Happy Labor Day! It's likely going to be a wet holiday due to a looming tropical disturbance, but that never stopped a party in Miami. A Labor Day disco party awaits at the scenic Standard Hotel in Miami Beach on Monday. Once the work week begins, you'll want to keep the festivities going with DJ Hottpants at PAMM on Thursday evening at another installment of the Flaming Classics film screening series, and ArtLaunch2018 has performances by Locos Por Juana and Jahfé on Saturday at the Arsht Center.
Here are the best free events happening in Miami this week.
Miami is a city made for dancing. It's always warm, so your muscles stay limber. There's always a cocktail nearby, so you can feel loose and start swaying. All you need is the music. So check out this week's A Labor of Disco Love party, hosted by Twiga, Magnus Sodamin, Ricky Ricardo, and Tatiana (AKA T-Money) and presenting music by Supermarket's Disco Collective Michelle Leshem, Sean Drake, Will Renuart, Freckles, and Terence Tabeau. The disco dance party at the Standard will boast the prismatic Biscayne Bay as the backdrop. It's an afternoon affair ending at sunset and offering barbecue and sunshine. 2 p.m. Monday at the Standard, 40 Island Ave., Miami Beach; standardhotels.com. Admission is free.
By early September, the weather begins to cool in most of the country. But in Miami, we keep sweating until, well, basically forever. The folks at the new dining hall at Jackson Medical Center, aptly called Jackson Hall, have a solution to the heat. They want to sweeten your crummy day and keep you cool with Ice Cream Social. Visit Jackson Hall Tuesdays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. for a free scoop while supplies last. And if you avoid animal products, don't fret: They have vegan options too. 11 a.m. Tuesday at Jackson Hall, 1050 NW 14th St., second floor, Miami; jacksonhallmiami.com. Admission is free.
Thanks to his skillful spinning of pop jams, DJ Hottpants was already a Miami celebrity before he expanded his repertoire to include MC for cool classic flicks. Flaming Classics, an event series that pairs queer films with drag performances, is staging its next showing at Pérez Art Museum Miami, and Hottpants will show off his skills. He's curating a Jane Fonda video clip show, which will be paired with a screening of Barbarella, introduced by Flaming Classics' founders Juan Barquin and Trae DeLellis. You can catch that after you lube up at happy hour with DJ Miguel Rodriguez Clark on the terrace. The party doesn't end there — there's also the Night of a Thousand Fondas Drag Revue with Miss Toto, Patent Pending, Kunst, Persephone Von Lips, and Petty Boop, showing the power of Fonda as an activist and movie star. It'll be a sexy night with a heavy helping of camp. 5 p.m. Thursday at Pérez Art Museum Miami, 1103 Biscayne Blvd., Miami; pamm.org. Admission is free.
The roller-coaster story of former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez captivated the nation. Miami-based attorney Jose Baez defended the star in his second, double-murder trial (after he had already been sentenced to life in prison). In Baez's new book, Unnecessary Roughness — which he'll chat about at Books & Books in Coral Gables — he recounts his experiences with Hernandez, their victory in court, and, ultimately, a tragedy for so many. 6:30 p.m. Friday at Books & Books, 265 Aragon Ave., Coral Gables; booksandbooks.com. Admission is free.
It's an art overload, in the best way possible. Beginning at 9 p.m. Friday at Locust Projects, you can catch different artists (including the likes of Anthony Anaya and Douglas Repetto) displaying their art in one-hour increments. The shindig will last 20 hours, hence the exhibit's name, "20/20: Twenty Artists/Twenty Hours." If you're busy or will be sleeping during part of the madness, elements from the project will also be reinstalled in Locust's main gallery and on display through September 29. 9 p.m. Friday through 5 p.m. Saturday at Locust Projects, 3852 N. Miami Ave., Miami; locustprojects.org. Admission is free.
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Football season isn't the only season kicking off this time of year. It's also arts season. ArtsLaunch2018 brings together many of Miami's fine establishments in the arts community for one helluva party at the Arsht Center. The event offers a community arts village with more than 100 vendors, food and drinks for purchase, and performances by DJ Kumi Alvarez, Jahfé, and Locos Por Juana. Pro tip: A good chunk of the Arsht's individual show tickets for the upcoming season will go on sale this Saturday, so get 'em while they're hot. 10 a.m. Saturday at Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts, 1300 Biscayne Blvd., Miami; arshtcenter.org. Admission is free.
Some of the wildest and most innovative films throughout cinematic history are about to hit the big screen — all in one place. Film Art Expanse will feature five vintage projectors showing more than 30 essential cinematic pieces on a single stage. Among the artists you'll see are Thom Anderson, Storm De Hirsh, and Lawrence Jordan, all with works in their original 16mm formats. The goal of the event is to "bring an expanded cinema experience to a traditional theater environment." 6 and 8 p.m. Saturday at MDC Live Arts Lab, Miami Dade College's Wolfson Campus, 300 NE Second Ave., Building 1, Miami; eventbrite.com. Admission is free.
How will a minimalist furniture object take its shape in Miami? You'll have to show up to find out. X,X,X is a large art object/piece of furniture created by Jessica Martin and Deon Rubi (known for their collaborative design practice, Nun). Their piece — composed of various removable components — is delivered to audiences and is meant to be disassembled, creating an opportunity to "explore human relations." The pieces are moved around during a unique, choreographed ceremony of sorts, and guests may interact with it too. Noon Saturday and 11 a.m. Sunday at Mana Contemporary Miami, 777 Mall, 145 E. Flagler St., Miami; eventbrite.com. Admission is free.