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Tag: OnBoard

DOCK UP AND DINE AT THESE KEYS JOINTS – ONBOARD MAGAZINE

The Florida Keys have something many seaside communities don’t: dockside dining. Guests arrive by boat with no worries about where to park the rental car (although most places are also accessible by land).  It’s a great way to end the day on the water that somehow makes the appetite sharper. Here are our picks: SUNSET GRILLE & WATER BAR, Marathon This place is the rest stop in the Middle Keys largest vehicular and marine thoroughfare. Located at the base of the 7 Mile Bridge on Knights Key, the huge restaurant and bar also features a pool. Sunday Funday is an established tradition as are...

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BEST GRUB TO BRING ON THE BOAT – ONBOARD MAGAZINE

DO NOT BRING BANANAS ON A BOAT. That’s the most important lesson we learned when it comes to what people bring and don’t bring onboard. But more on that later.  Keys Weekly posted a simple question to the community: What do Keys peeps eat on their boats during a day on the water? And y’all were opinionated. Sixty people responded about their favorite nibbles to nosh on.  The winners by a landslide? Dion’s Quik Chik fried chicken and Pubs Subs (Publix sandwiches, for the uninitiated). Obviously, foods eaten with utensils are a pain onboard, especially since many boats don’t even...

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A GLIMPSE OF THE KEYS’ PIRATE BIRD – ONBOARD MAGAZINE

It is hard to think of the magnificent frigatebird as elusive, especially in the Florida Keys where, any time you go out on a boat there is a good chance to see one. Usually, when you do, it is hanging a few hundred feet above the water, turning wide circles on its 7-foot, slightly M-shaped wingspans. It is up there for the view, monitoring wholesale acres of the ocean’s surface at a time, scanning for either small fish or other birds that are feeding on small fish.  While magnificent frigatebirds may be a near-constant in the Florida Keys skies, they tend to keep their distance. At some...

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PADDLING INTO THE MANGROVES A MUST THIS SUMMER – ONBOARD MAGAZINE

I like an open water paddle as much as the next person. But I love, love, love exploring mangrove trails. It’s sort of the Keys version of hiking.  Mangrove trails are literally paths through stands or swamps of mangrove trees. Usually, the greenery meets overhead, forming a little tunnel. Sometimes there’s not enough room to swing a paddle, and I traverse it by pulling myself along by the stilt (exposed) roots of the tree. That close focus reveals so much — the tiny crabs that skitter away from my reaching hand, the pocket nurseries of baby fish, the flutter of bird wings above. Often,...

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BE MINDFUL OF MARINE LIFE WHEN BOATING – ONBOARD MAGAZINE

Summer days in the Keys are meant to be spent on the water. Crystal clear conditions mixed with hot and humid temperatures give locals and visitors a perfect escape to the Oceanside and the Florida Bay. From Key Largo to Key West, the island chain features sandbars, coral reefs, fishing spots and uninhabited islands that lure water and boating enthusiasts from all over. With more watercraft launching from ramps and marinas, it means more calls and reports of injured marine life from hull and propeller strikes. For instance, sea turtles can swim at bursts of 25 miles per hour. They’re no match...

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KEYS ANIMAL CELEBS TAKE CENTERSTAGE – ONBOARD

Besides beautiful water, great fishing and cold drinks, the Keys are famous for their resident, celebrity animals. There are numerous educational facilities that harbor animals, many of whom are injured in some way or another and can’t be released to the wild. From owls to Tursi, the dolphin, whose parents starred in the original “Flipper,” these animals have a serious following. Often, visitors check in on them year after year. Of course, locals are fortunate enough to pal around with these guys as part of their job, or see them on a regular basis.  “BUTTON”Key West Butterfly &...

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LEARN TO PAY ATTENTION TO THE WEATHER

I don’t know where you are, but it is a great day here on the island. It is partly cloudy, the wind chill is 84° F, and beautiful people fill my view from the tiki bar. Paradise is not constant even in paradise though. On the horizon a bank of huge thunder heads is building and it appears to be meandering this way. As they get closer a few people start to take notice. The harbor is packed with boats and I’m betting that most of them left some or all of their hatches open. I fall into that category. I’m notorious for leaving my hatches open if I’m not absolutely convinced that it will rain while...

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TASK FORCE TACKLES LOBSTER MINI-SEASON

If you ever want a conversation to get heated on a community Facebook page, lob out this question: “Hey, do you think we should have lobster mini-season?” Then buckle up and enjoy the ride. Keys Weekly did a search on “lobster mini-season” on a local Facebook page, and we saw a post that said, “I just want to remind people that mini-lobster season is not for taking small lobster.” Commenters responded, “I wish they would do away with mini-lobster season,” and “We never go out for mini stupid season. I hide. Too many amateurs on the water with no regard to safety.” Also: “I say close mini-season...

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WEEKLY DIVE REPORT: VOLUNTEERS COLLECT TRASH ON EASTER DIVES

By: Tiffany Duong and Justin Benson Easter Sunday looked a little different at Key Dives. The crew and community of divers all pitched in for another Trash Trek. These dives are a shop specialty, where participants help remove trash from local reefs while enjoying their beauty. Everyone is invested in the health of the oceans and has the opportunity to help with their own two hands. On the holiday morning, the dive boat was dedicated to a full-day trip. Everyone was eager and on board to dive with a purpose. Their targets were Bishop, Crater and Mosh Pit reefs in Islamorada. Despite choppy conditions...

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