SEAFOOD FESTIVAL

Festival Information

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Our Seafood Festivals are held twice yearly on the third Wednesday of May and on the third Wednesday of October.   Festival hours are from 3:00 to 8:00 p.m.  Gates open at 2:00 p.m. but no food or beverages is served until after the playing of our national anthem at 3:00. (Ruritans love citizenship and patriotism!) Location of the festivals is on our Festival Grounds behind our club building at 8784 Guinea Road, Bena, Virginia.  

SEAFOOD FESTIVAL 2024

Ruritan National President Robin Davenport helped at the Abingdon Ruritan Club’s 80th Seafood Festival on May 15, 2024

The Abingdon Ruritan Club celebrated its 80th Seafood Festival this year. Again, another year supported by our community.

THE SEAFOOD FESTIVAL CELEBRATED 80 YEARS!

The individuals shown above have worked in
all 80 Seafood Festivals.

Left to right: Members on
Back row Jon Beck, David Dea & Rupert Thomas
Front row Graham Blake, Walter Priest & L. T.
Wells. Also Front row Volunteer Rachel Wells
and Shucker Catherine.

The first Seafood Festival was planned in 1979 by L. T. Wells. Wells Said it all started with a fish fry that was held at Gloucester Point. The tickets were about $15.00. There were about 600 tickets sold at the first festival. Today the Seafood Festival sells 2200 tickets! Why do we do It? It is all about supporting our community through donations. The Seafood Festival allows us to donate money from our fundraisers to multiple local and national organizations, as well as give scholarships to our local students.

SEAFOOD TICKET INFORMATION:

Here is what you get for your ticket

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Beverages – Beer, wine, mixed drinks (no shots) soft drinks, tea, coffee and water. Alcoholic beverages are not served during the last 30 minutes of the festival.

Entertainment – Popular live band.  Different band at each festival. Spacious grassy dance area in front of bandstand.

Parking – Free and convenient 

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How to get there

The address of the main entrance to our club building is 8784 Guinea Road, but on the day of the festival you cannot enter there to access the festival grounds!  You will need to drive a few short yards ahead to the intersection of Guinea Road and Mark Pine Road (the next right turn). Immediately on your right as you are turning onto Mark Pine Road, you will see the paved apron in front of Abingdon Fire and Rescue Station No. 2, and a few inches beyond their paved apron is a gravel road which is our entrance you need to take to proceed to the parking area adjacent to our festival grounds.

Important Facts About Our Seafood Festivals

The Festival goes on, rain or shine.  Ticket sales are final.

Enjoy the tables in the covered seating areas but they are not to be “reserved” by placing tablecloths or markers on them.  Please share.

You may bring in lawn chairs and small folding tables (but no pop-up tents/canopies).

Not permitted

(These restrictions are necessary to provide a safe and enjoyable environment for our guests)

Pop-Up Tents/Canopies

Coolers (They will not be allowed through the gate)

Pets (They will not be allowed through the gate)

Wagons (They will not be allowed through the gate)

Firearms (concealed or open carry)

Political Campaigning (Never–not even in an election year!)

Anyone without a ticket. (Remember, none are sold at the gate.)

Any food or beverage to be taken outside the festival grounds.

Reserving tables by placing tablecloths or markers on them. 

Sponsors for the Abingdon Ruritan Seafood Festivals provide a highly visible way of supporting the community.  Over 30 businesses have banners displayed throughout the grounds on Festival days.  If you would like to join them and be a sponsor, contact our Sponsor Chairman, Chris Lamb, email gloucesterbug@aol.com or phone/text (804) 832-6357.

The Seafood Festivals are the Club’s primary fundraising events

 The money raised is used to help non-profit organizations and individuals with financial emergencies.  By participating in our festivals, you are helping us help our community.

THE SEAFOOD FESTIVAL CELEBRATED 80 YEARS!

The individuals shown below will have worked in
all 80 Seafood Festivals following our Festival
on May 15th, 2024.

Left to right: Members on
Back row Jon Beck, David Dea & Rupert Thomas
Front row Graham Blake, Walter Priest & L. T.
Wells. Also Front row Volunteer Rachel Wells
and Shucker Catherine.

The first Seafood Festival was planned in 1979 by L. T. Wells. Wells Said it all started with a fish fry that was held at Gloucester Point. The tickets were about $15.00. There were about 600 tickets sold at the first festival. Today the Seafood Festival sells 2200 tickets! Why do we do It? It is all about supporting our community through donations. The Seafood Festival allows us to donate money from our fundraisers to multiple local and national organizations, as well as give scholarships to our local students.

SEAFOOD FESTIVAL 2024

Fall Seafood Festival 2023

Seafood Festival Preparations

Tuesday nights at the Abingdon Ruritan Club are work nights. When the Seafood Festival planning begins, preparation goes into high gear getting ready for the festival day. Inventory is checked, grass cutting in continued, cleaning and painting is done, American Flags are inspected, and many more jobs are completed. Below Ruritan members are hard at work.

Allen Scales
Yvonne Scales
David Kyle & Roger Dick
David Onesty
Jimmy Leiffer & Dave Onesty
Rose Taylor
David Onesty