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Have  you Run with the Bulls? Do It at the Hemingway Days Festival

Updated on: Jun 19, 2023 4:25:20 PM

What do you get when you combine one literary great, a 3-day marlin tournament, the running of the bulls (not real ones though), look-a-like contest for white-bearded men, book readings and signings, a street fair and an arm-wrestling contest????  July's Hemingway Days, of course.

Each July about 15,000 people hit the streets as Old Town Key West is transformed back in time to Papa Hemingway's Town, with all the flair, color and excitement that Ernest Hemingway adored.

Hemingway's Home and Museum is just one  of those must-do's for any Key West getaway.  Whether Hemingway-Contest-FiveFinalist-Sloppy-Joesyou're here for the festival or visiting at any other time of the year.  Located in the heart of Old Town. Hemingway lived and wrote on Key West for more than ten years.  Arriving in 1928 by way of Havana, Cuba. The first novel that he finished here was the semi-autobiographical novel A Farewell to Arms.   Throughout his life and spanning 3 wives, he lived in Key West off and on until his death in 1961.

Today, we celebrate him with a collection of zany and eclectic events that he surely would have loved to have seen in person.

Photo Credit: Sloppy Joes - Key West

Things to do in Key West

  • Countless literary confabs, that discuss every book, work or aspect of his life
  • A 3-Day Fishing Tournament for the great Marlin, with prizes over $50,000
  • Hemingway Look-a-Like Contest judged by past winners - for all you older, white-bearded types
  • The Lorian Hemingway Short Story Competition
  • Caribbean Street Fair - Duval Street closes down to the annual favorite open air market: Caribbean arts, crafts, jewelry, tropical clothing an island and ethnic cuisine
  • The Running of the Bulls - Paper Mache and wood figurines fill out the costumes
  • A 5k Walk/Run Race as well as a Paddle Board Race
  • And MUCH MUCH More.....

Photo Credit: Sloppy Joes - Key West

Hemingway-Days--2019-Winner-Joe-MaxeycropNo matter what your interest in Ernest Hemingway is, you can find it all in Key West and maybe even sit in the same spot, in Sloppy Joes, where Ernest spent many an afternoon..


Looking for more great things to do in Key West? Key West Brewfest, Lobster Fest or the Key Lime Festival?  Check out all these great things to do all year long.

Hero Image Photo Credit: - Andy Newman, Fla Keys News Bureau

Topics: Activities

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