Urgo hosts second crab feast

Correction: This years Crab Feast was the second held at President Urgo’s house, not the second annual Crab Feast as originally reported.

On Saturday, Sept. 23, the annual Crab Feast was held at College President Joseph Urgo’s house for the second year in order to benefit the senior class.

Despite the rain that poured for most of the afternoon, the feast carried on with many happy students either expertly picking apart the Maryland Blue Crabs or helping out friends by coaching them in a popular Maryland pastime.

Although 90 tickets were bought at $25 apiece, roughly 150 people attended the event, according Class of 2012 President Stephon Dingle. He said, “there was a big turnout. A lot of people brought friends.”

To block out the rain, white tents were erected around the two separate sitting areas, as well as over the main line where attendees were able to pick up a dozen crabs, drinks, sides, vinegar and Old Bay seasoning. Holiday string lights lined the tents, and guests, as well as Urgo, commented on the festive look of the event.

Dingle stated there were 95 dozen crabs purchased for the event, which roughly equates to 17 or 18 bushels. He also mentioned that the amount of money raised for the senior class has not been totaled as of yet. An unverified source, though, said that it was only $200. This would not help the Class of 2012, which is already low on cash.

While the seating was limited and difficult to find during the big rush from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., many students decided to bag their crabs and take them home. Those who stayed, though, were able to watch the sun slowly set over Urgo’s dock, which sits on the St. Mary’s River across from the school, as they enjoyed the company of other students and staff members.

“I thought it was really nice,” said senior Jackie Reymann, who also proudly declared that she accomplished eating all twelve of her crabs by herself. “I like that it is at Jurgo’s. It was nice to sit down and be with friends while eating crabs.”

In order to accommodate for the number of people coming to and from the event throughout the night, there was a shuttle that conveniently carried attendees from Daughtery-Palmer Commons on-campus to the front steps of Urgo’s home.

President Urgo was also pleased to host the event at his house for the second year in a row. “We love it,” he said. “After last year, we looked forward to it.”

Urgo also stated that it was great to be able to see the senior class and have them all get together, as well as saying that it was the “first of many interactions” with the seniors for the rest of the school year.

Students Pay to Get Crabs at Joseph Urgo’s House

Students were invited to chow down on jumbo crabs at Joseph and Lesley Urgo’s home for the Class of 2011 Crab Feast. (Photo By Ryan Gugerty)
Students were invited to chow down on jumbo crabs at Joseph and Lesley Urgo’s home for the Class of 2011 Crab Feast. (Photo By Ryan Gugerty)
This year, the annual Senior Crab Feast was held at the college President’s house for the first time. Although the tickets were more expensive than in previous years (a five dollar increase to $30 to accommodate the difference in price for jumbo crabs), the event was so well attended that students taking shuttles to Joseph and Lesley Urgo’s home were at one point asked to help bring more chairs to the event.

Urgo, who had previously expressed an interest in holding college functions at his home, was approached by Kelly Schroeder and the Class of 2011 about hosting the Senior Crab Feast. The event seemed to be a financial success for the senior class, though a member of the executive board of the Class of 2011 was unavailable to confirm.

Urgo said, “We do think it went well…with everyone enjoying the crabs, the evening, and the view of campus from the river.”

When asked about whether this was his first time picking Maryland blue crabs, Urgo responded that he had never picked a crab before coming to St. Mary’s. However, he felt “well-taught in the art of crab feasting” since he had been taught by County Commissioner Jack Russell and trustee Mike P. O’Brien at several events over the summer.

Ken Benjes, a Hawk Radio DJ from the Class of 2011, was asked by the senior class president, Colleen O’Neil, to provide music for the event. “People seemed to enjoy everything and the music,” said Benjes, who also added that several songs by Lady Gaga were included per Urgo’s request.

With crab feasts leaving a notoriously large mess by the end of the evening, a lot of help was needed to get the Urgos’ lawn clean again. Urgo specifically wanted “to thank those who helped with the clean-up at the end of the evening, and those who staffed the event for the College.” Urgo was even spotted helping as well. “He helped clean up, which was really cool,” said Benjes.

Dr. Urgo expressed that he and Ms. Urgo “had a great time that evening talking to students and other guests” and that they would “be happy to [host the crab feast] again with next year’s class.” With the success of the event and the Urgos’ hospitality, this hopefully indicates a new St. Mary’s tradition.