Revelry Dominates at Key West’s Fantasy Fest Masquerade March

KEY WEST, Florida Keys – The historic Old Town of Key West is gearing up for a spectacle. Thousands are expected to flaunt their inventive costume designs during the Captain Morgan Masquerade March on Friday, Oct. 27. This event is one of the many standouts of the island's opulent Fantasy Fest masking and costuming festival taking place from Oct. 20-29.

2023 Festival Theme: “Uniforms and Unicorns … 200 Years of Sailing into Fantasy”

  • This year's theme honors the Florida Keys' bicentennial and celebrates the U.S. Navy's two-century-long presence in Key West.
  • It also embodies the distinctive "unicorn" charm that is symbolic of the island.

Highlights of the March

  • Often referred to as “the locals’ parade,” this annual event attracts participants showcasing a wide range of costumes.
  • Expect to see costumes influenced by the festival theme: from ancient sailors and future warriors, to medieval knights, sci-fi space teams, athletic squads, and superheroes. The ethereal allure of unicorns will also likely inspire many.
  • The march kicks off at 5:30 p.m. from Truman Avenue and Frances Street. Revelers will stroll down Frances and Fleming Street, pausing occasionally at bed-and-breakfast inns for refreshments.
  • Onlookers usually crowd the streets of the historic district, cheering on the participants. Many even join the parade before it concludes. Post-event celebrations are set to be held at the Key West EmPOURium, 618 Duval St., and Aquaplex, 711 Duval St.
  • Past marches have showcased unique costumes, such as a band of Santa’s rogue reindeer, attendees in radiant robes and oversized ethereal wings, and personas from the “How to Train Your Dragon” animation.

Upcoming Event: Bud Light Fantasy Fest Parade

  • This vibrant parade serves as an introduction to the main festival event.
  • Slated for Saturday, Oct. 28, the parade will meander through Key West’s Whitehead and Duval streets. Anticipations are high, with estimates suggesting attendance figures could reach 60,000 enthusiasts.
  • Attendees can look forward to glittering motorized floats, groups in elaborate costumes, and spirited island dancers.

For more details on the event, please visit