Key Lime Square

Key West’s Duval Street is full of side alleys with a plethora of stores, boutiques, souvenir shops & restaurants! Key Lime Square is no exception, this is one of only a few ‘L’ shaped alleyways with entrances from two different streets.

So you might ask “What makes this alleyway different from the others?… simple, its well-balanced mix of businesses & restaurants. So many other alleys are dominated and cluttered with ONLY souvenir shops making this one a pure delight and change of pace from the standard overwhelming ‘tourist key chain’ & ‘shot glass’ themes. Pictured to the left is the long shaded walk along the Duval entrance to the right of one of three restaurants in Key Lime Square. The Old Town Mexican Cafe is one of the largest restaurants of its type and is always packed with a steady line of patrons to partake in their delicious offerings!

Key Lime Square is of course is FREE to stroll along, window shop & smell the baked, fried & broiled delights that fill the air. And YES… you can get a piece of the world-famous and namesake Key Lime Pie here at Key Lime Square! 🙂

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Capt. Tony’s Bras, Hats & Business Cards

There are many strange, weird, unique, odd & different traditions in many of the bars in Key West and the Keys but none have such a wide variety as Capt. Tony’s! I’ve reported on this bar a number of times in the past, let me recap our previous adventures: Home of the Infamous Death Chains, Tossing coins into the Good Luck Fish’s mouth, Cemetery Headstone located inside the bar, & Famous names painted on their bar stools to name a few! This place indeed has it all! This should rank HIGH on you list of must see attractions for Key West… I mean top 5 for sure!

Here in this installment of Crazy Key West you’ll see that along with the laundry list above their also known for a few other things to boot. Seen below there is a collection of bras… yes, female bras tacked on and hanging from the ceiling along with dozens of mens hats and 1,000’s upon 1,000’s of business cards stapled all over the walls & ceilings throughout the entire bar. Though there are some dollar bills upon the wall & ceiling, it’s not their specialty as in other bars I’ve reported on in several previous blogs.

Formerly the original Sloppy Joe’s Bar, it’s now called Capt. Tony’s Saloon and is located at 428 Greene Street just 1/2 block south of Duval Street. It’s FREE to stop by and wander in amazement of all of the different things packed into one street address as here. DON’T MISS IT, IT’S THAT GOOD!

    

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Prevent Scurvy “Eat Key Lime Pie”

I couldn’t think of a better way to prevent scurvy than eating an original Florida Key’s Key Lime Pie! I think I’ll take my own advice on this one and be very proactive having a GRANDE slice for lunch! 🙂

Bonus time: Click here for your Key Lime Pie recipe blogged on earlier! Yum, Yum… do I love Key Lime Pie!!!!

You can find this ‘Prevent Scurvy’ billboard at Mile Marker 26.7 bayside on US-1.

Disclaimer: 🙂 As billboards always come and go, it may not be in this location when you visit so keep on the lookout all the way down and back just in case.

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Shell’s Shell

Coincidence or not? I seem to notice things like this that others wouldn’t and wonder if the person responsible for it was that good of a thinker or just so happened to do it by accident. In this instance I think it’s the latter.

Here’s Shell’s shell, the Shell gas station has in front of it a large pink conch shell which is the official symbol of Key West. This is probably tied for the third largest conch shell in the Keys. There are many of this size conch shells spread throughout the entire length of your drive to entice tourist to pull into their establishments in hopes of you loosening your purse strings.

You can find Shell’s Shell on the corner of US-1 & Key Haven Road at Mile Marker 5.3 bayside.

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Islamorada’s Historical Hurricane House

Welcome to the ‘Hurricane House’, stop #13 on the Islamorada Historical Heritage Monument Trail.

After the ‘Great Hurricane’ of 1935, the Red Cross & Works Progress Administration (WPA) constructed 26 houses for Islamorada families. Built to be “hurricane proof,” they consisted of poured concrete and steel. Several hurricane houses still stand throughout this vicinity today. The doorways stand high above the ground (seen below in a historical photo); the foundations are 18″ thick; there are large cisterns beneath the floors to store fresh water. The cisterns hold enough water to sustain a small family throughout the dry season.

You can find this historic hurricane house at Mile Marker 81.6 just off US-1.  Turn east (oceanside) at the fork in the road behind the Green Turtle Inn and you’ll see it just down on your left.

Kudos to loyal blog reader James W. for yet another tip leading to a fantastic story! If you have a tip for a potential new blog topic please contact me with the info on what it is and of course the all important where to find it. 🙂

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Old Town Trolley’s Hanging Shark

Sharks, Sharks and MORE Sharks! Here’s another Florida Keys shark hanging around just waiting for the closest tourist to stop and take their photo with it. There are literally dozens of these in the Keys some of which are larger, smaller, taller & shorter.

Located all around town in many different locations and throughout the entire length of your drive down the Keys you and your kids will have NO trouble what so ever in finding at least one or two of these on your next trip.

To find this particular hanging shark you have to venture into ‘Old Town’ Key West just one block east of the World-Famous pedestrian mecca of Duval Street’s southern end at the Old Town Trolley Station.

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Historic Cuban Airliner Used In Defection

Want to see a part of history? It’s right here at the Key West International Airport up against its northern fence. Don’t go to the airport because they won’t let you see it… but I will! 🙂

This historic Antonov-24 aircraft can be seen ONLY by entering Little Hamaca Parks Flagler Avenue entrance and driving up the main road about a half mile down on the right. I walked up to the fence to get both of these photos, one of which I stuck thru a gap in the fence only wide enough for my camera lens on zoom to get the photo with no chain links. The  Antonov-24 (AN-24) is the most popular Soviet made turboprop aircraft in the world. You might ask: “Why is the plane still sitting there?”, here’s the funny but TRUE story. It’s still property of the Cuban Government and they do want it back… but, they are unwilling to pay the planes storage fee that has accumulated for the past 9 years & 11 months… I can only imagine what that price tag is! 🙂 This is FREE and a part of history, wow what a find this was, trying to find out the facts about it was the hardest of any blog yet… but I finally did! AND HERE IT IS… Ripped directly from the headlines of the Miami Herald, here’s the actual news article that appeared in the paper on that historic day on November 11, 2002.

Cargo plane with Cubans lands in Key West

BY JENNIFER BABSON
Miami Herald

KEY WEST – A group of 10 Cubans landed at Key West International Airport this morning on what authorities said was a small Russian-made cargo plane. The Antonov, which was escorted to the Key West airport by two U.S. fighters, landed at 10:41 a.m. K ey West Airport manager Peter Horton said the airport had advanced knowledge the plane was coming, “but not much, just a few minutes.” Horton said the 10 Cubans — the pilot, eight adults and a small child — left the ramp accompanied by officers from the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service. Horton said the white Antonov appeared to be a cargo plane. ”When we got the call that they were on the way they were already in our landing pattern,” said Horton, who added officials didn’t know yet where the plane originated. ”It’s our understanding that this is a defection, not a hijacking,” Horton said. “The aircraft is not configured for passengers, it’s configured for cargo.”

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