LOS MESCALEROS, Sweden's premiere blues band, has three gigs here this weekend. Tonight, Friday, April 20, they'll be at the Schooner Wharf Bar 7-8 p.m. to help kick off the Conch Republic Independence Celebration. Then they move down the street to the Green Parrot Bar, 10-2. They're back at Schooner Wharf Saturday night, 7-midnight. Los Mescaleros is Charlie Musselwhite's band when he's touring Europe. They've also worked with Ron Wood, Kim Wilson and John Mayall.
The annual Conch Republic Independence Celebration kicks off tonight, Friday, April 20, at the Schooner Wharf Bar, official celebration headquarters. The fun starts at 7 p.m. with the traditional Conch Shell Blowing Contest. Prizes will be given for the longest and hardest blow of the conch shell. Wanna enter? Call 292-9520 or 292-3773.
Los Mescaleros, a hot blues band on tour from Sweden, will play 7-8. The Island Junkaroos, Key West's Bahamian Processional Band, will entertain 8-9:30, followed by Barry Cuda and the Sharks, 9:30-midnight.
On Saturday, April 21, the celebration moves to the Green Parrot Bar, with the Conch Republic Tattoo Contest at 3 p.m. Wanna enter? Call 294-6133.
This year's King and Queen of the Conch Republic will be crowned at the Green Parrot Saturday night at the Conch Republic Royal Family Investiture Party, beginning at 8 p.m. Cast your vote for King, Queen, Jester, Duke of Earl or any other title you can come up with.
Robert Albury, Key West's own King of Soul, hits the Green Parrot stage at 10.
The action moves back to the Schooner Wharf Bar on Thursday. That's where the "World's Longest Parade" down Duval Street from the Atlantic Ocean to the Gulf of Mexico ends up. On stage 8:30-midnight will be the fantastic 9-piece Cabaret Diosa, famous for their "mambo exotica" style of music.
Next week: the Conch Republic Naval Parade & Great Battle, the Conch Republic Crafts show & Food Fest, the Lower Duval Crawl, the Conch Republic Pedicab Downhill Invitational, the Conch Republic Fiddler's Contest, the Red Ribbon Bed Race, a chili cookoff, the Pirate's Ball & Pig Roast, the Conch Republic Family Breakfast, the Conch Cruiser Car Show, and the Wrecker's Cup Race series finale.
'll be at the Schooner Wharf Bar this coming Thursday, April 26, for the after-parade party, 8:30- Midnight. On Friday, April 27, they'll be at Virgilio's, 9:30. On Saturday, April 28, they}ll be at the Green Parrot Bar, 10-2. And Monday night, April 30, they'll heat up Margaritaville.
A handful of tickets are still available for this Sunday's Key West Film Society's fundraiser. "Shock Value: An Evening with John Waters." The event begins at 8 p.m., Sunday, April 22 at the Tennessee Williams Fine Arts Center, where the independent filmmaker and cultural icon will present a 90-minute presentation with time for questions.
Also part of the fundraiser, John Waters' Birthday Bash at La Te Da's Crystal Room begins at 10:30, with champagne reception, hors d'oeuvres by Alice's, cash bar, and live entertainment by Allison Mayer, the Spectrelles, Kenny Watson, Ronnie Carruthers, the Strip Club band, and more.
Tickets for the fundraiser are being offered at two levels. The $35 Demented tickets will get you into the "Shock Value" program and the book signing immediately following the Q&A period; the $75 Divine tickets include "Shock Value" and the book signing, plus the John Waters' Birthday Bash at La Te Da.
For Divine and/or Demented tickets to "Shock Value: An Evening with John Waters," contact the Key West Film Society at 294-5857. Or visit them on the web at www.keywestfilm.org. Tickets are also available at Java Lounge, Blue Heron Books, Fast Buck Freddie's, Wings of Imagination, and Key West Island Bookstore. Space is limited, so purchase your tickets early.