This Weekend on the Crystal Coast: Emerald Isle's St. Patrick's Festival & Swansboro Oyster Roast

As the spring season approaches, the Crystal Coast events and activities rev up into high gear. There's so much to see and do, and the weather conditions are perfect for some time spent outdoors in the fresh sea-salt air. Here are some local festivals and events to add to your weekend itinerary.

23rd Annual Emerald Isle St. Patrick's FestivalEmerald Isle St. Patrick's Festival
You're in luck this weekend on the Crystal Coast as the 23rd Annual Emerald Isle St. Patrick's Festival gets underway on Saturday, March 15 from 9a.m. to 6p.m. at the Emerald Plantation Shopping Center. A charming local favorite, the St. Patrick's Festival features over 75 arts and crafts vendors, festival food, a beer garden, a petting zoo, a climbing wall, amusement rides, clowns, face painters, and plenty of other family-friendly activities.

Bring your appetite and indulge in the festival's mouthwatering fare such as corned beef and cabbage, shrimp burgers, hamburgers, hot dogs, Mediterranean cuisine, barbecue, funnel cakes, fried peanuts, cotton candy, and the list goes on. There's a little something for every craving and every appetite. Come hungry!

A highlight of the Emerald Isle St. Patrick's Festival is The Little Ms. & Mr. Leprechaun Contest taking place on the main stage at 11a.m. The contest welcomes boys and girls ages 2-3 and 4-5. Each of the contestants is judged on originality and creativity of their costume along with their stage presentation. Pre-registration for the contest occurs at 12 noon on Thursday, March 13, so don't delay. (Please note that pre-registration is required for this event; space is limited to 20 participants; no exceptions.) Applications are available at or at the Emerald Isle Community Center and should be returned to Sarah McNally.

The Emerald Isle St. Patrick's Festival is packed with live music and entertainment on two stages.

Here's the lineup:

Gold Stage
9a.m. Little Mr. & Miss LeprechaunEmerald Isle St. Patrick's Festival 2014
11a.m. Keelhaul Down
12p.m. 4EverAll
1p.m. Pure T Mommicked
2p.m. Big Drink
3p.m. Heritage
4:30p.m. Spare Change

Emerald Stage

11a.m. Pamlico Joe
12p.m. Redneck Juliets
1p.m. Justin Castellano
2:30-4p.m. Selah Dubb

The St. Patrick's Festival offers free admission and free parking. Bring your family and friends and make a day of it!

Swansboro Oyster Roast
Round out the night with the 35th Annual Swansboro Oyster Roast hosted by the Swansboro Rotary Club on 1104 Main Street. It's good food for a good cause. Festivities begin at 5p.m. on Saturday, March 15. Get your fill of oysters, barbecue, fried fish, clam chowder, hot dogs, and more. Live music is presented throughout the evening by Machine Gun.

Tickets are $45 in advance and $50 at the door. (Beer is included in that price.) The proceeds benefit scholarships and projects locally in Onslow and Carteret counties. More information on ticket purchase can be found here.

Where to Stay on the Crystal Coast
With the weeks and wRainbow in Emerald Isle Photo by Renee Ritchieeekends becoming busier and busier during the spring and summer seasons, it's the ideal time to book your Emerald Isle beach vacation rental.

Vacation rentals are the only way to travel. Enjoy the comforts of home combined with the luxuries of a vacation. Choose the location, size and style of accommodation that best suits your needs and search for all of the amenities you desire to make your Crystal Coast vacation complete. It's that simple!

We are very excited that beach season is upon us. The Emerald Isle beaches await you with their pristine shores and sparkling blue-green waters, so we hope to see you around town and at our local events and festivals real soon.

You can read more about what is happening locally on any given day by visiting the Crystal Coast calendar of events page. Subscribe to our weekly Sun-Surf Realty blog, and we'll keep you informed on all of the local highlights, too.

Are you coming to the Emerald Isle St. Patrick's Festival this weekend? If so, let us know! We hope to see you there. Cheers and Irish blessings!

May the sun shine, all day long,
everything go right, and nothing wrong.
May those you love bring love back to you,
and may all the wishes you wish come true!

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