There are a lot rumors floating around inside the mouth of the shark that has called Big Coppitt home for the past two decades, but none of them can be verified. It’s been said the shark has appeared in movies, possibly a James Bond flick, but we can’t find it. He’s also a Pokemon Go stop, and used to be a place trash was thrown into.
The new owners, Lori and Barry Gaukel of Shady Palm Art Gallery are asking for any history on the shark. “We have christened him ‘Nibbles,’ because we don’t even know if it previously had a name,” said Lori.
The couple tried to buy the shark two years ago, when they fell in love with the piece of art on the side of the road in front of the Hitch King. But, at the time, the owners weren’t ready to part with the toothy work of art. A few weeks ago, Lori received a call. “You’re not going to believe this, the shark is up for sale,” said a Lower Keys friend.
Lori bit. She said she wants the shark be a part of Marathon’s quirkiness. “That shark is a part of history,” she said. “We aren’t sure what kind of history, but we knew we had to have him.”
Lori hopes the shark will bring the gallery “Betsy the Lobster” type of fortune. (Betsy is the gigantic roadside lobster in front of the Rain Barrel Gallery in Islamorada.) “I hope people will stop by and take pictures with Nibbles and use him as a landmark here in Marathon,” she said.
The biggest obstacle they are tackling now is trucking Nibbles across the 7 Mile Bridge. “That’s going to be a sight to see,” she said.
If anyone knows more about “Nibbles” identity, the Gaukels would sure love to hear it. Swing in and climb up the back of Nibbles stairs for a picture in the shark’s mouth at Shady Palm Gallery and Photography at 2888 Overseas Hwy.