The Nine Greatest Father Figures in Miami, in Honor of Father's Day
Father's Day is this weekend, which means you should
probably start prepping yourself for the same, awkwardly stilted conversation with
your dad you always have -- the one where he thanks you for getting him The Best of Bob Seger and then
you discuss the weather.
just honor your own Pops this weekend. Our fair city has a swath of strong
patriarchs that have shaped our identity, and they too deserve our recognition.
We've made the case for some of the most
important fathers of Miami -- strong, upstanding, and most importantly, easily mockable guys who've guided this town with their own unique brand of paternal wisdom. So while you're listening to Linkin Park and wondering why daddy never told you he loved you this weekend, take heart: These Miami dads are just a stone's throw away.
Sure, he may be just an "Uncle" to you, but Luther Campbell is undoubtedly the father of Miami hip-hop. Starting as a raucous hell-raiser in his youth, he's eventually maturing into an elder statesman for our city. He's the kind of dad who you can trust with your problems; you can't faze him with whatever wild situation you've found yourself in, because he's been there too. It's a story practically begging to be made into a network sitcom. Get on it, ABC! It'll go perfect with Modern Family!
The Transformers director is a divisive figure in the film community, but he is a proud and diligent Miami papa, still dropping by to shoot his blockbusters in our hood. He's like the dad who married young, had a kid, and quickly divorced. The one who tries hard, perhaps too hard, to be the hip father. He'll sneak you a beer and not comment when a Playboy goes missing from his vast collection. But he may go too far, not only taking you to your first strip club, but also guiding you to the girls who give the best dances.
Sure, Eric Spolestra is the Miami Heat's coach, but is there any doubt who their real father is? Pat Reilly was the one who brought the Big Three together, and the one who has been trying to hold them all together. Let's put it like this: If, God forbid, The Heat doesn't come home with the NBA championship, who do you think is going to be the one to stick around? That's the sign of a true daddy.
The Hall of Fame football coach is your classic "worked his ass off his whole life so he's going to enjoy retirement" dad. He's the one who coached Miami Hurricane Football to national prominence and dominance. It's his standards The U strives to live up to, and you want to make him proud. Jimmy Johnson gave you everything you've got, so you can forgive him if he chooses to wear the classic fatherly Hawaiian shirt every day. He's earned it.
The owner of Churchill's Pub, Dave Daniels is a father to all in Miami's music scene. Many bands played their first set in the venue, kids went to their first show, and when they were old enough, had their first drink at the pub's copper-topped bar. And they never left. If Dave and his Little Haiti pub has given anything to the city, it's a reminder that a little grit never hurt anyone and that substance always wins over style.
"Mr. 305" is the Miami dad who will be the first to tell you just what an amazing father he is. Hell, we even gave him the keys to our city. But, his city parenting seems like a lot of sizzle without much steak. He's the pops who never too far from his "Father of The Year" coffee mug, but when it's time to make it out to your piano recital, well, it turns out he has to shoot a Dr. Pepper commercial. Maybe next time, sport!
The actual "Father" of Miami, Henry Flagler is the dad who passed on when you were really little. There are tons of artifacts you can go through, but can you really say that you knew the man? Only if you paid attention in History class.
The oft maligned Britto and his ubiquitous art around Miami suggests the kind of Dad who tries to connect with his moody, artsy children by taking up their interests as well. This always backfires. Especially when you create inescapable multimedia miasmas. Even if you don't have Daddy issues, there's something about his work that makes you want to scream "you just don't get me!" then slam your door and blast "The Downward Spiral" for days on end. Expect a generation of pretty good industrial bands to come from his Miami parenting.
Otto Von Schirach
Like the Bob Dylan to our Dude from The Wallflowers, Otto is unquestionably the dad who is way cooler than you. This is a blessing and a curse. He'll introduce you to awesome music and be down to help you build a volcano for Science class, but when it comes time rebel as all kids do, it may prove difficult. You'll wind up on the other side embracing your cool roots or you'll turn a 180, get your CPA, and settle in the suburbs with a decent 401k. Either way, the result of solid Miami parenting.
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