Events in Key West
Event calendar provided with the courtesy of the Monroe County Tourist Development Council.
Chiefly known as a playwright, Tennessee Williams also had an artistic flair for painting. To mark the 30-year anniversary of his death, the Custom House is exhibiting a number of Williams' paintings revealing a different facet of his life and his talents. Custom House Museum is located at 281 Front Street, and open daily 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., closed Christmas.
This stunning annual art exhibit showcases the work of leading contemporary sculptors on the grounds of West Martello Tower, home of the Key West Garden Club, and the surrounding Higgs Beach. Contemporary sculptures in a wide variety of traditional and experimental media enhance the land and seascapes. Visit website for more information.
Emerging local artist and graphic designer Marky Pierson is to exhibit new paintings and designs focusing on three distinct categories: 'Conch Night' Series featuring the Hemingway House, Custom House and Curry Mansion; 'Squishy Femme' Series explores soft, squishy and everything womanly; 'Graphic Design' Series features graphic posters of iconic Key West images and large format paintings inspired by vintage tourism posters. Custom House Museum is located at 281 Front Street, and open daily 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Winner of the 2011 Pulitzer Prize and the 2012 Tony Award for Best Play. This comedy explodes in two outrageous acts set fifty years apart. Act One takes place in 1959, as nervous community leaders anxiously try to stop the sale of a home to a black family. Act Two is set in the same house in the present day, as the now predominantly African-American neighborhood battles to hold its ground in the face of gentrification. Directed by Carole MacCartee. Visit website for show dates, times and tickets.
The Florida Keys have historically been an alluring travel destination for travelers around the world. With the onset of the Great Depression in the 1930s, tourism in Key West was the lynchpin in warding off bankruptcy. This exhibit explores the history of tourism in the Florida Keys from the 1920s until the 1980s while focusing specifically on transportation, accommodation, travel brochures and postcards. Custom House Museum is located at 281 Front Street, and open daily 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
MFMM recently opened its new Coins of the New World exhibit, the story behind the now infamous 'pieces of eight.' Join MFMM's guest lecturer Carol Tedesco, author of "Treasure Coins of the Nuestra Senora de Atocha and the Santa Margarita," as she shares her extensive knowledge about the coins found at the shipwrecks Atocha and Santa Margarita. Free lecture starts at 6:30 p.m., in the Museum Coin Gallery, 200 Greene Street. Public welcome, chairs provided.
Contact: Corey Malcom 305-294-2633 ext 20
Fifteen target species and $5,000 in cash prizes highlight this open-to-the-public event, heralding the beginning of more than eight months of exciting Keys fishing. Cash awards await individual participants who catch the heaviest dolphin, kingfish, cobia, blackfin tuna, mackerel, mutton snapper, wahoo, mangrove snapper and grunt, and for boat teams that score the most releases of tarpon, permit, bonefish, barracuda, marlin and sailfish. Junior anglers under age 15 can also fish. Entries in the kickoff also are eligible for the Key West Fishing Tournament, which runs through Nov. 30, 2014.
Contact: Rob Harris 305-587-6718
The Great Egg Hunt and Wild Bird Show! From 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., this family-friendly educational event creates awareness and appreciation for the birds that visit the Garden. Enjoy educational activities, egg hunts, arts and crafts, games, live bird presentations and much more. Admission is $5 per person, Botanical Garden members are admitted free.
Feel like running across a bridge in the Florida Keys without waking up early or breaking a sweat? Join us for the inaugural Cow Key Channel Bridge Run - the only Zero K Run in the Florida Keys, just for fun. Pre-register on April 4 from 5-8 p.m., and get your t-shirts, bibs @ The Green Parrot. A $5 pre-registration includes an official number bib and finish line bonus gift. Monies raised are to benefit the Monroe Sheriff's Animal Farm, located on Stock Island.
The crowd-pleasing MADE IN KEY WEST BAND rocking through a collection of country, cowboy, folk, rock, and blues music including original compositions about legendary characters in Key West history is back by popular demand, John Wells heads up the musical group with Gary McDonald, George Halloran, Tom Murtha and music legend Paul Cotton of the seminal seventies band, POCO. Five performances only; visit website for show dates, times and tickets.
More than 40 species of fish are targeted during these months, with divisions for men, women, junior anglers (ages 10 to 14) and Pee Wees (under 10 years old). The Key West Fishing Tournament strongly encourages the release of game fish. All participating anglers receive certificates noting their catches and qualify for a variety of prizes.
Contact: Rob Harris 305-587-6718; Doris 305-295-6601
Winner of the Drama Desk Award for Best Play, Souvenir is the true story of Florence Foster Jenkins, a tone-deaf woman who is convinced she is an operatic diva. Using her own fortune, she teams up with a mediocre accompanist, Cosme McMoon, in the hope of achieving success. Wickedly funny and full of heart. Showtime 8 p.m.
Contact: Box Office 305-294-5015
From 4-6 p.m., join Carol Tedesco, Roberta DePiero and Jane Newhagen who will present their new release, 'After Life - Images from the Key West Cemetery' at a public book launch and signing event at Salute on the Beach, 1000 Atlantic Blvd. With photography by Tedesco and DePiero and prose by Newhagen, 'After Life' captures the island's unique final resting place in all its poignance, character and eccentricity.
Between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. each day, the Key West Garden Club features five delightful gardens to explore. Tickets are $20 per person and can be purchased at any of the individual gardens or at the Garden Club at West Martello Tower. Visit website for more information.
Open between 1 - 3 p.m., the Sheriff's Animal Farm invites you to bring the family and visit the animals at the farm, including horses, a cow, pigs, goats, bunnies, alligators, tropical birds, a Kinkajou, Sloths, a Lemur, Kramer the Emu, a family of Patagonian Cavys, tortoises and turtles, snakes and many more. It is free of charge (donations are welcome). The farm is located just off of College Road, on Stock Island, at the Sheriff's Office Headquarters complex. Groups may schedule special tours at the farm by calling ahead. Visit the Farm on Facebook! The Animal Farm is open every second and fourth Sundays of the month.
Contact: Farmer Jeanne Selander 305-293-7300
Scores of area restaurants present mouthwatering samples of their cuisine to benefit AIDS Help Inc. The culinary celebration takes place at the Truman Waterfront overlooking Key West Harbor.
The cost of admission to the Key West Tropical Forest & Botanical Garden brings visitors an added value and wealth of beauty with 19 sculptures, each made of recycled materials, and some interactive, placed throughout the garden from local contemporary artists. Garden is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily.
Enjoy as you stroll along exhibitions and receptions at art galleries and retail venues along White St., from Southard to United streets. From 6-9 p.m., the monthly Walk includes Harrison Gallery, Stone Soup Gallery, Studios of Key West, Armory Main Hall, Space 2 Gallery and more, as well as restaurants and shops. Featured this month at the Harrison Gallery, Jimmy Wray and (son) Louis Wray. Jimmy Wray assembles antique architectural elements recovered from old houses in Key West into frames for beveled mirrors, providing a truly unique stage to see oneself. Through photography, Louie calls us to relinquish thoughts of our self, and to expand our imaginative pallets into the natural unknown.
With activities ranging from wacky bed race to a lighthearted sea battle featuring tall ships, the Conch Republic's 10-day birthday party showcases the independent and eccentric spirit that characterizes the Florida Keys.
Dry Tortugas National Park will have free admission April 19 and 20, opening weekend of National Park Week. At Dry Tortugas National Park, a variety of remarkable experiences await visitors who venture out to this remote national park, including camping, snorkeling, bird watching, fishing, or just enjoying a view from the top of massive Fort Jefferson. The park is remote and can only be reached by ferry or sea plane. Park entrance fee is waived.
Contact: Ferry 305-294-7009; Seaplane 305-293-9300
This four-day challenge is to offer up to $50,000 for first place prize, $15,000 and $10,000 to second- and third-place anglers, respectively. Early entry angler fee per angler is available. Visit website for details.
Contact: Mike Weinhofer 305-395-3474
The story of those historic "mouse that roared" moments in April 1982 when Key West declared its independence from the United States. It's a rollicking musical tale of the Conchs taking on the Feds in one of the greatest PR stunts ever. Show time 8 p.m., at The San Carlos Institute, 516 Duval Street. Visit website for tickets; three nights only!