Matt Murphy, Port Orchard Chamber of Commerce executive director and master of ceremonies at the Seagull Calling Contest, grimaces from the cacophony generated by a contestant. (Bob Smith | Kitsap Daily News)

Matt Murphy, Port Orchard Chamber of Commerce executive director and master of ceremonies at the Seagull Calling Contest, grimaces from the cacophony generated by a contestant. (Bob Smith | Kitsap Daily News)

Calling all seagulls!

Port Orchard waterfront overrun by Seagull Calling Contest watchers, wings cook-off tasters

PORT ORCHARD — The seagulls languishing above the Port Orchard waterfront — perhaps not the steeliest of birds compared to the crows that were darting about and grabbing tasty treats on the beach — finally got the message about halfway into the annual Seagull Calling Festival’s contest on Saturday, May 25.

Better to get into action closer to shore while the grabbing was good or else cede the bread bits and Cheetos to their distant avian brothers. And just as a few young seagull-calling contestants began to bellow out their own custom gull-like shrieks, a flock of the white birds descended to the waterfront just in time to take part in the food frenzy.

Matt Murphy, Port Orchard Chamber of Commerce’s executive director and master of ceremonies of the event, kept the proceedings moving briskly as he eyed the gathered darkening skies.

Steve Sego, co-owner of The Dock Bar Eatery, gets ready to serve the restaurant’s wings entry at the Wings Cook-Off on the Port Orchard waterfront Saturday. (Bob Smith | Kitsap Daily News)

Steve Sego, co-owner of The Dock Bar Eatery, gets ready to serve the restaurant’s wings entry at the Wings Cook-Off on the Port Orchard waterfront Saturday. (Bob Smith | Kitsap Daily News)

The chamber-sponsored event — the 31st annual seagull calling contest — also featured plenty of food for the humans who ventured out to the Port Orchard waterfront despite the wet weather threat. The “wings cook-off” was advertised to onlookers by a waft of savory scents emanating from the variety of wings being prepared several yards behind the sandy beach for taste tests after the seagulls were sent on their way.

The judging panel assembles at the Port Orchard waterfront just before the start of the Seagull Calling Contest on Saturday. (Bob Smith | Kitsap Daily News)

The judging panel assembles at the Port Orchard waterfront just before the start of the Seagull Calling Contest on Saturday. (Bob Smith | Kitsap Daily News)

Earlier in the morning, a contingent of runners, young and old, lined up at the starting line next to the Port of Bremerton’s Waterfront Park for the annual Fathoms O’ Fun Seagull Splat 5K Race/Run. Then later in the afternoon, the South Kitsap High School Rowing Regatta kicked off on Sinclair Inlet with a collection of area prep rowers competing in several racing heats. Race results will be posted as soon as they are received.

Here are the winners of the Seagull Calling Contest:

Best Costume: Ryan and Brayden Gray

Most Authentic: Roxy Woods

Best Team: The Sargeant Kids

Judges Award/Best Bribe: Riley Smith

Most Landed: Minh Le and Jamison Canonizado

The following participants in the Wings Cook-Off were winners:

1st place – Commercial: Whiskey Gulch, Smoky Whiskey Peach

2nd place – Commercial: The Dock Bar & Eatery, Aloha Wings

3rd place – Commercial: The Dock Bar & Eatery, Korean-Ginger Wings

1st place – Amateur: SKHS NJROTC, Wolf Wings

2nd place – Amateur: Victor Thompson, Farmers Insurance, Apple Bourbon Memorial Dream

3rd place – Amateur: Tim Taylor, Low Card, High Flyin’ Keto Chicken

Matt Murphy begins to wrap up the Seagull Calling Contest Saturday just as a seagull straggler steams to shore looking for any remaining treats left by contestants. (Bob Smith | Kitsap Daily News)

Matt Murphy begins to wrap up the Seagull Calling Contest Saturday just as a seagull straggler steams to shore looking for any remaining treats left by contestants. (Bob Smith | Kitsap Daily News)

Kids kick into a run at the starting line of the Seagull Splat 5K Run/Walk on Saturday. (Bob Smith | Kitsap Daily News)

Kids kick into a run at the starting line of the Seagull Splat 5K Run/Walk on Saturday. (Bob Smith | Kitsap Daily News)

Seagulls aren’t the only creatures hoping for a piece of wings to drop to the pavement. (Bob Smith | Kitsap Daily News)

Seagulls aren’t the only creatures hoping for a piece of wings to drop to the pavement. (Bob Smith | Kitsap Daily News)

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