October 31, 2005 |
The weekend after Hurricane Wilma swamped most of this tropical island city with an average of 4 feet of seawater, the party was on again for tourists in downtown Key West. Sloppy Joe's bar was packed by Saturday night, dancers at Victoria's, a disco, had difficulty maneuvering on the jammed floor, and some enterprising shops had already begun selling "I Survived Wilma" T-shirts. Beyond the main tourist boulevards, however, the scene was different.
February 14, 1993 |
Key West tends to cater to upscale travelers, but that doesn't mean that those on shoestring budgets can't enjoy a visit. More than 20 camping areas line U.S. 1 between the mainland and this popular resort town at the tip of the Keys. And, when budget travelers reach Key West itself, they can bed down at a local youth hostel for $16 or less per night. During spring break, this isn't a town for students to get too frisky in.
February 9, 1987 |
Four years ago, a small freighter called the Arbutus began to take on water during a storm about 30 miles west of Key West, Fla. The ship sank in 25 feet. Although that development no doubt was a rotten break for the owners, crew and insurers of the Arbutus, it was another in a series of lucky breaks for Key West's light-tackle fishermen. For them, the latest wreck meant another place to fish.
December 13, 1998 |
Theater isn't the first thing that comes to mind when someone mentions Key West. To me, the Florida Keys are where Flipper lived, or the place where Jimmy Buffett chased the blues with margaritas. But for the past seven years, Key West has hosted a theater festival of some note, and this year I was invited: A play of mine had been chosen for a staged reading, and my best friend, Julie Schlenker Case, agreed to accompany me.
May 7, 1990 |
This is the city at the end of the road, the southernmost spot in the continental United States, the last island in an archipelago that dangles off the Florida mainland like beads on an aquamarine strand. The remoteness has suited it well, for Key West has always been something of a rogue's paradise, even through a sequence of identity changes: fishing village, artists' colony, naval base, marijuana port, raucous tourist town.
November 12, 2002 |
A pilot seeking asylum crowded a group of his relatives into a small, government-owned cargo plane and flew Monday from Cuba to Florida, landing safely at Key West International Airport. Two Florida National Guard F-16 fighters scrambled to intercept the yellow Soviet-made Antonov-2 Colt biplane once it appeared on U.S. radar screens after taking off from Pinar del Rio in western Cuba. The fighter pilots ordered the aircraft to land as local police and federal agents waited alongside the runway.
September 5, 1994 |
On what is traditionally one of the busiest weekends of the year in the Florida Keys, hotel vacancy signs are lit, some charter boat captains are idling at the dock and luxury cruise ships are preparing for the unscheduled stops they may be making at sea to pick up non-paying passengers. As the ragtag fleet of rafts continues streaming across the Florida Straits, the Cuban refugee exodus is raising economic havoc with Labor Day holiday tourism here.
June 29, 1997 |
When Fast Eddy isn't toiling at a waterfront deli, he's usually contemplating life from a sagging lawn chair outside a rickety trailer home, the only rental he can afford. Fast Eddy, known to his parents as Keith D. Bahnemann, is about to become history, in a manner of speaking, as the park prepares to fade away in one of the hottest real estate markets in America.
October 13, 1991 |
The first thing Ben Woodson explains as visitors climb out of his motor launch Escape onto the dock at Little Palm Island in the Florida Keys is that they ought to consider leaving . . . and just as soon as possible. It's not that Woodson, part-owner of the island that is three miles offshore from Little Torch Key, doesn't want you as his guest. Or that once you've settled into one of his palm-shaded, thatch-roofed bungalows on stilts, you won't want to stay twice as long.