October is quickly approaching. If you live or vacation on the Gulf Coast of Florida, you know what that means: Stone Crab season is about to begin! This beloved event begins annually on the Gulf Coast starting on October 15 and continuing through the month of May here in the Sunshine State. It’s a phenomenon all its own, so if you haven’t experienced Florida Stone Crab Season, you must! Book your Gulf Coast vacation rental and be here for the food, fun and festivities during this favorite time of year.
So what do you need to know about Stone Crab season in Florida? Let us help you out. We’re listing 10 things you’ll absolutely love about stone crab season here on Florida’s Gulf Coast. Read this and then make your plans to be here. You won’t regret it.
1. The Seasonality
Because Gulf Coast Stone Crab Season only happens during a portion of the year from October 15 through May 15, it’s a time of year that Floridians look forward to each and every time it rolls around. There’s heightened anticipation and satisfaction in knowing that you can’t get this delicacy all year long. Seize the day… and the crab!
2. The Florida Stone Crab Festivals & Celebrations
As with any big event on the Gulf Coast of Florida, you’ll find that there are celebrations and festivals all in honor of the glorious stone crab and the kick-off of the season. Wondering where to go? Keegan’s Stone Crab Feast happens annually in Indian Rocks Beach and is a good place to start. Then there’s Frenchy’s Stone Crab Weekend and Cooter’s Stone Crab Fest in Clearwater Beach. Let’s also not forget about the John’s Pass Seafood Festival, where you’ll find stone crabs and all of your other seafood favorites all in one place. You have a lot of options!
3. The Sweet Succulence of Stone Crab Meat
Known for their signature sweet taste and delicate meat, stone crabs fall into two categories in this area: Gulf stone crabs and Florida stone crabs. Gulf stone crabs can be found in all five Gulf states (Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas) and are known for their giant crusher claw. The crusher claw accounts for almost half of a stone crab’s weight and can easily crush an oyster, which happens to be its main source of nutrition. Gulf stone crabs are brownish-maroon in color. Florida stone crabs closely resemble the Gulf stone crab, except they have a spotted brownish-maroon colored shell which gives them a somewhat lighter appearance. And they are harvested exclusively in Florida. You really can’t go wrong with either kind.
4. The Specialty Stone Crab Dishes
5. Preparing Stone Crabs Right in Your Gulf Coast Vacation Rental
6. The Time of Year on the Gulf Coast of Florida
7. Other Gulf Coast Fun & Festivities Happening at the Same Time
8. Satisfying Your Craving While You Can
9. Trying New Stone Crab Dishes
10. Planning for Next Year’s Stone Crab Season
Plan Your Next Florida Gulf Coast Vacation
Where’s your favorite place to eat stone crabs on Florida’s Gulf Coast? We want to know!