Best of Miami®

Best Of 2012

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  • + Plantation
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  • + Riviera Beach
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  • + Tamiami
  • + Unknown
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  • + Wellington
  • + West Dade
  • + West Kendall
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  • + Wilton Manors
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Best Of :: Sports & Recreation

Best Sportscaster

These days, every sportscaster on the planet has a catch phrase handy when an extra-amazing play happens on the court, field, or ice. So one would think the guy who does the play-by-play for the Miami Heat would be full of catch phrases, because the Big Three are a highlight reel come to life. But the beauty of Mike Inglis, the nightly voice of your Miami Heat on 790 the Ticket, is that he doesn't rely on the often-hackneyed trickery of describing a play by saying someone just got it "right between the eyes!" That kind of announcing has become cliché to the point of self-parody. Inglis is old school mixed with good old-fashioned enthusiasm. In a game where things change every half a second, he merely paints the picture and makes things more exciting simply by using a genuine fervor that most announcers have confused with being trendy. But Inglis's retro style doesn't rob you of the excitement of a Dwyane Wade Euro-step shot or a LeBron James dunk. Instead, he enhances every big moment with a guttural call that makes every respective play that much more awesome. For example, during last year's playoff matchup against the Atlanta Hawks, he famously described a Wade-to-LeBron alley-oop with his usual get-off-your-seat-and-yell-hell-yeah moment: "The ball stolen, down the floor, Wade with LeBron, and the alley-oop and a right-hand jam by LeBron James on the a-l-l-l-l-e-y-oop!" No gimmicks. Just passion. That's why we turn down the volume on the TV set and fire up Mike Inglis on the radio during Heat games.

Best of Miami: Sports & Recreation
Kira Shaimanova

Click here for all Sports & Recreation winners.

READERS' POLL WINNERS

Sports & Recreation

Best Coach: Erik Spoelstra

Best Dolphins Player: Matt Moore

Best Heat Player: Dwyane Wade

Best Hurricanes Player: Lamar Miller

Best Marlins Player: Giancarlo Stanton

Best Park: Kennedy Park

Best People-Watching Spot: Lincoln Road

Best Place to Take Out-of-Towners: Lincoln Road

Best Sportscaster: Dan Le Batard

Best Day Trip

Pack up the bikes and head west to Shark Valley, where there are no sharks but plenty of sunbathing gators lounging around the 15-mile looping path. It's a nature-filled workout with ample views of pristine saw grass and loads of migratory birds from January to March. What's that, you say? Pedal-pushing your way past gators and birds is sooooo touristy? Well, there's also a decent chance of spotting one of the much-hyped Burmese pythons that are grabbing national headlines. Park ranger Eric Riordan says five of the suckers were removed from the park in December, including one that was 16 feet long. If that's not motivation to keep pedaling, what is?

36000 SW 8th St., Miami, 33194
MAP
305-221-8776
Best Kayaking
West Lake Park

Two minutes in West Lake Park is it all it takes to get away from the asphalt hell of South Florida sprawl. The trip begins with a light paddle down a serene mangrove tunnel — keep your eyes peeled for always-awesome manatees and some nice birds. When the trail empties out onto the lake, it's your choice. Let the boat float, and kick back to relax while soaking up the rays, or cut across the lake — a workout in itself on a windy day — and explore the mangrove-lined, color-coded trails. If it weren't for the not-so-distant skyline peeking over the trees, you might forget you're smack in between Miami and Fort Lauderdale. Prices aren't bad either: Drop $15 to rent a canoe for one hour, $20 for two hours, or $50 for the whole day.

751 Sheridan St., Hollywood, 33019
MAP
954-357-5161
Best Tour Boat

The next time you have guests from the Midwest crashing at your pad, there's a sure-fire way to show them Miami like an undercover narcotics detective with an affinity for fine Versace suits. Head to Bayside Marketplace and board the Thriller SuperCat 55, a cigarette boat with room for more than two dozen people that takes riders on a high-speed adventure via Government Cut. After jumping through waves and doing water doughnuts on Biscayne Bay, the Thriller slows things down for a very informative tour of Star Island. The captain provides Trivial Pursuit-style tidbits of information about the wealthy, famous people who own mansions there. For instance, you'll learn that Ivax Pharmaceuticals founder Phillip Frost imported 50 date palms from South Africa at $9,000 a pop to decorate the landscape of his and his wife's $55 million estate. You'll also discover that the neighboring house was used in the 1955 movie Guys and Dolls, starring Marlon Brando and Frank Sinatra. It costs $35 per adult and $22 per child to ride the Thriller (or $32 and $19 if you buy tickets online).

401 Biscayne Blvd., Miami, 33132
MAP
305-371-3278
Best Kids' Thrill
Super Wheels Skating Center

Sure, you can take the youngsters to the latest mega-arcade or crowded water park, or trudge three hours in traffic to the beach. Or you can introduce them to the kind of place you once hung out before the days of Xbox 360 Kinect and Twitter. Take 'em skating! OK, strapping on a pair of skates and rolling around in a giant circle with music pumped in the background seems a bit outdated. But that doesn't mean it's not fun. It's also amazing exercise and a great way to tire out the kids from all that pent-up summertime energy. Super Wheels Skating Center, which has been in operation since 2009, has 20 HDTV sets, five giant screens, a large music selection, and a "live text" broadcast. There's also an enormous arcade with old-school favorites like air hockey, plus a snack bar where you can stuff your face with pizza, chicken wings, fries, and Dippin' Dots. But the enormous hardwood skating rink is where the real excitement is to be had. Friday is Cheap Skates Day, where you can rent skates for $7 from 3:30 to 6 p.m. and $12 after that. And Super Tots sessions for the little ones cost only $8 from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Saturdays. Yeah, skating isn't what it used to be. But it's still a kick-ass time for the whole family.

12265 Southwest 112th St., Kendall, 33186
MAP
305-270-9386
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Best Sportscaster: Mike Inglis

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