Conch Shell Blowing Contest« Back to Events
Dozens of contestants will blow their own horns at Noon March 2 during the 51st annual Conch Shell Blowing Contest in the garden of the Oldest House Museum, 322 Duval St.
Natives from the Calusa Indian tribe blew conch shells to communicate over distance, early sailors are said to have used them as fog- horns and 19th-century shipwreck salvagers blew blasts to signal a shipwreck.
Today, the chewy meat of the conch appears in chowder and fritters, but the shell has become a symbol of the Florida Keys. In the quirky “conch honk” contest, winners are chosen in multiple age groups for the quality, duration, loudness and novelty of the sounds they make. Musical ability is not required (or often displayed).
Sponsored by the Old Island Restoration Foundation, the competition is free to enter and watch. Contestants can register at the Oldest House from 10:30 a.m. to noon March 2 or at the event if space is available. Those lacking their own “instruments” can purchase conch shells on site. For more information, visit www.oirf.org or call 305-294-9501.