Boot Key
Boot Key
A Boaters Cruising Guide to Marathon and the Florida Keys ...
Copyright 2000 - 2015 by "Gregory Absten"    All Rights reserved    E-Mail:
  ... Founded in 1997 by Gregory Absten and Sam Nelson
Starts just after sunset (about 6:10pm) at the West Channel entrance to the Harbor (7 mile bridge side). Parade slowly progresses through the harbor to the east end past Sombrero Boatman's resort. Judging at Burdines. Going past Lazy Days, Marathon Marina, Panchos, Burdines, BKH Bridge, Dockside (closed), Sombrero, Hurricane Hole, and back out.
WX PERMITTING - Check back day of parade

The Parade starts just after sunset (just after 6pm) from the West end of the Harbor (7 mile bridge side) and will slowly wind its way into the harbor down to the East end by Sombreror Boatsman resort, then back out. Good viewing from Lazy Days, Panchos Fuel Dock, Burdines, the BKH bridge and Sombrero Boatmans Resort, plus all the condo parties up and down the harbor. Dockside is closed again this year so no viewing there.

A Post Parade Awards party will be held just after the parade - approximately 8:30pm to give captains time to moor their boat and get to the ceremony. Held at Lazy Days South Restaurant on 11th street. There's also good viewing there for the parade if you want to go in for dinner. Boat captains and crew will meet back at Lazy Days at 8:30 for the awards. Judges will be at Burdines waterfront as the parade goes by.

ENTER YOUR BOAT!!!!!! Dinghies to Megayachts! Power and Sail! No registration fee - it's all about the fun.    (ALSO - KCB Parade info on Sun 11th at bottom of this page)

A captain's meeting will be held the SATURDAY AFTERNOON prior to the parade
(CHANGE from Friday evening)
to go over the route and details with all boat captains. Held at the Power Squadron Building - 1:00pm. You'll get your number to display during the parade here as well. If you can't make it but still want in the parade - just call us. See the awards classes at bottom of page.
For directions to the Squadron Building - CLICK HERE.
Questions? Email Greg at, or call my cell at 305.849.0285.

Look further down this page for Judges, locations to view from, the Awards Party and classes of entries, leaving your boat in the harbor for the night, last year's winners, and a short history of the Parade.

NOTE: This 20th year will be our last year doing this. EMAIL GREG if you are an individual or organization who would like to take this over.

Where to view from?
...... any of the restaurant/bars/marinas listed above, or privately from many of the homes, condominiums and apartments along the parade route having private viewing parties. If you're not from Marathon keep in mind that the Harbor is about 3 miles long, so there is no "One" spot to go to view. Familiarize yourself first with a map of the area. Links to some of these restauraunts/bars/marinas are listed below - click to go to their websites:
Scroll up the page for more info on judges, viewing locations, last year's winners, post parade awards party, and a short history.

* Marathon Power Squadron - Tom Casey
* Marathon U.S. Coast Guard Auxilliary - JoAnn Griffor
* Marathon Yacht Club - Kathy Ledebuhr, RN

2015 Winners!
BEST OVERALL BOAT:   The Island of Misfits.  44' Powerboat.
                        Marathon Marina & Kahuna Boat Wiring
BEST 17' and Under:         Snapper Whacker    17' Powerboat. William Jacobs Jr
BEST 18-29':              1st Place: The Merry Mamas, 22' Power. Mark & Mary Lou Kyriacou
                                  2nd Place: Dunn Deal. 20' Power. Chet Dunn
BEST 30' and Over:     1st Place:  Ricochet. 42' Power. Dennis & Linda Turner
                            2nd Place: MV Stowaway. 44' Powerboat. Gregory, Lisa & Jessica Absten

Christmas Boat Parade

Marathon City Marina

BKH Webcam

Cruising- Waypoints, Anchorages, Marinas & Services

Diving & Snorkeling

Fishing (general)

Marine Stings & Bites

Weather & Tides

Local Keys Links of interest to boaters

Personal Cruising Logs - Pictorial

Personal Boat Library

Awards Party!
Join the Boat Captains and their Crews for a Post-Parade Awards Ceremony and Party. Plan on about 8:30pm to give the Captains time to securely moor their boat somewhere, then meet for the Awards Ceremony. Award Trophies given for 1st and 2nd place in each class, in addition to Best Overall. Classes are based on boat length - 17' and under, 18-29', and 30' and over.

BOATERS - If you want the convenience of taking a slip for the night in the Harbor, then call Judy at Marathon Marina at 305-743-6575 to reserve a slip right away. Say you are in the parade. Slips will be limited because of incoming boats for the winter season. Call ASAP.
Parade Judges
This Year's Boats
CLICK for a listing of boats for this year's parade, posted as they come in. (might be a couple days delay time for posting)
Professional Medical Education Assn
Marathon Sail and Power Squadron
Co-Sponsored By:
KEY COLONY BEACH BOAT PARADE! - (Click for the PDF Flyer) Double your pleasure - Double your fun. Key Colony's Parade is the following night on Sunday the 11th. Check back here and we'll put a link to their flyer and info on that parade. or go to KCB Parade Website for a short video.
2015 Winners!