changed to ShrimpFest in 2012 to broaden the appeal from its jazz influences to all genres of music. We are a family friendly event offering live entertainment from jazz to country, to pop, to rock – not to mention our beach music heritage. Past festivals have showcased national acts such as: Tim Reynolds, Elyse Testone, Nathan & the Zydeco ChaCha’s, Marlena Smalls, Bonerama and the Dirty Dozen Brass Band.
The Intracoastal Waterway is Little River’s playground. Our roots lie in the shrimping and fishing industries so what better way to showcase the Little River waterfront than by offering a bevy of traditional seafood specialties? Shrimp is highlighted and cooked in unique and creative ways exclusively by our local restaurants. Land lubbers are not to worry, of course, we offer your festival food favorites as well.
While great music and food are showcased, the backbone of the festival is our vendors. Once a juried art show, the festival has grown to 150+ vendors offering unique arts & crafts and featuring our local businesses and community organizations. An old fashioned southern street festival, Mineola and Waterfront Avenues are blocked to vehicular traffic and these vendors line the streets where festival patrons can enjoy a stroll under the moss draped live oaks.
The mission of the Little River Chamber of Commerce & Visitors Center’s is to promote community improvement, tourism and commerce by proactive leadership and community involvement. The Little River ShrimpFest is the ideal event to embody this mission. As our tagline reads, “There is Something Here for Everyone!”