Wrecker’s Cup Race

Wrecker's Race

Yes, we have been in Key West for three weeks and I haven’t posted a thing about it. The truth is, my laptop has been sorely neglected and I think that is a good thing. As I’ve mentioned before, I struggle with the dilemma of experiencing life vs. documenting life. Enjoy the pretty sunset or take a picture of the pretty sunset? Sometimes it’s hard to do both.

Lately we’ve just been enjoying, but today we are experiencing the rare Key West rainy day, which is often a welcome respite from the need to be somewhere, doing something all the time. When I first moved to Key West, many years ago, I tried to be outside all the time, which makes it hard to sleep and shower. Florida transplants eventually get over it, learning that there will be another beautiful day tomorrow and the day after that. But after spending my first winter in 13 years outside of Florida (have I mentioned that?), I find myself back to old habits.

We have had many, many beautiful days in our time here and one in particular was Easter Sunday. The last Sunday of the month, from January to April, the Schooner Wharf Bar sponsors a Wrecker’s Cup Race. Back in the days before GPS and electronic charts, the reefs along the Florida Keys were treacherous for sailing ships, often loaded with various cargo going to or from the Caribbean and Gulf of Mexico. In the early to mid 19th century, one ship a week wrecked, on average. When the call went out, Key Westers would take to boats of all sizes and race to the site of the wreck, as the first captain to arrive would be designated salvage master and claim the largest share of salvaging rights. During its wrecking heyday, Key West became one of the wealthiest cities in the country.

The Wrecker’s Cup Race recreates that event when schooners, Hobie Cats and everything in between race out to Sand Key, mostly for bragging rights, although there are some bottles of rum and Schooner Wharf swag up for grabs. We were invited by our friend Jerry to “crew” on the S/V Blue Ice, his friends and dock neighbors. We left the sailing part to the professionals and tensions were high as we raced a sloop in our class to a photo finish across the line. It was a great day with a bunch of fun people just happy to share a perfect Key West day out on the water together.



2 thoughts on “Wrecker’s Cup Race

  1. Damn…..very sorry we missed that since we spent a large portion of our Easter on planes. Ohhh welllll…..there is always next year!!

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