Amite Oyster Festival officially cancelled for 2020
AMITE---Organizers of the Amite Oyster Festival have decided to cancel this year's event as the uncertainty of life after the COVID-19 shutdown remains forefront in people's minds.
In a statement issued Wednesday, Oyster Board representatives said, "The decision was made to protect our town and our many faithful visitors that come every year to celebrate with us."
Amite Councilman Kris Hart announced several weeks ago that at least one resident of the town had succumbed to the virus.
Oyster Board members said they worked with Mayor Walter Daniels to consider rescheduling the 2020 festival for another date; however, after much discussion, the board decided it would be best to cancel this year's event.
"It is a heart breaking decision for us and for our town. Our oyster board and our royalty work year round to plan and promote our March full of oyster events. The culmination of the year is proudly revealed each March in the spectacular events.
"We are very sad that our 2020 Royalty were not able to celebrate their hard work the third weekend of March. We are thankful we were able to host the scavenger hunt and the royalty were able to experience the wonderful gala and brunch.
"Our King and Pearl Carl 'Chicken' and Barbara Gaines were outstanding this year in their representation of the Oyster Festival, the Oyster Industry and the Town of Amite City. They traveled and attended many local and statewide events. Our Queen Mary Graves traveled over 7,480 miles all over Louisiana promoting oysters. She did a phenomenal job and we are extremely proud of her hard work. Many thanks to our other royalty including Teen Queen Lauren van Mullem, Deb Queen Madelyn Morgan, Jr. Queen Avery Hallmark, Little Queen Ivy Roberts and Petite Queen Alyssa Spitale. The Oyster Board appreciates all your hard work."
The board plans to hold their annual Oyster Pageant in June, if possible, depending on the status of the COVID-19 situation. They encourage the public to stay tuned to their Facebook page, their website, and the local media for future updates.
This year's board includes more than a dozen local volunteers, including Amite business owners, public servants, and civic activists. Scott Gay was the 2020 chairman with Carol Brooke serving as co-chair. Board members include Bo Carrier, Trea Coxed, Bruce Cutrer, Jennifer Decota, Julian Ledet, Daina McClain, Doug McKean, Dawson Primes, Walter Stell, Bradon Voight, Tanya Warren, and Joseph Wong.