We’re off to the races – crab races, that is! One of St. Croix’s beloved pastimes is an exhilarating sporting event featuring a few friendly, multi-legged crustaceans. Weekly crab races have returned to St. Croix since its hiatus due to the global pandemic. Husband and wife duo Tito and Sue “and their nifty kazoo” have been organizing crab races all around St. Croix for over 20 years. The tradition of Soldier Crab Racing has been a form of entertainment enjoyed by many for centuries; the same remains true here in present-day St. Croix.
For a small fee, racers choose their beloved crab and name them before the main event. Armed with their “name tags” – usually a piece of tape on their shells – the hermit crabs are placed into a bucket as they await their debut on the racecourse. After a series of bull’s-eye circles are drawn on the ground in chalk, the buckets of competing crabs are placed upside down in the innermost circle of the course starting point. At the animated sound of Sue’s kazoo, the race is on! The buckets are lifted off the crabs and they take off! The first crab that makes it outside the course circle is declared the ultimate winner. Thanks to local businesses and organizations, the prizes include a variety of items such as gift certificates for shopping or dining, trips to Buck Island, scuba diving lessons, local handmade jewelry, bottles of rum and more.
There are two important rules to follow during crab racing. Don’t point your fingers and don’t stomp your feet as these gestures can scare the crabs. For those rule breakers, Tito is always prepared with a roll of tape to bind anyone’s hands if they start pointing. Fun Fact: the culprits are almost always adults! Join in on the fun each week at Crab Races with Tito & Sue for a delightful outing that is fun for the entire family. Head to Brew STX on Christiansted Boardwalk each Wednesday starting at 5pm* and choose your winning crab for a chance to win awesome prizes. Win or lose, you’re guaranteed to have a great time and leave with more laughs and memories than you came with. *Times and locations are subject to change. Call ahead to confirm.
Written by Anquanette Gaspard (firstname.lastname@example.org)