While the mercury may be rising across the U.S., Key West’s subtropical weather holds steady with daily temperatures in the high 80s, abundant sunshine and cooling sea breezes. However, when it comes to entertainment, August is guaranteed to be a scorcher on the island with our annual Tropical Heat festivities.

Island House pool Key West

Island House, whose welcoming pool is shown here, hosts the Tropical Heat kickoff party. (Photo courtesy of Island House)

The sizzling action-packed four-day celebration takes place Aug. 14-18, with all-male adult-themed events scheduled throughout. Whether you want to be naughty or nice, Tropical Heat (or, as I like to call it, “the summer’s largest gaythering of men ever”) has something for everyone.

If I had to explain the event in a nutshell, I’d use three words: fun, frisky and playful.

The revelry includes oodles of indulgent frivolities on both land and sea. The lineup is brimming with adult-themed pool parties, snorkel and sandbar cruises, appearances by entertainers and late-night parties at the island’s LGBTQ bars and nightclubs. Last but not least, it features some of my favorite things to do: shopping in the “gayborhood” (supporting our local businesses), and brunching with lots of free-flowing libations.

On Wednesday, Aug. 14, weather forecasters predict it will be “raining men” with a 100-percent chance of fun during the 5 p.m. kickoff party at Island House, a world-renowned male-only clothing-optional resort. The property welcomed over 22,000 guests last year — and a whopping 100,000-plus men since it opened in 1999.

All of our LGBTQ guesthouses, resorts, and entertainment venues have parties planned during the long weekend of festivities. It’s the perfect opportunity to check out which LGBTQ accommodations you’d like to call home (albeit temporarily) on your next visit to gay Key West. I recommend trying to attend a different property’s pool party each day (perhaps modeling a different bathing suit every day, though that’s not mandatory).

Key West La Te Da

On the final day of Tropical Heat, guests can gather for a traditional Key West Tea Dance at the beloved La Te Da. (Photo courtesy of La Te Da)

If you love brunch like I do, you should absolutely NOT miss the “Drunken Drag Brunch” at 2 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 15, at Mangoes. The gastronomic gathering will feature drag queen performances, a Cuban-style buffet and mimosas to your heart’s content.

Also, I always endorse getting your “inner Roman on” at the Equator Resort’s Toga Party set for 7 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 17. Your ancient garb can consist of anything from an old bed sheet to an extravagant costume; anything goes at this party — one of the most highly anticipated of the weekend.

Then on Sunday, the celebrations simmer down with some — yes, you guessed it — pool parties, plus lots of dancing at a traditional Key West Tea Dance at La Te Da, located at 1125 Duval St. (This should be followed by a “Greg approved” disco nap.)

After that, get ready for a lively night of carousing at our bars and nightclubs situated in Key West’s Pink Triangle, located around the 700 and 800 blocks of the iconic Duval Street.

To purchase a VIP pass for the festivities, please click here. The VIP pass allows you admission to all parties, a five-day entry to Island House Resort and special values at several restaurants and retailers.

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