30 March 2023
KEY WEST, Florida Keys — The annual Conch Republic Bed Race, billed as “the most fun you can have in bed with your clothes on” is to trundle through downtown Key West Saturday, April 29, during the 41st annual Conch Republic Days celebration.
The zany competition, an eagerly anticipated highlight of the April 21-30 celebration, is to feature decorated wheel-mounted beds, each propelled down famed Duval Street from Olivia to Southard streets. A team of four runners, some in outlandish costumes, is to race each decked-out bed while one fortunate rider lounges aboard.
Events are slated to begin at 1 p.m. with registration, lineup and inspection of the whimsical beds. A parade of beds is to follow and the race is set to kick off at 3 p.m.
Rules call for teams of “strange bedfellows” to attempt to outpace their rivals to earn first-place, second-place and people’s choice awards. An awards ceremony is scheduled at 6 p.m. at the Bourbon St. Pub’s Garden Bar at 724 Duval St.
The lighthearted competition is a fundraiser for the local Sister Season Fund. The organization provides financial assistance to hospitality- and tourism-related industry employees who are temporarily out of work because of situations including illness and accident. Since the charity’s inception in 2005, it has raised $1 million and helped thousands of residents who are integral to Key West’s workforce.
Entry fee is $200 per team with proceeds to benefit Sister Season. Viewing the challenge is free of charge.
The wacky race is typically among the most popular events of the annual Conch Republic Days celebration. The 10-day festival commemorates the Florida Keys’ symbolic 1982 secession from the United States, carried out to protest a U.S. Border Patrol blockade of the island chain, and formation of the independent republic.

The schedule also includes the so-called “World’s Longest Parade” that proceeds along Duval Street from the Atlantic Ocean to the Gulf of Mexico, a pirate-themed ball and a re-enactment of the legendary secession.

Bed Race information: sisterseason.com/2023-bed-races.html; race teams contact Julie Hanson at 305-304-9828
Conch Republic Days information: conchrepublic.com/events/
Key West visitor information: fla-keys.com/keywest or gaykeywestfl.com
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