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In Florida City: Pack Up At Jack's

Today and tomorrow are big travel days for those of you driving down to Key West and hopefully, you'll be able to access the internet via phone while you do (or rather, your passenger should - you should focus on driving, of course.) For me and Jae, the Florida Turnpike is rather uninspiring (and those landfills can be nauseating), but we perk up as the countdown to exits rolls through 13, then 5 then finally, exit 0 (South Dixie Highway - U.S. 1.)

Once off of the Turnpike, you'll veer right and begin traveling on U.S. 1. Be warned that this is your last chance for about 40 minutes to make a restroom break, grab something to eat and drink or gas up and stretch your legs. Our traditional stop is at Jack's Bait & Tackle, which sounds like a lot less than it actually is. Yes, it's a bait and tackle shop. But there's also food, beverages, restrooms, t-shirts, hats, sundries and, oh yes, boiled peanuts. The cracking of shells and sucking of juices usually carries us all the way into Key Largo. If you've never had boiled peanuts - give 'em a try!

There is a Racetrac next door where you can gas up and shop a little more, if you like, but we like to support the mom and pop establishments that we run across in our travels and hopefully, you'll find Jack's as charming as we do.

35410 S Dixie Hwy (Overseas Highway)
Florida City 33034

Jack's Bait & Tackle.kmz (Google Earth)


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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 …