MARATHON, Florida Keys — Visitors to the Middle Keys can discover the chowder power and fritter flavor of conch (pronounced conk) during the inaugural weeklong Conchtoberfest 2010, set for Sept. 13-19.

Both a Keys food favorite and a term used to describe native-born islanders, conch and the laid-back Keys lifestyle are to be celebrated with the sights, sounds and smells of the themed event.

Starting Monday, Sept. 13, on each “Conchtoberfest Night” a Marathon restaurant or resort is to host a uniquely themed and decorated event that includes food, specialty drinks and menu items. These events lead up to a grand finale weekend Friday through Sunday, Sept. 17-19, at Hawks Cay Resort, 61 Hawks Cay Blvd. off U.S. Highway 1 at mile marker 61 oceanside.

Headlining the weekend’s entertainment is to be Taylor Carson and his blues-inspired rock and folk rhythms. Food and artisan vendor booths, kids’ activities and live entertainment in one of Marathon’s premier locations at Duck Key round out the weekend.

Weekend admission is $5 per person per day, with parking included in the fee. Hours are 4-8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 17, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 18, and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 19.

For more information and specially priced room rates at Hawks Cay Resort during the event, visit http://experience.hawkscay.com/conchtoberfest.

For other area accommodations, explore the official website of the Florida Keys & Key West at www.fla-keys.com.

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