Attendees enjoy some bacon. KEYS WEEKLY FILE PHOTO

Smells of bacon will fill the Islamorada air as the annual Bacon Fest and Vendor Show returns to the heart of Islamorada on Sunday, Nov. 6.

Organized by the Islamorada Moose Lodge, attendees will have the chance to indulge in a variety of bacon-inspired dishes, from bacon banana bread and bacon mac and cheese to bacon shrimp rolls. Joining in the bacon festivities are MEAT Eatery & Taproom, Chef Michael and other local restaurants.

“If you like bacon, you’re going to love it, and you’ll love all the things we do that go to support the community,” said Nancy Saxe, Islamorada Moose Lodge member and Bacon Fest organizer. 

A contest will determine who can eat a pound of bacon the fastest for the top Upper Keys bacon eater. Meanwhile, bartenders will try to concoct the best crafty bacon cocktail.

With the food comes shopping as some 15 vendors showcase and sell their works in time for the holiday shopping season. Live bands will entertain the crowds from the beginning of the festival at 9 a.m. to its conclusion at 3 p.m. Festival goers can also try their hand at dunking local celebrities and surprise guests. Five dollars get you three attempts. 

There’s also something for the kids to enjoy, including hot dogs and sodas and face painting. 

Admission to Bacon Fest is a $5 donation. Proceeds from the event support Moose Charities and other local charities, Saxe said. 

“It supports our Coral Shores scholarships, which we give out close to $10,000. Proceeds also support other local charities just depending on what happens during the year,” she said. “We also support International Moose Charities. They support a children’s school in Indiana and a senior center in north Florida.”  

Bacon Fest happenings take place outside the Moose Lodge, located at MM 81. For more information, visit 200 Bacon Fest & Vendor Show on Facebook.

Jim McCarthy
Jim McCarthy is one of the many Western New Yorkers who escaped the snow and frigid temperatures for warm living by the water. A former crime & court reporter and city editor for two Western New York newspapers, Jim has been honing his craft since he graduated from St. Bonaventure University in 2014. In his 4-plus years in the Keys, Jim has enjoyed connecting with the community. “One of my college professors would always preach to be curious,” he said. “Behind every person is a story that’s unique to them, and one worth telling. As writers, we are the ones who paint the pictures in the readers minds of the emotions, the struggles and the triumphs.” Jim is past president of the Key Largo Sunset Rotary Club, which is composed of energetic members who serve the community’s youth and older populations. Jim is a sports fanatic who loves to watch football, hockey, mixed martial arts and golf. He also enjoys time with family and his new baby boy, Lucas, who arrived Oct. 4, 2022.