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A Yardwork Orange

A tropical haven awaits

SAT 3/12

If the ceramic gnomes and metallic globes set on pedestals outnumber the plants and Adirondack chairs in your garden, today is your chance to see what a beautiful oasis your back yard can be. The fourth annual Miami Beach Botanical Garden's (2000 Convention Center Dr., Miami Beach) Tour of Private Residential Gardens allows you to meander at your own pace while you snap photos and jot down ideas for turning your kudzu jungle into a meditative retreat or pool party central.

As part of the Dade Heritage Days events, the tour includes a visit to the historical gardens of a 1930s Italian villa and the 1925 winter home built for the Pennsylvania Railroad president. If your jardin consists of a few pots on the patio, you'll find inspiration in the terrace and urban gardens, or simply get lost in yards so large they consist of separate garden "rooms." Spend the day in someone else's back yard today from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., followed by a Finlandia vodka cocktail reception from 3:00 to 5:00 at the Miami Beach Botanical Garden. Tickets cost $20 in advance and $25 the day of the tour. This fundraising event benefits the Botanical Garden, which is free and open to the public Tuesday through Sunday, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Call 305-673-7256 ext. 206, or visit -- Lyssa Oberkreser

Swing for Charity

Or just play cards

WED 3/16

Some activities are considered games, some sports. Golf and tennis, on the other hand, are obsessions. Fans and participants in the Big Three (football, baseball, basketball) might scoff at these two noncontact games/sports, but the truth is golf requires more concentration and better form than most anything, and tennis players actually run more in their back-and-forth than any other athletes. The Douglas Gardens Classic charity event also features card playing (not a sport), entertainment, and raffles. The fun-filled day raises money ($180 to play golf, $125 for tennis, $75 for cards) for the Miami Jewish Home and Hospital for the Aged. Players (and athletes) of all skill levels should go to Westview Country Club, 2601 NW 119th St., Miami, by 9:30 a.m. Call 305-751-8626 ext. 2178. --Greg Baker


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