The fresh seafood that has been a highlight of Keys cuisine for nearly two centuries and the commercial fishermen who devote their careers to harvesting it are to be celebrated Saturday, Jan. 19, in a flavorful Key West festival.
The eighth annual Florida Keys Seafood Festival is set for 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. at the island citys Bayview Park, located at Truman Avenue and Jose Marti Drive. Admission to the family-friendly event is free.
Attendees can purchase and feast on offerings that typically include grilled clawless Florida lobster, fried fish, stone crab claws, smoked fish dip, sweet Key West pink shrimp and more all caught, cooked and served by Keys commercial fishermen and their families.
The menu also includes favorite dishes such as savory conch chowder and fritters, traditional flan and Key lime tarts. Soft drinks, beer and wine are to be available for purchase as well.
Plans call for other attractions including nonstop entertainment by local musicians and bands, a performance by the Key West Comparsa Dancers, raffles and the Kids Fun Zone with a bounce house, giant slide, rock climbing and more.
Vendor booths are to offer arts and crafts portraying the fishing community and marine life, as well as other items handcrafted by local artisans. Information booths and educational exhibits round out the planned offerings.
Proceeds from the festival benefit the Florida Keys Commercial Fishermens Association and scholarships for college-bound children of commercial fishermen.
Event information: www.fkcfa.org, monroe.ifas.ufl.edu or 305-872-9026
Key West visitor information: www.fla-keys.com/keywest or 1-800-LAST-KEY
Social: facebook.com/floridakeysandkeywest · twitter.com/thefloridakeys · youtube.com/FloridaKeysTV