Public Shucking Contests & The Big Shuck

Aw Shucks!

Our Public Shucking Contest is open to any good-humored oyster lover aged 18 or older who enjoys the challenge of opening one dozen oysters as fast as they can on a stage in front of a large audience.

Entrance fee: $10

How to register: You may complete this form in advance or pick one up upon arrival at the Information Tent adjacent to the L.L.Bean Discovery Park stage. A representative from Visit Freeport will review the rules, assign your heat time in order of arrival and take your $10 entrance fee (cash or credit card.)

Rules: Entrants must provide all of their own tools including knives, gloves (strongly recommended), towels, magic dust, etc. This is for fun and there are basically no rules about how you try to shuck.

What to expect: There will be ten heats with not more than six participants per heat. Heat times will be assigned in order of arrival at the Registration Tent. Each shucker will be assigned a separate timekeeper. One dozen oysters will be randomly selected and placed in front of each shucker on a tray. Shuckers will have a chance to arrange the oysters as they like before time begins. Time will begin when the MC announces the start. To signal to your timekeeper that you are done, raise your hands above your head.

Heat Schedule: Saturday, June 25 at 11, 11:30, 12, 12:30, 2, 2:30, 3, 3:30, 4, & 4:30.

Awards & Prizes: The fastest time in each public heat will receive a gift bag of prizes provided by local business, oyster farms, and maritime non-profits. The entrant with the fastest time logged across all the heats conducted throughout the day on Saturday, June 25 will receive a personalized award to be displayed and bragged about in perpetuity and will be invited to compete against handpicked professionals on Sunday, June 26 at 11 AM in The Big Shuck. Results to be announced at approximately 5 p.m. on Saturday, June 25.

Special thanks to John Boland, owner of Nicholson Inn, for being the MC of the Public Shucking Contests. 

The Big Shuck

On Sunday, June 26 at 11 am join us at the L.L.Bean Discovery Park Stage to watch the pros throw down in their own shucking contest. They will each be given two dozen oysters and this time it’s not just the fastest time that counts. For the pros, it’s also about the quality of their shucks. A judge will inspect their finished product and add time on for any penalties according to the chart below. Special thanks to Brian Kevin, Editor of Down East Magazine, for being the MC of The Big Shuck! 

PENALTIES. Judges will add seconds to shucking time accordingly:
(1) An oyster not completely severed from shell ……….………….add 3 seconds
(2) An oyster presented on a broken shell……………….…………….add 1 second
(3) An oyster presented with grit or other foreign substance……….add 3 seconds
(4) A cut oyster………………………………………………………..….add 3 seconds
(5) An oyster not placed properly in the shell………………………add 2 seconds
(6) A missing oyster……………………………………………………..add 20 seconds
BONUS. Judges may (optionally) award a bonus reduction of ten (10) seconds as an
award for a tray whose presentation is deemed outstanding.

 

THE BIG SHUCK PARTICIPANT PROFILES

Andy Rogers

Andy Rogers owns Jolie Rogers Traveling Raw Bar and Scully Sea Products in Edgecomb with his business partner Ryan Jolie. Shucking professionally since 2015, Andy has most recently won the 2021 Wellfleet Shuck Off, and is very passionate about creating a 100 oyster shucking competition.

John Herrigel

Founder and owner of Maine Oyster Company.

Founder and host of OysterFest at Harvest on the Harbor.

Coined the phrase, “BOOM SHUCK A LUCKA!.”

Jake Gerry

“I’ve been in this game for years, it made me an animal, there’s rules to the shuck I wrote me a manual, step-by-step a booklet for you to get. 12 years later here I am still loving every oyster I shuck! We shuck ‘em you suck ‘em!”

Libby Davis
Libby is a Maine native with a background in Biology and International Development and has worked in the aquaculture industry for the last 4 years. She got her start working as the restaurant manager at Maine Oyster Company in 2018 and gained extensive experience in raw-bar operations management, oyster farming, shellfish shipping and distribution, as well as marketing and event coordinating. She has been professionally shucking oysters for the last 4 years and began Lady Shuckers mobile raw-bar and event company last year with the mission to support and source products exclusively from women-owned sea farms and increase visibility for underrepresented groups on the working waterfront.

 

Chaz Guthrie

Chaz is newest member of Team Eros.   An Alaskan native, Chaz was born in Alaska and raised on the coast of Maine,  He comes from a rich cultural heritage revolving around ocean life and appreciation of nature – now including oysters.

Leo Sparta 

“Hi! My name is Leo Sparta. I work at Spartan Sea Farms and Little Buster’s oysters. I am super into cars and am building a Miata now! I love all things outdoors and all things surrounding the water. I run track and throw as well!”

Mark Gaffney

Mark is owner/manager of Eros Oyster.  At 5’8”  and 175lb out of Gorham Maine, Mark would like to have an Eros Team for next Trek Across Maine 2022.  All are welcome.

Brooke Kotack

Brooke hails from Rodney’s Oyster House in Toronto, Ontario CANADA where she is head of Oyster purchasing and manages the restaurant. She has been shucking professionally for 3 years in various competitions across Canada. Her proudest moment was finishing in the top 10 at the Canadian Championships in 2021. She’s passionate about all things coming out of the water, with Oysters and Kelp being her quirky obsessions. She’s excited to be visiting Maine, meeting all the Oystermen and women she’s worked with over the years and competing internationally for the first time.