A vacation from reality, the annual Fantasy Fest in beautiful Key West, FL is an escape into another world for the faithful who attend year after year. People make the annual migration to the tip of the Florida Keys from all over the world, coming to celebrate life and lose their inhibitions.
Centering each year’s festival on a common theme, Fantasy Fest 2011 will be known as the “Aquatic Afrolic”. Expect to meet mystical mermaids, sexy sirens, and all manner of naughty nauticals on your trip down Duval Street. In an environment that encourages participants to “bare what you dare”, many costumes will be more reminiscent of the Emperor’s New Clothes, as body paint replaces more traditional cotton attire.
It takes all kinds…
For just over a week each year, people from all walks of life converge on the tiny island of Key West to share in each other’s wildest fantasies. Professionals who have reputations to uphold back home don masks and make-up, losing themselves into the anonymity of the crowds of people who have come here to have a good time and leave the constrictions of their “normal” lives on the mainland. For these few days, societal judgment and restrictions are suspended, replaced by a sense of openness and acceptance in a common pursuit of uninhibited happiness.
What cold front?
With temperatures around the country dipping, Key West plans Fantasy Fest each year to take advantage of their incredibly consistent weather pattern. With highs in the lower 80’s and nighttime lows generally in the mid 70’s, skimpily clad partygoers can carry on well into the night without the need to cover up, nor the worry of sweating off their painted on costumes during the day. Originally designed to bring tourists to the Keys for a historically slow period of the year, the festival is now the peak of the economic cycle for many local businesses.
Kicking off the activities, “Goombay” is a celebration of Caribbean flavor and style, centered in Key West’s Bahama Village. Relying on the heritage and culture of some of the island’s first residents, Goombay represents the family friendly side of the annual festival. Offering rhythmic drum beats and expressive dance in the streets in the traditional style of their Bahamian ancestors, Goombay is definitely a favorite among locals.
THIS is Winning!!!
Throughout the week, local establishments will offer a host of contests and events for those seeking more “adult” themed entertainment. From Sloppy Joe’s Toga Party to Overboard’s Aquatic Erotic Bubble After Party, opportunities abound for tourists to explore the wilder side of life. This year’s festival will also include appearances by actor Ron Jeremy , Playboy model Kristy Morgan, and even Charlie Sheen’s former ‘goddess’, Bre Olson.
It ain’t over…
Highlighting the festival, Captain Morgan’s Fantasy Fest Parade will kick off this year at 7pm, Saturday Oct 29th. With an estimated 70,000 people set to attend, festivities will go well into the night and beyond. In a city that never really sleeps anyway, this festival brings non-stop excitement to a fever pitch. Like all things, it’s not over til the fat lady sings, and she does so Sunday night at the La Te Da Hotel on Duval.