For us, the Best of Marathon celebration allows our Keys Weekly team, our partners, neighbors and some new faces a moment to unwind with a blend of humor and community love. And this year’s event was especially meaningful, as the Keys Weekly celebrated 20 years of locally owned media here in the Florida Keys this past month – and it all started right here. So to celebrate this week’s Top 10, we (temporarily) ditched the humor and asked our local Marathon team what they love most about their hometown. From parents to grandmothers, homeowners and civic members, we’re proud to live, work and play alongside you in this amazing town. Here are our… 

Top 10 Reasons the Keys Weekly Staff Loves Marathon

10. “Of all the Keys, Marathon was my safe haven for relocating and starting my life over after my divorce. I love Sombrero Beach – the peace and the calmness of being there on the weekend mornings. Marathon is more family-oriented and down to earth, and that is what I am accustomed to. As my children are scattered, Marathon is a great place for them to bring their families. There is no place I would rather be.” — Char Hruska, Executive Administrator 

9. “When we first moved here, we were amazed by how friendly everyone was to us two young folks fresh from Indiana. We were invited to go boating, offered fresh fish and lobster and given all kinds of useful advice for living in the Keys. All these years later, the people of Marathon have not changed and they are there for you at a moment’s notice if needed.” — Anneke Patterson, Production Manager

8. “Marathon was my first home in the Florida Keys. Some of my best memories and best friends remain in Marathon. I was only 29 when I moved there and so many people (many who are still there today) taught me the meaning of community and accepted me as family. For me, Marathon is family. Like all places, there are differences. But at the end of the day, it’s a community that loves and looks out for one another. And that is what defines that amazing town.”  — Britt Myers, Partner/Publisher 

7. “An excellent assortment of cheeseburgers in paradise.” — Mike Howie, Copy Editor 

6. “Our community is the best part of Marathon. Despite our differences, this town pulls together to get things done. Whether it’s cleaning up after a storm, sponsorships, donations or supporting a family in crisis, I have never been told ‘no,’ but always ‘What do you need and how can I help?’ It’s why we truly are the heart of the Florida Keys.” — Patti Childress, Business Development 

5. “I think my favorite thing about Marathon is the 35 mph speed limit. It kind of makes everyone chill out, take it slow and enjoy the ride and the views of the town. It forces you to live on true island time. That, and the feeling you get when you are about to get on the Seven Mile Bridge. Overwhelming beauty all around.” — Manuela C. Mobley, Director of Sales 

4. “Marathon is truly remarkable at coming together for the common good in the face of adversity or crisis. For a small town, Marathon has an astonishing number of residents whose dedication and hard work are an inspiration to others.” — Jason Koler, Partner/Publisher 

3. “I have a deep affection for Marathon, primarily due to the breathtaking ocean views it offers and the delectable seafood experiences. It’s not uncommon for me to frequent spots like Curly’s Coffee or Sombrero Beach, or indulge in a delightful lunch at Driftwood Pizza.” – Kiara Bush, Digital Strategist

2. “Because where else does your daughter get to kiss a dolphin, and you can call it work!” ­— Javier Reyes, Graphic Designer

1. It’s completely backwards, but it took a Category 4 hurricane for me to realize that Marathon is the best place to live. I was on the verge of moving before Irma, but seeing this community come together to rebuild, and putting my own hands in the mud more times than I can count, showed me the true fabric of this town more than anything else ever could. It’s why I stayed.” – Alex Rickert, Marathon Weekly editor