Traveling the Georgia Coast
As full time musician, I get to perform at some really captivating and beautiful spots. One place I really enjoy is the Fish Dock Bar and Grill near Townsend, Georgia—it’s less than an hour south of Savannah and about 15 minutes off the I-95. It's easy to get to but just enough off the beaten path to make you feel like you’ve found something hidden and rare when you arrive.
I return to the FIsh Dock for another evening of music on Friday, April 14, 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.
I grew up in a solidly working class family. Nearly all my close and extended kin were farmers or factory workers. I know about working with my hands and its intrinsic value. I know the smells of dirt, diesel and oil like old friends. And I know that full-body tired after working 14 hours or so on the farm.
I think that’s what resonates deeply with me about the Fish Dock. The restaurant is part of a small working shrimp and fishing community woven into the fabric of Crescent, Georgia. In fact, everything the restaurant serves either comes from one of its boats or another one just up the planks.
I’ve played at the Fish Dock nearly four years, and every time I do, I arrive early to check out the birds, dolphins and chat with dockworkers and fishermen who welcome me every time.
One family on the dock has been shrimping for more than 60 years. And now three generations work together operating the business and maintaining a fleet of three small boats.
Each has a place in the operation. The youngest, a high school-aged boy, shovels shrimp from an iced storage hull and into buckets that are lifted by rope and pulley into a sorting shed on land. His father stands on the boat deck making sure
all the shrimp make it from boat to bucket.
Inside, the family’s matriarch and patriarch help sort and package the shrimp. The grandmother is primarily quality control ensuring each sack weighs and looks the same before they head out to a seafood distributor who takes them to nearby restaurants and grocery stores.
It’s fascinating because their hands fly so quickly through the shrimp sorting them into similar sizes. Years of repetition at this process make it seem so smooth, effortless—though I’m certain were I to sit in, I’d be slow and terribly inefficient
The work is not easy and sometimes entails long hours of trawling the ocean only to return with little to no catch. But diligence pays off, and empty nets won’t last forever, so shrimper and fishermen return to sea because they know tides shift and abundance eventually will come.
If you visit the Fish Dock Bar and Grill, I highly suggest arriving before sunset and making an effort to meet some of the families working on the dock who just may play a part in catching what you eat that night.
Everyone I’ve met here is generous and proud of what they do—just ask a question or two about their boat or what they caught, and be prepared to listen because one fishing story always leads to another. And it will make you smile and think about that fresh shrimp dinner you’re about to enjoy and the people who helped make your meal possible.
Oh, one last thing--I review restaurants, cafes, bars and pubs on Google. Recently, I received a message that my reviews and photos are in the top 20% of all Google reviewers. Click on the highlighted text to find my review for The Fish Dock Bar & Grill. And click HERE to find my Google reviews profile. Thanks, y'all, see you out there soon!