Hangout Oyster Cook-off

October 28, 2019 - Gulf Shores, AL - (OBA®) - The 12th Annual Hangout Oyster Cook-Off Craft Spirits and Beer Weekend is set for Nov. 1-2 in Gulf Shores. Again this year, event organizers — alongside Alabama Coastal Foundation (ACF) and Alabama Gulf Seafood — will align to recycle leftover oyster shells to aid in ongoing oyster restoration efforts.

“More than 100,000 oysters are expected to be prepared throughout the weekend, and recycled shells are nature’s best material for new oysters to grow,” said Chris Blankenship, commissioner of the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. “It is vital that we utilize these shells — rather than send them to a landfill — to improve water quality and aid in limiting erosion in our water systems.”

Festivalgoers can participate by disposing of used shells in special onsite receptacles, which are being provided by the Alabama Coastal Foundation's Oyster Shell Recycling Program.

"We are honored to partner with Hangout Oyster Cook-Off leadership this year to recycle shells and look forward to a great weekend of food and fun," said ACF Executive Director Mark Berte.

ACF’s mission is to improve and protect Alabama's coastal environment through cooperation, education and participation. Anyone interested in volunteering with ACF to move the oyster shell recycling carts should visit for more information including how to sign up. 

“We appreciate the public’s help in maintaining clean waterways and providing a habitat for more oysters to grow,” said Blankenship. “Something as simple as dropping your shells in these bins become of part of a larger conservation effort. We hope to see everyone come out and enjoy the weekend, while also helping support a greater cause.”

Recycled shells will be stored at the Marine Resources Division Artificial Reef Staging Area and will be deployed for oyster restoration projects after six months of seasoning.

The Hangout Oyster Cook-Off Craft Spirits and Beer Weekend offers attendees unique samplings of seafood and oysters prepared by some of the most celebrated chefs in the country. For more information on the annual event or to learn more about Alabama oysters, please visit or


Established by Alabama Governor Robert Bentley by executive order signed in March of 2011, the Alabama Seafood Marketing Commission (ASMC) was created to help provide advice, oversight, management and encouragement to the marketing of Alabama seafood. Led by Chris Blankenship, commissioner of the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, the ASMC is comprised of volunteer members appointed by the Governor that include fishermen, processors, charter boat operators, retailers, restaurant owners and others both directly and indirectly related to the Alabama seafood industry.