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Merry Shrimpmas | Jekyll Island

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Friday 24th to Saturday 25th, November 2017

This year, and this year only, we’re having a special festival that merges some of the most beloved elements from the Shrimp & Grits Festival and the Tree Lighting celebration into a new, two-day event – Merry Shrimpmas. Merry Shrimpmas will feature shrimp and grits dishes, live music, and an artist’s market for holiday shopping. Younger festivalgoers can take in story time with Santa Claus and play in the kid’s zone. Festivities will culminate Saturday evening with the lighting of the great Jekyll Island Christmas Tree. This celebration will provide an opportunity for everyone to support local businesses in the aftermath of the storm and will offer the community a unique way to ring in the holiday season. We hope you will join us this November for this unique event. Merry Shrimpmas will take place in the Jekyll Island National Historic Landmark District. Admission to the festival is free. Costs will vary for individual attractions, food, and refreshments throughout the event.


There’s something delicious for everyone at this special, one-time event.

Shrimp & Grits
We believe that good food brings us all together. For two days, you’ll enjoy a variety of local restaurants sharing their favorite recipe for shrimp & grits. Who will be your favorite?

Sample Night
Friday, 5-8 p.m.
On Friday evening, all shrimp & grits vendors will offer a 6-ounce serving of their signature shrimp & grits dish for $5. We dare you to pick a favorite.

Food Trucks
Looking to diversify your meal or for a sweet treat to top off your shrimp & grits? Let the food trucks tempt you with an assortment of dishes.


The Merry Shrimpmas event will be packed with family-friendly entertainment for kids of all ages spread across two, fun-packed days.

Tree Lighting
Ring in the holidays with the lighting of the Christmas Tree on the Main Lawn in Jekyll Island’s Historic District. Once the sun goes down Saturday night, the magic sets in as the Christmas tree is lit, accompanied by fireworks and snow!

Kids’ Zone
In the Kids’ Zone, your little ones can jump, swing, bounce, run, and create their way to fun! This kid-friendly spot is sure to keep kids (and parents!) happy. Bounce it out on a variety of inflatable slides, bounce houses, and agility games. Some activities within the Kids’ Zone will require tickets, which can be purchased on-site.

Story Time with Santa
Catch Santa Claus on the front porch of historic Skeet House as he reads stories to children of all ages. This wonderful show will bring the magic of Christmas alive as children will be captivated by traditional and modern stories. After the show, Santa will take a group photo with the children and even pass out special treats. Do you have a letter for Santa? Leave it in Santa’s mailbox and we’ll make sure the elves deliver it to the North Pole. Be sure to bring your cameras as there will be plenty of of photo opportunities. Unfortunately, individual Santa visits will not be available at this event. Story Time will take place hourly throughout Friday & Saturday. 

Artists’ Market

Just in time for your holiday shopping, a carefully curated roster of art & craft vendors will line the paths of the Historic District. Bringing their hand-crafted goods, these artists from throughout the southeast have something for every interest – paintings, photography, pottery, glass, textiles, woodworking, jewelry, and more.

You’ll be sure to work up an appetite for shrimp & grits while shopping all the wonderful wares. Check back soon for a full line-up of vendors.


Live music, it’s the perfect accompaniment to shrimp & grits, arts & crafts, and friends & family. With two stages in the festival, you’ll find a tune for tapping your toes or cutting a rug.

Main Stage
The premier stage of the festival, it’s literally in the center of all the action, and adjacent to all of the delicious food, including the restaurants serving up shrimp & grits. The Main Stage will be packed with two days of talent. From favorite bands from throughout the coast to specialty acts for the holiday season, this stage will be a festival favorite.

Skeet House Stage
This stage is situated in the heart of the Artists’ Market on Pier Road. Located on the front porch of this historic Skeet House, this stage is the perfect place to sit with friends and take a break from the hustle & bustle of the festival and will be filled with a mix of local bands and seasonal entertainment, including Story Time with Santa.


Great Dunes Beach & Great Dunes Golf Course parking lots will be the primary parking lot for all festival attendees.

Accessible parking will be located at the Georgia Sea Turtle Center. Lot attendants will check for government-issued parking placards or license plates for entry.

Shuttle Buses
We’re pleased to welcome Glynn County’s school buses to get you to & from parking to the festival. Not only does this continued partnership support our local community, it also allows us to maintain a large number of shuttles to keep festival attendees on the move. Additionally, the shuttle bus fleet includes ADA-accessible buses & attendants.

Festival Shuttle Schedule
Friday, Nov. 24: 1-9:30 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 25: 9 a.m.-9:30 p.m.

Friday, November 24: 2-8 p.m.
Saturday, November 25: 10 a.m.-8 p.m.

Jekyll Tree Lighting Festival & Holidays in History

This listing is Family Friendly
This Event Happens in: 
November and December
Visit Jekyll Island this Christmas for special-themed tours, seasonal storytelling, caroling, craft workshops and more!
Event Venue: 
Jekyll Island National Historic District

Jekyll Island National Historic District

This listing is Pet Friendly
This listing is Family Friendly


Riverview Drive,
Jekyll Island, GA 31527
United States

At first, it was the farm and home of John Eugene duBignon. But, with the help of his brother-in-law Newton Finney, it became what Munsey’s Magazine called "the richest, most inaccessible club in the world" – the Jekyll Island Club.