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Celebration

Triplets
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Getting Ready

Each year at the end of October Key West welcomes Fantasy Fest. Trying to stay with the annual theme, painters decorate people as part of the festivities.
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We Get Ready

The group forms up for photos before the Friday "Locals Parade" during Fantasy Fest in Key West. Believe it or not, there really is a theme.
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It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas

Key West cigar lady
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Our Crew

Ready for the Locals Parade in Key West
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Real Fish

Fantasy Fest costume Key West
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Then War It Shall Be

The Conch Republic (also known as Key West and the Florida Keys) like many nations was born from trouble. The trouble started back in the dark days of March 1982, when the U.S. Federal Government placed a Border Patrol Roadblock at the Last Chance Saloon in Florida City. A seventeen mile traffic jam immediately ensued as the Border Patrol stopped every car leaving or entering the Keys, supposedly searching for illegal drugs and aliens who might be hiding under the front seats, in glove compartments, and in trunks. A Federal Miami court refused to enjoin the US Federal Government’s Border Patrol from treating the Keys like a foreign country. When the Key West delegation left the courthouse On April 23rd, Mayor Wardlow announced “We are going to go home and secede” and thus the Conch Republic was born. The Conch Republic flag was raised over city hall and the Schooner Western Union, under command of Captain John Kraus, went forth into the harbor and attacked the US Coast Guard Cutter DILIGENCE with water balloons, Conch fritters and stale Cuban bread. The DILIGENCE fought back with fire hoses and thus commenced the Great Battle of the Conch Republic. Prime Minister Wardlow surrendered and demanded foreign aid from the United States (which we are still waiting for!) The road block was quietly removed and the glorious Conch Republic was born. This event is celebrated each year with among other things a sea battle between the US Coast Guard and the Conch Republic Navy and Air Force. The sea battle is fought with water cannons while the Air Force bombs the Coast Guard ships with toilet paper, as seen here. For the past 40 years the Coast Guard admits defeat and shamefully sails back to their base. The city of course then has a parade. One year I had the admittedly very difficult task of being both an arial photographer and a toilet paper bombardier. We returned to the airport as glorious battle hardened winners.
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Curry Mansion

Always decorated for all holidays. Was a mansion but now a beautiful bed and breakfast in Key West.
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Fantasy Fest

Face painted and costumed for the Key West Fantasy Fest parade
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Parade Painted

Face painted and costumed for the Key West Fantasy Fest parade
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Parade Happy

Face painted and ready for the Key West Fantasy Fest parade
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Parade Feathered

Painted and costumed in the Key West Fantasy Fest parade
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Fantasy Fest

Key West Florida
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Dantes at Christmas

Decorated for Christmas, Dantes of Key West
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Christmas Harbor

Key West harbor.... as unlikely as it would be, snow would be a pretty addition to this photo.
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Harbor Lights

The Key West Harbor is very nicely decorated at Christmas. The reflections really enhance the lights.
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How fun is that

Wisconsin State Fair
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Eye Catching

Fantasy Fest ready
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Grrrrrrrr

Tiger Lady on Duval Street for Fantasy Fest
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Fantasy Fest Week

A celebration full of creativity and fun.
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Wisconsin State Fair

Every year in August fairgoers buy over 400,000 creampuffs.
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Festive Face Painting

Fantasy Fest primed
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Fantasy Fest

10 days of color and imagination which for a camera guy equates to a "target rich environment" in Key West.
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Be Careful

A simple Fantasy Fest costume.
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Parade Ready

In costume for a Fantasy Fest float
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Happy Halloween

Roadside WI Halloween
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Triplets

Fantasy Fest Key West
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Red Head

Interesting Fantasy Fest paint job
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Fantasy Fest – Key West

He is on a float from Tampa with a group called F-Troop. I asked what they are and was told it was a mens club that travel around the country having fun while raising huge amounts of money for charity.
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Be Afraid

If you are not into body painting, some just have their faces painted which is great. Fantasy Fest attracts painters from all over the USA for this event.
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Sea Battle

An annual event in Key West - Conch Republic Navy vs US Coast Guard
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Halloween yard art

Wisconsin
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Fantasy Fest

The look I got when I asked her if he had his face painted.
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Face Painting

Fantasy Fest
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Parade Face

Fantasy Fest
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Painted Parade Viewers

Fantasy Fest
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At Parade End

The parade ended and maybe 1/2 hour later this lone man is, I think waiting for it to come by again.
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Curry Mansion Key West

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Key West Christmas Decorating

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Sunset Performer

Mallory Square Sunset Celebration
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Fantasy Fest Face Painting

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Fantasy Fest

Key West
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Conch Republic Days

Key West bed races
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