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What Is A Key West Conch?

Key West Train Tours & Key West Attractions | Key West Conch
When people speak of the Key West Conch, they may be referring to the large sea snail that lives in the depths of the Gulf of Mexico surrounding the Florida Keys. But most often the term refers to Key West natives—the first settlers and the long-time residents of Key West.

Americans loyal to the British crown after the war, Tories, were not very popular, so they fled the southern states to the next British colony, the Bahamas. Unfortunately, the British Parliament started taxing the Bahamians on their food just like they taxed Bostonians on their tea. The Bahamians said they'd rather eat conch than pay taxes and that is just what they did. They came up with 27 different ways to eat this animal.

Throughout the years, many came to know and use the term Conch to describe the locals and those who made the island their home were proud to be nicknamed Key West Conchs.


A great way to see the island of Key West, the Conch Tour Train celebrates its 50th Anniversary this year and will be a fantastic way for festival-goers to get an overview of this tropical paradise!

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Great Times!

We had a BLAST at this year's Gathering and are already making plans for 2014!  Thanks to everyone who joined us - we hope you think back on these few days and smile at the memories.  Plan on joining us again next January!

2013 Key West Dulcimer Gathering - 1/24 - 1/27

The 2013 Key West Dulcimer Gathering will take place January 24th - 27th at Casa Cabanas (2510 Harris Ave.) in Key West, Florida!  The low-key nature (pun fully intended) of the 2012 event worked so well that we've decided to stick with that formula; whoever shows up, shows up and will be welcomed with music, fun, great food and the beauty of wintertime in the sub-tropics of the United States.

No registration fee is required and with the workshops on mountain dulcimer, Native American flute and ukulele (perhaps even guitar), you simply pay as you go.  Or nap on the deck.  Or go snorkeling - it's all your call.

The dynamic duo of Butch Ross and Bing Futch will be on staff and ready to help you learn as you have fun - or is that have fun as you learn?  Either way, it's going to be a good time as we enjoy lots of jamming, an honest-to-goodness Cuban cookout, some sightseeing and whatever else may come into play;  this is Key West after all.

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The Key West Dulcimer Gathering is just around the corner and we're starting to get excited about spending four lovely days in the place that you see in the picture above.  (That's Smathers Beach, by the way, and we'll head over there at least once.)

There's no registration fee - merely point your GPS to 2510 Harris Ave in Key West and plan on showing up sometime on Thursday, January 24th.  Nothing is planned yet - that's completely up to those who arrive!  Butch Ross and myself will be on hand to lead jams, offer private lessons and see who's interested in what.  Once we have a consensus, we'll know what kinds of workshops to put together and when to offer them.

Now, if you don't have a place to stay yet, contact Sheri Cabanas at Conch Republic Concierge (305) 294-6019.

Other than that - prepare to have a blast in the tropics!  If you're joining us later than the 24th, text or call me at (407) 342-1447 and I'll let you know where we're at if …