By Linda Hunter
This weekend, I am taking a trip to Tomales Bay. Not just to enjoy the bucolic hills of West Marin, but also to join a panel of highly enthusiastic and esteemed oyster aficionados to talk about the future of shellfish farms. Why should people care about tiny underwater creatures like oysters? Because oyster reefs are like the underwater version of a rainforest. They are critical to healthy shorelines for Bay Area residents.
The panel will be part of a forum called “Farming on the Half Shell,” which will cover the history of shellfish farming in Tomales Bay, its economic viability, and the importance of water quality and resource stewardship. My co-panelists include: former Bubbles and Bivalves keynote speaker Rowan Jacobsen, (The Geography of Oysters); Hog Island Oyster Co. owner and marine biologist John Finger; West Marin historian Dewey Livingston, and others.
“Besides increasing awareness in a local sense, the forum has the potential to create a template for sustainability in all five California shellfish farming areas as well as in other parts of the U.S.,” said Luc Chamberland, the event sponsor and founder of the Pickleweed Point Community Oyster Farm, a fiscally sponsored project of The Watershed Project.
The event will take place at the historic “Launch for Hire” boathouse in Inverness on Sunday, May 19th, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Question-and-answer periods follow each session. A box lunch prepared by Saltwater Oyster Depot is included in the ticket price. Space is limited. Tickets are available at saltwateroysterdepot.com.
I hope to see you there!