KEY WEST, Florida Keys — Native-born Key West residents proudly call themselves conchs, a nickname inspired by the sturdy sea mollusk that inhabits area waters. A celebration of their conch heritage is set for 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday, March 5.

The inaugural ConchFest, a family-friendly free-admission event presented by The Rotary Club of Key West, is scheduled at Bayview Park, located on Truman Avenue at the entrance to the island city’s historic Old Town.

The festival is to feature conch chowder and conch fritter cook-offs showcasing the savory flavor of Key West’s favorite seafood, other food and libations, arts and crafts vendors, a nautical flea market, domino and softball tournaments, kids’ activities and games.

Heading the entertainment lineup is a free concert by renowned Keys singer/songwriter Howard Livingston and nationally known country music sensation Cowboy Troy. Local musicians are to appear as well.

Commemorating Key West’s longstanding tradition of community spirit and acceptance, ConchFest is to raise money for The Rotary Club of Key West’s college scholarship program for local students.

Event information: www.conchfestkeywest.com or 305-725-6446

Key West visitor information: www.fla-keys.com/keywest or 1-800-LAST-KEY

Social: www.facebook.com/floridakeysandkeywesttwitter.com/thefloridakeys

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