Press release from NCOyster365:
Durham, NC, January 27, 2019: On Sunday, North Carolina represented at the Low Country Oyster Festival in Charleston, SC. The 36 annual event boasts the largest oyster festival in the country. But North Carolina can boast the fastest oyster shuckers, at least for last weekend’s contest.
Marco Gaspar, of the Lobster Trap took the first place prize money this year opening 60 oysters in the three minute timed event. Besting Zephe Bonifacio, previous NC shucking champion of Shallotte, NC who opened 55 oysters and Kat Hundertmark of Creekside Taphouse who opened 44 oysters. George Hastings Jr. of Weaverville finished 4th with 40 oysters in three minutes.
All three of the finalists have won the event in the past. Gaspar taking the first place check for the 6th time. In 2017 Gaspar opened 66 oysters coming just three oysters short of the contests record or 69 oysters opened in three minutes by Tres Hundertmark, Kat’s father formerly of The Lobster Trap, now living in Durham, NC.
Tres, who won the contest last year said, “I was disappointed not to be able to make the festival this year, but I still feel like a winner when two of the top three are shuckers that I had taught the art to.”