Although there was much fun, merriment, fresh seafood and delicious wines being poured at Seafood and Wine at South Beach last weekend, there was plenty of socializing and partying starting at the north end of the bridge as well. The Shilo Inn on Elizabeth Street was packing them in Friday and Saturday night along with Nana’s Irish Pub in Nye Beach. Apollo’s on the Bayfront looked more a screen shot from a hotel-resort in Cancun or Montego Bay.
The Seafood and Wine Festival, organized and presented by the Newport Area Chamber of Commerce, aims not only at raising about a quarter of the chamber’s annual operating budget, but also to provide widespread economic benefits to area tourism-dependent businesses during a typically slow time of the year. And from these photos, those businesses were certainly getting their piece of the benefits. Chamber Executive Director Lorna Davis reports that this year’s Seafood and Wine was the second biggest in the history of the event. That observation should provide comfort to Newport area, as well as other central coast business communities, that although the economy is far from recovered from the worst recession in over 80 years, people are still spending money and having a good time doing it as they gathered in Newport the last weekend in February.
Next: Spring Break!