For the past 40 years on the first Saturday in May, the town of McClellanville has rolled out the welcome mat for visitors from near and far to enjoy the Lowcountry Shrimp Festival and Blessing of the Fleet. Plan on making the short drive off Highway 17 to the end of Pinckney Street to enjoy the 41st Annual Lowcountry Shrimp Festival and Blessing of the Fleet on Saturday, May 6, 2017 from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

While a $1 donation is suggested, the festival is free to attend and this year’s event will feature live music from bands to be announced! Bring the whole family and plan to make a day of it on the edge of beautiful Jeremy Creek at the Robert E. Ashley boat landing.

There will be plenty of local shrimp, as well as options for the non-shrimp eaters to enjoy. Beer and other beverages will be available for sale — no coolers, please. Browse the official merchandise tent, the craft vendor area with more than 45 local artisans, or the huge children’s play area.

Whatever you do, make sure you’ve got a view of the creek at 4:00 for the main event: the Blessing of the Fleet. Join local clergy as they offer their blessings on the local shrimping fleet for a safe and bountiful season as they parade by in the creek.

Proceeds benefit the Cape Romain Environmental Education Charter School.