Little River hosts the annual world famous Blue Crab Festival

LITTLE RIVER, SC (WMBF) - Hundreds of vendors are set up for an annual event that brings thousands to Little River.

More than 25 thousand people are expected to attend the 33rd Annual World Famous Blue Crab Festival happening in Little River. This year is said to be their biggest year yet with a new marketing strategy, renovations to restaurants and of course traditional family cooking.

Jason Carbone, owner of Fibber's on the Water, explains how the town stepped up their marketing this year.

"They've really gone ahead, they've done the planning, they've done the research, they've reached out to all the restaurants.. what we're looking for what we need."

Local businesses say that this weekend marks their summer season where most are looking to do 20 percent more than they did last year.

Anthony Cifelli owner of Anthony's Connoli Factory says, "I think we're going to be busier than we can probably handle.. we're hoping!"

The Blue Crab Festival is one of the largest in the Southeast where there are over 250 arts and crafts vendors, specialty food, entertainment and a kid's area.

"The high impact here, it puts little river on the map and it brings business to all our local friends and families," says Jackie Runyon, owner of crazy crème and candy. Saturday is her grand opening, she's hoping for a huge turn out.

This annual festival not only impacts local business this weekend but also gives them the exposure they need to grow.

Ed Mueller is a new vendor this year and brought his Carolina Gumbaya Company to see what new adventures it brings. He says, "It's an opportunity for us to get our product out without having to go through a restaurant or local.

This is a weekend long event, so if you missed out Saturday you can catch some of the fun and food Sunday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. along Mineola Avenue which will be closed off to all traffic.

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