A fish fry for out of work crabbers struggling to get by netted more than $16,000 Saturday and donations are still pouring in.

Three short weeks after deciding to host a benefit dinner, the Crescent City Commercial Fishermen’s Association served up more than 500 fish and chip baskets featuring red snapper fresh from the ocean. Much of the fish came from Pacific Choice Seafoods as well as from local fishermen, said association Vice President John Beardon.

“We were expecting 300 people, we sold way more tickets than that,” Beardon said, adding that roughly 25 volunteers helped cook and serve the fish dinners. “We had so many volunteers show up, it’s been phenomenal. The support has been just amazing.”

The commercial crabbing season on the North Coast was slated to open Dec. 1, but it’s been held off due to harmful levels of domoic acid detected in Dungeness crab along the West Coast.

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