Key West

Two More Chinese Students Held After Shooting Photos At Key West Naval Base

Jan 7, 2020
GWEN FILOSA / Miami Herald

Key West visitors always flock to the town’s favorite tourist spots — Mallory Square, Duval Street, Ernest Hemingway’s home, and the Southernmost Point Buoy — to snap photos and record memories.

But apparently, not students visiting from China. For some reason, they seem to like taking pictures of military facilities in Key West.

Nancy Klingener / WLRN

Last February, a Chinese man was sentenced to a year in federal prison after he got caught taking photographs of military buildings on the Navy base in Key West. Now, another Chinese man faces the same charge.

Walter Michot / Miami Herald

The environment will likely be a top story in Florida in the upcoming year. 2019 has been one of the hottest on record. King tides were some of the highest recorded. And, while Hurricane Dorian skirted along the Atlantic coast, it was a reminder of how vulnerable Florida is as climate change fuels more intense and wetter storms.

Nancy Klingener / WLRN

A couple weeks ago during Art Basel, the news was all about fruit as art — specifically a banana duct-taped to the wall that went for $120,000.

But there was other fruit-related art news in South Florida at the same time that didn't get quite as much attention.

YouTube

Last month a big anniversary in the western hemisphere went largely unnoticed in the U.S.

Havana – one of the oldest capitals in the Americas – celebrated its 500th birthday. Among the few Americans at the fiesta was former Key West city commissioner and Cuba native Tony Yaniz.

Monroe County Public Library

The Monroe County Public Library system is celebrating its 60th birthday this month. But the Key West library calls itself South Florida's oldest, dating back to the 1800s. 

Lawmakers Take Aim At Sunscreen Ban

Nov 4, 2019
Nancy Klingener / WLRN

In light of Key West banning the sale of sunscreens that contain chemicals believed to harm coral reefs, Florida lawmakers are fast-tracking proposals that would undo the local regulation.

Sen. Rob Bradley, R-Fleming Island, said Monday that Key West is sending “mixed signals” to people about the importance of sunscreen and that his bill is meant to send a clear message to the “country and the world” that the use of sunscreen is encouraged in the Sunshine State.

Ron Wolek / Courtesy

Hundreds of people each year parade the streets of Fantasy Fest in Key West after having their naked bodies transformed into artwork through detailed body paint design. 

NOAA

New rules for the troubled reefs and turquoise waters that make up the vast marine sanctuary that surrounds the Florida Keys are threatening to spark a Conch-style uprising. 

Nancy Klingener / WLRN

The local legend in Key West is that a few businessmen started Fantasy Fest in 1979 because they wanted to drum up some business at the end of the off-season.

That's true, says Tony Falcone, who was one of those founding fathers for what has turned into the biggest annual event in the Keys. But it's not the only reason.

MIAMI HERALD

A passenger on a private flight headed out of Key West stepped in front of the plane Saturday night and was struck by the propeller, which severed one of her arms, police said.

Rebecca Lynn Gray, 45, of Fort Myers, was taken to Lower Keys Medical Center and then airlifted to a Miami-area hospital in stable condition, according to the Florida Highway Patrol, which is handling the case.

The incident happened at about 8:45 p.m. Saturday at the Key West International Airport.

Nancy Klingener / WLRN

There's a reason Key West was the inspiration for the song Margaritaville. The island runs on booze.

Tourists and the Duval Crawl — that’s the obvious. There are towns where it might be frowned upon for locals to start the day with a beer, or even a shot of tequila. Key West is not one of those towns. 

Nancy Klingener / WLRN

Green iguanas are invasive exotics and in South Florida, their numbers have exploded. They eat vegetation and sometimes bird eggs. And they dig into the ground, destabilizing canal banks, bridge pilings — and at the Key West cemetery, grave sites.

Nancy Klingener / WLRN

For years, the city of Key West and Monroe County have been at odds about the location of the city's homeless shelter. But they may have reached a resolution.

Sherrilyn Cabrera / WLRN

The Florida Keys depend on the coral reef tract and marine life for much more than just recreation. They're vital to the economy, contributing billions of dollars in tourism and travel to the region. But pollution, development and a warming ocean have had catastrophic effects on the environment. 

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