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The 12 Best Things to Do in Miami This Week

Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival: See Thursday
Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival: See Thursday
Photo courtesy of Cloudburst Entertainment

Thursday, November 5

In the world of shopping, there's pretty much nothing more exciting than a sample sale, with its unbeatable discounts and the thrill of knowing another eager buyer could snatch up your coveted items at any moment. If you've been missing the fun of browsing in person and feel ready to stop wearing exclusively athleisure, head to 260 Sample Sale's location in the Design District, where it will host a sale of womenswear, menswear, and accessories by Sandro Paris. Through Sunday, November 8, at 260 Sample Sale, 180 NE 40th Street; 260samplesale.com. Suzannah Friscia

The 35th-annual Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival kicks off Thursday night, and it has found plenty of creative ways to bring movie magic to audiences, pandemic be damned. In addition to the classic in-theater experience, the festival boasts virtual screenings, four drive-in events, two boat-ins, and six outdoor "dinner and a movie" nights at local restaurants. Sing along to Grease from the comfort of your car, float on the water at sunset while watching James Bond classics, or grab a virtual pass that gives you access to 150 films from over 20 countries. Opening night kicks off with The Comeback Trail, starring Robert DeNiro, Zack Braff, Morgan Freeman, and Tommy Lee Jones. Runs November 5-22, fliff.com. Suzannah Friscia

Eartheater
Eartheater
Photo by Sam Clarke

Friday, November 6

Promoter Coconut Groove takes over the popular hookah spot Oasis Lounge on Friday for Soto's Balcony. On the bill: resident DJ and party namesake Soto, whose stylings range from deep and melodic soundscapes to groovy house beats. He's joined by special guest Juan Fonseca for a happy-hour set. Sit on the lounge's open-air patio to take in the tunes, and avail yourself of $5 off hookahs, $2 off cocktails, and $1 off draft beer, all courtesy of Oasis' happy-hour menu. Organizers ask that attendees add to the night by donning their most outlandish masks. 5 to 11 p.m. Friday, at Oasis Lounge, 2977 McFarlane Rd., Coconut Grove; 305-446-6565; oasisloungeandhookahbar.com. Admission is free with RSVP via residentadvisor.net. Olivia McAuley

Forget planes, trains, and automobiles. Get up close and personal with giant, colorful hot-air balloons at this year's South Florida Balloon Festival. Weather permitting, the balloons, which reach up to 100 feet tall when inflated, will be available for tethered rides. There'll also be food and retail vendors, a kid zone, and more. Just make sure to arrive before 7 p.m. to get your car pass, which covers parking and admission for the event. 5 to 10 p.m. Friday, November 6, through Sunday, November 8, at Homestead-Miami Speedway, One Ralph Sanchez, Speedway Blvd., Homestead; balloonglowtour.com. Tickets cost $25 to $99 via eventbrite.com. Suzannah Friscia

The Institute of Contemporary Art, Miami's performance initiative First Fridays has persisted in digital fashion throughout the pandemic, offering viewers free online exploratory activations, from screenings to live performances. On Friday, New York City-based multi-instrumentalist Eartheater, AKA Alexandra Drewchin, will perform, bringing her distinct experimental digital production to this one-of-a-kind virtual event. The live performance, which will stream via ICA's YouTube and Facebook pages, will feature a harpist, a violinist, and other performance elements specifically tailored for an event that originates in a living room in New York. 7 p.m. Friday; icamiami.org. Olivia McAuley

"Allied with Power" at PAMM: See Saturday
"Allied with Power" at PAMM: See Saturday
© Zanele Muholi. Courtesy of Stevenson, Cape Town/Johannesburg, and Yancey Richardson, New York

Saturday, November 7

The Pérez Art Museum Miami reopens its doors on Saturday after a pandemically induced hiatus. In celebration of the reopening, PAMM will debut its new permanent exhibition, "Allied with Power: African and African Diaspora Art." The collection includes 40 works by African and African-diaspora artists, including Stanley Whitney, known for his abstract grid compositions; and Zanele Muholi, whose two large-scale self-portraits are a reflection on her gender and skin. The museum has implemented new hours and safety precautions to keep visitors and staff safe, including one-way paths, hand-sanitizing stations, and ticketed reservations. Noon to 6 p.m. Saturday, at the Pérez Art Museum Miami, 1103 Biscayne Blvd., Miami; 305-375-3000; pamm.org. Tickets cost $16 for adults, $12 for youth 7-18 and seniors over 62, and free for healthcare professionals, first responders, active military, and veterans. Olivia McAuley

Acclaimed house-music artist Dombresky will play at the Miami Beach dance hub, Treehouse, on Saturday for the latest edition of Sunsets at Treehouse Miami. Fresh off its tenth-anniversary celebration, the club is sporting a new lounge layout, with hand-sanitizer dispensers dispersed throughout the space, and operating at 50 percent capacity. The event will start at 6 p.m., with DJs ODK, Rune Noir, and Strictly Business on the lineup. General-admission tickets have sold out, but table reservations are still available with a minimum to spend ranging from $500 for a party of four to $600 for a party of six. 6 p.m. to midnight Saturday, at Treehouse, 323 23rd St. Miami Beach; 786-318-1908; treehousemiami.com. Olivia McAuley

Sunday, November 8

Why not start your Sunday morning with a unique blend of burlesque, comedy, drag, and celebrity impersonation? Illusions the Drag Brunch takes your typical weekend brunch to a new level, featuring some of Miami's best and funniest drag-queen hosts, who'll bring to life stars like Madonna, Cher, Whitney Houston, Beyoncé, Pink, and Cardi B. Be sure to come hungry for lots of food and fun. 12:30 p.m. Sunday, at Il Giardino, 1236 Ocean Dr., illusionsthedragqueenshow.com. Tickets cost $10 to $100 via eventbrite.com. Suzannah Friscia

Orchestra Miami promises to transport audiences to Vienna with its production of Beethoven Lives Upstairs. The performance tells the story of Christoph, a young boy writing letters to his uncle about the madman composer who's moved in upstairs. Slowly, Christoph begins to learn more about Beethoven's life and music and to understand his genius. More than 25 excerpts from Beethoven's greatest works, like "Moonlight Sonata," "Für Elise," and the Fifth and Ninth Symphonies, are woven into the story and played by the orchestra — a perfect way to introduce young audiences to Beethoven. 3 p.m. Sunday, at Pinecrest Gardens, 11000 SW 57th Ave., Pinecrest; orchestramiami.org. Tickets cost $5 for kids ages 3-17, $12 for seniors, $15 for adults; virtual tickets cost $15 via eventbrite.com. Suzannah Friscia

Worst Coast at Over Under: See Monday
Worst Coast at Over Under: See Monday
Photo by Olivia McAuley

Monday, November 9

Downtown cocktail bar Over Under opened amid the pandemic. While the timing wasn't ideal, the laidback watering hole has taken off despite the chaotic curfew adjustments. The newly installed street-side DJ booth now allows for new events, including its Monday party, Worst Coast, a rock 'n' roll music night directed by Alex Nuñez (Psychic Mirrors, Wrong) and Lauren Palma (Bleeth). This week, catch special guest John Vale on the decks, delivering heavy-hitting tunes to patrons spread out inside the bar and on the elevated outdoor deck. 8 p.m. Monday, at Over Under, 151 E. Flagler St., Miami; 786-247-985; overundermiami.com. Olivia McAuley

Tuesday, November 10

Head to Sweet Caroline Karaoke Bar to catch some of Miami's funniest standup comedians. Hosted by MiamiComedy.com founder Manny Garavito, the event invites comedy fans to see an intimate gig, where comedians hone their craft and the audience becomes a part of the show. On Tuesday night, get some much-needed laughs courtesy of locals Sergio Mendez, Cbas Mattar, and Cisco Duran on Sweet Caroline's stage. Fancy yourself an amateur comic? Stick around after the show and try your hand during the open mike. 9 to 11 p.m. Tuesday, at Sweet Caroline Karaoke Bar, 1111 SW First Ave., Miami; 786-673-2522; sweetcarolinebar.com. Oliva McAuley

Wednesday, November 11

Manatee season is upon us, and there's no better time to see wild manatees in their natural habitat. Head to Virginia Key for the Clear Kayak Manatee Photo Safari and immerse yourself in Florida's wildlife — including birds and the occasional dolphin sighting. Paddle your kayak and explore Jimbo's Lagoon, where several manatee families have made their home, and be sure to bring a waterproof case for your phone so you can take pictures. The tour may venture to Virginia Key Cove and the beach at North Point as well. 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. at Virginia Key Outdoor Center, 3801 Rickenbacker Cswy., Miami; vkoc.net. Tickets cost $85 for adults and $45 for kids via fareharbor.com. Suzannah Friscia

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