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Revelers can unleash hidden heroics or devious alter egos Friday, Oct. 18, through Sunday, Oct. 27, during Key West’s annual Fantasy Fest celebration. Themed “Super Heroes, Villains… & Beyond,” the 2013 festival features 10 days of masquerade balls, costume contests, parties and uninhibited escapades, all climaxing in an epic grand parade set for Saturday, Oct. 26.
To book a room at Parrot Key Resort, dial (877) 684-5095.
Event organizers encourage 2013 participants to design floats and costumes around the festival theme.
They might take inspiration from caped crusaders or cartoon foes, mythic gods and monsters, “good guys” from the silver screen or denizens of the dark side.
In addition, Key West’s Caribbean roots are to be celebrated with Friday and Saturday’s Goombay street party in historic Bahama Village.
Throughout the festival, themed costume competitions are planned to draw competitors ranging from single super-humans to dynamic duos and groups. The schedule also includes a pirate bash, a rock-and-roll burlesque musical, a “Halos & Horns” soiree and parties for the valiant and villainous alike.
The spotlight shines on Key West’s renowned Duval Street Friday as vendors of costumes, arts and crafts, food and libations star in the mile-long Fantasy Fest Street Fair. In addition, the Masquerade March draws masked and costumed evildoers and action heroes for an exuberant walking parade.
The clash between superheroes and scoundrels is to culminate Saturday, Oct. 26, during the Captain Morgan Fantasy Fest Parade through Key West’s historic “Gotham City” downtown. Tens of thousands of spectators converge to cheer the parade’s exotic marching groups, Caribbean bands, costumed characters and lavishly decorated motorized floats.
Event information: www.fantasyfest.com
Images compliments of the Florida Keys News Bureau / Andy Newman
Every year, our little island of Key West plays host to a number of exciting festivals– from pirates to speed boats, there’s a celebration to fit everyone’s taste. The biggest, and most popular, is of course our legendary Fantasy Fest– ten days of crazy costumed parading, partying and other debauched activities. But equally fun is the festival that marks the imminent opening of Fantasy Fest: Goombay Festival, a celebration of the tastes, sights and sounds of Caribbean culture. We impatiently await the opening of Goombay each year–a family-friendly festival that offers incredible food, music, dancing, performances and a true sense of community– and we’re so excited that it’s finally only a few more days away!
For two fabulous days beginning this Friday, October 19th, stroll down the length of Petronia St. and see how long your willpower lasts (ours usually gives in right around the time we see the first foodstall. Conch salad, anyone?) This festival, the end of which marks the official beginning of Fantasy Fest and all its crazy glory, is the perfect way to dip your toe into the Key West festival pool. We’re certain you’ll love it.
The festival runs all day and offers something for everyone. This Friday, be sure to head down to Petronia Street and learn all about Caribbean culture… we’ll save some Conch salad for you, if you’re lucky.
One week before Fantasy Fest is a lesser known but also fantastic Key West festival, Goombay. The traditional celebration of food, music and West Indies culture is held each year on the 20th and 21st of september on Duval street and Bahama Village. This year’s festivities will include vendor stalls, street dancing, music by traditional caribean groups and partying until the early morning. Check out there official page here for more info.