As far back as the early 19th century, the majesty of Key West’s famed sunsets began to be documented into the official record. Naturalist and author John Audubon wrote of them in his inimitable style but, it is said, that playwright and raconteur Tennessee Williams actually established the very first Sunset Celebration by applauding the sun as it sank below the horizon. Today, as it has been for years, Mallory Square is the meeting place for these nightly festivities where locals and visitors alike salute one of nature’s wonders surrounded by performers and vendors in a wonderful show of community.Here’s what you might expect to see at our square on any given day as the sun sets:
Passionate voices strumming and singing songs with an island flair, fledgling singer/songwriters, 6-string aficionados, maybe a one-person band and sometimes a set of bagpipes. This is the soundtrack of the Sunset Celebration.
Gather round, make some room, and check out the multitudes of street performers with their high-wire acts, sword swallowing, unicyclists, jugglers and, if you’re lucky, cats jumping through fiery hoops (totally safe by the way). Yep, this is as Key West as it gets!
Professional storytellers, an artform highly regarded down here in the Conch Republic, can also be found here in addition to joke-tellers, comedy troupes, mimes and all manner of performance artists.
Inspect the handmade wares of the local artist community from jewelry, painting, clothing, souvenirs and a whole lot more.Like Martin and Lewis and bagels and cream cheese, Mallory Square and Key West are virtually one and the same and wouldn’t be as great without the other. Be part of a time-honored Conch Republic tradition by attending the always wonderful Sunset Celebration!