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Category: Key West News

KEY WEST STUDENT CHOSEN AS 1 OF 50 ‘FREEDOM WRITERS’ WORLDWIDE

When their struggles became stories, young writers became warriors. Remember the 2007 movie, “Freedom Writers,” with Hilary Swank as California teacher Erin Gruwell, who transformed a class of students that others had deemed “unteachable?”  The movie’s true story about Gruwell’s high school initiative that turned at-risk students into authors has grown exponentially into a global curriculum that trains teachers to transform students by introducing them to relevant reading material and the emotional release of writing. Claire Schoonover, a Key West High School sophomore, was recently chosen...

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PETER MAX’S ICONIC ART NOW AVAILABLE IN KEY WEST

Peter Max’s world didn’t always include the Rolling Stones, Aerosmith, Bruce Springsteen and Super Bowl stars. His life wasn’t always as vibrantly reassuring as the iconic paintings in signature colors that would come to define the artist — and an entire pop art movement. The artist who has painted for six U.S. presidents, five Super Bowls and countless rock stars was born Peter Max Finkelstein in October 1937 in Berlin, Germany. His parents fled the Nazi regime a year later, moving among China, Israel and Paris. The family finally settled in Brooklyn, New York when their son, now known simply...

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HOGFISH BAR & GRILL IN KEY WEST HOSTS CRAWDAD FESTIVAL

The Hogfish Bar & Grill is spicing things up on Saturday, May 15 for its first-ever Crawfish Festival, featuring the freshwater crustaceans that resemble miniature lobsters and turn bright red when cooked. Hogfish owner Bobby Mongelli is having 400 pounds of live Louisiana crawfish flown in for Saturday’s traditional crawfish boil that should start around 2 p.m. “A guy who does these things all the time, who’s from Louisiana and was the chef at House of Blues in New Orleans, approached me last year and asked if he could do a crawfish boil here at the Hogfish. I said, ‘Absolutely,’” Mongelli...

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BREAKING NEWS: LOCAL TEEN ARRESTED FOR HAVING GUN ON SCHOOL BUS

Key West Police Department reported the following about an incident that occurred Wednesday morning: On Wednesday, May 12, 2021, Key West Police received information about a teen who had a gun in his waistband when he boarded the school bus on Cudjoe Key Wednesday morning. When the bus arrived at Key West High School, the student got off the bus and walked off campus. The teen attends Somerset Island Prep, a charter high school less than a block from Key West High School. (The same school bus is used by students attending both schools.) The teen skipped school on Wednesday and was found by police...

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ROADWORK TO FIX FLOODING IN KEY WEST

A major road project is underway to fix flooding issues on Key West’s Bertha Street, which runs from Smathers Beach to Flagler Avenue. The project will also include improvements on 1st Street, which is the continuation of Bertha Street, from Flagler Avenue to North Roosevelt Boulevard.  Monroe County started the 1st Street and Bertha Street project last month. The two roads will be rebuilt and resurfaced. A new stormwater collection system will be installed on Bertha Street and the stormwater system on 1st Street will be improved.  In addition, the county partnered with the City of...

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RACIAL SLUR AT SUGARLOAF SCHOOL CONFIRMED BY SCHOOL DISTRICT

School district officials acted quickly on May 7 to investigate allegations of racism at Sugarloaf School.  “We have zero tolerance for bullying and harassment in our schools,” Superintendent Theresa Axford told the Keys Weekly at 6 p.m. that day. Investigators then interviewed 23 students and four employees.  “Action needs to be taken and will be taken,” the lead investigator told the student’s mother, Jwanna Powell on Wednesday, May 12. Superintendent Theresa Axford told the Keys Weekly investigators had “confirmed inappropriate use of a racial slur.” Axford added that students and...

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KEY WEST WANTS BIKE LANE ON BOTH SIDES OF BEACH ROAD

The city of Key West has hired consultant Bob Slavin to help find a new city manager. Slavin, who is based in Atlanta, will be in Key West in the next week or two to meet with each commissioner to design a recruitment profile for the desired qualifications in a candidate. “After we create that profile, the process usually takes about 30 days until you’re interviewing candidates,” Slavin said, adding that his company offers a guarantee that any candidate he places will stay on the job at least two years or he will perform another search at no charge. Slavin emphasized that his process is tailored...

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OPINION: ‘LOVE’ ISN’T A STRONG ENOUGH WORD FOR MOMS

 ‘Love’ isn’t strong enough. Our language is woefully inadequate. How can the word that describes our affection for, say, a favorite sweatshirt, be the same one we use for the woman who is our everything?  Not only is the word inadequate, but also shamefully overused. We need a stronger, better, more descriptive word for the love between a mother and child. Sure, “love” works for little kids drawing hearts with crayons. But as those kids become adults, we realize the sacrifices this woman has made. The worries we caused. The school projects we forgot until the night before and the...

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BREAKING NEWS: SCHOOL DISTRICT INVESTIGATING RACISM ALLEGATIONS

School district officials acted quickly on Friday to investigate allegations of racism at Sugarloaf School.  “We have zero tolerance for bullying and harassment in our schools,” Superintendent Theresa Axford told the Keys Weekly at 6 p.m. Friday after confirming that an investigation is underway. She added that the school district “will cooperate with law enforcement to solve this.”  Jwanna Powell, the mother of two Black students at the school — one in middle school and one in elementary — told school officials and the Keys Weekly about the two incidents after she had spoken with her daughter...

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KEY WEST AIRPORT READIES FOR $80M UPGRADE

Despite the beloved island charm of Key West International Airport, the days of passengers walking across the tarmac when arriving and departing soon will be gone. Richard Strickland, Monroe County airports director, presented plans at a meeting on April 27 for a new concourse at the Key West airport that will include a new security checkpoint, new gates, a new “hold room” for departing passengers, new concessions, a new baggage claim area and glass-enclosed jet bridges, or jetways, to connect the planes with the building.  The targeted completion date is October 2024. “There will be much more...

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