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When summer arrives in Key West, so does an even brighter, tastier and more vibrant program of events to keep families and groups of travelling friends entertained from June through September.
The island’s year-round laid-back atmosphere along with its exciting mix of attractions, water-based activities and beaches, are more than enough to offer the most memorable break in the Florida Keys. Come summertime, this charming atmosphere reaches a whole new level when the streets of Key West host a variety of events in celebration of the island’s delectable cuisine and cultural heritage.
Find artistic treasures in tropical gardens
The Key West Tropical Forest & Botanical Garden will be showcasing extra special displays until July 31 with 19 beautiful sculptures made of recycled materials. Contemporary artists have created the sculptures, and each one has been placed throughout the popular botanical garden, so be prepared for some unexpected designs as you explore the beauty of this fresh, tropical space.
Indulge in the favorite flavor of Key West
If you’re lucky enough to be on summer vacation from July 4th, you will be in for the sweetest of treats. A three-day celebration of Florida’s official and delicious dessert, Key Lime Pie, will take place across the island with a variety of events including a pie-eating contest and the challenging attempt to make the largest pie ever. The Key Lime Festival is not to be missed.
Explore Mel Fisher’s famous salvage vessel
Mel Fisher, the American treasure hunter from the 1600′s, will be celebrated during an annual four-day event from July 10 – 14. The Mel Fisher Days celebration marks the anniversary of Fisher’s discovery of the shipwrecked Spanish galleon Nuestra Senora de Atocha, and the event is perfect for families and treasure-hunting enthusiasts. For the first time since the 1980s, Mel Fisher’s famous 90′ treasure salvage vessel, JB Magruder, will be on display at the dock behind Schooner’s Wharf where you can talk with the crew and discover the equipment used to uncover treasure.
Celebrate Key West’s literary legend
The work of legendary Key West author, Ernest Hemingway, will be celebrated during the 34th annual Hemingway Days event, taking place this year from July 15 – 20. His literary accomplishments and love for the island he called home throughout the 1930s will be marked with a range of celebrations, including literary readings, a theatrical premiere, short story competition, fishing tournament, a museum exhibit of rare Hemingway memorabilia, a Look-a-like Contest at Sloppy Joe’s bar and a party marking Hemingway’s birthday.
With the opening of Lobster Season comes the biggest party of the summer with thousands of lobster lovers descending on Key West for four days of gastronomic fun from August 7 through 10. The event launches with the Lobster Boil on Thursday night followed by the Lobsterfest Duval Crawl on Friday night immediately after sunset. There will also be a free concert and street fair on Saturday and an indulgent Sunday brunch to close the event.
Sit back and sip the best beer
Over Labor Day weekend, August 28 – September 1, Brewfest will return to Key West bringing with it over 150 beers and micro-beers on tap. To sample the very best of this popular tipple, you can indulge at a variety of events, including beer dinners, beer brunches, happy hour parties, pool parties, late-night parties, seminars and the Signature Tasting Festival Event.
Call 855-327-7200 to book your summer vacation at Parrot Key Resort.
Every year in Key West, families and friends join together on July 4th to celebrate Independence Day with picnics, parades, beachside barbecues, spectacular firework displays and a generous slice of the famous Key Lime Pie. With so many options for families, Parrot Key Resort is the perfect choice for a July 4th escape to Key West.
During the July 4th weekend, a variety of celebrations will keep the party spirit high, including the Key Lime Pie Festival (July 3 – 5). There’s every excuse to indulge in Key West’s favorite flavor during this festival while enjoying a number of highlights, including a Key lime pie-eating contest, a Miss Key Lime Pageant, and the unveiling of an impressive 9 foot-wide pie which will be served up on Greene Street, just off Duval Street.
All over Key West, the beaches will be filled with families enjoying picnics and barbecues. Favorite beaches on the island include Smathers Beach which boasts a half mile stretch of sandy man-made beach with restrooms, ample parking, concession stands, chair rentals, bike paths, picnic tables, volleyball nets and watersports rentals. Parrot Key Resort offers complimentary shuttle service to Smathers Beach.
Independence Day parties will also be in full flow during the nightly Sunset Celebration at Mallory Square. With arts and crafts, street performers, food carts and thousands of locals and visitors, the atmosphere is electric and will be even more special on July 4th when the sun sinks into the Gulf of Mexico. Fireworks will begin on the White Street Pier at 9 p.m., courtesy of the Key West Rotary Club. You can enjoy excellent views for free, from Higgs Beach. Call 855-327-7200 to book your stay today.
Winning a prize that takes you overseas on an exclusive trip of a lifetime is one of the most desirable prizes to be rewarded, and the only way to win it is to be in it! So if you’re currently on a lunch break in the office or catching up on all the latest online news, take a few minutes out to vote for the Condé Nast Traveler‘s Readers’ Choice Awards and you’ll be raising your chances of winning the ultimate travel prize.
For more than 25 years, Condé Nast Traveler‘s Readers’ Choice Awards have produced the most trusted and comprehensive listings of your favorite hotels, resorts, cities, islands, airlines, and cruise lines. This year, we’re excited to see Parrot Key Resort included in the survey and voters are being asked to recommend their experiences during their vacation or business trip. Just a few minutes of your time spent reminiscing your trip can help Condé Nast compile their listings which will be published in November, and in turn you could win one of two getaways.
Follow this link to vote http://www.cntraveler.
Parrot Key Resort is celebrating mom the entire month of May in Key West with our exclusive Mother’s Day Package. Every mom deserves a much-needed break, and if she’s lucky enough to be spending Mother’s Day weekend (May 11th) at Parrot Key Resort, she is sure to be pampered and indulged in style. Our Mother’s Day Package includes complimentary breakfast, a discount on accommodations, along with a free welcome drink. We’ve also outlined our top tips below, to make Mother’s Day 2014 one to remember. Call 877-746-4701 to book your accommodations today.
Whether mom prefers an action-packed day soaking up the sights of Key West, or a few restorative poolside hours to herself before sampling some of the island’s finest delicacies, there are many wonderful ways to celebrate mom this May. Here’s our pick of the best:
Breakfast at Cafe Blue
Surrounded by lush, tropical gardens and overlooking one of our calm, sparkling pools, Cafe Blue is the perfect place to start mom’s perfect day. Sipping a cool, freshly squeezed Florida orange juice, mom can leisurely open presents from the family while breakfast is being prepared. The menu offers healthy options including our tropical fruit plate, omelettes and old-fashioned oatmeal, as well as indulgent treats such as delicious Belgian waffles.
If mom fancies some “me time,” catching up on her favorite book before taking a refreshing dip in the pool, whisk the kids away for a few hours and let mom just be. With four secluded pools to choose from, each surrounded by a tranquil atmosphere and nestled among stunning landscaped gardens, mom will feel completely revitalized and relaxed in her poolside paradise.
Conch Tour Train
Keep the whole family entertained at one of Florida’s most popular attractions. The Conch Tour Train unearths Key West’s quirky history, snaking all over town to explore the island’s special architecture and tropical fauna. It’s fun, informative, and mom can sit back and soak up the beauty surrounding her. The tour takes 90 minutes and departs from Mallory Square all day long.
A leisurely lunch prepared especially for mom with loved ones around, is an absolute must on Mother’s Day, and Key West is teeming with charming restaurants to help set the scene. For a memorable dining experience in the historic Bahama Village, try Blue Heaven (729 Thomas Street) which prides itself on serving quality culinary creations in a quirky environment. Mom will love the menu: there’s Caribbean shrimp deglazed with red stripe, Jamaican jerk chicken, and yellowtail with citrus beurre blanc among others to choose from. Or there’s Nine One Five on Duval Street, a Victorian house boasting a fine menu with plenty of local seafood, including pan-roasted grouper with chorizo, spinach and olives.
Time out beachside
One of the best ways to switch off and escape in the Florida Keys is to head beachside. Take mom to Smathers Beach and enjoy the complimentary Parrot Key Beach Club service that includes a free shuttle transfer, beach towels and beach chairs for the day, allowing the whole family to kick back and relax in absolute comfort. We don’t expect mom will ever feel bored of feeling the powder white sand between her toes as she gazes out across the clear blue waters of the Atlantic, however if she does fancy some action then there is plenty to choose from, including paddle boarding, kayaking, and parasailing which is offered for an added cost.
However you choose to appreciate mom this year, make sure you end Mother’s Day with a celebratory cocktail at sundown. Cafe Blue serves cocktails from 11am until sunset with happy hour between 5pm and 7pm. Treat mom to a Bahama Mama and make a toast as the sun sets on a memorable day in Key West.
Key West is an excellent 2014 spring break destination for family vacations in March and April. Guests must be 25 to book a room at our resort, you can rest easy knowing that our Key West resort is not popular for college spring breaks. With so many family activities to enjoy across the island this spring break, we’ve highlighted 10 reasons why Parrot Key Resort is the perfect choice for a Key West family vacation.
Call 877-746-4701 to speak with an on-site vacation planner.
10 Reasons to Choose Our Key West Family Resort This Spring Break:
Not only is Parrot Key one of the best Key West family resorts, but we also offer the largest hotel rooms on the island, plus spacious two-bedroom suites and three-bedroom villas that are ideal for families this spring break.
If that’s not enough, kids love bouncing from one of four heated swimming pools and building sand castles on our white sand terraces. You won’t have to go far for breakfast and lunch with casual poolside dining at Cafe Blue, plus plenty of options for the kids. Families and children especially love watching a gorgeous Key West sunset from the popular Sunset Pier at our hotel. We’ve also outlined several money-saving tips that your family will appreciate during spring break. View our family package
1. Spacious Family Suites and Villas
Enjoy plenty of wiggle room for the whole family in our spacious family suites which include a master king bedroom, a living room, dry bar, and a double twin room with two ensuite bathrooms. Or try a 3-bedroom villa for added space. The spacious living room features a 42″ flat screen TV, a dry bar area, mini-fridge, coffee maker and toaster. Both the master king and twin bedrooms feature en-suite bathrooms, their own 27″ flat screen TVs and DVD players and WiFi access property wide. View Our Suites and Villas
2. Four Sparkling Pools
Choose from four sparkling pools with plenty of options for the kids during the spring break holidays. You will be nestled in a tropical garden oasis and surrounded by fun art objects that the children will love. At arm’s reach is our poolside Cafe Blue for breakfast, lunch and island drinks for mom and dad. View all four pools
3. Waterfront Views and Sunset Pier
Enjoy a family sunset from your waterfront balcony or watch the sun go down from our sunset pier while the kids play on our white sand terraces. View our waterfront suites
4. White Sand Terraces
Build a sand castle or just enjoy the sand between your toes with our white sand sunbathing terraces. Mom and dad can enjoy ‘me time’ with waterfront views while the kids play in the sand. And don’t worry about safety–while we offer gorgeous waterfront views, there is no water access from our sandy terraces. Book a guestroom or villa
5. Exciting Onsite Watersports and Beach Shuttle
Relax and unwind with family fun on a WaveRunner tour around Key West this spring break. Book our watersports activities onsite for easy planning. We also offer complimentary beach shuttle service to Smathers Beach! Money Saver: Enjoy Super Discounts on Key West Activities
6. Casual Outdoor Poolside Dining
Enjoy casual island cuisine for the whole family from light bites, meals, island drinks, and sweet treats. Our poolside Cafe Blue offers everything from a breakfast fit for your little king or queen, to an island lunch that mom and dad won’t forget. View the Cafe Blue Menu
7. Fun and Colorful Art Objects
Discover an array of unique art objects throughout Parrot Key Resort that the kids will love. From colorful garden sculptures and more, the art at Parrot Key captures the vibrant energy of the island and fuses it with the tropical setting of our Key West hotel. View more artwork at Parrot Key
8. Stand Alone Units With No Hallways
Don’t worry about disrupting the neighbors. Each individual suite at Parrot Key Resort has its own entrance with no hallways so your little ones can run free this spring break. The units also offer ample privacy, with an at-home feel for you and your family. View our accommodations
9. Near Family Attractions But Off Duval Street
Key West is an amazing family destination, but many families prefer to be located away from the nightlife of Duval Street during spring break. Parrot Key Resort is located three miles from Old Town, nestled in a safe tropical oasis that your family will love. View nearby family activities
10. Budget Room Options for Families
If your budget is tight this spring break and you’re looking for a little less room than our family suites, you can also try a garden view double queen guest room. The garden view room is less expensive and still offers you the largest hotel room in Key West, with two queen beds, a garden porch and an en-suite bathroom. Enjoy an en-suite bathroom with walk-in shower. Watch the world go by from your private garden view porch. Money Saver: View the garden double queen guest room
Call 877-746-4701 to speak with an on-site vacation planner.
Save up to 25% in Key West at Parrot Key Resort
It’s time to break out your luggage, pack the sunblock and book a last minute spring break escape, or plan ahead for your Key West summer vacation. It’s been a long, cold winter and you deserve a slice of paradise in the sunshine-filled Florida Keys complete with white sand beaches, spectacular sunsets, delicious dining and fun around every corner. That’s why we’re giving you the perfect chance to book now and enjoy a discount at Parrot Key Resort with in our Spring Into Summer 7-Day Sale. You can even reap more rewards from our sale by entering to win a two-night stay at Parrot Key Resort!
For a limited time only, we’re offering up to 25% off stays when you book by March 17, 2014. Whether you’re planning a fun family vacation, a getaway with friends or a romantic retreat, you can enjoy up to 15% savings on an escape in March and April, or book a summer vacation and save up to 25% on stays through September 22.
Offering simple luxury and welcoming southern hospitality, Parrot Key Resort is the ultimate oasis of calm and ease. You can spend carefree days lounging by one of our four sparkling pools all nestled among picturesque tropical gardens, or head to nearby Smathers Beach via our complimentary shuttle service.
Whether you choose to stay in one of our spacious guestrooms, one or two-bedroom suites, or a fabulous three-bedroom villa, you will experience a haven of relaxation at an affordable price making Parrot Key Resort the ideal hideaway for families and couples.
With great discounts on bookings this spring and summer, you can sit back and make the most of all that Key West and the resort have to offer. Families will love the Key West Aquarium, the Conch Tour Train and the Key West Shipwreck Museum. Couples on a romantic break, can indulge in leisurely lunches in Key West’s many sidewalk cafes, or splash out on a Sunset Watersports dinner cruise.
Book early and take advantage of our Spring Into Summer 7-Day Sale for a vacation of a lifetime. All you have to do is like us on Facebook and enter your email address on our sale page to receive our exclusive booking link. Your next stay in paradise is just few clicks away.
Call 877-676-1826 to speak with an onsite vacation planner
Key West Songwriter’s Festival in May 2014
Key West’s party spirit is set to soar this spring to the tune of the annual Songwriters’ Festival, the largest of its kind in the world, which will take over the island for five days from May 7th through 11th.
All images are compliments of the Key West Songwriter’s Festival
As you venture from one venue to another during your vacation, you’ll be greeted by a diverse line-up featuring over 100 songwriters all delivering unique “Key West-only” moments, including informal adaptations of Nashville’s signature in-the-round acoustic showcases. At the peak of the event will be the enticing, colorful street concert adding a Mardi Gras feel to the festival.
A Festival Line-up That Can’t be “Beat”
With some of the biggest names in the world of songwriting descending on Key West for the festival, we’re excited to see a phenomenal line-up of headliners including Kacey Musgraves, Sara Evans, Anders Osborne, Robert Earl Keen, Kree Harrison, DJ DU, Matraca Berg, Tony Joe White and Dean Dillon.
For more details on the line-up and show schedule during the Songwriters’ Festival, visit www.keywestsongwritersfestival.com.
10 Toe-Tapping Live Music Venues in Key West
If you can’t make this year’s May festival, Key West has an array of live music venues throughout the year to get you in a toe-tapping mood. The island is famed for many types of music, from techno, hip hop, jazz and raggae, to calypso, blues, country and western, so a night out will always feature a show that appeals to all musical tastes. Here are our top ten recommendations for live music venues in Key West:
Schooner Wharf Bar, 22 William Street. Laid-back, comfortable and oozing with character, this bar is just a few blocks away from Duval Street and overlooks the harbor. It’s popular for its live music, friendly service and rustic charm.
Little Room Jazz Club, 821 Duval Street. Renowned for being Key West’s finest blues lounge, the cosy Little Room Jazz Club is on the quieter side of Duval Street. It’s one of the top local spots for sipping beer whilst enjoying some of the island’s best jazz.
Smokin’ Tuna Saloon, 4 Charles Street. This popular venue is home base for the Songwriter Festival. Throughout the year it stages some of Key West’s hottest acts with a music schedule on offer every night alongside a tempting menu of fresh seafood.
Sloppy Joe’s, 201 Duval Street. Famed for being Ernest Hemingway’s favorite watering hole, Sloppy Joe’s is one of the most iconic bars in Key West. Expect a lively party atmosphere with its regular live music schedule.
Willie T’s, 525 Duval Street. If it’s a cool mojito you fancy whilst checking out the latest quality live music acts, head to Willie T’s. The mojitos here are legendary and the walls are decorated with dollar bills from patrons past.
Island Dogs, 505 Front Street. One of Key West’s coolest hang-outs, you’ll find live music most nights at Island Dogs where the Key Lime Pie Martini is a must-try, along with the chargrilled oysters.
Hog’s Breath Saloon, 400 Front Street. Locals and visitors have been coming to Hog’s Breath Saloon for around 25 years for its daily schedule of live music and friendly service.
Green Parrot Bar, 601 Whitehead Street. Another Key West icon, Green Parrot Bar is loved by locals and welcomes visitors every night with its exciting line-up of live music which makes the venue fun and bursting with energy.
Turtle Kraals, 231 Margaret Street. Catch the latest live music from the harbor-based Turtle Kraals which not only offers the best views of the Key West Historic Seaport, but serves up a refreshing selection of drinks, including the delicious Key Lime Margarita.
Bull and Whistle Bar, 224 Duval Street. Here you’ll find two bars under one roof with live music showcased on the Bull stage. The party atmosphere entices large crowds most nights, making it one of Key West’s most popular venues for musical entertainment.
For more details on the Key West Songwriter’s Festival, visit www.keywestsongwritersfestival.com.
Sculpture Key West is a unique (and free) Key West art exhibition that places selected artworks in the community for your enjoyment. Sculpture Key West believes that art isn’t something we should have to make plans to see, or buy a ticket to visit. Instead, they believe that art belongs in our everyday environment where we can bump into it, where it can unexpectedly alter our day and our world. Artists from eight states are represented in the exhibition and their works are showcased in a wide variety of traditional and experimental media. Some sculptures were constructed on site, while some incorporate native materials such as local plant life. The exhibit is available for viewing through March 23, 2014 at West Martello Tower and adjoining Higgs Beach in Key West.
Artist John Martini’s sculpture art can be seen around Parrot Key Resort and some of his works are also part of the Sculpture Key West exhibit. Scroll down to see some of Martini’s work, along with other amazing art sculptures. View the Sculpture Key West Facebook Page
Eric Troffkin, “Communications Vine,” 2013
Welded red and white steel tubing
40″ L x 3.5′ W
Sunil Garg, “Will They Too Soon Be Gone”
Wire mesh, nylon thread, air currents, programmed RGB lights
Adam Russell, “Watchmen,” 2013
3 ceramic sculptures approximately 85″ tall
Darryl Lauster, “Homage to Brancusi,” 2013
Welded steel and high fired porcelain
11′ 2″ tall, various dimensions
John Martini, “Big Rat,” 2013
85″ x 74″ x 38″
Bill Lorraine, “Man Looking Up,” 2013
Carved out of indigenous stone, Miami Oolite
15″ tall x 23″ x 12″
Pedestal 10′ tall x 24″ x 15″
James Racchi, “Untitled Column,” 2013
48″ high x 20″ W x 18″ D
Lorrie Fredette, “Evade Invasion,” 2013
Beeswax, tree resin, muslin, brass, nylon line
11′ H x 36″ W x 36″ D (approximate)
Gereon Krebber, “Conchie,” 2012
Cast concrete, variable dims
Joel Erland and Kate Kaman, “Conch Republic,” 2013
3 Forton glass fiber reinforced concrete
5′ max length in any direction
Ursula Clark, “Palm Goddess,” 2013
Palms, branches, shells, pods and stones as embellishments
10″ H x 6′ in diameter bottom of skirt
John Martini, “A Blakean Tale,” 2011
Simran Johnston, “Untitled: Semi Circle 1 and 2,” 2013
Sticks, plaster, paint polyurethane, nylon 6′ x 4.5′ and 2.5′ x 4″
Richard Brachman, “Tank” (Camouflaged), 2013
Wood, chick wire, vines, leaves, sticks, coconuts
6′ W x 10′ L
William Bennett, “Belly Scepter,” 1987 – 2013
Laminated stone, steel, bronze, plastic, gold leaf
86″ x 13″ x 13″
Liliana Crespi, “Shadows,” 2013
6 life size figures: wire crocheted
72″x 15″ x 8″ ea
Fans of fine food and stellar vintages can indulge their appetites for both at the 2014 Key West Food and Wine Festival scheduled Wednesday through Sunday, Jan. 22-26. Parrot Key Resort is offering a special Key West Food and Wine Festival Package for event-goers that includes overnight accommodations, a complimentary bottle of wine and tickets to “Duval Uncorked.”
View the Key West Food and Wine Festival Package at Parrot Key Resort
What is the Key West Food and Wine Festival
Now in its fifth year, the edible extravaganza spotlights Key West’s lively culinary scene, talented chefs, indigenous ingredients and multifaceted flavors through gourmet galas and tastings, food and wine seminars and only–in–Key West experiences.
Food and Wine Festival Highlights
Highlights include Duval Uncorked, a stroll down Key West’s renowned Duval Street from the Gulf of Mexico to the Atlantic Ocean, set for 3:30-7 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 25. The avenue is to become a mile-long culinary showplace, tempting attendees with forays into restaurants, bars, galleries and boutiques.
Also highlighted is the “Save the Turtles” pierside grand tasting in Key West’s Historic Seaport, which during the mid-1900s was the center of the island’s now defunct turtle harvesting industry. Planned for 5-7 p.m. at 231 Margaret St., the event features samples of Sea Turtle Reserve red and white wines produced by California’s Weibel Family Vineyards. A portion of the event’s proceeds is earmarked for the Sea Turtle Conservancy to support protection of the species.
Among other standout events are a barefoot evening beach party, seminars on topics ranging from pinot noir to the origins of Key lime pie, wine strolls in three island neighborhoods, a tour and tasting at Key West’s new rum distillery, an outdoor artisan wine market, a French masquerade dance party and the Master Chef’s Classic tasting and competition.
In addition, offbeat adventures are scheduled that combine food and fun. Among them are a quirky afternoon of coconut bowling in historic Bahama Village, an indulgent “bean to bar” chocolate experience and a traditional Key West shrimp boil beside the working shrimp docks.
Tickets and Information
Exclusive VIP passes are available covering admission to multiple festival events, as are tickets for individual events.
Festival information and ticketing: www.keywestfoodandwinefestival.com
Here is an updated list to our original post of festive fun in Key West!
The Florida Keys and Key West offer an array of festive fun during the holiday season. From holiday events, lighted boat parades, and more… Key West is just the place to enjoy the festive spirit. Parrot Key Resort will also get you in a jolly mood with our lighted Christmas tree and exterior festive light decorations.
Parrot Key Resort offers great family accommodation options during the holidays with up to 3-bedroom options to choose from. View our accommodation options here or enjoy a range of festive activity below, in and around Key West!
Festive Holiday Events Around Key West
Image by Florida Keys News Bureau
Now through Sunday, Dec. 22
Holiday Photos with a Dolphin at Dolphin Research Center (Marathon)
At Dolphin Research Center, mile marker (MM) 59 bayside on Grassy Key, visitors who participate in the Meet the Dolphin program also can pose with the dolphins for a holiday photo. Visitors can bring their holiday-themed props to pose with, and DRC’s experienced photographers will shoot the pictures using high-resolution digital cameras. The program is offered several times each day on a walk-in basis and costs $25 per person in addition to general admission prices. The photos are supplied on a flash drive for $20 for one person or $35 for multiple people in the same shot. Group size is limited to four people. Contact: 305-289-1121 or www.dolphins.org
Wednesday, Nov. 27, 6 p.m.
Key West Holiday Fest (Key West)
The harbor walk along the Historic Seaport at the Key West Bight, stretching from Greene Street to Grinnell Street, is to be festively lit from rooftops to the sea for the holiday season. Celebrate with holiday events, browse at local shops and galleries and relax at waterfront restaurants and watering holes. This and other seaport festivities are part of the inaugural Key West Holiday Fest. Contact: www.KeyWestChristmas.org or www.KeyWestHolidayFest.com
Sunday, Dec. 1, 8 p.m.
“The Messiah” (Key West)
As many as 90 singers from around the Florida Keys participate in the annual performance of George Frideric Handel’s holiday masterpiece. Directed by Dean Walters, the 31st consecutive production is to be staged at Key West United Methodist Church at the corner of Eaton and Simonton streets, and admission is free. Contact: 305-296-2392
Friday, Dec. 6, 8 p.m.
Keys Chorale 2013 Holiday Concert (Key West)
The Keys Chorale will present a holiday concert at the Key West United Methodist Church, corner of Eaton and Simonton streets. Tickets are $20 for general admission. Contact: 305-849-1474 or www.keystix.com
Saturday, Dec. 7, 7 p.m.
Key West Holiday Parade (Key West)
The island city shows its holiday spirit with this annual hometown parade. Featuring marching groups and motorized and nonmotorized floats, the festive procession traditionally draws entries from churches, civic organizations, businesses and neighborhood and school groups. Starting at Truman Avenue and White Street, it proceeds down Truman to Duval, where it takes a right and continues on to Eaton Street. Contact: 305-809-3881 or visit www.keywestcity.com
Saturday, Dec. 14, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Big Pine & Lower Keys Island Art Festival (Big Pine Key)
Experience the joys of art and music, and find some unique holiday gifts, at this festival held on the wooded grounds of the Lower Keys Chamber of Commerce, MM 31 oceanside. Family fun highlights include live music by favorite local entertainers, exhibits and booths featuring the original work of artists and artisans, raffles and vendors offering food and beverages. Parking and admission are free. Contact:305-872-2411 or www.lowerkeyschamber.com
Saturday, Dec. 14, 7 p.m.
Lower Keys Lighted Boat Parade (Lower Keys)
All boats are welcome to participate in this favorite Lower Keys holiday event sponsored by the Lower Keys Rotary Club. Santa and Mrs. Claus are expected to arrive and hand out candy to the kids. Best viewing spots include the Old Wooden Bridge Guest Cottages & Marina, No Name Key Bridge and Big Pine Community Park, all off U.S. Highway 1 at MM 31. Contact: Steve at 305-923-5370 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Saturday, Dec. 14, 8 p.m.
Schooner Wharf Bar & Galley Lighted Boat Parade (Key West)
Festively decorated kayaks, fishing craft and schooners are to glitter in Key West’s Historic Seaport during the 23rd annual Schooner Wharf Bar Lighted Boat Parade. The Gerald Adams Elementary School Steel Your Heart Band kicks off the festivities at 6 p.m. singing holiday favorites, followed by popular family band The Doerfels. Spectators can view the dozens of participating vessels from resorts, bars and restaurants in and around the Historic Seaport. Contact: 305-292-3302 or www.schoonerwharf.com
Sunday, Dec. 15, 1-3 p.m.
Christmas on the Farm 2013 (Stock Island, Key West)
Kids and adults can visit the furry, fluffy and feathered residents of the Animal Farm and get a photo taken with Santa. The Monroe County Sheriff’s Office Animal Farm is situated at the county’s detention center just outside Key West at 5501 College Road. This event is free and open to the public. Contact: Jeanne Selander at 305-293-7300 or www.keysso.net/miscellaneous/animal_park.htm
Sunday, Dec. 15, 3 p.m.
Southernmost Christmas Tree Celebration (Key West)
Holiday revelers enjoy free conch chowder and then board Conch Tour Trains to proceed to the continental United States’ Southernmost Point to set up the southernmost Christmas tree at sunset overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. The event is an annual community thank-you party presented by the Monroe Association for ReMAR Cable Citizens. The fun starts at 1401 Seminary St. Contact: 305-294-9526
Friday and Saturday, Dec. 27-28, 4-7 p.m.
54th Annual Key West House & Garden Tours (Key West)
Presented by the Old Island Restoration Foundation, the annual self-guided tours showcase festively dressed Key West homes and gardens. Tickets are $30 and proceeds benefit the Old Island Restoration Foundation’s museums, collection and education, grant and scholarship programs. Contact: 305-294-9501 or www.oirf.org
New Year’s Eve
The Southernmost City celebrates with a descending 6-foot red high heel shoe carrying drag queen Sushi at the Bourbon Street Pub/New Orleans House complex, 724 Duval Street.
Tuesday, Dec. 31, 12 p.m.
Annual Key West Dachshund Walk (Key West)
The procession of pooches begins at noon at the corner of Whitehead and Fleming streets in Key West’s historic downtown. The walking route, deliberately kept brief to cater to the dachshunds’ short legs, includes a portion of the downtown area and a block of Duval Street. Many dogs wear offbeat costumes or accessories. Contact: email@example.com
Tuesday, Dec. 31, just before midnight
Key West New Year’s Eve Celebrations (Key West)
The Southernmost City celebrates New Year’s Eve with a “conch shell drop” at Sloppy Joe’s Bar, 201 Duval St.; the descent of a super-sized red high-heel shoe carrying drag queen Sushi at the Bourbon St. Pub/New Orleans House complex, 724 Duval St.; the splash of a huge replica Key lime wedge into a massive margarita glass at Ocean Key Resort’s Sunset Pier and the descent of a pirate wench from atop a tall ship’s mast in the island city’s Historic Seaport. Contact: 305-296-2388, ext. 121, for the conch shell drop; 305-293-9800 for the high-heel drop; 305-295-7005 for the Key lime splash and 305-292-3302 for the descent of the pirate wench
Image by Florida Keys News Bureau