Broken Clouds 39° Good Afternoon
Broken Clouds 39° Good Afternoon
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Oyster Festival returns to Long Island

Oyster Festival returns to Theodore Roosevelt Memorial Park

Oyster Festival returns to Theodore Roosevelt Memorial Park in Oyster Bay on Saturday, Oct. 17 and Sunday, Oct. 18 from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Photo Credit: Newsday / Bill Davis

Perhaps you've been to the Oyster Festival, but you haven't experienced it all. This event, back Saturday and Sunday for its 32nd year at Theodore Roosevelt Memorial Park in Oyster Bay, typically draws more than 150,000 people, who slurp down about 50,000 oysters.

Here are five new things to experience this year -- and a few favorites first-timers shouldn't miss:



A piece of Brooklyn cool is coming to Oyster Bay when Dix Hills native Ryan Star takes the main stage at 2:30 p.m. Saturday.

This singer-songwriter, who's responsible for hits "Stay Awhile," "Last Train Home" and "Breathe," has left the major labels to go the indie route. Material from his latest effort, "After the Elephant," will be showcased in his all-acoustic set.

"When I get up onstage, I feel like I have to fight and sing for my supper," says Star, who lives in Brooklyn. "It's going to be an honest, real display from a local guy talking to his peeps. The energy will be high."


When you've had your fill of seafood, try bacon-on-a-stick as Center Cuts of Roslyn Heights provides piggy pops ($4 each). "It will be a thick, steakhouse slice of applewood-smoked bacon weaved in and out on the skewer," says owner Justin Aronoff. "There will be some sauces to dip in, like Buffalo ranch and maple syrup."


If you head down to the pier, you won't see a fleet of tall ships this year, but rather the World's Largest Rubber Duck. Standing over six stories high, 70 feet wide, 80 feet long and weighing 11 tons, this monstrous aquatic bird is waiting for photo ops. "It's crazy how big it is," says owner Craig Samborski. "People like to stand in front of it, take selfies and post them online. It's a cool, fun thing."


Giants fans need to come early Sunday to meet two-time Super Bowl champion punter Sean Landeta, who played with the team for 10 years.

Landeta, who lives in Nassau County, will assist with the Long Island championship of the NFL's Punt, Pass & Kick competition for kids ages 6-15 at 9:30 a.m. on the artificial turf field in Roosevelt Park. He also will meet fans and sign photos from 10:45 to 11:20 a.m.

"The way the fans support the team is really amazing," Landeta says. "I really appreciate that people care so much for its players."


Witness pro bicyclist Chris Clark do wheelies, bunny hops and other tricks over various obstacles in his bicycle stunt show. The 25-minute performance will take place four times a day (noon, 1:30, 3 and 4:30 p.m.).

"The show is about getting my bike and body up and over obstacles you couldn't imagine possible," says Clark. "I'll even pull some people out of the audience and do jumps over them."


While it's always fun to try something new, it's comforting to fall back on some old favorites. Here are some perennials that never go out of style.

JOHN J. HARVEY BOAT Climb aboard this legendary old FDNY fireboat, which sprays 18,000 gallons of water per minute.

FRIED OYSTERS The festival's most sought-after treat is made with the Mill River Rod & Gun Club's secret recipe ($8).

OYSTER EATING AND SHUCKING CONTESTS Watch contestants shuck and swallow these mollusks in record time at 2 p.m. Saturday.

THE ELECTRIX It's an Oyster Fest tradition to wind down with the Grateful Dead / Allman Brothers cover band's 4:30 p.m. set Saturday.


Take the Long Island Rail Road to Oyster Bay and you'll arrive at the festival entrance -- or to Syosset, where passengers will be shuttled to the festival. Five designated parking lots nearby will have shuttle buses.

WHEN | WHERE 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Theodore Roosevelt Memorial Park, West End Avenue, Oyster Bay. Rain or shine.
INFO 516-628-1625,


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