Crane Road Topper

IMG_9590I don’t know who did it… but I love it! And ‘NO’… it was not done by the city, this was an individual expression of artistic interpretation! This is just another example of expecting anything on your drive in the Florida Keys.

All we need are the two crains fighting over a guava to make the intersection a complete total hoot!

You can find this corner crain street sign topper at the corner of Crain Street & Guava Avenue at Mile Marker 58.2 on US-1 bayside.

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Sandy Hook Memorial Found In Florida Keys!

About three weeks ago while in the upper Florida Keys I saw something out of the corner of my eye that I just had to turn back around and see what it was. WOW was I surprised and then sad at what it turned out to be… a local tribute to a tragic past. 😦

Remember Sandy Hook? Here’s a recap: The Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting occurred on December 14, 2012, in Newtown, Connecticut, when 20-year-old Adam Lanza fatally shot 20 children between six and seven years old, as well as six adult staff members. Prior to driving to the school, Lanza shot and killed his mother at their Newtown home. As first responders arrived at the scene, Lanza committed suicide by shooting himself in the head. The incident, at the time, was the deadliest mass shooting at a high school or grade school in U.S. history and the third-deadliest mass shooting by a single person in U.S. history.

You can find this personal tribute to a tragic event from 4-1/2 years ago at Mile Marker 90.4 bayside on US-1 just in front of a local nursery. Go see it before it’s gone!

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State Park Pickup Truck!

Does your State Park have a rusted out hulk of a pickup truck like this? This State Park does and is proud of it! In fact, it’s part of the island’s tour.

This former personally owned island is now known as Lignumvitae State Park. Its hard to access entrance is only accessible by boat or dropping in by parachute if you’re brave enough! The tour includes the former landowners home, windmill, storm shelter, water cistern, grave, cannon,  and of course the pickup’s rusted remains (I myself call it the “Lignumvitae Tour Bus!”) 🙂 , along with a walk through the woods with PLENTY of mosquitos so bring your bug spray… you’re going to need it!

You too can partake in an afternoon of surf and turf (land & sea) mixing up your pleasure while enjoying one of Florida’s LEAST VISITED State Parks. You can find a catamaran tour boat company to take you there at Robbie’s Marina at Mile Marker 77.5 on US-1 bayside.

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Gates Of The Keys

On The Rocks Dolphin Sunset Gate

As if the drive through the Florida Keys wasn’t good enough! On your trip you’ll see some of the most unique, beautiful and sometimes strange looking gates you’ll ever find. So let’s go gate watching or is it gate sighting… who cares, just notice and enjoy the artwork of these overlooked features. There are literally 100’s of them in the Keys & Key West.

The first of these two you’ll come to is straight out of the 1988 Tom Cruise movie “Cocktail” called Cocomo’s  flanked by the visually stunning ‘On The Rocks’ Dolphin Sunset gate a few homes further down.

You can find both of these ‘Gates of the Keys’ at Mile Marker 80.5 oceanside almost… almost side-by-side across the street from a roadside park where you can break out a sandwich or snack as you’re enjoying the awesome drive.

Cocomo’s Paradise Gate

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Florida’s Oldest Bar!

IMG_1746Can you imagine walking into the ‘Oldest Bar in Florida’, how big of a thrill would that be? But wait, where in the State of Florida can you find the oldest bar? Here’s a hint, I write blogs on the Florida Keys so that should be a dead give-a-way… It’s in Key West!

Featured here is the sign that in fact states ‘The Oldest Bar in Florida’, it’s tacked on the front wall on the right side of its main double door entrance. Be careful, there’s so much here to see and look at outside and inside that it can be easily missed if not careful.

You can find the ‘Oldest Bar in Florida’ sign at Capt. Tony’s Saloon 428 Greene Street.

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Mahi-Mahi Painted Shipwreck

Welcome to one of the Florida Keys newest paintings! And yes it’s on a boat, that’s a fish called a ‘Dolphinfish, Dolphin, Mahi-Mahi, or Dorado’ (depending on where you’re from) painted in all its glory embolden upon the side of this strategically positioned inland shipwreck. OK, it’s used as an advertisement for the souvenir shop just behind the boat purposely left out of the photo.

You can find this Dolphin painted boat in front of the Largo Cargo gift shop at Mile Marker 103.1 oceanside on Hwy. US-1.

P.S. – I personally like the painting two paint jobs ago that read ‘CONCH REPUBLIC’ (seen below)… in fact, it’s still seen on our website part of our logo-type image!

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Hanging Out & Hanging Around!

‘Hanging Out & Hanging Around’ is nothing less than a Florida Keys right of passage and beloved local tradition! Believe it or not, those who take their hard-earned vacation time away from work do their very best to take part in this cherished ritual called ‘Relaxing’!

This photo kind of sums it up, having fishing boats tied to the pier on the right with a symbol of today’s catch on the left along with a seaside band wailing Jimmy Buffett tunes as patrons sip down some margaritas oceanside! It doesn’t get any better than this mi amigos! Come try it out for yourself, I’m sure you’ll soon agree!

You can find this oceanfront paradise here at Mile Marker 88 Restaurant so named for it being at Mile Marker 88.00 on Hwy. US-1 oceanside.

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