Posted: Sep 4, 2010 7:59 PM by Shawn Kline
Updated: Sep 4, 2010 8:01 PM
It's the 75th year for Morgan City's Shrimp and Petroleum Festival but it's been a tough year for both industries.
The crisis in the Gulf spurred a rough shrimping season and a drilling moratorium but the cash is flowing at the Shrimp and Petroleum Festival and BP is one of the big sponsors.
"BP is one of the major players in the oil industry." Eric Geibel says, "you want the major players to be involved in your community."
Festival goers took notice. Dallas Tillman was happy to see support from the company.
"They're putting money back into the system to try to right some of the wrong they did in the Gulf," Tillman said.
The company, amidst strong criticism over the deepwater horizon crisis has already invested billions of dollars into southern Lousiana's communities.
The Shrimp and Petroleum Festival may just be a 'drop-in-the-bucket' but the show of support brings strength to a community battling a moratorium- trying to keep an industry nearly 100-years in the making alive.
"You can never bring back the lives that were lost." Tillman says. "but this can help heal some of those wounds."
"We're really thankful for the way folks have received us." BP Community Outreach Agent Jack Berry says, "we feel like we're making a difference."
"You've got a lot of people who work for BP or its subcompanies," Geibel said. "All that money flows through the community."
Flowing into places like the Shrimp and Petroleum Festival. It's here where churches and fundraisers make a lot of their money.
At the 75th Anniversary of the festival, It's more about celebrating the oil industry than criticizing one company's mistakes.
"I think they'll get it fixed and get it cleaned up," Scott Vining said. "(BP will) get on top of things."
On-shore however, BP isn't just investing in more oil rigs and wells- they're investing in communities like Morgan City and the things that matter to them.
"We're doing all we can," Berry says, "only time will tell just how strong our commitment is."