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The 15 Best Things to Do in Miami This Week

The CubansEXPAND
The Cubans
Photo by Andres Manner

Thursday, January 23 

The Cubans is a homegrown Miami play making its world premiere at the Colony Theatre. Coming from the minds of two FIU-educated theater kids — playwright Michael Leon and director Victoria Collado — the story revolves around a Cuban-American woman in her 30s who clashes with her family when she comes home for a celebration, something we can all relate to. Check out a special preview performance of the new drama before its official opening night. 8 p.m. Thursday at the Colony Theatre, 1040 Lincoln Rd., Miami Beach; 305-674-1040; colonymb.org. Tickets cost $39 to $65 via colonymb.org/the-cubans.

A member of the L.A.-based music cooperative Internet Money, Iann Dior is one of the creative artists behind hits such as Juice Wrld's "Lucid Dreams" and Drake's "Blue Tint." If you're at all familiar with those songs, you'll know the distinctive sound of emo trap, a burgeoning genre brewed in the SoundCloud rap scene and helmed by the 21-year-old artist and his collaborators. With more than 60 million plays on Spotify for his tracks "Emotions" and "Gone Girl," the artist will bring his Industry Plant Tour to the Ground this Thursday. Dreamy hip-hop artist Landon Cube and South Florida native PoorStacy will also perform. 7 p.m. Thursday at the Ground, 34 NE 11th St., Miami; thegroundmiami.com. Tickets cost $20 via ticketweb.com

Friday, January 24 

Dreams do come true: Big Bounce America, the world's largest touring inflatable bounce house event, lands in Miami this Friday. The supersize inflatable attraction includes four custom-built courses, so no need to worry about fitting the whole family. Though the Guinness World Records-certified world's biggest bounce house has a three-hour time limit due to popular demand, the Sports Slam (a bouncy sports arena) the Giant (a 900-foot obstacle course), and a space-themed maze offer unlimited fun. It's the stuff of Ferris Bueller's fever dreams. Adult bounce enthusiasts need not feel left out: Event organizers also offer adult-only sessions, so whether you bring the crew or the family, your visit to Big Bounce America is bound to be a blast. Multiple time slots available Friday, January 24, through February 2 at Miramar Regional Park, 16801 Miramar Pkwy., Miramar. Tickets cost $17 to $35 via thebigbounceamerica.com

Sure, Willy Wonka's chocolate factory was cool, but was it really necessary for him to subject those kids and their families to body horrors and blood pressure–raising stakes? If you're looking to taste some candy or spend a day immersing yourself in the magic of chocolate without running the risk of turning into a giant blueberry, head to the 14th-annual Chocolate Garden at Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden this weekend. Explore the tropical grounds, sample artisan chocolate, sip milkshakes, attend lectures on chocolate-making from Miami's master chefs and chocolatiers, and much more. 9:30 a.m. Friday to 4:30 p.m. Sunday at Fairchild Tropic Botanic Garden, 10901 Old Cutler Rd., Coral Gables; fairchildgarden.org. Tickets cost $12 per child and $25 per adult per day via store.fairchildgarden.org; admission is free for Fairchild members

The Black Lips
The Black Lips
Photo by Dani Pujalte

If you're looking for an alternative to all the DJ sets in town, swing by the Ground this Friday and try this rip-roaring band from Atlanta. The Black Lips took a page from the Yeehaw Agenda and added a country spin to their lo-fi rock sound on their latest record, Sing in a World That's Falling Apart. They'll celebrate it here in Miami, because January 24 happens to be the album's release date. 7 p.m. Friday at The Ground, 34 NE 11th St., Miami; 305-375-0001; thegroundmiami.com. Tickets cost $15 to $40 via eventbrite.com

Alla Kovgan's documentary Cunningham — a biographical work exploring dancer and choreographer Merce Cunningham's achievements, as well as his long-term collaborative and romantic relationship with composer John Cage — is set to premiere at O Cinema South Beach this Friday. From the genesis of Cunningham's career in New York to his status as an icon of avant-garde dance today, the film reflects on the decades of groundbreaking work the dancer created, as well as the lack of recognition he received during his journey. 7 and 9 p.m. Friday at O Cinema South Beach, 1130 Washington Ave, Miami Beach; o-cinema.org. Tickets cost $9 to $11

Saturday, January 25

Who even goes to horse races for the horses? Track day is all about day-drinking and hobnobbing with high society, and if you thought the Kentucky Derby was swank, just wait until you check out the Pegasus World Cup at Gulfstream Park. A reserved admission ticket snags you access to all the luxurious bars, viewing areas, gambling, and other amenities the park offers. A LIV Stretch ticket, on the other hand, gives access to the South Beach megaclub's VIP viewing area, hosted by Nelly and presenting a live performance by T-Pain. 9 a.m. Saturday at Gulfstream Park, 901 S. Federal Hwy., Hallandale Beach; 954-454-7000; pegasusworldcup.com. Reserved admission tickets cost $89 to $310 via pegasusworldcup.com/tickets

The Vince Lombardi Trophy is one of the more popular attractions at the Super Bowl Experience.EXPAND
The Vince Lombardi Trophy is one of the more popular attractions at the Super Bowl Experience.
Photo by Annie Rice / AP

In case you haven't heard, there's a big football game coming to town, and to celebrate, the NFL is hosting the Super Bowl Experience at the Miami Beach Convention Center this Saturday through the day of the big matchup. It's an interactive NFL extravaganza featuring games, exhibits, football clinics, autograph sessions, merchandise, and even a photo op with the Vince Lombardi Trophy. Maybe you won't get into the stadium, but you can live out the Super Bowl experience here. 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday at Miami Beach Convention Center, 1901 Convention Center Dr., Miami Beach; miamibeachconvention.com. Tickets cost $50 via ticketmaster.com

Sunday, January 26

Spend an evening with Chilean novelist Isabel Allende. Presenting her latest book, A Long Petal of the Sea, the writer has long been lauded as a master of magical realism. Receiving critical acclaim for her first novel, 1982's The House of the Spirits, she has since penned several other best sellers and is one of the highest-selling Spanish-language authors in the world. Set in 1938, her latest work follows a love story facing insurmountable obstacles and prevails only through the strength of two individuals' persistence to find a home. 6:30 p.m. Sunday at the Adrienne Arsht Center, 1300 Biscayne Blvd., Miami; arshtcenter.org. Tickets cost $42 via their website

publisHER; See Sunday
publisHER; See Sunday
Photo courtesy of Nautilus by Arlo

As this year's all-male Oscar nominations for best director prove, women unfortunately still have a long way to go in the creative industries, including the literary world. If you're looking for a way to get your words into the hands of eager readers, the publishHER Book Fair might be a good place to begin. Meet women authors who specialize in online publishing and learn how to self-publish your work. After all, in the internet age, the only real gatekeeper is yourself. 1 p.m. Sunday at the Nautilus Miami Beach, 1825 Collins Ave., Miami Beach; 305-503-5700; arlohotels.com/events/publisher-book-fair. Admission is free with RSVP via eventbrite.com

Monday, January 27

As Miami gears up to host the largest football event of the year, a Hampton Art Lovers presentation of the work of former NFL player–turned–neo-mannerist painter Ernie Barnes could not come at a more appropriate time. With a story arc that trounces George W. Bush's president–to–portrait painter track, Barnes was the first American athlete to become an internationally recognized fine artist. Though he received several notable sports-related commissions after his football career ended (such as his piece A Dream Unfolds for the NBA), Barnes never looked back to his offensive guard start and became a renowned artist and pioneer of the neo-mannerist movement, often depicting what he saw while growing up in the segregated South. 1 to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday at the Historic Ward Rooming House, 249 NW Ninth St., Miami. Admission is free with RSVP via eventbrite.com.

The Genuine Somm Slam will not be as bitter as the World War I Battle of the Somme, but it will be at least a bit French. Duking it out for the glory of creating the perfect wine pairing, advanced sommelier Daniel Toral of Florida Wine Company and head sommelier Amanda Fraga of the Genuine Hospitality Group will go head-to-head to amuse guests. The experts will choose from the wine selection at Tigertail + Mary and pair their picks with a delicious tasting menu. Chef/owner Michael Schwartz and Genuine Hospitality Group CEO Sunil Bhatt The event will host the proceedings. May the best somm win. 7 p.m. Monday at Tigertail + Mary, 3321 Mary St., Coconut Grove; tigertailandmary.com. Tickets cost $96 via eventbrite.com. 

If you like this little guy, you're going to love the Canine Film Festival's Bark-Off 2020 movie night.EXPAND
If you like this little guy, you're going to love the Canine Film Festival's Bark-Off 2020 movie night.
Photo by Monica McGivern

Tuesday, January 28

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Don't you wish your furry friend could talk? Wouldn't it be just lovely if your pup could tell you when it had to go out instead of crapping all over your carpet? This BYOD (bring your own dog) edition of the Canine Film Festival's Bark-Off 2020 movie night might be just what you need. Catch a showing of the new adventure film Dolittle, which stars Robert Downey Jr. as the titular guy who can talk to animals. The movie looks kind of insane, but maybe you and your dog will magically be able to speak to each other and bond over it by the time the credits roll. 7 p.m. Tuesday at Silverspot Cinema Downtown Miami, 300 SE Third St., Miami; 305-536-5000; silverspot.net. Tickets cost $18 via eventbrite.com

Wednesday, January 29

If you still need to catch up on your backlog of Pixar films, now is a good chance. See a screening of Toy Story 4 — yes, there's a fourth one — as part of the SoundScape Cinema Series. Check out what Woody, Buzz Lightyear, and the rest of the gang are up to (let's hope with less mortal drama this time) and bring the whole family to relax in the grass and watch the free movie projected onto the New World Center's wall. 8 p.m. Wednesday at SoundScape Park, 400 17th St., Miami Beach; nws.edu. Admission is free

The music-loving, anecdote-laden, South Florida-centric podcast That Record Got Me High is back for its first live taping of 2020. Hosts Rob Elba and Barry Stock will appear at Fort Lauderdale's beloved Laser Wolf this Wednesday, where they'll be joined by special guest and fellow music savant Adrian Morales for a track-by-track analysis of They Might Be Giants' 1992 classic album, Apollo 18. 7 p.m. Wednesday at Laser Wolf, 901 Progresso Dr., Suite 101, Fort Lauderdale; thatrecordgotmehigh.com. Admission is free

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