I must admit I have already nabbed a taste of my favorite crustaceans this year. A couple times, actually. It only teased my taste buds and got me ready for my annual indulgence at this year’s St. Mary’s Crawfish and Bluegrass Extravaganza!

Mardi Gras is over, Valentine’s came and went. Chili Cook-off set us on fire and went about its way. St. Patrick’s Day claimed a few of our brain cells. The next holiday before Easter is still my favorite. If it were held in the middle of the week the kids would be out of school. But the 2014 St. Mary’s KOC CBE is slated for Saturday, April 5, from 4 to 9 p.m. at St. Mary’s Catholic School at 1450 Old Shell Road.

Once again Azalea City Seafood and Gumbo will be on hand boiling up thousands of pounds of crawfish and gumbo along with hot dogs and chips for the anti-seafood kooks out there. Attendees are also asked to bring non-perishable food items as donations to the Knight’s food drive for Bay Area Food Bank.

The band schedule for this year was just announced, and includes a couple of newcomers to the stage under the oaks. Old favorites Phil and Walon will kick off the jam at 4:30 p.m. followed by the Celtic flavored Drunker Shade of Green. After that, Fat Man Squeeze hits the stage, proud to have been at all but the first one. Then for the first time at St. Mary’s, Rollin’ in the Hay will close out the evening. These “newgrass” heavy hitters feature the 7-foot tall Stan Foster on bass who claims he will arm-wrestle anyone for a plate of crawfish. I didn’t have the heart to tell him it’s all you can eat once you go through the gate.

Tickets are on sale now at St. Mary School, Zoghby’s Uniforms, and Mobile Popcorn. More ticket outlets to come. Prices are $25 in advance, $30 at the gate. Buy yours right now at www.brownpapertickets.com/event/558901.

You can also check things out at http://www.stmarymobile.org

Stockton Wild Game Cook Off sounds delicious

Details have not been finalized, but the Stockton Civic Club’s Wild Game Cook off will be held Saturday, April 5, at 3 p.m. at the Old Schoolyard Park. Come and enjoy the flavors of the hunting camp as amateur chefs compete for glory. If you have a hankering to get in on the cooking call Laureen Harms at 251-937-6124. Get there early enough and you may be able to make it back to St. Mary’s in time to catch Phil and Walon’s first song!

‘Throw Down 2014’

If you love watching people gorge themselves in pursuit of glory — and who doesn’t? — March 28 & 29 is the time to be at Windcreek Casino in Atmore. They’re bringing in the world’s top-ranked competitive eater Joey “Jaws” Chestnut to try to fend off Matt “Megatoad” Stonie and Tim “Eater X” Janus. The men will first battle over Pork sliders on Friday, then meet again Saturday for the Creek Indian Taco-eating championship. Each has a $5,000 purse.

In addition to that fun, the folks at Wind Creek will also have a variety of beers and bourbons available for sampling, a BBQ cookoff and also some powerful music featuring Gretchen Wilson, among others.

Local Goodness Farm-to-Table event slated at USA Children’s and Women’s Hospital

This is the kind of fundraiser that warms my heart. The name of the event is Local Goodness, and it is happening Sunday April 7 at USA Children’s and Women’s Hospital Park. This farm-to-table event is a celebration of local produce, meat and seafood with local art and music.

Tickets are $150, but the cause is worthy. Funds raised are to be used to redesign the Evaluation Center. That’s the emergency department that sees over 35,000 patients annually — 90 percent of those patients are children. Both of my little ones aren’t strangers to that facility and have always received top-notch care.

Dress is casual, thank goodness, as it ought to be fairly warm by then. Music is provided by Fat Man Squeeze, and reportedly the event staff is coming up with a cocktail named after the band. I can’t wait to find out what it is.

Grab your tickets today at www.cwhlocalgoodness.eventbrite.com

Taste of the Towns announces 2014 date for 5 Rivers event

The Daphne-Spanish Fort Kiwanis Taste of the Towns slated its 2014 date for Thursday, May 1, from 6 to 8 p.m. at the usual 5 Rivers Delta Resource Center. The $25 advance/$30 at the door tickets allows you to sample more than 30 restaurants and caterers, complimentary beverage service, and desserts.

Expect live music and a silent auction, Azalea Trail Maids, and Miss Lorie Dubose as the Mistress of Ceremonies. We will let you know more when there is a complete list of vendors. Until then, purchase your tickets from a Kiwanian or call 251-621-2996.

Hungry Owl restaurant hits the small screen once again

It was a couple of years ago when “Man Vs. Food” came to the doors of the Hungry Owl. The Travel Channel must have liked what they tasted because they came back for more. This time the program was 101 More Amazing Places to Chow Down Countdown.

When you think of all the good restaurants in Mobile, then Alabama, then the south, then the United States, isn’t it amazing to reach the 101 status? How about the top 50? Top 40 is even better. Chef Tony and the gang made it all the way to number 36 on the countdown!

Congratulations to the hip restaurant at the corner of Cottage Hill and Schillinger roads. Please start making Ultimate Stuffed Tony Sliders now so I can drop a couple pounds!

Italian Fisherman announces April wine dinner

Get ready for another installment of the Italian Fisherman’s wine dinner series. I hate to say I missed the February edition, but there was a lot going on that month.

April 9 is the next event at the Old Shell and Florida location and this one features wines from California. The ones I have attended have been very successful, so call and make your reservations today.

I’m not sure of the menu, but Chef John will not disappoint. Reach the Italian Fisherman at 251-478-2881.

This year is flying by because everyone is so busy. We will be even busier in April. Don’t get so busy you forget to recycle!