05/17/2013 to 05/19/2013

    Islamorada, FL


    SAILING BOATS OF ALL TYPES (even “half-boats”) ARE INVITED!!!!!
    (Stinkpotters only if you realize in your heart that ragbaggers are right!) 




    A Gathering of Wharrams

    Hui Wharram — Hawaiian name.  In long form “Hui-O-Waa-Kaulua-Wharram”.  “Hui” means a group or gathering united for a common purpose (further: “o” means of, “waa” means canoe and is pronounced va-a with both a’s short, “Kaulua” means two hull (Kau=hull and lua= two)).  So, it literally means a gathering of two-hull Wharram canoes.  In the short form “Hui Wharram ” – a group or gathering of Wharrams.


    We are expecting Wharrams of various sizes and descriptions.  We normally have between 7-10 Wharrams and a few other boats.  Many attend every year and a few others show up as their schedules permit and their boats are finished.

    The Florida Keys are a wonderful place to visit.  Everything is close to the Lorelei anchorage and nearly everything you might need is within walking distance.  Please note that May is still high season in the Keys.  Prices are high and traffic is heavy…some of the yearly sufferings we must go through in Paradise!

    We will be anchoring behind the Lorelei Restaurant at Mile Marker (MM) 82 Bayside in Islamorada (approximately N24.55.5; W80.38).  The Lorelei is a landmark in the Keys and I’m sure that some of you have been there before.  The holding is sand or mud over a coral plate but adequate if the winds don’t pick up (but bring AND — USE two anchors anyway).  Dragging is possible.  Depth ranges from 2’ – 7’.  Every year someone drags because they don’t listen!!!!!!  Don’t let us laugh at YOU this year!!!! 

    The Lorelei will allow us to use their property for dinghies if you anchor out (dock is about ¼ – ½ mile from the anchored boats).  Some of the shallowest draft Wharrams (up to about 31’) will be able to beach at the Lorelei or very close in.

    We will hold our Saturday evening Dutch-treat dinner party at the Lorelei.  As in the past there will be a limited menu.  There is live music every evening.  Food service at the Lorelei is mostly outdoors, although the bar area is covered (we have our priorities!).  Many of us will use the restaurant for breakfast, lunch and dinner.  The menu ranges from hamburgers, fish and conch sandwiches to full meals.  The food is very good and the ambience is definitely “Keysey”.  The Lorelei is both a local’s and tourist hangout.  Kayaks and bicycles can be rented nearby.  Check out the Lorelei at www.loreleicabanabar.com.

    Free WI-FI is now available property-wide at the Lorelei.  You can also use the computers and internet connection at the Islamorada Library which is a short walk from the Lorelei.

    We normally have about 50 people in attendance at the dinner and more than that stop by during the weekend.  We again expect to have door prizes from a number of sources given by drawing at the Saturday Dutch-treat dinner!!!!  Door prize details will be in subsequent emails.

    CAUTION!!!!!!  The southern 47 miles of the Florida Turnpike (and SOME ancillary toll roads) no longer accept cash, reales nor doubloons.  You must use a “Sunpass” or you will be billed by photo plate number about a month or so after your visit (a $2.50 administrative fee will be added to the tolls you amass).  Yes, even if you have out of state plates the constabulary will find you!!!!  Cover your plates with mud and the constables will arrest you…it doesn’t work.  If you are renting a car at an airport BE SURE TO ASK ABOUT THIS PROCESS BEFORE YOU BOOK YOUR RENTAL CAR.  Some companies provide the “Sunpass” gizmo.  Some add a relatively low daily fee to your rental regardless of whether you use tolls or not and some, in keeping with the best traditions of pirates, are seeking to pillage you, reportedly at $25 extra per day – tolls or not.  There may be a solution.  I have been told that you can go to www.sunpass.com and buy a “mini” Sunpass for $4.99 and it includes some toll money.  You can add money to these in various ways.  You can also buy a Sunpass windshield gizmo at a CVS or Wallgreens pharmacy or at a Publics or WinnDixie Supermaket.  The gov’mnt says it will work.  Big brother loves us!

    The Florida Keys:  Aaaarrrrggghhhhh matey!  A quick overview…the Keys (called the “ConchRepublic”) is a chain of islands (keys) connected by numerous bridges.  The one remaining drawbridge is in Islamorada.  The Keys are about 110 miles long from Key Largo at the upper end of the chain to Key West at the lower end.  The Keys curve toward the West beginning around Islamorada (mile marker 82) so Key   West (mile marker 0) is actually west of Islamorada and a little south.  Each part of the Keys has a distinct and unique style.  The Florida Keys became the ConchRepublic, when in 1982 after the US Federal Government blockaded the one road to the mainland to stop cars to check for illegal aliens, the Keys “seceded” from the USA.  After throwing stale Cuban bread at the officials the insurgents then immediately surrendered and requested Federal aid (The Mouse That Roared).  The ConchRepublic was born.  Those of us with ConchRepublic passports do allow outsiders in sometimes – but of course rapacious tribute is due.  Our kindness knows no bounds!  Getting out however is a different issue!

    What Do People Do at a Wharram Rendezvous?  We talk about Wharrams.  We tell stories…some may even be true.  We compare notes.  We look at plans.  We take pictures of each other’s boats and get some really good (and a few bad) ideas.  If you haven’t seen a Wharram, are building a Wharram, thinking about sailing and cruising for a reasonable amount of money, want to do something unique or just like multihulls (or sailing boats of any kind), or have nothing meaningful to do that weekend we welcome you to the event.  We welcome everyone…trimarans and even “half-boaters” (monohulls) too.  Stinkpotters are welcome if you are really nice!  Oh, yes, we do eat and drink a lot too!  We have fun.

    Door Prizes at Dutch-Treat Dinner:  We will again have door prizes from the Lorelei (www.loreleicabanabar.com), personally autographed books from Charles and Corinne Kanter (www.sailcopress.com), from Frank Papy (www.crusingguidetothefloridakeys.com), from Scott B. Williams (www.scottbwilliams.com), a host of items from Bob Bitchin and Lattitudes and Attitudes magazine (www.seafaring.com), and Tiki 26 Study Plans and other swag from David Halliday at www.boatsmithfl.com.  All attendees will also be provided with a copy of the latest issue of South Winds Magazine (www.southwindsmagazine.com), and information from the Free Press and the Islamorada Chamber of Commerce.

    The Event’s Plan: There isn’t one.  We meet, we see old friends and make new ones, we take dinghies out to the boats to look them over and we eat and drink when we want to.  Everything is at your option and schedule except for the Saturday evening Dutch-treat dinner schedule.  Last year we also had seminars by the authors of the books that we had as door prizes and I hope we can repeat that again this year.  We do our best to be sure you see all the boats you want to see and talk with their owners.  Oh, yes, did I mention that we eat and drink a lot too…wouldn’t want to forget that.

    Sailing at the Event:  Some boats may take people out for sails.  That is up to the captain of each boat and the conditions during the event days.

    Bring a Dinghy if you Can:  If you have a portable dinghy please bring it.  We always need additional ones.  The more we have available the easier it is to get everyone out to the boats they want to see at the times they are available to go.

    Weather:  the Keys weather is typical of tropical islands.  In May the historic monthly average is 79 (on the cool side for locals!) and May rainfall averages 5”.  Wind is normally around 10 from the South East.  However, we have often had blows during the night from the north and that has caused some embarrassing dragging of the boats (we call the resultant occurrence “dancing with the mangroves” – so, I again say…use two anchors and be sure they are securely set!!!!).  Thunderstorm occurrence averages about 4 storms each May.  Humidity is around 75%.  All in all, an excellent chance of perfect weather!  But, do bring mosquito spray and no-seeum stuff (Bounce brand original fragrance fabric toweletts rubbed on your body work to keep the critters away).  Also, bring sunscreen…the sun can be brutal.  Having rain gear and a sweater with you is also a wise thing to do.

    OUR OUTDOOR SATURDAY NIGHT DINNER HAS ALWAYS BEEN BLESSED WITH NICE WEATHER…BUT IT IS USUALLY AT AN UNCOVERED SPACEON THE LORELEI’S BEACH…BRING RAIN GEAR JUST IN CASE.  KEEPING YOUR BURGER OR FISH SANDWIDGE DRY IS YOUR PROBLEM!  BRING A SWEATER TOO!  (We are unsure if we can duplicate the Island-wide blackout that occurred a few years ago…when chips, salsa and beer were the only sustenance available…but we always aspire to something innovative.)

    A Little More Detail Regarding Exact Locations:  If you use Google Earth you can see the Lorelei, the general area of the anchorage (very general) and my house.  Search for “lorelei Islamorada florida” and you will get close and then zoom in.  Here are the coordinates for the various sites.  Use Google Earth to get a feel for the island and the location of the other places mentioned for shopping and such.

    Lorelei Itself:  N24.55.18.63 W80.38.00.23.  You can see my Tangaroa at the dock to the north of the little hand, the beach and dinghy dock a few feet to the west and southwest of the hand and the bar/restaurant a few feet to the east.

    Anchorage:  this is general as there is quite a large area in which to anchor depending on depth and where the channels are.  You will note that there don’t seem to be any marked channels…be careful and look at the charts and ask me when you sail in.  Many channels are “local knowledge” and are used by the back-country charter fishing guides and anchoring in the channels will cause a “disturbance in the force”.    The smaller boats can anchor closer to shore but must leave a clear path from the Lorelei out to the main channel for the guides.  N24.55.22.14 W80.38.09.35.  The new seaplane bouy (white round ball near the Lorelei) is not on these photos and may not be on charts yet.

    My Beach Shack:  move across the island to N24.55.18.55 W80.37.39.22 and the hand will be on my roof.  Easy walk for showers, laundry or tenting.

    Getting Here By Boat:  We hope that you will sail in.  The Lorelei is on the Gulf side of the Keys (called FloridaBay or “the bay side”).

    Coming in on the Bay Side you will be looking for Upper Matecumbe Key (per the charts).  The Intracoastal is about a mile away from the anchorage.  On the Intracoastal turn to approximately 130 degrees just northeast of marker 84.  You will see boats anchored near shore to your starboard as you approach the island.  That is the general area.  Anchor toward the southwestern end of that anchorage…but watch out for very shallow water in some places.  Coordinates approximately N24.55.5, W80.38 (see above for exact).  Keep a careful watch for critter buoys and lines.  Please call me before you anchor…we want to get you as close to shore as possible but out of the way of local channels and away from the new seaplane landing zone.  If you have a Wharram of 31’ or less we can probably have you pull right up to the beach…a nice place to be and makes for great pics too.

    If you are coming from the ocean side you can come through the following bridges to get to the FloridaBay side:

    1. come in at Anglefish Creek south of Miami (North Key Largo) and continue South to Barnes Sound on the Intracoastal to Jewfish Creek bridge (Gilberts Marina just on the northwest side of the bridge has a good anchorage and gas.  Good food too.  Usually live music in the evenings.);

    2. through Snake Creek Bridge northwesterly of Hens and Chickens mark  (Between Windley and Plantation Key on the Charts) (around 4-5 miles northeast of the anchorage – Island Grill is there – anchor out and use your dinghy, it has good food, no gas), or;

    3. go south of the anchorage on the ocean side and come through Channel 5 bridge (Lower Matecumbe) and then sail northeast along the Intracoastal to find the anchorage (about 8 miles).

    A word of caution …you must approach the anchorage from the Intracoastal.  Be very careful.  Some marks are hard to see and going outside of the Intracoastal or locally marked (poorly!) channels can cause a quick grounding.  Grounding in the Keys is a serious issue.  If you need to be towed off a grounding the towing company must call the authorities who come to inspect the bottom before you leave…fines for damage to coral or sea grass can be huge (really huge!).  Sometimes the constabulary will visit you even if you don’t need to be towed off but have grounded.  The route is circuitous but very enjoyable…just be cautious.  Don’t try to sail it…motor!

    Getting Here By Car:  If you are driving north, you know where you are going as there is only one main road in the Keys!

    If you are coming south from the mainland (commonly known to Keys locals as the frozen northern tundra) come south on US Route 1 (the Florida Turnpike southbound ends and empties onto Route 1 going south just before you enter the infamous 18-mile stretch to the Keys – there is only one way to go – follow the main road!).  Keep going south.  See highlighted caution above about the “no cash” rule on the southern end of the Florida Turnpike!  AVOID 95 South after Ft. Lauderdale because if you take 95 South you will eventually be dumped into midtown Miami and will have to take Route 1 South for many city miles…not a good option.  Use the Turnpike from Ft.Lauderdale south!

    Be careful of the speed limits on the 18-mile stretch and in the Keys – follow the speed limit, please!  The speed limit in the Keys changes frequently and for no apparent reason…watch for the changes!!!!  There are often speed traps.  Stop in the heart of Islamorada at Mile Marker (MM) 82 that is also the location of the Lorelei Restaurant on your right (Bay/Gulf Side).  The Lorelei has a large mermaid sign and it is opposite the Islander Resort (a more prominent large high angular pointed sign on your left/east/ocean side).

    Mile Markers are the little green rectangular signs, steering wheel height, on the side of the road and they mark the distance from Key West (MM 0) to the mainland.  Islamorada is exactly half way between Miami airport and Key West.  Once at MM 82 you will find everything easily.  A landmark to watch for as you near the center of Islamorada is the Postcard Inn on the ocean side (if you have been here before everyone knew it as Holiday Isle – dumb marketing by changing the name to the Postcard Inn!) at MM 84.2 (about 2.2 miles north of the Lorelei – OK, get it…mile markers…MM?).  Once you cross over the little bridge to the immediate south of Postcard Inn you are in the main section of Islamorada (Upper Matecumbe Key) you will see Whale Harbor Restaurant (and Wahoos) on the left (oceanside) and you only have 2 miles to go.

    Flying In:  There is air service to Key West (82 miles southwest of Islamorada) although flights to Key West are usually very expensive.  Miami International is 82 miles north of Islamorada.  Sometimes there is air service to Marathon but that is very intermittent.  The best airport for the least cost and the least congestion is usually Ft.Lauderdale (100 miles north) but it is obviously a longer drive.  Palm Beach airport is also a good bet for cost and lack of congestion but is an hour farther north than Ft.Lauderdale.

    Some Basics:  Islamorada is a small village of a few islands.  The heart (“downtown”) of Islamorada is on Upper Matecumbe Key (per the charts) and the Lorelei is in the middle of that.  This is where most of the restaurants, hotels, shops and stores are.  The Lorelei, our host destination, is central to everything.

    Local Businesses:

    Ice:  available at tackle shop on Lorelei property, at locations below: Mobile gas; Trading Post food store; and CVS.

    Gas:Mobile south of the Lorelei .5 miles or Tiny’s (no name gas) north of the Lorelei .7 miles.  If you insist on getting alcohol free for your boat it is best to get it at the Marlin gas station a few miles north as there has been problems with water in the tanks locally.  I can drive you to that station.  Can also get alcohol free gas at marina at the Worldwide Sportsman marina .6 miles south of Lorelei.

    Food Shopping: Trading Post, .3 miles south of Lorelei (small supermarket, expensive, open 24/7/365 – hasn’t closed in about 20 years…didn’t even close for hurricane Andrew!  They tried to close once for a ‘cane but couldn’t find the front door keys so they stayed open…true story.)

    Library with Internet: .4 miles south of Lorelei (Lorelei has free wireless Internet)

    ACE Hardware: .5 miles north of Lorelei

    CVS Pharmacy: .8 miles north of Lorelei

    Dollar Tree: .8 miles north of Lorelei.  Everything is $1.  Has food too.

    Island Silver and Spice: across the street from Lorelei (department store)

    Latitude 25: .6 miles north of Lorelei (department store)

    Backcountry Cowboy: .6 miles north of Lorelei (bike and kayak rentals, outdoor stuff)

    Tropical Optical: across the street from Lorelei (sunglasses and optical)

    Ocean Gardens: .2 miles north of Lorelei (gifts and great selection of shells and coral)

    Coin Laundry: .4 miles north of Lorelei

    Outboard Parts (mostly Yamaha): .4 miles south of Lorelei and .2 miles north of Lorelei.

    West Marine:  20 miles north or 30 miles south of Islamorada.  We can arrange to drive you if you need something really, really bad!

    Places to See:

    1. Worldwide      Sportsman Store – sister ship to Hemmingway’s Pilar is inside (yes, a full      size antique sport-fishing boat that you can go on).  There is also a small saltwater      aquarium.  Free.  .6 miles south of Lorelei.
    2. History      of DivingMuseum – large collection of unique      and historic diving equipment.       About $12 (discounts are usually available).  1.0 mile north of Lorelei.
    3. HurricaneMonument – dedicated to the      hundreds who died during the ’35 hurricane.  Free.       .4 miles south of the Lorelei.
    4. Key West is 82 miles      south.  It’s about a 2.5-hour drive      (some very slow speed limit stretches).       If there are accidents or construction on the highway it can take      much longer.  Remember, only one      road in and out of the keys…and most of that is one lane in each      direction.  If you go, plan to see      the sunset festival that occurs each evening on Mallory Pier (OK, to make      this clear I don’t know the time it happens…it’s called sunset festival      for a reason…be there at sunset!       Duh!).  Always fun to see the      free acts, have a drink and applaud the sunset with hundreds of other people.  Maybe you will even be lucky enough to      see the Green Flash (no, not a streaker!)!       During the day walking along Duval street is an “interesting”      experience…people watching is great fun.       The Key West      motto is “One Human Family” and it is a true belief there.  If you hold very conservative values it      may not be where you wish to be in the evening.  At night you may think it is more than a      few bubbles off and it is not a place I would suggest for kids in the      evening.

    Very Good Restaurants in Islamorada (in addition to our host, the Lorelei.  But, please, patronize the Lorelei as much as you can!  Personally, I see no reason to leave the Lorelei to eat! The Lorelei has Very Good Food and Drink, Good Prices and Perfect Ambience.):

    (NOTE: Listing Below is in No Particular Order)

    There is a very nice (best in the state?) Moose Lodge about .7 miles south of the Lorelei.  Food is available (lunch and dinner most days, Sunday breakfast).  Be sure to bring your active Moose membership card.

    What to eat: You are in the Keys, eat fish!  If you haven’t ever tried Hogfish you should.  Very tasty and sweet fish.  Don’t fry it or add lots of stuff to it.  The flavor of the fish itself is great.  A “new” fish is Lionfish.  This is an invasive fish that is predatory.  We want to get rid of it.  Fortunately, it is quite good and somewhat similar to Hogfish.  Try it.  Call the restaurants first to see if they have these on the menu.  Eat a lot of it, get rid of the Lionfish, it is damn good!

    Good Restaurants include:  (I’ve put a * by my personal favorites – both because they are good and they fit a sailor’s budget.  To the lawyers in the group – these are my personal favorites, I’m not slighting anyone!!!  Twit!  I’ve left off the very, very expensive ones and a few at which I’ve really not had good experiences.  Just remember, nothing in the Keys is “cheap”!).  REMEMBER LORELEI – YOU ARE THERE.  EAT THERE!!!!

    1. *Lazy      Days – 2.2 miles S of Lorelei.       (ocean view).  L/D
    2. *Tower of Pizza — .5 miles S of      Lorelei.  (no view).  (yo’, eeeaahhh, if ‘yus frm ‘nordern      ‘joisey yus wl liek dis pizza).
    3. Bentleys      — .7 miles N of Lorelei.  (no      view).  D
    4. *MA’s      Fish Camp — .6 miles S of Lorelei. (no view).  L/D
    5. MoradaBay — .6 miles S of Lorelei.  (bay view).  L/D
    6. Whistle      Stop Bar and Restaurant — .5 N of Lorelei (no view).  L/D
    7. *Outback      – 2.0 miles S of Lorelei.  (outdoor      patio with ocean view).  L/D
    8. Michaels      — .4 miles S of Lorelei.  (no      view).  L/D
    9. Spanish      Gardens – 1.2 miles S of Lorelei (no view).  L/D
    10. *Overseas      Kitchen — .2 miles N of Lorelei.       (no view)  L/D
    11. *Mangrove      Mikes Café — .2 miles N of Lorelei. (no view) L/D
    12. *TakiOuti      — .3 miles N of Lorelei.  Take out      only.  L/D
    13. Islander      — .1 mile E of Lorelei.  (ocean      view) L/D
    14.  Debby Doo’s Deli, .3 miles N of      Lorelei.  (no view) B/L
    15.  *Bitton French Café — .4 miles N of      Lorelei.  (no view) B/L
    16.  Kayo’ — .4 miles S of Lorelei. (no view)      L/D
    17.  Green Turtle — .9 miles S of      Lorelei.  (no view.)  B/L/D
    18.  Uncles – 1.2 miles S of Lorelei.  (no view) D
    19.  *Village Gourmet — .7 miles N of Lorelei      (no view) B/L/D
    20.  Islamorada Fish Company — .6 miles S of      Lorelei. (Bay view).  L/D
    21. *Wahoos,      Whale Harbor Seafood Buffet and La Braza Brazilian Steakhouse – 1.6 miles      N of Lorelei.  (view and buffet      dinners at two of the three)
    22. *Midway      Café, 1.5 miles S of Lorelei. (no view)       B/L
    23. Burger      King, .2 miles N of Lorelei.  (no      view), B/L/D
    24. *Islamorada      Restaurant AKA Bob’s Bunz, .5 miles S of Lorelei. (no view) B/L

    There are more places to get edible sustenance on our 4-mile long island.  For example Trading Post has a good take out hot meal offering every day.  The Mobile gas station has fried chicken.  If you think that all we do is hang out in the sun, go to restaurants and drink…you are starting to get the idea!  Remember, Islamorada is a vacation destination.

    Places to Stay:

    It is possible that there may be a few births available on some of the boats.  First come, first served.  However, we will not know this until a week or two before the rendezvous.    Dan’s house is about a .5-mile walk from the Lorelei.  There is one short couch (no one over 5’ 10” will be comfortable) and the beach can hold three or four small tents (you bring the tent and all sleeping stuff).  If necessary we can add one or two air mattresses on the floor inside.  We can also park a few small pickups or vans around my property and sometimes on neighbor’s property so you can sleep in those if you have one.  I only have one bathroom with a small hot water tank so shower scheduling is critical (you supply your own towels)!!!  Cold-water washing machine is also available.  Come a few days early, stay a little while after…it’s ok.  I enjoy company.  Also, a friend of mine (yes, I have one) sometimes offers a room in his house if he and his wife are not here at the time.  If they are here they know better than to ask a Wharramite in!

    Motels/Hotels (I am no longer listing prices since they change frequently.  Virtually every location has a web site.):

    (Note: Ocean or Bay Front means the HOTEL is ocean or bay front, not all rooms are ocean or bay front and prices increase as you get closer to the water or have a greater view thereof.  Double Duh!)  (OK, you are asking why I list those that are ocean or bay front since they must be a little more expensive than the few that aren’t…it’s simple — the island is ½ mile wide and you, in nearly all cases, are either fronting the water, in it or within spitting – or other bodily function — distance of it!)

    Least Expensive (clean and old 50’s style funky Keys, basic): BEST DEAL!

    1. Sunset      Inn.  305-664-3454.  .2 miles north of Lorelei.  Bay Side. Not on water.
    2. Key      Lantern Motel and Blue Fin Inn.       305-664-4572.  .1 mile north      of Lorelei.  Bay Side. Not on water.

    A Little More (bigger rooms, more amenities, reasonable within in the “big picture”):

    1. La Jolla Resort.       305-664-9213.  .3 miles north      of the Lorelei.  Bay Front.
    2. Islander      Resort.  305-664-2031.  .1 mile east of Lorelei.  Ocean Front.
    3. Pines      and Palms 305-664-4343.  1.6 miles S      of Lorelei, Ocean Front.
    4. La      Siesta Resort.  305-664-2132.  1.8 miles south of Lorelei.  Ocean Front.
    5. Ocean      Dawn, 305-664-4844, .8 miles N of Lorelei, Ocean Front.
    6. Sands,      305-664-2791, 1.8 miles S of Lorelei, Ocean Front
    7. Breezy      Palms, 305-664-2361, 1.9 miles S of Lorelei, Ocean Front
    8. Hampton      Inn, 305-664-0073, 2.0 miles S of Lorelei, Ocean Front
    9. Chesapeake      Inn, 305-664-5403, 1.6 miles N of Lorelei, Ocean Front.

    Expensive (I don’t even list phone numbers since I don’t know of any Wharramite who can afford these three places – but they are beautiful!):

    1. Cheeca.  Ocean Front
    2. Moorings.  Ocean Front
    3. Caribbean.       Ocean Front


    The Islander, Cheeca, Moorings and Carribean are all less than a half mile from my house…it’s the same damn ocean and same view (unless MoradaBay is doing a Playboy photo shoot, then the “scenery” changes!)!  My house’s “tent on the beach” prices are better…one cold box of cheep wine for the whole stay!  Plus, you can walk onto the luxury resort properties and see the amenities.  Space on my beach is limited to about 4 pup tents!

    More Information:  You can find additional and very useful information for the area at www.fla-keys.com/islamorada/ which is the tourist website for all the Keys.  The Islamorada Chamber is at www.islamoradachamber.com.  Their Email is info@islamoradachamber.com.  Their phone is 1-800-352-5397.  The ChamberVisitorCenter is located on the bay side of the island 1.0 miles north of the Lorelei. (Note: they may be moving before May, I will keep you posted.)  We will have a Chamber of Commerce package of information available for every “family group” and it will include coupons, brochures, maps and charts.  The website listed above has a live web cam that will give you a perspective of the island from various locations.

    Registration:  There isn’t any formal or pre-registration.  This is a FREE event.  However, if you are coming PLEASE let me know as soon as you know.  A head count helps my planning and it is also very helpful to know in advance which boats will be here so that I can let everyone know in future emails (respond to this email or call me at 305-664-0190).  If you can, please let me know if you will be at the Saturday evening Dutch-treat dinner and how many will be in your party.  When you arrive you will find a sign-in table on the Lorelei beach – usually on one of the covered swings – look for the “HUI WHARRAM” sign.  We want to have the names of everyone in your party, one or more email addresses for you and how many people will be attending the Saturday evening Dutch-treat dinner.  A simple form will be provided for sign in.

    Boat Assembly:  For those of you who will be trailering your boats and need to assemble them there are only a few ramps that can accommodate a wide boat and fewer still that have a separate area in which to assemble.  The best option is Blackwood Drive.  Blackwood is .2 miles south of the Lorelei on the bay side and is flat and shallow…but assembly must give way to others who may want to launch – it would be best to assemble and disassemble during a weekday.  You can assemble in the area on a trailer and then move your boat onto the “ramp” area to launch.  We will try to gather others who are here to help you to make the process go as quickly as possible.

    The Keys “Reality”:  First, you must understand that Islamorada and the Keys lie approximately at latitude 25 degrees North…that is the latitude that bisects the Bermuda Triangle in the Atlantic and the Devils Triangle in the Pacific.  Take heed ye non- believer!

    The Keys and its inhabitants are unique.  “Different is “Normal.””  While change is coming (yuck!) the local’s places are still “kewl”.  You must understand that “reality” in the Keys is a relative term.  A few T-shirt/tourist development council phrases to help you better understand the “ambience” of the keys:

    “Islamorada, A Quaint Little Drinking Village with a Serious Fishing Problem.”

    “The Florida Keys, America’s Wholly Owned Third World Nation.”

    “The Florida Keys, Where the Weird Go Pro.”  (I prefer this one!)

    After the bigger hurricanes our national marketing campaign is: “Come to the Keys: We Are Returning to Abnormal.”  True, serious and accurate!

    More Questions?

    Call Dan at 305-664-0190 and leave a message with a phone number.  That is my home number and is often forwarded to my cell phone.  NO MESSAGE, NO CALL BACK!  Please note that the call back may be from a different number.  Or, the best is to send an email to floridawharramrendezvous@hotmail.com.



    OK, you have plenty of notice…start making plans!!!!

    See you in May.

    Fair Winds.