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The 12 Best Things to Do in Miami This Week

Dog Dates at the Garden: See Thursday
Dog Dates at the Garden: See Thursday
Photo courtesy of Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden

Thursday, September 24

As the presidential election looms, so do the debates, which kick off September 29. But have you ever wondered what it's like behind the scenes at the venue? The Adrienne Arsht Center, which hosts the second debate on October 15, plans to pull back the curtain with The Art of Debate, a live online conversation where panelists discuss how a presidential debate site gets chosen, how the venue prepares, and what it's like backstage on the night of. Participants include Janet Brown, executive director of the Commission on Presidential Debates; Johann Zietsman, president and CEO of the Arsht Center; and moderator Calvin Hughes, news anchor for WPLG Local 10. Noon Thursday; arshtcenter.org. Admission is free with RSVP. Suzannah Friscia

Is there anyone you'd rather go on a date with than your dog? At Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden, you can give your furbaby a great night out while maintaining social distancing with Dog Dates at the Garden. For this week's theme, Dog Bazaar, local dog-loving businesses and groups will be on hand with something for every pup. You and your bestie can explore the scenic garden and enjoy special Yappy Hour prices at the Glasshouse Cafe. Human guests may want to treat themselves to a snack from the café or beverages like strawberry champagne and mango daiquiris. Canine visitors can enjoy plenty of complimentary water and dog tapas. 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday, at Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden, 10901 Old Cutler Rd, Coral Gables; 305-667-1651; fairchildgarden.org. Tickets are free for members, $5 to $12 for nonmembers. Suzannah Friscia

Friday, September 25

Space Jam, the epic '90s Looney Tunes revival starring Michael Jordon and other NBA greats, will play at Wynwood's Carpool Cinema on Friday. The classic sports flick screens at 7 p.m. — but get there early because spots are designated on a first-come-first-serve basis. For those looking to expand their movie-snack horizons beyond popcorn, Carpool Cinema offers food and beverage options from local restaurants Back Door Monkey, the Dirty Rabbit, and La Tiendita. 7 p.m. Friday, 2418 N. Miami Ave., Miami; 305-396-4915; carpoolcinemawynwood.com. Olivia McAuley

Record Store Day: See Saturday
Record Store Day: See Saturday
Photo by Chris Hill

Saturday, September 26

In case you missed it, Record Store Day, the annual sale and unofficial international celebration of all things vinyl, has been split into three separate drops to accommodate the pandemic's knock-on effects. The second round of releases is scheduled for Saturday, and participating stores across Miami will celebrate with extended opening hours, goodie bags, and special socially distant programming. Technique Records will operate by appointment only with five people allowed inside the shop with 15 minutes to shop. That's not all. The $1 Sidewalk Sale will return and offer deep discounts for collectors who don't mind doing a little bit of digging. After shopping till you drop at Technique, check out other participating stores like Sweat Records, Museo del Disco, Radio-Active, We Got the Beats, and Yesterday & Today. 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday, at Technique Records, 880 NE 79th S.t, Miami; 786-717-6622; techniquerecords.com. Olivia McAuley

Ah, the humble Cuban sandwich. The ingredients are so simple, but it can be tricky to get right. (You know who never gets it right? Tampa, regardless of how much they whine that their cubano is more "authentic.") This month, Miami-native, New York City-based chef Louie Estrada took over Bebito's in Miami Beach with a pop-up version of his Brooklyn restaurant My Cuban Spot. Saturday and Sunday will be your last chance to sample Estrada's creations as he closes out with his take on the Cuban sandwich — appropriately named El Cubano. The sandwich features layers of ham, swiss, pork, pickle, and mustard on Cuban bread. Noon to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, at Bebito's, 1504 Bay Rd., Miami Beach; 786-353-2829; bebitos.cafe. Pre-order the sandwich for $15 via eventbrite.com. Jose D. Duran

Inffinito Brazilian Film Festival: See Saturday
Inffinito Brazilian Film Festival: See Saturday
Photo courtesy of Inffinito Brazilian Film Festival

The largest Brazilian film festival outside of Brazil is turning 24 and going virtual for the first time. This year's Inffinito Brazilian Film Festival is chock-full of over 100 fiction, documentary, and short films, including special collections of films by Black and indigenous filmmakers and winners from previous festivals. Masterclasses and talk sessions with industry professionals round out the programming. The festival kicks off on Saturday with an in-person screening at the Dezerland Park drive-in of Fernando Grostein Andrade's film Abe at 7:30. Thursday through October 25; inff.online. Tickets cost $18 to $88. Suzannah Friscia

Sunday, September 27

Even as the world recalibrates and things slowly reopen, it's a great time to take advantage of as many outdoor activities as possible. Now you have another one to add to your list: Miami Beach Botanical Garden is back, with limited hours to keep guests as safe as possible. The garden is offering timed tickets good for two hours, and there's plenty to do while you're there, whether you prefer to wander the garden's collections on your own with a self-guided audio tour, or nurture your green thumb and shop for your own plants in the Boutique & Garden Center. Guided tours are also offered on Saturdays for an additional $5. Thursday through Sunday 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 1:15 p.m. to 3:15 p.m., at 2000 Convention Center Dr., Miami Beach; 305-673-7256, mbgarden.org. Tickets cost $5 via eventbrite.com. Suzannah Friscia

Monday, September 28

Monday is now the best day to pay a visit to the critters of Zoo Miami. With the zoo's online-only $10 Mondays deal, you can buy a ticket for ten bucks plus tax (less than half the typical price of admission). While some experiences are temporarily suspended owing to social-distancing impossibility, you can visit all the animals, from bright blue frogs to giant elephants to playful otters. You can also check out the zoo's Dinos Live! exhibit, on view until November 1. Mondays through December 28, at Zoo Miami, 12400 SW 152nd St., Miami; 305-251-0400; zoomiami.org. Tickets cost $10. Suzannah Friscia

Mr. Pauer: See Wednesday
Mr. Pauer: See Wednesday
Photo courtesy of 1-800-Lucky

Tuesday, September 29

Books & Books and the Miami Book Fair present a literary evening with New York Times best-selling author Jennifer Niven on Tuesday, as she discusses her latest page turner, Breathless. The YA novel follows the young, ambitious Claudine Henry as she embarks on a healing journey with her newly divorced mother on a remote island off Georgia's coast, but instead finds herself in an unexpected entanglement with trail guide-cum-heartthrob Miah. Niven will be joined in conversation by actor, musician, writer, and model Luke Eisner. The free Crowdcast livestream will see the two chat about the new work, followed by a Q&A session with the audience. 7 p.m. Tuesday; booksandbooks.com. Admission is free with RSVP via crowdcast.io. Olivia McAuley

Wednesday, September 30

The Adrienne Arsht Center rolls out a new six-part monthly series, the Heritage Project, on Wednesday. The event invites local community leaders and cultural experts from across South Florida to gather for virtual minisummits on social justice, activism, and the influence of Black art on mainstream American culture. The first edition, Songs of Freedom, features musicians Brenda Alford, Valerie Coleman, and Dr. Wayne Bumpers in conversation with Johann Zietsman, president and CEO of the Arsht Center, discussing how music has influenced the social-justice movement. The series is inspired by the salons held during the Harlem Renaissance between Black intellectuals, activists, artists, educators, and business owners. 5:30 p.m. Wednesday; arshtcenter.org. Admission is free with RSVP. Olivia McAuley

Wynwood-based Asian food hall and club 1-800-Lucky is bringing back its music programming. Thanks to a large outdoor patio, the food and nightlife mecca can now allow patrons to sip, eat, and relax while taking in the tunes of Latin Grammy-nominated producer Mr. Pauer every Wednesday night. Spinning global-tropical tracks, Pauer will play from 6 to 10 p.m., but that shouldn't stop patrons from arriving early to get the best seats in the house or take advantage of the bar's happy hour from 4 to 7 p.m. 6 p.m. Wednesday, at 1-800-Lucky, 143 NW 23rd St., Miami; 305-768-9826; 1800lucky.com. Olivia McAuley

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