Spring Rendevouz/meet Florida, USA
Monday, February 08 2010 @ 04:42 PM UTC
Contributed by: Admin
MAY 14, 15, 16
(THE FABULOUS FLORIDA KEYS)
IF YOU HAVE FRIENDS WHO WOULD BE INTERESTED IN GETTING EMAILS ABOUT WHARRAM EVENTS, PLEASE FORWARD THEIR EMAIL ADDRESSES TO firstname.lastname@example.org. THANKS.
First, Wharrams available and related information (to the best of our knowledge as of this email!):
1. Tiki 26, ‘05, Staten Island, NY, Betsy, email@example.com, 718-524-0221.
2. Tangaroa, ’02, MKIV+, Islamorada, FL. Dan, firstname.lastname@example.org, 305-664-0190.
3. Tangaroa, ’83, MKI, Annapolis, MD, Carl, email@example.com.
4. Tahini, Pennsylvania, unfinished, Don, firstname.lastname@example.org, 305-801-5663.
5. Professionally built Wharrams, Florida, David, www.boatsmith.com, 561-744-0855.
6. Professional built and kit Wharrams and a very informative website with Wharram forum, Texas, Shane, www.wharrambuilders.ning.com, 254-232-4033.
A Gathering of Wharrams
Hui Wharram -- Hawaiian name. In long form “Hui-o-waa-Kaulua-Wharram”. “Hui” means a group or gathering united for a common purpose (further: “o” means of, “waa” means canoe and is pronounced va-a with both a's short, “Kaulua” means two hull (Kau=hull and lua= two)). So, it literally means a gathering of two-hull Wharram canoes. In the short form "Hui Wharram " – a group or gathering of Wharrams.
Now, to the Event….
We will be holding the spring rendezvous in May 2010. Specifically, May 14, 15 and 16. It will be in Islamorada, FL (Florida Keys). We are expecting Wharrams of various sizes and descriptions. Last year we had 9 Wharrams and a few other boats. Many of those who attended last year are expected to return and we are hoping for a few new builds as well.
The Florida Keys are a wonderful place to visit. Everything is close to our anchorage and nearly everything you might need is within walking distance. Please note that May is still high season in the Keys. Prices are high and traffic is heavy…some of the yearly sufferings we must go through in Paradise!
We will be anchoring behind the Lorelei Restaurant at Mile Marker (MM) 82 Bayside in Islamorada (approximately N24.55.5; W80.38). The Lorelei is a landmark in the Keys and I’m sure that some of you have been there before. The holding is mud over a coral plate but adequate if the winds don’t pick up (but bring two anchors anyway). The Lorelei will allow us to use their property for dinghies (about ¼ mile from the anchored boats). We will hold our Saturday evening party there. There is live music every evening. Dining is mostly outdoors, although the bar area is covered (priorities!). Many of us will use the restaurant for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The menu ranges from hamburgers, fish and conch sandwiches to full meals. The food is very good and the ambience is definitely “Keysey”. The Lorelei is both a local’s and tourist hangout. Kayaks and bicycles can be rented nearby.
We will be holding our group dinner at the Lorelei on Saturday night. We will have a limited menu. Last year we had nearly 50 people in attendance. WE WILL AGAIN HAVE DOOR PRIZES from the Lorelei, Latitudes and Attitudes Magazine, Corrine and Chuck Kanter and Frank Pappy, PRAKTEK, Inc. and possibly others!!!!
What Do People Do at a Wharram Rendezvous? We talk about Wharrams. We tell stories…some may even be true. We compare notes. We look at plans. We take pictures of each other’s boats and get some really good (and a few bad) ideas. If you haven’t seen a Wharram, are building a Wharram, thinking about sailing and cruising for a reasonable amount of money, want to do something unique or just like multihulls (or boats of any kind) we welcome you to the event. We welcome everyone…trimarans and even “half-boaters” (monohulls) too. Stinkpotters are welcome if you are really nice! Oh, yes, we do eat and drink a lot too!
Weather: the Keys weather is typical of islands. In May the historic monthly average is 79 (on the cool side for locals!) and the rainfall averages 5”. Wind is normally around 10 from the South East. Thunderstorm occurrence averages about 4 storms each May. Humidity is around 75%. All in all, an excellent chance of perfect weather! But, do bring mosquito spray and no-seeum stuff (we have heard that Bounce fabric toweletts work to keep the critters away). Also, bring sunscreen…the sun can be brutal. But of course, it can get cool so bring warmer clothes and rain gear too.
Getting Here By Boat: We hope that you will sail in. If you do you will be on the Gulf side of the Keys (called Florida Bay). You will be looking for Upper Matecumbe Key (per the charts). The Intracoastal is only a mile away from the anchorage. On the Intracoastal turn to approximately 157 degrees between red marks 84 and 86. You will see boats anchored near shore. That is the place. Coordinates approximately N24.55.5, W80.38. Keep a careful watch for crab and lobster pot bouys and lines. If you are coming from the ocean side you can come through the following bridges to get to the Florida Bay side:
1. come in at Anglefish Creek south of Miami (North Key Largo) and continue South to Barnes Sound on the Intracoastal to Jewfish Creek bridge (Gilberts Marina just on the west side of the bridge has a good anchorage and gas. Good food too. Usually live music in the evenings. Sunday afternoons and evenings are great!);
2. Snake Creek Bridge at the northern end of the Village of Islamorada (Tavernier/Plantation Key on the Charts) (three islands up from the anchorage – Island Grill is there, it has good food.), or;
3. go south of the anchorage and come through Channel 5 bridge (Lower Matecumbe) and then sail north east along the Intracoastal to find the anchorage (about 8 miles).
A word of caution …you must approach the anchorage from the Intracoastal. Be very careful. Some marks are hard to see and going outside of the channel can cause a quick grounding. Grounding in the Keys is a serious issue. If you need to be towed off a grounding the towing company must call the authorities who come to inspect the bottom before you leave…fines for damage to coral or sea grass can be huge (really huge!). The route is circuitous but very enjoyable…just be cautious. If you have questions, we will be monitoring Channel 5 on the VHF for a day or two before and then during the event. You can also call 305-664-0190 (Dan).
Getting Here By Car: If you are coming from the south, you know where you are going as there is only one main road in the Keys! If you are coming south from the mainland (commonly known to Keys locals as the frozen northern tundra) come south on US Route 1 (the Florida Turnpike ends on Route 1 just before you enter the infamous 18-mile stretch to the Keys – there is only one way to go!). Keep going south. The stretch is undergoing major construction and there may be some delays. Stop in the heart of Islamorada at Mile Marker (MM) 82 that is also the location of the Lorelei Restaurant on your right. Mile Markers are the little green signs on the side of the road and they mark the distance from Key West to the mainland. Islamorada is exactly half way between Miami airport and Key West. Once at MM 82 you will find everything easily. A landmark to watch for as you near the center of Islamorada is Holiday Isle resort on the ocean side at MM 84.2 (about 2.2 miles north of the Lorelei). Once you cross over the little bridge to the south of Holiday Isle you are in the main section of Islamorada (Upper Matecumbe Key) and you only have 2 miles to go.
Flying In: There is air service to Key West (82 miles southwest of Islamorada) although flights to Key West are usually very expensive. Miami International is 82 miles north. The best airport for the least cost and the least congestion is usually Ft. Lauderdale (110 miles north) but it is a longer drive.
Some Basics: Islamorada is a small village of a few islands. The heart of Islamorada is on Upper Matecumbe Key (per the charts). This is where most of the restaurants, hotels, shops and stores are. The Lorelei is central to everything.
Gas: south of the Lorelei .5 miles or north of the Lorelei .7 miles.
Food Shopping: Trading Post, .3 miles south of Lorelei (small supermarket, expensive, open 24/7/365 – hasn’t closed in about 20 years…didn’t even close for hurricane Andrew! They tried to close once but couldn’t find the front door keys so they stayed open…true story.)
Library with Internet: .4 miles south of Lorelei
ACE Hardware: .5 miles north of Lorelei
CVS Pharmacy: .8 miles north of Lorelei
Coin Laundry: .4 miles north of Lorelei
Outboard Parts (mostly Yamaha): .4 miles south of Lorelei and .2 miles north of Lorelei.
West Marine: 20 miles north or 30 miles south of Islamorada. We can arrange to drive you if you need something really, really bad!
Places to See:
1. Worldwide Sportsman Store – sister ship to Hemmingway’s Pilar is inside (yes, a full size boat that you can go on). There is also a small sal*censored*er aquarium. Free. .6 miles south of Lorelei.
2. History of Diving Museum – large collection of unique and historic diving equipment. About $12. 1.0 mile north of Lorelei.
3. Hurricane Monument – dedicated to the hundreds who died during the ’35 hurricane. Free. .4 miles south of the Lorelei.
4. Key West is 82 miles south. It’s about a 2.5-hour drive (some very slow speed limit stretches). If there is any accidents or construction on the highway it can take much longer. Remember, only one road in and out of the keys…and most of that is one lane in each direction. If you go, plan to see the sunset festival each evening on Mallory Pier. Always fun to see the free acts, have a drink and applaud the sunset with hundreds of other people. Maybe you will even be lucky enough to see the Green Flash (no, not a streaker!)! During the day walking along Duval street is an “interesting” experience…people watching is great fun. At night it can be bizarre.
Very Good Restaurants in Islamorada (In addition to our host, the Lorelei but please patronize the Lorelei as much as you can!):
1. Lazy Days – 2.2 miles south of Lorelei. Ocean View. (outdoor balcony with ocean view, lunch/dinner).
2. Bentleys -- .7 miles north of Lorelei. (no views, dinner)
3. MA’s Fish Camp -- .6 miles south of Lorelei. (reasonable prices, best Key Lime pie, no view)
4. Morada Bay -- .6 miles south of Lorelei. Bay View. (outdoor beach/patio with bay view, lunch/dinner)
5. Outback – 2.0 miles south of Lorelei. Ocean View. (outdoor patio with ocean view, lunch/dinner)
6. Green Turtle -- .9 miles south of Lorelei. Gourmet. (breakfast/lunch/dinner) (no view.)
7. Fish Market -- .4 miles south of Lorelei. Bay View. (all outdoor seating, bay view, lunch/dinner)
8. Tower of Pizza -- .5 miles south of Lorelei (no view, very good pizza, lunch/dinner, good prices).
9. Mangrove Mikes -- .2 north of Lorelei (no view, breakfast/lunch, a real locals place, good prices).
10. Whale Harbor Seafood Buffet and La Braza Meat Buffet – 1.6 miles north of Lorelei. (some view, buffet dinner)
Yes, there is a Burger King, .2 miles north of the Lorelei for those without taste buds.
There are at least another 10 good restaurants on our 3-mile long island. All are good. If you think that all we do is hang out in the sun, go to restaurants and drink…you are starting to get the idea!
Places to Stay:
It is possible that there may be a few births available on some of the boats. First come, first served. However, we will not know this until a week or two before the rendezvous. Dan’s house is about .4 miles from the Lorelei. There is one short couch (no one over 5’ 10” will be comfortable) and the beach can hold three or four small tents (you bring the tent and all sleeping stuff). One bathroom so scheduling is critical!!! Come a few days early, stay a little while after…it’s ok.
Motels/Hotels (prices are all approximate and are subject to change):
Least Expensive (clean and old 50’s style funky, basic):
1. Sunset Inn. 305-664-3454. .1 miles north of Lorelei – $75.
2. Key Lantern Motel and Blue Fin Inn. 305-664-4572. .1 miles north of Lorelei – $60 - $70.
A Little More (bigger rooms, more amenities):
1. La Jolla Resort. 305-664-9213. .3 miles north of the Lorelei. About $100.
2. Islander Resort. 305-664-2031. .3 miles southeast of Lorelei. Just under $200.
3. La Siesta Resort. 305-664-2132. 1.8 miles south of Lorelei. $200-$300.
1. Cheeca Lodge. Do you really want to spend $300-700/night??
2. Morada Bay. This is where they do the “island” Playboy magazine photo shoots. $700-2,000/night. A hang out of some supermodels.
The Islander, Cheeca and Morada Bay are all less than a half mile from my house…it’s the same damn ocean and same view (unless Morada Bay is doing a Playboy photo shoot!)! My prices are better…one cold box of cheep wine for the whole stay! Plus, you can walk onto their properties and see the amenities. Space on my beach is limited!
Boat Assembly: For those of you who will be trailering your boats and need to assemble them there are a number of locations available but you will need to call me first to confirm what is available. There are only a few ramps that can accommodate a wide boat and fewer still that have a separate area in which to assemble.
The Keys “Reality”: The Keys and its inhabitants are unique. While change is coming because of the building boom and high housing prices, the local’s places are still “kewl”. You must understand that “reality” is a relative term. A few T- shirt/tourist development council phrases to help you better understand the “ambience” of the keys:
“Islamorada, A Quaint Little Drinking Village with a Serious Fishing Problem.”
“The Florida Keys, Where the Weird Go Pro.”
“If it’s Tourist Season, Why Can’t We Shoot Them?”
After the bigger hurricanes our national marketing campaign is: “Come to the Keys: We Are Returning to Abnormal.”
Call Dan at 305-664-0190 and leave a message with a phone number (note: I do not have caller ID so if you don’t leave a number I can’t get back to you). That number is often forwarded to my cell phone. Or, send an email to email@example.com.
OK, you have plenty of notice…start making plans!!!!
See you in May.