Fall for Fun and the Naples Stone Crab Festival

Stone Crab Festival
By JoNell Modys

October is here and that kicks off our annual Fall for Fun season on Florida’s Paradise Coast. We’re ramping up for the start of the annual stone crab season on October 15, followed by the Stone Crab Festival, lots of great Halloween events including the Halloween Spooktacular on Fifth Avenue South, the Naples International Film Festival, and much more in the coming weeks.

Here in Southwest Florida, opening day for stone crab season is akin to opening day for baseball season in MLB team cities. Fans of the sweet and delicious claw meat start plotting and planning for weeks about where they’re going to stake out their spot to dine on opening day. Popular spots include several waterfront cafes in Everglades City – the Stone Crab Capital of the World – including City Seafood and Triad Seafood; and Grimm’s Stone Crab for takeout and overnight delivery of fresh, never frozen stone crab claws. Naples and Marco Island favorites include Pinchers Crab Shack, Capri Fish House, Kelly’s Fishhouse Dining Room, Truluck’s Seafood & Crab House, Captain & Krewe Seafood Market & Raw Bar, Little Bar Restaurant, and many others.

Don’t forget the annual Stone Crab Festival is coming up October 23 through 25 on the Old Naples Waterfront at Tin City and Bayfront with lots of stone crab claws, fresh Gulf seafood, taste treats from over 20 local restaurant vendors, live music, a fun-filled activity zone for kids, arts and crafts, and much more. Find the full action-packed schedule at www.stonecrabfestival.org.

A face for the Paradise Coast’s fall tourism marketing campaign is the somewhat cranky crustacean, Stoney the Crab. Watch for him online and on Facebook to learn more about the excellent deals available at area hotels, restaurants, attractions, spas and more. These offer an opportunity for locals to take advantage of discounts at some of their favorite spots before the full crush of the winter season kicks in. You can browse some of those deals at www.paradisecoast.com/deals, and be sure to check out the many fun fall events happening at www.paradisecoast.com/listings/events.

This article originally appeared in The News-Press (Fort Myers). 

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