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New Years in the Florida Keys rings in activity

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As people stir from ringing in the New Year, others are up and about running, walking and crawling the annual New Years run at Founders Park in Islamorada. The Village New Year’s Day Celebration Jan. 1 consists of a 5k Run, Walk and Crawl at 8 a.m. followed by an awards presentation at 9:30 a.m. at Founders Park, mile marker 87 bayside in Islamorada.

For the less athletically minded, festivities follow with the 10 a.m. blessing of the fleet at Whale Harbor Joe Roth Jr. Bridge, MM 84 oceanside. Boats are garnished with holiday flair and an award awaits the "best-dressed" boat. Attend the Blessing by land or by sea, but be careful as the bridge is part of the Overseas Highway. Contact the Islamorada Parks & Recreation Department at 305-853-1685 for more details.

If fishing is your thing, consider the 18th Annual Key Largo Sailfish Challenge set for Jan. 3 – 5. Heralding the height of sailfish season, each year this boat tournament is characterized by friendly but serious competition, professionalism and camaraderie among anglers who put their 20-pound test line skills to task. Up to four anglers per boat can register for the event. Cash prizes and trophies await the first- through third-place teams. Auctions and raffles are to highlight the event, whose proceeds benefit the Upper Keys' Coral Shores High School band program. Contact Tammie Gurgiolo at 305-240-9337 or email:

In Key West, Foliage and Flora at Frangipani Gallery is displayed Jan. 3 – February 5. "Foliage and Flora" is a show of new work by jewelry artist Jessica Wilson and acrylic painter Fran Decker. Wilson works with a relatively new material from reclaimed silver, Precious Metal Clay (PMC). Her latest work is inspired by jungle leaves and the smell of night air hanging heavy with the scents of flower blossoms. Fran's new paintings explored the flora and fauna of the Keys. Meet the artists at a reception on Friday, Jan. 3, from 6-9 p.m., at 1102A Duval as part of the Upper Duval Art Stroll. The show can be seen until February 5. Contact: 305-296-0440.

Finally, Impromptu Classical Concerts of Key West presents: Prima Trioey Jan. 5. The Prima Trio triumphed at the 2007 Frischoff Chamber Music Competition winning the coveted Grand Prize as well as the Gold Medal in the Senior Division. The Palm Beach News described the trio as, "a virtuosic tour de force, a whirlwind of joy." The performance is at 4 p.m. at the San Carlos Institute on Duval Street, and tickets are $20. Email: for more information.



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