The Blue Paper

Issue #71 – Friday, July 18, 2014                                          [back issues] [cartoons]

Last Day At Chapman’s House

chap tricycle

Whether ‘Old Man Chapman’ will finally be swindled out of his house is no longer up for debate.  Last Monday a red 8” X 6” legal notice was taped to his door at 221 Petronia Street.  It read:  “Final Notice of Eviction” and directed the Monroe County Sheriff to remove any person from the premises on Tuesday.

“It’s tomorrow. Tuesday is tomorrow,” said Chapman on the phone,  “Where am I going to put my things?  My clothes?  My wife’s clothes?  Our grandson’s clothes?  What am I going to do?”  It was 9:30 am.  The beginning of a long day – which was going to involve Sheriff’s deputies, pro bono attorneys, a Judge, New York bankers, someone known as “Coconut Man,” and Mr. James Matthew Chapman.  Mr. Chapman, the one-man-lighted-parade, who has been photographed thousands of times by tourists as he rides his Christmas-tree-like tricycle, blasting soul music, up and down Duval Street. [...full article]

Goombay: Another Betrayal?
Goombay Festival 2010, click for video

Bahama Village Goombay Festival 2010, click for youtube video

Conspiracy theories are running wild over the City Commission’s decision to give control of the African-Caribbean Goombay Festival to a group dominated by white businessmen.  “This decision was a slap in the face,” says Glenwood Lopez. He is Chairman of a group supported by eleven Bahama Village non-profit organizations that came together to reclaim the event.

“They took away the 6.6 acres and now it’s Goombay,” says David, a resident of Bahama Village.

Wardlow ballotOne belief is that the decision was somehow usurped during the Commission meeting and that the vote was actually a tie. In fact, the ballot does show that Commissioner Billy Wardlow actually cast his vote for the “Bahama Village Coalition.”  The only group referred to as a “Bahama Village coalition” during the July 1st Commission meeting was the group led by Mr. Glenwood Lopez. [...full article]

Ruling Allows Same-Sex Marriage In The Keys!


Monroe County Circuit Judge Luis Garcia overturned the state’s constitutional ban on same-sex marriage on Thursday after hearing a legal challenge in the lawsuit Huntsman v Heavilin on July 7th in Plantation Key. Garcia ruled in favor of the plaintiff couple, Aaron Huntsman and William Lee Jones of Key West. The ruling applies only to Monroe County.

Garcia’s order would allow same-sex couples from around the state to flock to the Keys to get married. However, Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi, quickly filed a notice of appeal Thursday, putting Garcia’s ruling on hold.

[...full article]

Does Climate Make A Difference?


Over the past weekend, I binge-watched a TV drama series on Netflix. The story took place in Seattle. It was not about Seattle; it was about a murder mystery. But the outdoor scenes showed the city of Seattle and its climate. Now, I have never been to Seattle but I have always heard that it is cloudy and rainy there almost all the time. And sure enough, the TV presentation showed that. With few exceptions, it was raining or black-cloudy in every outdoor scene. I feel sure that it was not the intent of the producers to present the city in an unfavorable way and, as part of the plot, the actors were not particularly preoccupied with the weather. That is just the way it was. They were almost always walking or running or driving in the rain. Jeez, I kept thinking, how could anybody live in a place like that?! Indeed, when I Googled Seattle and weather, I learned that it does indeed rain a lot there and that the sun rarely shines– and that many residents suffer from depression and that there is a high suicide rate. Go figure. [...full article]

Good Morning Florida Keys With Jenna Stauffer / Interview With Ms. Grace McKinnon

Grace McKinnon is interning with the Florida Keys Outreach Coaliton [FKOC] this summer as an AmeriCorps/VISTA volunteer through the National Coalition for the Homeless.  Formerly homeless herself, Grace is from Maryland and now a college student with double majors in social work and psychology.  She is serving at Peacock Supportive Living, an FKOC program providing housing and supportive services to 38-individuals living with serious mental illness. We’re sure you will enjoy meeting this remarkable young woman! Enjoy!

Click here for more WEYW 19′s Good Morning Florida Keys With Jenna Stauffer

Rose Garden Betrayal…Odious Symbolism…


Since commenting on an article published in ‘The Blue Paper’ by Dennis Reeves Cooper entitled: “The Prisoner Exchange: He Did What?!” on June 8, 2014;  I’ve closely monitored events surrounding the issues I addressed. I was determined to modify or correct my statements if necessary. As the Bowe Bergdahl saga unfolds, it appears the accuracy of my remarks have remained ‘spot on’.

Some have critiqued my interpretation of events as being lackluster and juvenile. They suggest that I’m unable to appreciate the grander scheme of our involvement in conflicts around the world. Although I challenge that notion, I respect their divergent perspectives and remain open to new ideas. [...full article]



Issue 70 bahama village for top storiesNOT ALL FESTIVALS ARE CREATED EQUAL




Mosquito thumbnailFOULING OUR NEST PART I:  Mosquito Control and the Ecology of the Keys


Issue-4-Wisteria-Cartoon-tinyjpgWho Owns Wisteria Island? Hearing Held On Fate Of Last Desert Island In Key West Harbor






2014 Amazing Mel Fisher Treasure Hunt Winners / Anthony and Kiana Porcelli
The Amazing Mel Fisher Treasure Hunt organized by Southernmost Scavenger Hunt presented Anthony Porcelli of the US Navy and wife Kiana Porcelli tonight with a treasure chest filled with ,000 in US one dollar coins on behalf of their 4 person team "Monsteras Deliciosas", which included team members Margot Koch and Shaun Griffin. Pat Croce Restaurant Group sponsored the prize and Mel Fisher's Treasures hosted the event. Congratulations, Today's the Day! Keep an eye out for next year's Amazing Mel Fisher Treasure hunt in Key West at

The Amazing Mel Fisher Treasure Hunt organized by Southernmost Scavenger Hunt presented Anthony Porcelli of the US Navy and wife Kiana Porcelli with a treasure chest filled with $ 5,000 in US one dollar coins on behalf of their 4 person team “Monsteras Deliciosas”, which included team members Margot Koch and Shaun Griffin. Pat Croce Restaurant Group sponsored the prize and Mel Fisher’s Treasures hosted the event. Congratulations, Today’s the Day! Keep an eye out for next year’s Amazing Mel Fisher Treasure hunt in Key West at

Important Fantasy Fest® Street Fair Dates and Discount for Locals

The organizers of Fantasy Fest have announced the important dates for food and arts and crafts vendor booth sign-up for the 2014 Street Fair and Promenade, to be held on Friday, October 24 and Saturday, October 25.  Early selection of vendor spots as well as discounted fees are being offered to Key West restaurants and related businesses and festival Sponsors.  Applications for vendor space are available on the festival website, Applications for early sign-up must indicate this preference and should be received by the festival office by August 1. Booth space will be assigned in early August according to the product the booth will be selling and availability of space.  [...full article]

State Recognizes Green Parrot and Blue Heaven For Outstanding Recycling Rates

Two local businesses are showing up the state when it comes to recycle rates. On Tuesday, Florida Department of Environmental Protection Secretary Herschel T. Vinyard, Jr. will be presenting awards to The Green Parrot and to Blue Heaven for their outstanding efforts at recycling. Secretary Vinyard will present the awards on Tuesday, July 22 at 1 p.m. at Old City Hall, 510 Greene Street, during the City Commission budget workshop.

FDEP has a program that recognizes businesses whose recycle rate tops 40 percent. The Green Parrot is the first bar in the state to achieve that goal with a rate of 59 percent. Blue Heaven is the first restaurant in the state to achieve that goal with a rate of 61 percent.

The state program is aimed at encouraging private businesses, institutions, schools, public organizations and citizens to increase recycling in order to reach Florida’s recycling goal of 75 percent by 2020.

Bravo Green Parrot and Blue Heaven!!

Southernmost Car Club Holds Monthly Ice-Cream Social and Car Show, July 19th


The Florida Keys Southernmost Car Club (FKSCC) holds its monthly ICE CREAM SOCIAL AND CAR SHOW this Saturday, July 19th. 5 to 8pm in the evening when its cool. This event is for the lovers of classic, custom, and street rod automobiles of all years and makes. Fords, Chevys, trucks, sports cars, and chrome loaded motorcycles. If it cool and on wheels it will be here.

This fun evening event  at  at our great location at the Sugarloaf Lodge, MM17, on Sugarloaf Key. Prizes, 50/50 Free Ice Cream and cold beverages are available for purchase at the Tiki Bar. Bring the kids to enjoy these beautiful relics of the auto world. Vote for the People’s Choice and that classic will take home a beautiful Plaque! This is a FREE event. NEW Tshirt design is here.

Club members are seeking new members for a full schedule of Club events. For more information contact Dick Moody 942-1758.

Islamorada Author, PJ Royal, Celebrates New Book Release: Roostica Restaurant, Tuesday July 22, 2014

killing the bee

Join Author P.J. Royal in celebrating the release of her new novel, “Killing the Bee King” at Roostica Restuarant on Tuesday July 22, 2014 from 5-8 PM.

The new novel is a wonderful piece of historical fiction:

Against a backdrop of escalating tension, in an England mismanaged by inept leadership, Napoleon Bonaparte is silently massing battle-hardened troops along the French coast in anticipation of a cross-Channel invasion. While Ireland violently protests English oppression, an unlikely hero emerges in the form of an Irish bare-knuckle boxer by the name of Wolfe Trant. Recruited from the depths of Newgate Prison by William Pitt, an ex-prime minister who now operates a covert spy ring, Wolfe’s agenda is to infiltrate Napoleon’s inner circle to determine the intended point of invasion. Wolfe is forced to partner with the enigmatic leader of the French Resistance, a woman known only as Primrose, as the two are pursued through the streets of Paris by the sinister minister of police. Hounded by larger political and economic forces that have a vested interest in their failure, Wolfe and Primrose are forced to redefine their ideas of trust and loyalty as they race against time to defeat the strategically brilliant plans of Bonaparte.

Please join us for a brief reading and celebration of the release of this novel. If you are unable to make it, the book is available via Barnes & Noble and, but why not come out, meet the author and get your copy signed.

Leadership Monroe County Class XXIII Recruitment and Reception July 24 at the New Islamorada Resort

Leadership Monroe County invites the public to the next and last of three social receptions to introduce the program for the upcoming Class XXIII which begins in October and meet alumni and Board, Thursday, July 24, at The Islamorada Resort, 80001 Overseas Hwy, Islamorada, at 5:30-7:30. 

Applying Class members will learn about the 2014-15 sessions, and the scope, mission and benefits of becoming part of this county-wide program which seeks to build relationships for constructive alliances among Florida Keys leaders in the public and private sectors. [...full article]

Key West Mayoral Candidates Q&A Forum Scheduled for July 29th

The Key West Golf Course Homeowners Association will be hosting a Mayoral Candidates Question and Answer Forum on Tuesday, July 29th at 6:30 pm.  This event is open to all citizens of Key West.

The Forum will be held at the Key West Golf Course’s clubhouse.  There will be a cash bar available and the event is anticipated to last approximately 90 minutes.

Jenna Stauffer of WEYW-TV, the co-host and co-producer of “Good Morning Florida Keys with Rick and Jenna”, will act as moderator for the Forum.  She will field questions from the floor. All the Candidates will answer each question.  This will be a great way for the people of Key West to learn where each candidate stands on a particular issue and their views for the future of Key West.

All three candidates have been invited to participate.   Candidates Sloan Bashinsky and Margaret Romero have accepted the invitation to participate. The Homeowners Association was disappointed to learn today that Mayor Cates declined the invitation, citing a conflict with “previous engagements”.

For further information please contact the Key West Golf Club HOA at

Senator Bullard Guest of Honor at LWV Social July 29th

State Senator Dwight Bullard will be guest of honor at the Lower Keys League of Women Voters‘ Fifth Tuesday social on July 29, 5 till 7 p.m. at the New York Pasta Garden in Duval Square.

Senator Bullard is a professional educator and serves as the ranking Democrat on the Senate Education Committee. In his tenure in the legislature, he has also been very active on issues of health care and justice.

LKLWV’s Fifth Tuesdays are an informal opportunity for league members and other interested constituents to get to know an elected official or community leader. “These gatherings have generated quite a bit of local interest and we know the Senator’s constituents down here in the Lower Keys will be thrilled to have the chance to hear his thoughts on the many issues affecting us, especially in this informal setting,“ said Joy Brown Taylor, the chapter’s founding vice president and current Voter Services Committee chair.

Duval Square is located at the corner of Duval and Virginia streets; there is customer parking off Simonton. The event will be held in the patio restaurant’s air conditioned party room. Appetizers will be served and a cash bar will be available throughout, Brown Taylor said, noting that Bullard would speak informally at about 5:30 p.m. and a question and answer session would follow.

For additional details, please phone her at (305) 587-7833.


Winn-Dixie launches donation program to help hungry children thrive in school

Local food banks, including Feeding South Florida, are preparing for the upcoming school year and the fight against childhood hunger. Winn-Dixie has launched the Summer Backpack Hunger Relief Program in all stores to help the one out of five children in Florida who don’t know from where their next meal will come. Customers are encouraged to donate at any store register July 16 through August 19 to help provide meals for healthy minds and bodies to thrive in the classroom. Every dollar donated will go directly to regional food banks to help fill backpacks with nutritious, fresh foods. Give a dollar. Help fill a backpack.

“As a community food provider, no issue touches the heart of our customers and associates more than childhood hunger,” said Rondel Hartwell, Winn-Dixie’s director of community involvement and charitable giving. “It’s our belief that no child should ever go hungry and that every child deserves nutritious meals and a healthy start to life.”

Added Hartwell, “the Winn-Dixie Summer Backpack Hunger Relief Program provides a quick and easy way for our communities to help give hungry children a nutritious meal.” [...full article]