I have been in Key West 30 years. The word has always been Stock Island would grow big time some day. Key West was becoming too crowded.

Except for a few new hotels, Stock Island has remained Stock Island. Growth limited to a snail’s pace.

It is all going to change. Actually, the process has already begun.

Bobby Mongelli is a respected restaurateur. Hogfish and Roostica two of his successful Stock Island restaurants.

Mongelli and a group of local investors have received final approval from the State of Florida and Monroe County for one of the world’s largest cruise ports beginning February 2023 on Stock Island.

Mongelli said, “We saw the opportunity and seized the moment…..We will have one of the largest tourist attractions in America…..the largest ships will be able to dock.”

The planned facility will also include a deluxe water pool, high end store fronts, and major restaurant chains.

The planned port will have room to accommodate 14 cruise ships and 42,000 daily tourists.

Go Bobby!

Dinner last night at the Prime Steakhouse. Cathy’s last night in Key West.

Our reservations were at the bar.

Two minutes after being seated, Laurie Thibault walked in. I had not seen her in at least 3 years.

Laurie has become a leading Key West radio personality and continues to appear and manage much of Aqua’s operation.

I had Laurie join us for dinner.

A great time!

Met Jerry at the bar. He has been in Key West 29 years and we never met. Amazing! He lives on a 70 foot boat. Big! Comfortable! I know I have partied and traveled on some. His boat is parked in Key West several months a year.

Dinner was great! The best steak in Key West. Probably the most expensive, also.

I spent the earlier part of the day at the Casa Marina with Cathy. An excellent room. First floor. Balcony/patio opened to the ocean.

I sat on the balcony. Ten minutes later, my legs were burned. I lathered up with sun tan lotion. Legs still blotches of firey red this morning.

Cathy and I had lunch at the beach side restaurant. Spent a long time there. Chatting and picking. A beautiful setting: Sand, sky and water.

Cathy leaves this morning. Stopping by on her way out to say good bye again.

The lobster season ended yesterday. Depending who you talked with, it was either good or mediocre. I suspect it was more on the good side.

The season will reopen for 2 days for recreational lobstering 7/27 and 7/28. The full season opens 8/6.

It was not the catch which was insufficient. The cost to catch had risen cutting into profits. The price of gas and wood had increased. Needed wood traps had increased by $15 a trap.

Overall, several fisherman thought it was the best season since Irma which hit in 2017.

Asian sales were down a bit. The biggest share of the Key West spiny lobster catch is sent to Asian countries. China the biggest purchaser. The down side was not that significant, however.

Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson referred to Mar-a-Lago as Trump’s Elba. Fits!

David Corn of Mother Jones wrote: “Ginnie Thomas is absolutely bonkers…..Justice Clarence Thomas is literally in bed with a conspiracy theory nutter.”

Crazies continue to become a part of Washington. The latest person desiring to move to the Capital and become a member of Congress is Alaska’s Sarah Palin. Palin is the former Republican governor of Alaska and the Republican candidate for Vice-President running with John McCain.

Palin claims the “far left is destroying America.”

I hope her reading material has expanded.

Saved the best for last today. Big time basketball tonight! I love college basketball. The Final Four begins tonight. The last 4 teams remaining alive. Kansas v. Villanova followed by Duke v. North Carolina.

Available on TBS.

I am excited!

I have personally attended 3 Final Fours. This year’s is in New Orleans. One I attended was in New Orleans also. A great town for the Final Four party!

Enjoy your day!



  1. If Key West HAS to change with chain restaurants, bars and stores, let it be Stock Island and not KW itself. Let KW be the quirky brother with unique restaurants and other places. I’ll still come to KW proper, let everybody else hang out at the Burger Kings on Stock Island and complain about KW being old fashioned and too cultured!

  2. The article about Mongelli building the world’s largest cruise ship port/dock on Stock Island, to open by 1/23, no less, was in the April 1st edition of the Keys Weekly. I understood it to be an April Fools article. Was I mistaken?

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