Feb 122016
Monroe County: "Affordable" Housing for the Rich

by Naja and Arnaud Girard……. A one-room efficiency for $1,836/month, a one-bedroom for $2,097, a two-bedroom for $2,358. Those are the “affordable” rates that will prevail for the rental of 70% of the 213 affordable residential units the County Commission has approved for a Big Coppitt Key waterfront development project. Those rents are defined in the code as “moderate-income affordable.”

Feb 122016
The Peary Court PAC:  Who Is "Housing First"?

Martha K. Huggins, Ph.D……. I am about to tackle the most onerous task of all: Preparing my family’s income tax. But before I take this unwanted leave from Key West’s Blue Paper for a few weeks, I want to address, “Who is Key West’s ‘Housing First’?” The Needle In a Haystack. It took longer to get the answer that question than to earlier find out “Who is White St Partners?” It just should not be that difficult, I thought beginning research on the “Housing First [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 1:08 am ~ Opinion ~, Issue #153, Martha Huggins 19 Responses »
Feb 122016
The Missing $22,000 at Horace O'Bryant School: Why Potential Whistleblowers are Hesitating to Come Forward

Commentary by Dennis Reeves Cooper……. How smart do you have to be to serve on the Monroe County School Board? This would seem to be a logical question considering the Board members’ history of dealing with internal theft of taxpayer money– as well as their treatment of whistleblowers. Surely you remember the infamous Acevedo scandal. It was former School District Financial Director Kathy Reitzel who uncovered and reported Monique Acevedo’s theft of $413,000 of School District funds. And she was also the State Attorney’s star [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 1:08 am Issue #153, Journalism as a Contact Sport 6 Responses »
Feb 122016
Being Homeless in Key West

  by Sloan Bashinsky……. There is a really different kind of homeless man in Key West right now. He has debilitating Raynaud’s disease, which causes a person to feel cold and want to live in a warm climate. This fellow said he took to traveling after his “normal” life stopped working well. On foot he mostly traveled. He told of trekking into San Diego, California with a small backpack and finding himself downtown surrounded by a S.W.A.T. team and snipers – they thought he had [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 1:07 am Island Voices, Issue #153 No Responses »
Feb 122016
Open Letter to Commissioner Jimmy Weekley

Commissioner Weekley, I am a Peary Court resident and attended your Housing First PAC meeting on Feb 4th. After hearing you speak, there is no doubt that you care passionately for city workers. The following are just a few of my thoughts as the meeting progressed. There are often unintended consequences of any project. I know that you personally did not intend to scare and/or alienate families in Peary Court; unfortunately you did. (1) If the referendum passes and the city purchases Peary Court – [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 1:06 am Issue #153, Letter to the Editor 6 Responses »
Feb 122016
Many Thanks

Dear Editor, I expect this will be an unusual email for you to receive as it’s from an ‘older’ person in England who can’t wait to open and read the Blue Paper every week! Colin (my husband) first visited Key West in 2006 and because we instantly fell in love with the Island we’ve returned three times since. Once for two weeks and twice for three weeks in late May/early June, and each time it felt harder to leave. However, since I retired we haven’t been able to afford the [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 1:04 am Issue #153, Letter to the Editor No Responses »
Feb 122016
An Attack on the Constitution

Freedom, the reason for America. People came here to escape. To be free from something. A document was created to insure that there was freedom. That document is under attack by individuals who want everyone to conform to their demands. Political Correctness, the evil that is castrating America. I, as in me, an individual, feel uncomfortable with the term “Founding Fathers”, as it is Gender Biased. The statue of a Confederate General in the town square makes me, as an individual, uncomfortable because it reminds [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 1:02 am Issue #153, Letter to the Editor 3 Responses »
Feb 122016
Affordable Housing Public Forum, Feb 23rd

The Democratic Party supports access to affordable housing for all residents of the Florida Keys. We believe local government has a responsibility to incentivize development and retention of additional affordable housing. Missing has been a comprehensive and integrated long-term approach to managing and maintaining adequate affordable housing in our community. The Forum’s Goal is to engage stakeholders and area experts, inform the general public, and motivate policy-makers and private interests to develop an affordable housing strategy and long-term action plan. This Affordable Housing Forum is [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:59 am Issue #153, Public Notice No Responses »
Feb 122016
When in Rome: "Criminal Consequences" for Assange's Tormentors?

by Thomas L. Knapp……. “How sweet it is” and “screw the UN” seem to be the major media tag lines to the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention’s ruling in favor of political prisoner Julian Assange: The former from Assange himself, welcoming vindication of his claim that more than five years under house arrest and/or confined to Ecuador’s UK embassy do indeed constitute illegal detention, the latter from British foreign secretary Philip Hammond and the London Metropolitan Police, neither of which apparently intend to abide [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:54 am Editorial, Issue #153 3 Responses »
Feb 122016
The Curse of Self-Consistency

by Kim Pederson……. The world of physicists and astrophysicists is abuzz today because of a “faint chirp.” What’s the big deal, you might ask? I can hear mockingbirds sing right outside my window and it’s a whole lot more interesting than a sound burp from an event that took place a billion light years away and a billion years ago. The chirp, if you haven’t heard (DOH!), was the sound of two black holes bashing into each other and becoming one (read more about it [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:52 am Issue #153, Kim Pederson 3 Responses »
Feb 122016

by Kirby Congdon……. God: Hello. Poet: What? God: I said Hello. Poet: Who’s there? God: I am your God. Poet: Oh, it’s you. What do you want now? God: I was just checking. Did you get my revelation? Poet: Oh yeah. I wrote it down. It’s a poem now. God: I know. But you changed it. Poet: Well– the idea was all right, but it needed work. God: You doubted my word? When it came from heaven? Poet: Yeah, I know. But it was too [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:50 am ~ Artists ~, Issue #153, Kirby Congdon No Responses »
Feb 122016
Liberating Students & A Nation From The Bondage of Self...

by John Donnelly……. Penetrating the implacable nature of invertebrate malefactors is not a task for the faint of heart. However, it can be done. Initiating a series of remedial actions via a multipronged strike upon illegitimate government and corporate practices, will resuscitate an abused citizenry reeling from the strangulating clutches of ‘exploitive authority and control’. Characterless and power driven pursuers of money and influence must be shown the door, if we as a community and nation are ever going to enjoy the liberating glow and [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:48 am Issue #153, John Donnelly 4 Responses »
Feb 122016
FAVORite People of the Florida Keys National Wildlife Refuges: Ranger Kristie Killam

In her position as refuge ranger, Kristie Killam has a strong focus on education and outreach, working with schools and camp programs, leading guided tours, and assisting with biological research. Killam moved to No Name Key in 2008 after visiting the Keys for more than 25 years, drawn by its mix of outdoor opportunities, especially in and among the refuges. “It’s so relaxing to go for a walk in the evening on the refuges after work, and it’s nice to head out to the No [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:46 am Issue #153, Public Notice No Responses »
Feb 122016
Screwed, Blu’d and Tattooed by Reef Perkins…continues…

Key West author Reef Perkins shares more of his hilarious book, Screwed, Blu’d and Tattooed by Reef Perkins ***The End of the Road*** (Click here for previous chapter) “Hey, Dad, where’s Key West?” “It’s at the end of the road, Danny.” “What happens at the end of the road?” the twelve-year old asked. Mud Lips paused to spit a ball of brown goo out his partly open window. “Well, Danny, from what I hear it’s one crazy-assed roundabout. That’s what it is. It’s a counter-clockwise, [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:44 am ~ Artists ~, Featured Artist, Issue #153, Literature No Responses »
Feb 122016
Rob O'Neal Speaker February 22

Friends of the Library Speaker Series Features Rob O’Neal As part of its ongoing 2016 speaker series, the Friends of the Key West library will be welcoming popular photographer Rob O’Neal to the podium at the Key West Theater, 512 Eaton St., Monday, Feb. 22 at 6:00 p.m. The lecture is open to the public, and admission is free. Doors open at 5:30. Seating is available on a first come, first served basis. Rob O’Neal has been a photographer and sometimes columnist at the Key [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:42 am Art, Issue #153, Special Events, What To Do No Responses »
Feb 122016
Rosalind Brackenbury’s Novel Release Celebrated with a Reading and Reception at Salt Island Provisions

On Saturday, February 20, Key West Poet Laureate Rosalind Brackenbury welcomes the public to celebrate the release of her newest novel The Third Swimmer at Salt Island Provisions on 830 Fleming Street from 6pm–8pm. The soiree will include a brief reading and reception with libations and refreshments and the artwork of Kimberly Narenkivicius. The twelfth novel in her prolific career, The Third Swimmer centers around World War II, the era in which Brackenbury was born, and “the effect of wartime on love affairs and marriages, [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:40 am Issue #153, Literature, What To Do No Responses »
Feb 122016
The Larry Smith Quartet Delivers Smooth Jazz at TSKW

Reviewed by: George Fontana……. Piano man Larry Smith has been a staple on the Key West music scene since he gravitated south some years ago from Woodstock, New York. He’s gigged at numerous venues around town, but is perhaps best-known for his long running engagement at the Pier House where he was king of night time jazz. Times change, and Larry has transitioned with the times. Inspired by the iconic Dave Brubeck Quartet, The Larry Smith Quartet includes Geoffrey Lowe on base, Tim Mayer on [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:39 am Issue #153, Music, What To Do No Responses »
Feb 122016
Pass the Salt: Photographer Jeffrey Cardenas Takes the Helm of Salt Island Provisions

Photographer and artist Kim Narenkivicius arrived in the Keys from Fire Island with her family at the age of 11, making the ocean her playground with her brother and their small Boston Whaler, “living wild and free, suntanned and salted.” Less than a year later, writer, photographer and former fly-fishing guide Jeffrey Cardenas “moved to Key West to be surrounded by saltwater.” For the next 35 years, both followed their love of salt and sea through sailing, photography, creative and business pursuits that lead them [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:38 am Issue #153, News, Public Notice No Responses »
Feb 122016
Peter Max Brings David Bowie to Key West

PETER MAX – A RETROSPECTIVE – 1960-2015 AN EXHIBITION OF WORKS FROM AMERICA’S ICONIC ARTIST Journey through the career of a Pop Culture Icon: Peter Max to Exhibit in Key West An Artistic Diversity that has Defined American Art: Captured by the Artist Who Began a New Visual Culture A newly-curated collection by artist legend, Peter Max’s exquisite paintings will be on exhibition and available for acquisition in a presentation at Key West Gallery, Key West’s premier fine art destination. Included in the Collection are [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:36 am Art, Issue #153, What To Do No Responses »
Feb 122016
Driver of the Quarter

The City of Key West Department of Transportation has named Jorge Colina Driver of the Quarter for October through December, 2015. Jorge has been employed as a bus operator with Key West Transit since May, 2009, driving both City and Lower Keys Shuttle routes. “Jorge is an excellent employee who is always available to the Department whenever he is needed,” said Transit Director Norman Whitaker. “Key West Transit appreciates his loyalty and dedication in providing professional service to our community.”

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:34 am Issue #153, Public Notice No Responses »
Feb 122016
Harrison Gallery’s 30th Anniversary Celebration

In 1986, Harrison Gallery and Music was opened by sculptor Helen Harrison and her husband, Ben, a writer and musician. Over the past thirty years it has evolved into Harrison Gallery, a Key West institution that has earned a reputation as a destination for some of the best fine art in the area. The work of the Harrison’s, along with that of a select group of contemporary artists from around the world, make the gallery a truly personal and unique artistic experience with a clear [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:32 am Art, Issue #153, Music, Special Events, What To Do No Responses »
Feb 122016
Historian and Civil War Reenactor Bernard Siler addressed Students at Sigsbee Charter School

Visiting law professor, practicing criminal attorney, historian and Civil War reenactor Bernard Siler addressed some 130 middle school and 50 fifth grade students at Sigsbee Charter School on Friday. The lecture, titled “African-Americans in the Union Forces,” sponsored by the Friends of Fort Taylor and the Key West Art & Historical Society, focused on the experience of thousands of African-Americans who served in the Union Navy during the Civil War. Siler, who has been featured as an expert in documentaries about the military tribunal that [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:30 am Issue #153, Special Event No Responses »
Feb 122016
Mud Pi Dinner February 19

The ceramics club of the Florida Keys Community College continues its tradition of raising funds through pairing pottery with food. Dinner will be served accompanied by the music of the Marty Stonely Band on Friday, February 19th, 6-10pm at the Stock Island campus near the Jay Gogin Memorial Fountain. Select your souvenir bowl produced on-site and fill it with your buffet meal; dishes will range from roast pork to vegan. Funds raised are used to maintain and augment equipment at the ceramics studio, enriching the [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:26 am Issue #153, Special Events, What To Do No Responses »
Feb 122016
Call to Visual Artists and Writers

Call to Visual Artists The Monroe County Tourist Development Council, Tinsley Advertising and the Cultural Umbrella of the Florida Keys & Key West are calling artists to submit artwork for the Culture 2017 magazine cover and interior. Culture 2017 magazine, an annual publication, is distributed to galleries, chambers of commerce and arts organizations throughout the Keys. It is also the insert in the In-room Concierge publication in over 3,900 guestrooms within the Keys reaching over 500,000 visitors annually. The magazine includes information on the Keys’ [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:24 am Art, Issue #153, Literature, Special Events, What To Do No Responses »
Feb 122016
Valentine’s Day Weekend Pop-up Exhibit at Stock Island Yacht Club to Feature Authentic Island Art Collections

Island art & antique collectors take note: Valentine’s Day Weekend—February 12-14—will be serenaded by the art collections of Ros Brackenbury, Diane Zolotow, and accompanying select artists in “Collections, Key West”— the second in a series of pop-up exhibits at 6810 Front Street, Stock Island, at Safe Harbor Marina’s Stock Island Yacht Club on Friday 6:00pm-9:00pm, Saturday 12:00pm-9:00pm, and Sunday 10:00am-9:00pm. “Look for the red doors, just beyond Hogfish Bar & Grill where Shrimp boats, palm trees and random anchors line the docks,” says organizer Karen [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:22 am Art, Issue #153, What To Do No Responses »
Feb 122016
Florida Keys Council of the Arts Cultural Calendar

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 11 thru WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 17 Visit keysarts.com, Cultural Calendar for more listings and events throughout the Keys.   Key West Happenings ARTISTS RECEPTIONS/EXHIBITIONS Friday Christine Fifer Artist Presentation, 4 PM Membership meeting at 3:30 p.m. Key West Art Center, 301 Front St. 305-294-1241. keywestartcenter.com   Friday-Sunday Collections Key West, 6-9 PM & 12-9 PM Local private art and antique collections are resurfacing and being made available via periodic shows. Our second show focuses on the collections of Diane Zolotow and Ros Brackenbury. Also [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:20 am Art, Issue #153, Literature, Music, Special Events, Theater, What To Do No Responses »
Feb 122016
OIRF Fundraiser for Historic Preservation

February 12th and 13th, Old Island Restoration Foundation continues its 56-year tradition of raising funds in support of historic preservation through House Tours. This month, five residence and a church that represent Key West’s rise from a hard-bitten seaport to a desirable tourists and retirement destination will be open from 10am to 4pm. Info and tickets at www.oirf.org.

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:18 am Issue #153, Special Events, What To Do No Responses »
Feb 122016
Gardenfest 2016 - February 13th & 14th

There will be more than greenery at the Key West Tropical Forest & Botanical Garden on February 13th & 14th. From 10am to 4pm, vendors of plants, natural products, art, crafts, entertainment and refreshments will gather by lake as part of Gardenfest 2016. Enjoy the natural setting while you select a last-minute Valentine’s gift, have lunch, or enjoy live music. Young ones can have fun learning at the Kids Science Corner while parents enjoy an adult beverage or attend a presentation on environmental topics. Of [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:16 am Issue #153, Special Events, What To Do No Responses »
Feb 122016
Distinguished Speaker Dan Burkhardt Reveals the Relationship Between the Everglades and the Florida Bay

On Thursday, February 25, from 6:00pm-7:00pm, the Key West Art & Historical Society welcomes the public to the Helmerich Research & Learning Center at the Custom House for “Everglades to the Keys and the Supply of Water,” a presentation by Dan Burkhardt, author of Florida Bay Forever. The St. Louis native has had a home in Islamorada for nearly two decades and is a longtime supporter of the Everglades Foundation as well as founder of Magnificent Missouri and the Katy Land Trust, two conservation organizations [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:14 am Issue #153, Special Events, What To Do No Responses »
Feb 122016
Sunrise Rotary Golf Tournament Benefits Local Students and Charities   

  Registration is open for Key West Sunrise Rotary’s 23rd Annual Golf Classic on Feb. 28 benefiting club charities and providing college scholarships to Key West High School graduates. Sponsorships are still available and door prizes are welcomed from local businesses. The four-player scramble tournament tees off at 7:30 a.m. at the Key West Golf Club with prizes awarded for first, second and third place in each flight as well as closest to the pin, longest drive, and longest putt. The $100 entry fee gets [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:12 am Issue #153, Special Event No Responses »
Feb 122016
Go Wild in the Keys: Your Bucket List for The Florida Keys National Wildlife Refuges

Whether you are a local or visitor to the Florida Keys, there are some ways to get wild that you need to consider—and they have nothing to do with margaritas. Home to more than 400,000 acres of protected wildlife that make up four National Wildlife Refuges— National Key Deer, Crocodile Lake, Great White Heron, and Key West National Wildlife Refuges— the Florida Keys offer a bounty of opportunities to witness its unique beauty and some of the world’s most endangered habitats, plants, and wildlife species. [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:10 am Issue #153, Special Events, What To Do No Responses »
Feb 122016
Save the NEW Date: Family-Friendly “Picnic Under The Stars” with Boys & Girls Club, Key West Art & Historical Society, Mote Marine, and Womankind

Four of the island’s community organizations join forces to celebrate an evening “Picnic Under The Stars” at Fort East Martello on Saturday, March 12, 2016, starting at 5:00 pm. Participants can bring a blanket to this family-friendly event and raise a toast to the environmental, education, arts and culture, and health care missions that each organization maintains while enjoying live music, food truck vendors, libations, and games and activities for kids. Gourmet picnic baskets from select restaurants will be available for pre-purchase, and raffle tickets [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:08 am Issue #153, Special Events, What To Do No Responses »
Feb 122016
Acoustic Surf Musician Donavon Frankenreiter Returns to Perform Concert at Fort East Martello

On Sunday, March 13, pro surfer-turned musician Donavon Frankenreiter will be back to send out his breezy, laid-back vibes and upbeat lyrics in an early evening performance offered by Key West Concerts at historic Fort East Martello, 3501 S. Roosevelt Blvd. The concert will kick off with local favorite Miguel Perez. Hosted by Key West Art & Historical Society and Key West Concerts, the show is part of The Society’s “Music at Martello Series”, a program established to promote the arts and bring live music [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:06 am Issue #153, Music, What To Do No Responses »
Feb 122016

Here Come The Mummies! Key West Theater on March 6th Here Come The Mummies [HCTM] is an eight-piece funk-rock band of 5,000 year-old Egyptian Mummies with a one-track mind. Their “Terrifying Funk from Beyond the Grave” is sure to get you into them (and possibly vice versa). Some say they were cursed after deflowering a great Pharaoh’s daughter. Others claim they are reincarnated Grammy-Winning studio musicians. Regardless, HCTM’s mysterious personas, cunning song-craft and unrelenting live show will bend your brain and melt your face. Get [continue reading…]

 February 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:04 am Issue #153, Music, What To Do No Responses »