For a buck a shuck and a dance with Johnny Hoy and the Bluefish, the Martha’s Vineyard Shellfish Group has Saturday night covered.
The hatchery group hosts its second annual Shellfish Extravaganza benefit tomorrow night at the Chilmark Community Center from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. Tickets are $25 and available at the door, and include two drink tickets for beer and wine. There will be a dollar raw bar while a chowder contest among chefs from the Art Cliff Diner, Among the Flowers, Port Hunter, Lucky Hank’s, State Road and Herring Run Kitchen takes place in the kitchen. And all the while the popular Johnny Hoy and the Bluefish will play a live set on the community center floor.
All proceeds benefit the shellfish group programs, which include millions of hatchery-raised seed clams, oysters and scallops that are planted in Island ponds. Hatchery manager Amandine Surier called shellfish the “forgotten cousin” of the farm-to-table movement.
“It’s not only supplementing the commercial and recreational fishermen but shellfish are the only farmed gill-free program that you can eat out there,” she said. “It’s the only farmed protein that does not harm the environment but improves it.”
The evening features over 40 silent auction items, including a wampum and scallop shell necklace by Kate Taylor, foul weather gear, tackle boxes, dinner for four catered by Bernadette Cormie, a peep sight for scalloping, Island-grown salt from Martha’s Vineyard Sea Salt and a painting by Marston Clough.
The raw bar includes a sampling of farmed Menemsha and Katama oysters and wild Tisbury Great Pond oysters, a chance for Islanders to test their oyster know-how.
“They taste just like the pond they were grown in,” Ms. Surier said. “It’s such a dynamic system, oysters always taste different from one week to another.”