Louisiana Seafood Festival
Old U.S. Mint, 400 Esplanade Ave.
As one-third of the Vieux to Do (which also includes the 24th annual Creole Tomato Festival and the Cajun Zydeco Festival), this year's Louisiana Seafood Festival is a moment to celebrate the fishermen, chefs and culture relying on the state's bounty now endangered by the BP oil disaster. While oil-soaked shores and wetlands threaten its future, the raison d'etre is honored (and fried, boiled, barbecued or on the half shell) within this five-block domain, and its definition extends to anything in the water — from alligators to oysters, crabs, shrimp, fish and crawfish. The festival features more than 50 vendors of food, drink and arts and crafts, as well as live music on stages hosted by the Cajun Zydeco Festival. On Friday and Saturday, chefs from Oceana, the Hotel InterContinental, Royal House Oyster Bar, Red Fish Grill, Saltwater Grill and others host cooking demonstrations. Free admission. — Alex Woodward