Flex in Effect
You've heard of a sci-fi convention, right? You know, it's where geeky people in Lord of the Rings outfits meet in some hotel ballroom to trade anime comics and Matrix action figures. Well, the Universe Weekend at the Eden Roc Resort (4525 Collins Ave., Miami Beach) is the opposite of that. Instead of thirtysomethings dressed like Spock, the participants in the Universe Weekend competitions are disturbingly tan and frighteningly muscular people who come from around the world to flex and pose. (One competition we're eagerly anticipating is the Ms. Bikini Universe contest -- not because of the near nudity, but for the intense interview round.) See them shine today through Sunday. Tickets cost $30 to $100. Call 305-633-5353, or visit www.universeweekend.com for a complete schedule. -- Ryan Brown
Motorin' for a cause
Whatever happened to the bikers of yore? The tattooed outlaws who terrorized the freeways of America are still out there, like dusty relics from a Sixties B movie. Now bikers are more concerned with helping out than raising hell. For example, Metris Batts. She's the director of outreach for the charity organization called The Village, and a member of the World AIDS Day planning commission. And she rides a Harley. Batts's interests will merge at today's Red Ribbon Ride. Participants will raise awareness of National HIV Testing Day (June 27) while raising proceeds for this year's National World AIDS Day Conference. This event isn't geared toward specific sectors of the motorcycling community: "HIV does not discriminate. It doesn't care what you look like or where you're from," Batts asserts. The ride begins at noon at the Miami-Dade College North Campus (11300 NW 27th Ave., Miami) and ends with a party at 2:00 p.m. at the Homestead Campus, 500 College Terr., Homestead. Registration costs $25. Call 305-573-3784, or visit www.villagesouth.com. --Patrice Elizabeth Grell Yursik
Treasures and fried dough
Now that those fancy art festivals and street carnivals have gone the way of Canadian geese and tourists, we can settle down for some laid-back, neighborly gatherings. The North Beach Development Corporation is happy to satiate our continued yearn to walk the streets and browse among the tents with its first North Beach Bazaar. This community garage sale and craft fair will have plenty of handcrafted jewelry, curios, collectibles, and treasures for you to snatch for reasonable prices. And there will even be vendors serving fun fair food, so the air will be filled with the aroma of fried dough. Grab your hat and shopping bag and head to 73rd Street and Collins Avenue, North Beaches, today from 10:00 to 5:00. Admission is free. Also, booth space is still available (for $100) if you are interested in selling your own unique wares. Call 305-865-4147, or visit www.gonorthbeach.com. --Lyssa Oberkreser
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