Keys Woman Wins Stone Crab Eating Contest

Vanessa Seaverns finished the 25 claws in 16 minutes and 30 seconds

Saturday, Oct 20, 2012  |  Updated 6:07 PM EDT
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Florida Keys News Bureau

The Stone Crab Eating Contest

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A Florida Keys woman was victorious in the annual Stone Crab Eating Contest Saturday after finishing second place last year, officials said.

Vanessa Seaverns finished the 25 claws in 16 minutes and 30 seconds, the fastest time of the 12 competitors. Officials attributed her win to her “crack-them-all-first-then-eat strategy,” according to the Florida Keys News Bureau.

"The secret to winning is being really hungry, and really fast," Seaverns said. "I have a love for stone crab, I love eating them, so I have a lot of practice -- not eating them quite that fast, but picking them apart, and cleaning them good."

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The contest was held at the Keys Fisheries Market and Marina. Seaverns earned a trophy and a stay at a Key West hotel.

Stone crab season began Oct. 15 and runs through May 15. About 40 percent of Florida's annual stone crab harvest comes from Keys' waters, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

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