Key West’s Most Complete Calendar of Events.
This calendar of events for Key West includes nearly every happening on the island throughout the year. Something missing? If you know of any Key West calendar events that we have overlooked please let us know by filling out this short form and we’ll quickly add it. Check back frequently: more events, dates, and details are added as the season progresses.
2015 Key West Calendar of Events
January 2015 Key West Events
- January 4, 2015 – ARTS – Key West Artisan Market – Held one Sunday each month, this open air bazaar is filled with artists, authors, chef-made cuisine, craftspeople, performers and fresh produce representing the diversity of creativity, ingenuity and locally made products of Key West. 1111 Eaton Street, 10am – 2pm. For more information, visit https://www.facebook.com/KeyWestArtisanMarket or call 305-294-7994.
- January 8 – 11, 2015 – LITERARY – 33rd Annual Key West Literary Seminar – This year’s topic is “How the Light Gets In”, exploring literature of the spirit. Celebrated authors, including Ayad Akhtar, A. Manette Ansay, Coleman Barks, Billy Collins, Mark Doty, Patricia Hampl, Ron Hansen, Jane Hirshfield, Marie How, Pico Iyler, Charles Johnson, Wally Lamb, Barry Lopez, Marilyn Nelson, Mary Rose O’Reilley, Robert D. Richardson, Marilynne Robinson, and Steve Stern gather at readings, discussions, lectures, and parties. More information and registration is available at http://www.kwls.org/seminar33 or by calling 888-293-9291.
- January 16 – 17, 2015 – ARCHITECTURE – 55th Annual Key West House & Garden Tour – Visit five Key West homes and tropical gardens. Transporation between homes is not included. 4pm – 8pm. Tickets are $30 and are available at http://www.oirf.org/page.php?p=tours. Call 305-294-9501 for more information.
- January 17 – 18, 2015 – FOOD – 10th Annual Florida Keys Seafood Festival – This festival keeps getting better and better and now includes live local music and craft vendors. The festival celebrates Key West’s abundant fresh seafood with music & beverages served up by many of the Florida Keys commercial fisherman and families. Crab, lobster, ceviche, conch chowder, and other local cuisine is served up in a picnic setting. Entrance is a $5 donation for adults, and free for children 12 & under. 11 a.m. – 8 p.m on Saturday, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m on Sunday. Bayview Park at Truman Avenue and Eisenhower Drive, Key West. For more information, visit http://monroe.ifas.ufl.edu/environment/env_seafood_fest.shtml or call 305-872-9026.
- January 18 – 23, 2015 – SAILING – Premier Racing Presents: Key West 2015 – Known locally in Key West as “race week”, this world-class sailing competition hosts over 100 racing yachts that compete for class championships in this international midwinter sailboat regatta. For more information and registration, visit http://www.premiere-racing.com/ or call 781-639-9545.
- January 18, 2015 – RUNNING – 17th Annual Key West Half Marathon & 5K – Over 1000 runners enjoy near perfect temperatures, flat terrain, and Key West scenery in one of the most popular running races of the year. Entry fee is $95 for half-marathon, $45 for 5K. Early registration suggested. For more information and registration, visit http://www.keywesthalfmarathon.com/event-details.
- January 20, 2-15 – ARTS - “Of Ebony Embers: Vignettes of the Harlem Renaissance” – From the Florida Keys Community College VIP Series, this performance combines spoken word and music while is delves into the Harlem Renaissance and its master poets. This event is part of the college’s Martin Luther King Day celebration. 7pm, Tennessee Williams Theatre, 5901 College Road, Stock Island. Tickets are $25 and may be purchased at http://www.keystix.com.
- January 24 – 25, 2015 – ARTS – 30th Annual Key West Craft Show – Open air art market and judged show offering an amazing variety of work, including sculpture, paintings, craft, and folk art. Whitehead Street and Caroline Streets, Key West. For more information, visit http://www.keywestartcenter.com/craft.html or call 305-294-1243.
- January 25, 2015 – FOOD – 21st Annual Key West Master Chefs Classic – Key West’s talented chefs compete for top honors in this annual gourmet competition. Benefits the local organization MARC House. 4pm-7pm at Westin Resort & Marina (245 Front Street). For more information, visit http://www.marchouse.org/masterchefsclassic or call 305-294-9526 ext. 25.
- January 27 – February 1, 2015 – FOOD – Key West Food & Wine Festival – Sample wine, Key West cuisine, and fresh seafood on one of many “strolls”. For more information, visit http://www.keywestfoodandwinefestival.com or call 800-474-4319.
February 2015 Key West Events
- January 27 – February 1, 2015 – FOOD – Key West Food & Wine Festival – Sample wine, Key West cuisine, and fresh seafood on one of many “strolls”. For more information, visit http://www.keywestfoodandwinefestival.com or call 800-474-4319.
- February 1, 2015 – ARTS – Key West Artisan Market – Held one Sunday each month, this open air bazaar is filled with artists, authors, chef-made cuisine, craftspeople, performers and fresh produce representing the diversity of creativity, ingenuity and locally made products of Key West. 1111 Eaton Street, 10am – 2pm. For more information, visit https://www.facebook.com/KeyWestArtisanMarket or call 305-294-7994.
- February 1, 2015 – SPORTS – Super Bowl XLIX (49) - The NFL’s championship game is held and Key West bars offer a raucous and fun scene to watch the spectacle. Schooner Wharf Bar, at 202 William Street, has numerous large screen TV’s, food, and drink specials.
- February 6 – 8, 2015 – HISTORY – 29th Annual Civil War Heritage Days – Presented by Fort Zachary Taylor State Park, this three-day event features civil war reenactors displaying life and struggle in the Civil War period. Events begin each day at 10am at the State Park (entrance is at the Truman Waterfront, end of Southard Street). Events are FREE with paid admission to the State Park. For more information, visit http://www.floridastateparks.org/forttaylor/events.cfm?viewevent=13104#13104
- February 7 – 8, 2014 – RUNNING - Ragnar Relay Florida Keys, Miami to Key West – Nearly two-hundred mile running race from Miami to Key West. Teams of twelve relay runners traverse the entire length of the Florida Keys. For more information, visit http://www.ragnarrelay.com/race/floridakeys or call 877-837-3529.
- February 10, 2015 – HISTORY - “The Kennedy Assassination: What We Now Know and What We Will Never Know” – From the Florida Keys Community College VIP Series, fifty years after the release of the Warren Report, Attorney Timothy Gratz, Journalist Mark Howell, and Publisher Shirrel Rhoades will lead an exploration through three government investigations into the assassination as well as the results of their own research. Their research, concentrated on the Keys, will reveal connections that will likely surprise you.. 7pm, Tennessee Williams Theatre, 5901 College Road, Stock Island. Tickets may be purchased at http://www.keystix.com.
- February 13 – 14, 2015 – ARCHITECTURE – 55th Annual Key West House & Garden Tour – Visit five Key West homes and tropical gardens. Transporation between homes is not included. 4pm – 8pm. Tickets are $30 and are available at http://www.oirf.org/page.php?p=tours. Call 305-294-9501 for more information.
- February 14 – 15, 2015 – FOOD – GardenFest Key West & Beer Garden – Key West Botanical Garden Society’s annual membership meeting includes food, fun, libations, and more. For more information, visit http://kwbgs.org or call 305-296-1504.
- February 15, 2015 – HISTORY – In the Shadow of the White House – The panel will feature presidential children and grandchildren Susan Ford Bales, Clifton Truman Daniel and Mary Jean Eisenhower. The evening’s moderator will be CNN political analyst John Avlon. The panel will discuss the role of presidential accomplishments as seen through the eyes of their relatives. The discussion will take place outside on the West Lawn of the Little White House. 4pm. $20.
- February 16, 2015 – HOLIDAY – President’s Day 2015 in Key West – Also known as Washington’s Day, this is an ideal time to visit Key West during winter. Four previous US presidents have visited Key West, including: Truman, Eisenhower, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and John F. Kennedy.
- February 16, 2015 – MUSIC – I Like Ike, Songs of the Eisenhower Era – Take a seat in the Bess and Harry living room of the Little White House as Bobby Nesbitt and Carmen Rodriguez perform hits of Nat King Cole, Johnny Mathis, Frank Sinatra, and more. 8pm, Truman Little White House. $60
- February 20, 2015 – ARTS – Thomas Arvid Gallery Appearance – Known for his photo-realistic paintings of wine bottles, glasses, corks, and accessories, Thomas Arvid displays his latest works. 7pm-11pm, Key West Art Gallery, 601 Duval Street.
- February 21 – 22, 2015 – ARTS – 50th Annual Old Island Days Art Festival – Open-air art show and market featuring oil paintings, watercolors, sculpture, photography and other works. 10am – 5pm on Whitehead Street & Caroline Street, Key West. For more information visit http://www.keywestartcenter.com/festival.html or call (305) 294-1243.
- February 28, 2015 – LOCAL COLOR - 5th Annual ConchFest – Native Key Wester’s are known as Conchs, and this family-friendly festival celebrates their heritage. Mingle with the locals and enjoy local art vendors, island cuisine, and live music. FREE admission, Bay View Park, 11am – 9pm. For more information, visit http://www.conchfestkeywest.com/ or call 305-294-5059.
- February 28, 2015 – LOCAL COLOR – Sword Swallowing Performance – In celebration of “world sword swallower’s day”, there will be a free demonstration of the death-defying skill. 2pm at Ripley’s Believe it or Not Odditorium, 108 Duval Street. Demonstration is FREE, but if you want to tour the Odditorium, there is a standard admission fee.
March 2015 Key West Events
- March 1, 2015 – ARTS – Key West Artisan Market – Held one Sunday each month, this open air bazaar is filled with artists, authors, chef-made cuisine, craftspeople, performers and fresh produce representing the diversity of creativity, ingenuity and locally made products of Key West. 1111 Eaton Street, 10am – 2pm. For more information, visit https://www.facebook.com/KeyWestArtisanMarket or call 305-294-7994.
- March 4, 2015 – SCIENCE – Coral Grief: Fall of the Cities Beneath the Sea – Coral reefs are home to one of every four marine species known to science; and they are vital to maintaining Earth’s biological diversity. Unfortunately, these magnificent natural wonders are in trouble. Nearly a quarter of the world’s coral reefs have been destroyed. If current trends continue, we risk losing the rest by mid-century. But there is much we can do to preserve these “cities under the sea” for future generations… if we act now. FKCC’s renowned Professor of Marine Science Dr. Alex Brylske will present this powerful and timely message.
- March 7, 2015 – LOCAL COLOR - 53rd Annual Conch Shell Blowing Contest – Prizes are awarded for contestants ability to coax sound from a conch shell by blowing into it like a trumpet. Oldest House, 322 Duval Street. FREE to attend. For more information, call 305-294-9501.
- March 7, 2015 – ART – 15th Annual Open Air Art & Music Affair – Arts and craft ventors display their creations at one of Key West’s favorite watering holes. Live music from local performers. 10am – midnight. For more information, call 305-292-3302.
- March 8, 2015 – MUSIC – I Like Ike, Songs of the Eisenhower Era – Take a seat in the Bess and Harry living room of the Little White House as Bobby Nesbitt and Carmen Rodriguez perform hits of Nat King Cole, Johnny Mathis, Frank Sinatra, and more. 8pm, Truman Little White House. $60
- March 13 – 14, 2015 – ARCHITECTURE – 55th Annual Key West House & Garden Tour – Visit five Key West homes and tropical gardens. Transporation between homes is not included. 4pm – 8pm. Tickets are $30 and are available at http://www.oirf.org/page.php?p=tours. Call 305-294-9501 for more information.
- March 16 – 19, 2015 – FISHING – Merkin Invitational Permit Tournament – Fly fishermen compete to catch Permit, one of the most challenging fish to catch on fly. Key West Yacht Harbor Marina (Stock Island). For more information, visit www.marchmerkin.com or call 303-888-4546.
- March 19, 2015 – ECOLOGY – Key West Botanical Garden Speaker Series – Mark Whiteside and Beryn Harty discuss butterflies and habitat. 5210 College Road (Stock Island). For more information, visit http://kwbgs.org or call 305-296-1504.
- March 28, 2015 – RUNNING – 3rd Annual Tuna Trot Race for the Reef – This 5 kilometer race begins at 8am at the Eco Discovery Center (end of Southard Street). For more information, call 305-292-7963.
April 2015 Key West Events
- April 2, 2015 – MUSIC – Happy Dog at the Green Parrot – Shake your bones to the funky Happy Dog band, whose extended jams have been rocking the island all winter long. This deeply talented band will soon be headed back to their home base in Pennsylvania after an outstanding winter stay in Key West. Their Green Parrot shows have been exceptional, with the normally mellow crowd packing the dance floor to groove to Happy Dog’s original songs and covers of the Grateful Dead. 9pm. Green Parrot, 601 Whitehead Street. FREE.
- April 4, 2015 – ARTS – 6th Annual Florida Keys Ocean Festival & Waterfront Craft Show – Hosted by the Florida Keys Eco-Discover Center, this two day event features live music, arts & crafts with Wyland, educational displays, food & beverages, and silent auction. 11am – 6pm, end of Southard Street. FREE admission. For more information, visit http://www.keysoceanfest.org/.
- April 5, 2015 – ARTS – Key West Artisan Market – Held one Sunday each month, this open air bazaar is filled with artists, authors, chef-made cuisine, craftspeople, performers and fresh produce representing the diversity of creativity, ingenuity and locally made products of Key West. 1111 Eaton Street, 10am – 2pm. For more information, visit https://www.facebook.com/KeyWestArtisanMarket or call 305-294-7994.
- April 11, 2015 – ARTS – Discover DaVinci & Michelangelo: Side by Side – Mark Rodgers, Curator of the DaVinci Machines and Michelangelo Exhibitions from the permanent Museum of Leonardo DaVinci in Florence, Italy, will take you on an awe-inspiring journey through the Italian Renaissance as seen through the eyes of these two monumental geniuses. This original theatre performance is a non-stop, multi-media event featuring movies, videos, 3-D animations, and images of their inventions, codices, paintings, and sculptures. 8pm, Tennessee Williams Theatre, 5901 College Road, Stock Island. Tickets may be purchased at http://www.keystix.com.
- April 13, 2015 – FOOD – 20th Annual Taste of Key West – For the benefit of AIDS Help, more than fifty Key West restaurants offer delicious tapas-sized portions along the Truman waterfront – each taste costing between $3 – $8. Always well attended, this lively event will have you bouncing from cuisine to cuisine, while enjoying the generous selection of fine wines available in a collectible wine glass. Car traffic is usually heavy – so come by bike or foot and breeze on past the cars lined up. Or take the Old Town Trolley, offering free transportation for the event, starting at 5:30 pm at the Pier House (1 Duval Street), with stops at the Westin, La Concha, corner of Simonton & South Street, and the Casa Marina Resort. Trolley runs every 30 minutes until last departure from Truman Waterfront Park at 9pm. Admission to event is FREE. Food tickets sold in $1 increments. For more information, visit http://www.aidshelp.cc/taste.html or call 305-296-6196.
- April 15 – 16, 2015 – FISHING – Final Sail in the Quest for the Crest Series (Formerly known as the Key West Sailfish Championship) – Three days of catch-an-release fishing by professional and amateur anglers with big cash prizes, including $50,000 for first place in the pro division. For more information, visit http://www.keywestsailfishchampionship.com/ or call 305-340-2737.
- April 17, 2015 – MUSIC – Happy Dog Farewell Soundcheck at the Green Parrot – Shake your bones to the funky Happy Dog band, whose extended jams have been rocking the island all winter long. This deeply talented band will soon be headed back to their home base in Pennsylvania after an outstanding winter stay in Key West. Their Green Parrot shows have been exceptional, with the normally mellow crowd packing the dance floor to groove to Happy Dog’s original songs and covers of the Grateful Dead. 5pm. Green Parrot, 601 Whitehead Street. FREE.
- April 17 – 26, 2015 – LOCAL COLOR – 33rd Annual Conch Republic Independence Celebration – Celebration of Key West’s brief secession from the United States. Event highlights include drag (queen) races on Duval Street (April 18, 1 pm), and the infamous bloody battle in Key West harbor where Conch Republic vessels toss stale cuban bread at Coast Guard vessels and each other in a mock secession (April 24, 7pm). Kick-off party at the Schooner Wharf bar on April 17th, 7pm. For more information visit http://www.conchrepublic.com/schedule.htm or call 305-296-0213.
- April 18, 2015 – RUNNING – 2nd Annual Cow Key Channel Run – Over 1000 people participated in last year’s inaugural run over the Cow Key bridge, a distance of approximately 300 feet. This mock marathon features hilarious costumed runners, walkers, relay teams, and even pets. Prizes awarded for fastest, slowest, best costumed, best theatrical performance, and many more. FREE to participate. Check-in at 10-11:30am at Stock Island side of Cow Key Channel. Race begins at noon. For more information, visit: http://cowkeybridgerun.com/.
- April 30 – May 3, 2015 – SPORTS – Key West Paddleboard Classic – Race around the island of Key West aboard stand-up paddleboards. Begins at 9:30am. For more information, call 305-295-9898.
May 2015 Key West Events
- May 2, 2015 – MUSIC - Keystock Music Fest – Live music performances at the Truman Waterfront (end of Southard Street), featuring Florida Keys musicians including Howard Livingston. Noon to 9:30pm. For more information, call 305-745-1079.
- May 3, 2015 – ARTS – Key West Artisan Market – Held one Sunday each month, this open air bazaar is filled with artists, authors, chef-made cuisine, craftspeople, performers and fresh produce representing the diversity of creativity, ingenuity and locally made products of Key West. 1111 Eaton Street, 10am – 2pm. For more information, visit https://www.facebook.com/KeyWestArtisanMarket or call 305-294-7994.
- May 6 – 10, 2015 – MUSIC – 20th Annual Key West Song Writers Festival - Features more than one-hundred top songwriters performing at a variety of venues in Key West, including a concert on the Sunset Pier of the Ocean Key House at 1 Duval Street and a free concert on Duval Street. For more information, visit www.keywestsongwritersfestival.com.
- May 15 – 16, 2015 – HISTORY – Harry S. Truman Legacy Symposium – Examining 14 years of the Truman Legacy, this year the Symposium explores The Marshall Plan. Truman’s Little White House, 111 Front Street. For more information, call 305-294-9911.
- May 22 – 23, 2015 – FISHING – Yamaha Dolphin Masters Invitational - Dolphin fish, also known as Mahi-Mahi or Dorrado, is NOT the marine mammal with the same name. (They look very different, too.) Dolphin fish are plentiful during summer offshore of Key West, and this tournament will reward the boat that catches the biggest combined weight of three fish. $13,000 in prizes. Call 305-304-7674 for more information.
- May 24, 2015 – LOCAL COLOR - 24th Annual Schooner Wharf Minimal Regatta – Hysterical race of build-your-own boats using a minimum supply of materials, including: one sheet of plywood, two 2x4s, one pound of screws/fasteners, and one roll of duct tape. Prizes awarded for fastest team, most creative design, sinker award, sportsmanship award, best costumed, and best paint job. Vessel inspection at 12pm, Schooner Wharf Bar, 202 William Street. For more information, call 305-292-3302.
- May 25, 2015 – HOLIDAY – Memorial Day 2015 in Key West – For many people, Memorial Day is the traditional beginning of summer. And what better way to spend it than in Key West at the beach, or at a local fish fry, or on Duval Street. Here’s to summer!
June 2015 Key West Events
- June 10 – 14, 2015 – LGBT – Key West Pridefest – Event honoring diversity, openness and freedom in the city that is consistently recognized as one of the world’s top gay and lesbian vacation destinations. Includes a mix of: Dance and cocktail parties, contests, shows, forums, activities on the water, tours, street fair and Pride Parade on Duval Street. Street fair on June 14, 10am – 7pm on Duval Street. For more information, visit www.keywestpride.org.
- June 13, 2015 – SPORTS – FKCC Swim Around Key West – Swimmers, accompanied by kayakers, circumnavigate the island of Key West, a distance of over 12 miles. For more information, visit www.fkccswimaroundkeywest.com or call 305-809-3562.
- June 19 – 21, 2015 – FISHING – Dolphin Derby – Fishing tournament for Key West’s summertime offshore gamefish, the dorrado (known locally as dolphinfish). Win up to $5000 for most dorrado. For more information, visit keywest.gatorclub.com/Event.htm or call 305-304-7674.
July 2015 Key West Events
- July 9 – 12, 2015 – MARITIME – Mel Fisher Days – Come celebrate the day 29 years ago when Mel’s crews found $400 million in shipwrecked gold, silver and emeralds that had been sitting on the ocean floor for more than 300 years. Kick-off party at the Schooner Wharf Bar with costume contest, raffle, and live entertainment. Duval Street block party is on Saturday, 2pm – 8pm, in the 200 block of Duval Street, and features live music and street fair food. For more information, visit http://www.melfisherdays.com or call 305-295-7929.
- July 11 – 14, 2015 – FISHING - 15th Annual Del Brown Permit Tournament – Considered by anglers to be the hardest and most rewarding fish to catch in shallow water on fly, this tournament is named after the early innovator of the sport Del Brown, who showed that you can catch a permit on fly – more than once in a lifetime. In practice, it is a feat of a lifetime, but if you have skills, pattern, and luck, then you just may have a chance. For more information, visit http://www.delbrown.com or call 305-744-0903.
- July 21 – 26, 2015 – HEMINGWAY - 35th Annual Hemingway Days and Look-Alike Contest – Annual celebration of Key West’s most famous writer, Ernest Hemingway, who wrote some of his most recognized works in Key West. Short story contest, readings, and marlin fishing tournament highlight the week’s activities. There will be a Duval Street fair on July 19th. Look-alike contest is held July 17-19 at Sloppy Joe’s bar, one of Hemingway’s favorite watering holes. This competition features dozens of Hemingway look a-likes competing for prizes and bragging rights. Costs $35 to register. FREE to watch. 6:30pm at 201 Duval Street. For more information, call 305-294-2388.
- July 22 – 25, 2014 – FISHING – Drambuie Key West Marlin Fishing Tournament – Coinciding with the Hemingway Days celebration, this fishing tournament has anglers competing for the king of all gamefish – the marlin. Large cash prizes for largest fish, including marlin, dolphin fish (mahi-mahi), wahoo, and sailfish. Cost is $1500 per vessel for early registration, or $1800 for late registration. Additional fees for fun fish, extra angler, and extra banquet tickets. For more information, visit http://www.keywestmarlin.com or call 305-292-2710.
- July 23 – 25, 2015 – HEMINGWAY – Sloppy Joe’s 35th Annual Look-a-Like Contest – Over 100 Hemingway look-a-likes compete for prizes and notoriety as most resembling the famous writer, judged by previous contest winners. Sloppy Joe’s Bar – 6:30 pm – 201 Duval Street.
- July 25, 2015 – SPORTS – Hemingway 5k Sunset Run & Paddleboard Race – Running race through Key West. For more information, visit http://www.keywesthalfmarathon.com/hemingway-5k-sunset-run-paddle-board-race or call 305-240-0727.
- July 29 – 30, 2015 – FISHING – Lobster Mini-Sport Season – Two-day event draws hundreds of often frenzied recreational boaters in search of Florida lobster. Many rules apply, including: Bag limit: 6 per person per day for Monroe County. Possession limit – on the water: equal to the daily bag limit. Possession limit – off the water: equal to the daily bag limit on the first day, and double the daily bag limit on the second day. Possession limits are enforced on and off the water. Minimum size limit: must be larger than 3″ carapace, measured in the water. A reminder that possession and use of a measuring device is required at all times, and night diving is prohibited in Monroe County (only during the sport season). Florida Salwater Fishing License plus lobster endorsement/stamp required. Please respect other boaters, stay away from shorelines, ecological reserves, no-take zones, and canals, use a dive flag, and do no harm to the sensitive coral and eco-system. Call Florida Fish & Wildlife (FWC) at 305-289-2320 for more information.
August 2015 Key West Events
- August 2, 2015 – LOCAL COLOR – 22nd Annual Battle of the Bars – Bartenders and drink servers from Key West’s many bars compete in a wacky, alcohol-fueled competition for fastest drink preparation, quickest drink service, and funniest costumes. Takes place at the Schooner Wharf Bar and provides plenty of uniquely Key West entertainment. Proceeds benefit several local charities. Begins at 12:30pm, Schooner Wharf Bar, 202 Williams Street.
- August 6 – 9, 2015 – SEAFOOD – Key West Lobsterfest – Everyone will be partying on Duval Street, except the lobsters. Marking the official opening of lobster season, this crustacean-focused event features street fairs, live music, and arts & crafts. Street fair with free live concert on Saturday, noon-11pm, lower Duval Street. For more information, visit www.keywestlobsterfest.com or call 305-744-9804
- August 13 – 16, 2015 – LBGT – Tropical Heat – All male, adults-only celebration of Key West’s gay community and lifestyle. Events include all-male themed parties and adult-oriented entertainment. For more information, visit www.tropicalheatkw.com or call the Key West Business Guild at 305-294-4603.
- August 14 – 16, 2015 – LITERATURE – Key West Mystery Writers Fest – Over twenty South Florida’s writers convene in Key West for three days of discussions and interactions. Registration is $98. For more information, visit http://www.mysterywriterskeywestfest.com/
September 2015 Key West Events
- September 3 – 7, 2015 – PARTY – 6th Annual Key West Brewfest – Labor-day weekend event featuring more than 150 different beers – including many award-winning microbrews. Events include seminars, tastings, pool parties, and meals. Big event is the Signature Tasting on Saturday, August 31 at South Beach ($75 per person for that event, advance tickets required). For more information, visit http://www.keywestbrewfest.com or call 305-295-6519.
- September 10 – 13, 2015 – LBGT – Womenfest Key West 2015 – Lesbians and friends converge on Key West for a week of activities, including late night dancing, pool parties, comedy shows, sunset sails, competitive bull riding, and lots of music. For more information, visit http://www.womenfest.com or call 305-294-4603.
- September 11 – 13, 2015 – FISHING – S.L.A.M. Celebrity Tournament – In the first of three tournaments in the annual Redbone Celebrity Tournament Series, also called The Trilogy, anglers target tarpon, permit and bonefish to achieve the coveted “flats grand slam.” The event raises funds for the fight against cystic fibrosis. For more information, visit http://www.redbone.org or call 305-664-2002.
- September 17 – 20, 2015 – MOTORCYCLES – 43rd Annual Poker Run – Over 10,000 motorcycle riders travel down the Florida Keys, stopping at five places to pick up a poker card at each one. Prizes are awarded to the best poker hands. Duval Street will be lined with impressive bikes, many rightfully called works of art. Proceeds from the event go to local charities. For more information, visit http://www.petersonsharley.com/custompage.asp?pg=pokerrun
October 2015 Key West Events
- October 8 – 10, 2015 – RUNNING – SoMo Marathon & Half Marathon – Running race through Key West and up the “lower Keys” with views of the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean. Distances of full marathon (26.2 miles) and half-marathon (13.1 miles). Registration costs $100 for full marathon, $75 for half marathon. For more information, visit http://somomarathon.com
- October 15, 2015 – SEAFOOD – Official 2015 Stone Crab Season Opening – In mid-October, the most delicious local seafood becomes available, the stone crab. With a porcelain-like shell and briny meat, this crab is considered a sustainable resource in that only the claws are taken, then the crab is released back into the wild to grow new ones. Stone crab is only native to this region and is considered a delicacy. October 15 is a special day for locals who eagerly await the opening of the stone crab season in Key West.
- October 23 – 24, 2015 – PARTY – 35th Annual Goombay Fest 2014 – This street party brings out all the locals to Bahama Village and features street fair cuisine (conch ceviche made fresh is popular), vendors selling a variety of wares, and live music at the bottom of Petronia. Don’t miss the party inside Blue Heaven. This is a family friendly event and NOT the time to be wearing body paint or showing too much skin. 10am – 11pm. Petronia Street starting at Duval Street. FREE to attend.
- October 23 – November 1, 2015 – FANTASY FEST – 36th Annual Key West Fantasy Fest – Week-long celebration and Key West’s biggest party of the year – with many adult-only events. This year’s theme is “All Hallows Intergalactic Freak Show”. Fantasy Fest event schedule will be posted here once it becomes available. For more information, visit http://www.fantasyfest.com
November 2015 Key West Events
- November 4 – 8, 2015 – MUSIC – 24th Annual Meeting of the Minds 2015: A Salty Piece of Land – Parrothead convention and nirvana benefiting charity. Many events are members only. Live shows include members of Jimmy Buffett’s band. Highlights include the Margaritaville Street Fest on Friday from 1pm – 5:30pm on the 500 block of Duval Street (near Fleming Street) which is FREE and open to the public. For more information, visit http://www.phip.com/meeting
- November 8 – 15, 2015 – BOATING – 35th Annual Key West World Championship – Considered the pinnacle of offshore powerboat racing. Top powerboat & superboat offshore racers compete for title of World Champion. Spectators line the Key West harbor to see the 100+ mph action. Good viewing from Fort Zachary Taylor State Park at the end of Southard Street. For more information, visit http://superboat.com/race-schedule/ or call 305-296-6166.
- November 10 – 12, 2015 – BOATING – 23rd Annual Key West Powerboat Poker Run – Two-hundred powerboat teams travel from Miami to Key West, a 160 mile journey. Cost is $750 per boat, and is open only to members of the Florida Powerboat Club using vessels 25-80 feet in length. For more information, visit http://www.flpowerboat.com/key-west-poker-run.html or call 954-545-1414.
- November 13 – 14, 2015 – LGBT – 12th Annual Smart Ride – Hundreds of bicyclists ride from Miami to Key West, a 165 mile course over two days, to raise money for the benefit of raising awareness for HIV/AIDS organizations in Florida. Cost is $95 per entrant, For more information, call 305-296-6196.
- November 18 – 22, 2015 – ARTS – 4th Annual Key West Film Festival – Features independent cinema with awards for narrative feature film, LGBT feature film, documentary, Florida feature film, and foreign feature film. Events include movie screenings, kick-off party, and awards gala. For more information, visit http://kwfilmfest.com/ or call 941-527-9385.
- November 27 – 29, 2015 – ARTS – ART!KEYWEST! – Art festival that celebrates many artists, galleries, boutiques, restaurants, and art-focused emporiums. Performance art, sculpture, interactive art, and musical performances are scheduled into the lively and coordinated art walk. For more information, visit http://www.artskeywest.com.
- November 26, 2015 – HOLIDAY – Thanksgiving in Key West 2015 – Traditional turkey is served in a tropical setting as residents and visitors celebrate the annual holiday. Many local restaurants have special Thanksgiving menus.
December 2015 Key West Events
- December 4 – 6, 2015 – FESTIVITIES – Fort Taylor Pyrate Invasion – Pirate re-enactors transform Fort Zachary Taylor in to an English Fort, defending itself from pirate invaders. Events include traditional music, costumed pirates, and pirate battles. For more information, visit http://www.forttaylorpyrates.com/ or call 305-797-1659
- December 5, 2015 – SPORTS – 5th Annual TRIKW Triathalon – Athletes swim, run, and bike among Key West’s ideal scenery and conditions. More than 500 competitors are expected. Two race distances are available: Sprint and the twice-as-long Olympic. For more information, visit http://trikw.com or call 305-797-8361.
- December 6 – 16, 2015 – HOLIDAY – Hanukkah in Key West 2015 – Key West is home to one of Florida’s oldest Jewish communities – with Jews settling here when the City was incorporated in 1832. The first Key West Congregation, B’nai Zion was founded in 1887. Today, during Hanukkah, a large menorah is lit in from of the synagogue each night of the holiday, with Rabbi and congregants gathering for the “festival of lights”. A latke and salmon feast is held the first night. Stop by 750 United Street and celebrate. For more information, call 305-294-3437.
- December 12, 2015 – HOLIDAY – 25th Annual Key West Lighted Boat Parade – Vessels of every size and shape deck their hulls and light up the night with their creativity and originality to the delight of locals and visitors alike. Santa Claus has been spotted at the helm, ditching his sleigh for a center console or sailboat with mistletoe hanging from the mast. His first mates have included gingerbread men and the Grinch. Other times, dolphins have replaced cold-weather reindeer, ushering in Santa’s sleigh packed with lighted presents. Festivities start at 6 p.m. and the parade begins at 8 p.m. Boats will come into the Key West Bight and pass in front of the judges’ stand at Schooner Wharf. Live music all evening. Captains’ meeting is Friday, December 11. $20,000 in cash and prizes in 12 categories. Awards ceremony is Sunday, December 13. To register your boat, which costs $25, or for more information, please call (305) 292-3302 of visit http://www.schoonerwharf.com.
- December 25, 2015 – HOLIDAY – Christmas in Key West 2015 – Whatever gift you wish for, spending Christmas in Key West might be at the top of the list. While it never snows, and sometimes a palm tree is substitued for a traditional tree, there still is plenty of Christmas spirit in Key West. Look for historic homes that have added twinkle and magic with lights and displays. And to all a good night!
- December 31, 2015 – CELEBRATION – Key West New Year’s Eve – Celebrations include the lowering of the Conch Shell over Sloppy Joe’s on lower Duval Street, the lowering of famous Key West drag queen Sushi (riding a huge high-heeled shoe) over the Bourbon Street Complex on upper Duval Street, and the lowering of the “pirate wench” from the mast of a schooner in the Historic Seaport.
If you know of any Key West calendar events that we have overlooked please let us know by filling out this short form and we’ll quickly add it. And check back frequently – since more dates and details will be added as the season progresses.
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