Florida Keys Attractions in October 2015

Florida Keys Attractions

The Florida Keys offers many attractions. What to do in the Florida Keys in late October? It’s time to celebrate a celluloid hero, frolic in fantasy and experience the eerie.

It’s all about Bogie for five days, October 21st to October 25th at Key Largo’s third annual Humphrey Bogart Film Festival. John Huston’s 1948 film classic KEY LARGO, starring Humphrey Bogart & Lauren Bacall, brought cinematic fame to this Florida Keys island paradise. Their son, Stephen Bogart, returns as festival host for the third straight year. Joining him is the “Czar of Noir,” Eddie Muller, an acclaimed novelist, biographer and film historian. The 2015 festival honors the very best of Bogie’s films and celebrates the life of his wife and frequent co-star, Lauren Bacall. Special guests include Monika Henreid, film documentarian and daughter of Bogie’s “Casablanca” co-star Paul Henreid, who played Victor Lazlo in the film classic. Events include indoor and outdoor screenings of Humphrey Bogart’s films, cocktail receptions, round table discussions, Saturday evening dancing and dining, and, finally, a closing brunch overlooking the breathtaking waters of the Florida Keys. In between catching a movie or attending an event, Bogie fans can take a cruise on the original African Queen, which makes its homeport in Key Largo, docked at the Holiday Inn at MM 100.

“All Hallows Intergalactic Freak Show” is the theme of Key West’s annual Fantasy Fest, Oct. 23 through Nov. 1. It’s an annual party in paradise for grown-ups as fun-loving revelers from around the globe attend or compete at masquerade balls, costume contests, parties and uninhibited escapades. There are over fifty events this year, some free, some paid, all making Fantasy Fest the wildest extravaganza around! Fantasy Fest kicks off Friday the 23rd with the Bahama Village Goombay Festival, a free, family-friendly two-day event showcasing island arts and crafts, music, and food.

Paid Fantasy Fest events include King Neptune’s Curse: Aliens vs. Coast Guard on the US Coast Guard Cutter Ingham at the Truman Waterfront where the fate of you and the ship hangs in the balance for seven nights. The King and Queen of Fantasy Fest are crowned at the Royal Coronation Ball at the Southernmost Beach Cafe on Friday during a two-hour stage show benefiting the non-profit, AIDS Help. Womankind’s Brazaar at the Studios of Key West on Wednesday, is a high-energy decorated bra auction featuring stunning women modeling outrageous artistic designs created by local artists to benefit Womankind’s free breast cancer screenings and exams. On Thursday, don’t miss the 33rd Annual Headdress Ball at the Truman Waterfront. The Key West Business Guild’s fundraising extravaganza features amazing designs and great entertainment.

Popular free Fantasy events include Tuesday’s Capt. Tony’s Saloon’s Party in Plaid that caters to all exotic lifestyles and fantasies. You’ll see a magic carousel of frisky pets and playful owners all delightfully disguised at the Pet Masquerade, Wednesday. They’ll stroll, dance and even skateboard across Casa Marina’s outdoor stage in a fun frolic for fame, fortune and to benefit the Lower Keys Friends of Animals. The Original Homemade Bikini Contest Thursday at Sunset Pier shows off the creativity and attention to detail of these works of art. A bevy of beauties display imagination and ingenuity as they vie for cash and prizes. Join the crowd of thousands parading Friday afternoon at the Masquerade March. It’s Fantasy Fest’s most all-inclusive street party as the march takes over the Southernmost City. At night, professional body painting artists take to the Ocean Key Sunset Pier stage at the 15th annual Living Art Airbrush Expo. Contestants will use the human form as a living canvas for artistic expression in competition for cash and prizes.

The grand finale of this wild ten-day spectacle is Saturday, Halloween night, at the 3Wishes.com Fantasy Fest Parade. 70,000 exuberant partygoers flock to Key West as glittering floats, outrageous costumes, and dazzling dance groups roll down Duval Street. Go to www.FantasyFest.com for festival information.

Last but not least in this late October things to do in the Florida Keys we visit the Middle Keys for Crane Point Hammock’s Creepy Carnival on Friday October 30th. Crane Point’s Haunted House will be inhabited by ghosts, ghouls and freaky characters to set a spooky tone for the year’s eeriest holiday. The fright-fest begins at 6 p.m., at the 63-acre Crane Point Hammock, located at MM 50.5 bayside in Marathon. Geared toward youngsters age 12 and under, the fright-filled fun is free to the public. For information, call 305-743-3900.