CAMBRIDGE — Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan celebrated Snappers Waterfront Cafe’s 25th anniversary by having lunch at the Cambridge restaurant Monday, June 24, and honoring owners John and Laura Sydnor.

While having lunch, Hogan touted the Chesapeake Bay’s blue crab population rebound. Overall, the Baywide crab population rose by 60% from last year to reach an estimated total of 594 million crabs, according to a dredging survey released in May.

An annual winter survey released by the states of Maryland and Virginia shows almost twice as many juveniles as last year. Adult males rose by 38 percent, or roughly 80 million. Spawning-age females have increased, climbing to 190 million for a nearly 30 percent gain.

“The crab population was a tremendous surprise,” Hogan said. “It is the biggest increase I can ever remember. It is much better than anticipated.

“The Bay is doing so well,” he said. “It is so much cleaner with all the Bay grass coming back. It is a really positive sign. We are going to eat some of the crabs this afternoon, but there will still be enough for everyone else the rest of the summer.”

Snappers, along Cambridge Creek next to J.M. Clayton Seafood, serves local seafood dishes, south-, western- and Jamaican-inspired cuisine, along with exotic drinks and refreshments.

The family roots run deep in Snappers for John and Laura Sydnor. Their children Victoria, Jack and Jordan all have worked at the restaurant. Victoria Laureska now is a first grade teacher at St. Michaels Elementary School.

Hogan called Snappers an incredible restaurant with extremely friendly and successful owners.

“It takes such hard work for them to be successful here for 25 years,” he said. “They have a really great product. I’m just happy to come down and recognize them for 25 years. It means a lot for Cambridge, being here on the water. A lot of people make this a stop along the way to the beach. A lot of people come over here from Annapolis. They draw from far and wide.”

Hogan presented the Sydnors with a Governor’s Proclamation for 25 years in business. He also was joined on the visit by members of his staff; Department of Natural Resources Secretary Jeannie Haddaway-Riccio; State Sen. Addie Eckardt, R-37-Mid-Shore; and Del. Johnny Mautz, R-37B-Talbot.

Comptroller Peter Franchot celebrated the Snappers 25th anniversary with a visit to the restaurant on June 10. He along with Eckardt and Mautz presented the Sydnor family with state proclamations.

“We came down here 25 years age, and no one even knew Snappers existed,” Mautz said Monday. “It was a diamond in the rough.

“Now, we are sitting here today with the governor eating crabs,” he said. “The comptroller was here two weeks ago. You could not say more about the impact that Snappers has had on the community. Snappers sure has made a mark because the Sydnor family works hard. They are a big part of the community.”

Hogan said Franchot does a great job with the “Shop Maryland” campaign, and enjoys joining him in towns across Maryland.

“Buy local is really important,” Hogan said. “The comptroller and I, we go out to a lot of small towns all across the state. We encourage people, instead of just going to the big chain stores and big chain restaurants, to come out and get into the towns by getting down to main streets and supporting the local merchants and the folks like this that have tremendous restaurants.

“It means a lot to the local economy, and puts a lot of people to work,” he said. “We are excited to help recognize that.”

Follow Caroline/Dorchester Editor Dustin Holt on Twitter @Dustin_StarDem.

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