LONG ISLAND — Some of Long Island’s bravest will be competing in an annual clam-eating contest this Sunday at 1 p.m.
The event was canceled last year because of the pandemic. But this year is expected to be bigger than ever, and it’s all for a good cause.
Dozens of firefighters across the area will compete to win the crown at Peter’s Clam Bar in Island Park. Restaurant owner Butch Yamali started the event after it was forced to close following Superstorm Sandy. He teamed up with local firefighters also affected by the storm to help raise money to donate to various charities.
The now 82-year-old restaurant has become a beacon in this quaint Long Island town woven into the fabric of the community, which is exactly what helped them stay afloat during yet another challenge, the pandemic. That’s why Yamali says it was important to pay it forward.
This weekend’s contest is expected to bring thousands of participants and spectators to the restaurant. Traffic will be at a standstill with northbound Long Beach Road down to one lane. With the anticipation of large crowds, COVID safety protocols will be in place.
Over 5,000 clams are expected to be devoured this weekend. The public is also welcomed to participate with all proceeds donated to charity.