The literary talent and vigorous Key West lifestyle of Ernest Hemingway will be celebrated Tuesday through Sunday, July 19 to 24, on the island the Nobel Prize–winning author called home throughout the 1930s.
Hemingway Days 2011 includes a popular look-alike contest, a book debut and authors’ readings, an offbeat “Running of the Bulls,” a marlin tournament and the culmination of a short story contest directed by author and Hemingway granddaughter Lorian Hemingway.
Events begin Tuesday, July 19, with a book release party for “The Key West Bucket List” by Florida Keys writer David Sloan at The Porch, 429 Caroline St. The festival's leading literary offering is the Lorian Hemingway Short Story Competition. Other literary events include “Voices, Places, Inspirations,” an evening of readings by acclaimed authors.
Approximately 125 stocky, bearded men resembling Ernest are to compete in Sloppy Joe’s “Papa” Hemingway Look-Alike Contest, a festival highlight now in its 31st year. The competition takes place at Sloppy Joe’s Bar, 201 Duval St., a watering hole frequented by Hemingway.
The “Papas” also take part in other festival activities, including Saturday’s “Photos with Papas” at noon and “Running of the Bulls” at 1pm – an offbeat salute to Pamplona’s sporting challenge featuring man-made bulls.
Those who share Hemingway's well-known passion for angling can compete in the July 20 to 23 Key West Marlin Tournament, offering cash prizes for top catches of marlin and other fish.
Other events include an exhibit of rare Hemingway memorabilia at the Key West Museum of Art & History, daily tours of the author’s former Key West home, Sloppy Joe’s Arm Wrestling Championship, a 5k race and a lively street fair on Key West’s Duval Street.
Event information: www.hemingwaydays.net
For more information about top events in Florida take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Florida.