76ºF

Hemingway wins lookalike contest in Key West

Although not related, Dave Hemingway says he shares much in common with author

Dave Hemingway holds a bust of author Ernest Hemingway after winning the annual lookalike contest in Key West. (Andy Newman)

KEY WEST, Fla. – For the first time in its 36-year history, a Hemingway has won a Key West competition seeking the man who most resembles literary giant Ernest Hemingway.

Dave Hemingway, 65, of Macon, North Carolina, was named the winner of the Papa Look-Alike Contest on Saturday.

The contest, which attracted 140 entrants, is the highlight event of the annual Hemingway Days festival that celebrates the author's legacy. It was held at Sloppy Joe's Bar, which was a frequent hangout of Hemingway's during his Key West residency in the 1930s.

Hemingway, who won the contest in his seventh attempt, wore a wool, cream-colored turtleneck sweater similar to what the late author favored.

"Even though this sweater is really hot, it was part of my strategy to win this year, and I think it worked really well," he said.

Hemingway is not related to the author, but he said that he does share much in common with the man who wrote "For Whom the Bell Tolls."

"I do feel like Ernest because I'm in the same town that he lived in for so many years," he said. "I like to fish, I like to drink a little bit, I like women and I just like having a good fun time."
Michael Groover, the husband of celebrity cook Paula Deen, finished in the top five for the second straight year. This is the sixth time he has participated in the contest.