North Suffolk Rotary prepares for roast

Published 4:13 pm Wednesday, November 24, 2010

The gulf oil spill may have postponed the ninth annual North Suffolk Rotary oyster roast, but it couldn’t smother its coals — or the good that takes place in the community in part because of the event.

Having been postponed by a few weeks, the roast will take place on Dec. 4 from noon to 3 p.m. at the Kirk Farm on the 6000 block of Everets Road.

“It took us longer, because of pricing and availability, but we’re just about ready to go,” said Tony Coppa, North Suffolk Rotary president. “The community has a lot of big needs, and we have a lot of big plans that this event will help us do. We want to do the best we can in the community.”

Email newsletter signup

The event is the largest fundraiser the club hosts each year and serves as its major funding mechanism for the numerous community projects it contributes to each year.

“This is truly the motor that fuels all the activities we’re able to do in the community every year,” Coppa said. “It’s critical for us to do the work we do.”

The North Suffolk Rotary has donated to ForKids’ Suffolk House, Stop Hunger Now, the Children’s Hospital of the King’s Daughters, the HER Shelter, the wreath-laying ceremony at the Albert G. Horton Jr. Memorial Veterans Cemetery and to polio eradication efforts through Rotary International.

“It’s just a good time that helps us do good things,” Coppa said. “It’s a casual, relationship-building experience. We have new people and folks who know each other come out each year. We cook oysters on the site, and it’s just down and dirty and casual.”

The 40 to 60 bushels of oysters will be roasted at the site the day of the event, and guests can take the eating of the oysters as casually or as seriously as they want.

“We’ll have tables made of barrels and planks, and people come with their own homemade ingredients,” Coppa said. “They have holsters to carry their homemade sauces and have their own shucking knives and gloves. They’ll even claim their own territory. It’s some serious business.”

To purchase a ticket, $25, talk to any North Suffolk Rotary Club member or visit Smithfield Gardens, A. Dodson’s or Bon Vivant.