Fourteen hundred oysters, 800 clams, 60-plus auction items, and endless fun. The sixth annual Shellfish Extravaganza was the place to be Friday evening, as dozens gathered at the Chilmark Community Center for the event to enjoy a (what seemed to be endless) raw bar, drinks, music and of course, dancing, all in the name of charity for the M.V. Shellfish Group. The towns of West Tisbury and Edgartown donated the shellfish, and local breweries, including Washashore, Bad Martha’s, and Offshore Ale, donated beer and drinks. The evening was topped off with a performance by Johnny Hoy and the Bluefish.
There was also a silent auction, with more than 60 donated items from Island businesses, restaurants, and hotels, with a total estimated value of over $7,000. People bid on everything from chocolate and gift baskets to a spa weekend and hotel stays. Ronan Kelly, 10, had his eye on a singing toy shark donated by Rick Karney, with a “priceless” estimated value. Kelly bid on the item multiple times, while his dad Donny Brice had his eye on golf and fishing excursions.
The money raised at the extravaganza, $15,134 before expenses, will go toward general operating costs for the Shellfish Group, a nonprofit whose goal, according to their website, is to “preserve and expand the Island’s traditional shellfisheries … and improve and maintain the good surface water quality crucial to a viable shellfish industry.”