Sunday Stroll aims to ‘reintroduce’ Little Haiti

By | February 20th, 2013 | No Comments
Dance at Big Night Little Haiti

The Sunday Stroll will feature neighborhood “hotspots” like the Little Haiti Cultural Center, pictured here during a performance of a vodou ritual. — photo by Robby Campbell

With the increasing number and volume of complaints about Wynwood’s Second Saturday Art Walk and its rowdy atmosphere, a Little Haiti-based coalition is inviting the culturally curious to explore a different Miami neighborhood. Spearheaded by Yo Miami with the support of Sweat Records, the Little Haiti Cultural Center, and other neighborhood anchors, the first Little Haiti Sunday Stroll will take place from noon to 6 p.m. on March 3.

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Brain Circulation and Miami’s future as a Start-Up City

By | February 10th, 2013 | 8 Comments
Richard Florida

Organized by influential urbanist and author Richard Florida (pictured), Start-Up City: Miami will feature talks by Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh and AOL co-founder Steve Case on Wednesday, Feb. 13. — photo by Jaime Hogge

The narrative of Miami’s ongoing transformation comprises various story lines, including, most prominently, the burgeoning of its artist community and cultural offerings (as chronicled in the recently released documentary Rising Tide). There’s also the less prominent stories of its increasingly vibrant music scene — attested to by our list of the Top 50 South Florida Songs of 2012 — and its surprisingly rich bike culture (surprising because our sprawled-out, car-centric city would seem utterly inhospitable to bike travel — and, in fact, it can be.)

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Talking ‘At-Risk’ with writer Amina Gautier

By | February 4th, 2013 | No Comments
'At-Risk' by Amina Gautier

Gautier will read from her award-winning short-story collection At-Risk and lead a craft workshop at Miami Dade College on February 11.

This post is sponsored by the Center for Literature and Theater at Miami Dade College

Growing up in Brooklyn during the late ’80s and early ’90s, Amina Gautier witnessed poverty and the crack epidemic first hand. “As most people know,” she says, “that was a really rough time to be a New Yorker.” Gautier survived the experience and ultimately channeled it into her short-story collection, At-Risk, which won the Flannery O’Connor Short Fiction Award from the University Press of Georgia in 2010.

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Beware of Mr. Baker

By | January 23rd, 2013 | No Comments
Beware of this man.

Don’t get too close.

In the beginning of Beware of Mr. Baker, Ginger Baker smacks Jay Bulger in the face with his walking cane, sending blood streaming down the filmmaker’s nose. It’s a fittingly aggressive start to a film that chronicles a life spent hitting things: hitting joints, pummeling his veins with heroin, hitting the dusty road on an improbable musical excursion through the Sahara, even whacking polo balls from the backside of a galloping horse — and, of course, banging out drum beats that transformed rock and roll.

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Author Nancy Rommelmann reading at Panther Coffee

By | January 21st, 2013 | No Comments
Nancy Rommelmann

Dark stories over black coffee, anyone?

In support of Transportation, a collection of short stories released on the first day of 2013, author Nancy Rommelmann is visiting Panther Coffee on Tuesday for a talk, reading, and presumably a cup of coffee. Raised in Brooklyn and based in Portland, Rommelmann is a journalist, novelist, and short-story author whose latest work “dives into some strange pockets of the human soul and swims a line right on the blackest edge of fear, desire and despair,” according to the Oregonian. Here’s more from the paper’s review:

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Obama picks Cuban-born, Miami-raised poet for inauguration

By | January 9th, 2013 | No Comments

Richard Blanco, a son of Cuban exiles who grew up in Miami, will recite an original poem at Barack Obama’s second presidential inauguration, on January 21, according to the New York Times.

From the moment Barack Obama burst onto the political scene, the poet Richard Blanco, a son of Cuban exiles, says he felt “a spiritual connection” with the man who would become the nation’s 44th president.

Like Mr. Obama, who chronicled his multicultural upbringing in a best-selling autobiography, “Dreams From My Father,” Mr. Blanco has been on a quest for personal identity through the written word. He said his affinity for Mr. Obama springs from his own feeling of straddling different worlds; he is Latino and gay (and worked as a civil engineer while pursuing poetry). His poems are laden with longing for the sights and smells of the land his parents left behind.

Now Mr. Obama is about to pluck Mr. Blanco out of the relatively obscure and quiet world of poetry and put him on display before the entire world.

To learn more about Blanco, who honed his craft at FIU and writes about “negotiating the world” as a “mainstream gay” man who came out of a very conservative culture, read the NYT’s profile. On this recording, Blanco reads “América”, a poem from his first collection, City of a Hundred Fires.

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Review: Borscht 8 Film Festival

By | December 16th, 2012 | 14 Comments
Blah blah blah

Just one of many unforgettable Borscht 8 images.

On Saturday, the Borscht Film Festival presented its eighth quasi-annual short film program to a crowd of hundreds at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts. While Borscht will continue to host events through this coming Friday, the Arsht Center screening was the festival’s main event, the culmination of months of work on mostly Miami-centric films, many of which Borscht commissioned and produced itself.

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Awesome Foundation to fund awesomeness in Miami

By | December 12th, 2012 | 2 Comments
Awesome Foundation

With 59 chapters around the world, the Awesome Foundation is now in Miami to fund “flashes of micro-brilliance.” — photo via

Got an awesome idea that needs a bit of money to become reality? Lucky for you, the Awesome Foundation just opened a local chapter and is currently accepting applications for “micro-genius” grants of $1,000. To learn more about the foundation and exactly what kind of awesomeness it intends to fund in Miami, I traded emails with Natalia Martinez, AF’s Miami dean.

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Ticket Giveaway! Borscht 8 at the Arsht

By | December 11th, 2012 | No Comments

Fresh off of receiving a $500,000 vote of confidence from the Knight Foundation and landing two spots in the Sundance Film Festival’s 2013 Short Film Program, the Borscht Film Festival is getting ready to present its eighth edition of Miami-inspired independent cinema. (See ticket giveaway details at bottom of post.)

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#BEACHEDBASEL Instagram Photo Contest Winners

By | December 11th, 2012 | 2 Comments

With sweet prizes and sweeter glory on the line, the Beached Miami community stepped up on Instagram and shared 1,500+ #beachedbasel photos from its collective Art Basel experience, posting everything from celebrity sightings (Will Ferrell, Beyoncé, Kanye, Iggy) and fabulously farcical fashionistas to flame-throwing graffiti artists and polka-dotted poodles.


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