Prescott Park - Fish & Lobster Festival

"Fishtival" features a Chef Cook-Off, Games, Music, Fishing Boat Tours, and More


PORTSMOUTH, N.H. - The uniquely local New Hampshire Fish and Lobster Festival will return Saturday, Sept. 24, 2011, from noon to 4 p.m. at Prescott Park in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. Admission is free, with seafood tastings available for $4 each. Support for the event is provided by sponsor Smuttynose Brewing Company.


The largest festival focused on local food in New Hampshire comes together once again in Prescott Park along the working waterfront where residents of all ages will have the opportunity to learn, explore and celebrate our community-based local fishing fleet and its fresh, healthy harvest. Through activities and delicious tastings of a wide variety of locally landed species, "Fishtival" will educate residents and visitors about local seafood resources and support and honor local fishermen by bringing fun and fish together.


Visitors are invited to walk the decks of a local fishing boat, taste freshly landed local seafood prepared by beloved Seacoast chefs, learn to identify and prepare local fish, watch a chef's cook-off competition, investigate the Gulf of Maine ecosystem, meet local fishermen, and create one of a kind fish print t-shirts to wear. An exciting collaboration with the Portsmouth Maritime Folk Festival will feature their performances woven throughout the event.


The event is a true community collaboration. Numerous environmental, heritage and cultural non-profits participate alongside working fishermen, and restaurants and markets to bring this event to our working waterfront. Activities will be hosted by the Northeast Consortium, Blue Ocean Society, Strawbery Banke Museum, Portsmouth Historic House Associates, Gundalow Company, Gulf of Maine Research Institute, UNH Slow Food, NH Coastal Protection Partnership, and UNH Marine Docents, among others.


To highlight the diversity and quality of the local fishing industry, chefs from restaurants, markets and culinary programs across the region will prepare creative, delicious samplings fresh from local boats. Each participating chef will be assigned, by lottery, a different locally-caught seafood species to prepare and serve. For a nominal fee ($4 for fish and oysters, $8 for lobsters) celebration attendees can taste each of the species and the unique preparations.


Tastings will be prepared by chefs from 100 Club, Black Trumpet, The Blue Mermaid, Jumpin' Jay's Fish Cafe, Little Bay Oyster Company, The Old Salt, Portsmouth Brewery, Seaport Fish, Philbrick's Fresh Market, Portsmouth Lobster Company, 106 Kitchen and Bar, and Hebert Brothers Seafood, among others.


Also during the afternoon, there will be opportunities to meet a lobster, or interact with two touch tanks worth of seafood animals. Aboard fishing vessels, captains will show how they bring in their haul; on land, listen to different talks about the aspects of the fishing industry, including innovations and sustainability in the industry, and watch first-hand the art of net building. Local fishmongers will show how to process several species of whole fresh fish, and share fish selection and preparation tips.


And for the third year, the festival features an exciting celebrity chef Seafood Cook-off where the defending champ Susan Tuveson defends her title against a new challenger.


Smuttynose Brewing Company, the Seacoast's uniquely local and award-winning craft brewery, is the festival sponsor. The NH Fish and Lobster Festival is produced by a variety of community organizations and businesses collaborating to support the local fishing industry. Seacoast Local and Prescott Park Arts Festival co-host the event in collaboration with local fishermen (NH Sectors, Commercial Fishermen's Association and Granite State FISH) and local food advocates, including Seacoast Eat Local and Northwest Atlantic Marine Alliance. Grant funding is provided by UNH Sea Grant, and generous in-kind support is provided by Seaport Fish Market, participating restaurants, educational non-profits, and Seacoast Growers' Association.


More information about Fishtival is available at To find out more information about the movement to support New Hampshire's local fishing industry, visit our event partners at,, and