Saturday, June 14, 2014

Jubilee!

The summer months bring an interesting natural phenomenon on the Eastern shore of Mobile Bay in Alabama: the Jubilee!   Irregularly, during the summer, the depletion of the oxygen levels in the water cause marine life in the Bay to seek out shallow waters.  This results in masses of crabs, shrimp, and flounders being easily accessible for people to pick up and put in baskets.

This Jubilee phenomenon only happens in the Summer, primarily in August.  It is a pre-dawn phenomenon.  And it only occurs in the Baldwin County section of Mobile Bay from just north of Daphne to Point Clear.  It never happened on the Mobile County side; and apparently it does not occur in other bays.  (Biloxi Bay, Pensacola Bay, and Pascagoula Bay have never recorded a Jubilee event, for example.)


These Jubilees are hard to predict, except for occurring in the summer, primarily in August, and pre-dawn.  When one does occur, there's spreading of the word through the bay coastal towns, to Foley, and to Gulf Shores.  People appear with bushel baskets and coolers.  Package stores are induced to open; and people bring beer down to the waterside and pass cans to strangers in an impromptu festival!   Sharing beer and cold drinks is part of the ritual.  It's a spontaneous party that pops up at 3 or 4 A.M, and goes on for hours.

The participants are jubilant; and after a while go home and sleep a little late in the morning.  That is why some Baldwin County businesses may open late without warning. 

11 comments:

Grand Crapaud said...

I saw a Jubilee once. It was a real party.

TexWisGirl said...

how neat!

Elvis Wearing a Bra on His Head said...

The Jubilees are not very predictable, but they are a good time when they occur. Otherwise, Fairhope and Daphne are quiet. Point Clear is where the Grand Hotel is.

Mike said...

With texting these days I think a lot more people could start showing up.

Sinner Bob said...

Why don't we get nice things like that around here?

Françoise said...

Very curious.

Duckbutt said...

I remember jubilees, having lived in Foley.

Bilbo said...

Sounds like a great, if unpredictable party!

John Hill said...

Sounds like fun!

beach lad said...

I love hearing/learning about these sorts of things. thanks.

is there any limits on what you can take??? when people start talking about 'fillin a pick up truck with shrimp in 1/2 an hour' it scares me a bit from a sustainability perspective.

beach lad said...
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