Crabdaddy catches on as a good bet for food and fun

By on September 28, 2017

Shannon and Laura Brugh, of Kitty Hawk paired up against another couple in the grape stomping event, filling their bucket the fastest.

Story and Photos by Jim Trotman

In the shade of the towering pines, we joined the crowds of crab enthusiasts who had collected around the picnic tables and improvised stand-up counters.

With our dowel mallets and brown paper bundles of fresh steamed callinectes sapidus (blue crabs) in hand, we sidled up to an open spot and commenced to crack the shells.

Our own tap-tap-tap-crack sounds added to the chorus as a gentle northern breeze carried not only the sound, but the fragrance of the spiced crustaceans across the grounds of Sanctuary Vineyards In Jarvisburg. We had come to be a part of Crabdaddy.

Crabdaddy was spawned from the fertile imagination of Sanctuary Vineyard’s general manager John Wright.

“One day we get this text from John (Wright) that reads, ‘I’m thinking about the Crabdaddy, rising from the sound,’ ” said Olivia Stuart, who with her husband, Hunter Stuart, own I Got Your Crabs. Of John and Hunter, she adds, “They’re just two little entrepreneurs, keeping it alive.”

We met up with John Wright later in the afternoon.

“You just keep throwing ideas against the wall, see what sticks.” Crabdaddy, now in its fourth year, is an idea that has stuck.

They limited ticket sales to 750 and just had sold all but the last hundred the week prior. Another scale is the volume of crabs consumed. By Stuart’s accounting, by 12:30, an hour and a half after opening for the day Sept. 23, they had served 25 bushels of crabs. By 4 p.m. they had served 60 bushels, and still had two hours left to go.

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In between crab cracking, the attendees were free to sample the vineyard’s wines and purchase by the glass or bottle. Uli Bennewitz was also on hand with his Weeping Radish beers for those with a taste for the grain instead of the grape. BJ’s Carolina Café was there as well, for those with a taste for non-aquatic comestibles.

Couples paired up in the vigorous grape stomping contests, competing to see which could fill the bucket with juice the fastest.

Others took part in the hayrides, while the more adventurous guests took to the sky in a tandem hang glider rides courtesy of Kitty Hawk Kites. An ultralight aircraft towed the gliders and their occupants high overhead, releasing them to soar over the vineyards, then swooping to a gentle landing in the field just beyond.

A series of bands took to the stage, providing tunes and an opportunity for those so inclined to work off some of that beer, wine and butter with a bit of dancing.

Next up on the calendar for the winery is Nov. 25 the day of the Big Currishuck Oyster Fest, where the mollusks will take center stage.


Barnhill Building Group has been selected as the Construction Manager @ Risk by the College of the Albemarle and is seeking to pre-qualify construction trade contractors to submit bids for the furnishing labor, materials, equipment, and tools for the new College of The Albemarle – Allied Health Sciences Simulation Lab (COA Health Sciences) located in Elizabeth City, NC. Please note: Only subcontractors who have been prequalified by Barnhill will be able to submit a Bid.

The project consists of the new construction of a 38,000-sf, 2-story expansion to the existing Owens Health Sciences Center and will house classrooms, labs, and a simulation lab. The site is just over just over 4.5 acres and is located on an active campus. This new construction will be a steel structure with a brick and metal panel veneer, curtainwall, and storefront glazing with a PVC roof membrane.

Principal trade and specialty contractors are solicited for the following Bid Packages:

BP0100: General Trades

BP0105: Final Cleaning

BP0390: Turnkey Concrete

BP0400: Turnkey Masonry

BP0500: Structural Steel & Misc. Steel

BP0740: Roofing

BP0750: Metal Panels

BP0790: Caulking / Caulking

BP0800: Turnkey Doors/Frames/Hardware

BP0840: Glass & Glazing

BP0925: Drywall

BP0960: Resilient Flooring

BP0980: Acoustical Ceilings

BP0990: Painting & Wallcovering

BP1005: Toilet Specialties / Accessories / Division 10

BP1010: Signage

BP1098: Demountable Partitions

BP1230: Finish Carpentry and Casework

BP1250: Window Treatment

BP1400: Elevators

BP2100: Fire Protection

BP2200: Plumbing

BP2300: HVAC

BP2600: Turnkey Electrical

BP3100: Turnkey Sitework

BP3290: Landscaping

Packages may be added and/or deleted at the discretion of the Construction Manager. Historically underutilized business firms are encouraged to complete participation submittals.

HUB/MWBE OUTREACH MEETING: Barnhill Building Group will be conducting a HUB/MWBE Informational Session. You are encouraged to attend the following session to learn more about project participation opportunities available to you. These seminars will help to: Learn about project and scope; Inform and train Minority/HUB contractors in preparation for bidding this project; Assist in registration on the State of North Carolina Vendor link; Stimulate opportunities for Networking with other firms. Location and time TBD. Please visit our planroom at for more information.

Interested contractors should submit their completed prequalification submittals, by July 22, 2024, to Meredith Terrell at or hardcopies can be mailed to Barnhill Contracting Company PO Box 31765 Raleigh, NC 27622 (4325 Pleasant Valley Road, NC 27612).


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