You've likely been on mental vacation mode for the majority of this week (or is that just us?), but at last, the long weekend has arrived. With Christmas Eve and Christmas landing at the very beginning of next week, most folks in town have at least a couple of days off over the next few days, and it's a great time to show visiting friends and family a fun night on the town. Start with Bayskate, which returns to Bayfront Park this weekend with a Veza Sur beer garden, Botran coquito bar, and much more. If you're looking to catch a show, you can't go wrong with the Heavy Pets and Surfer Blood at Revolution Live. And if you're really searching for a party, head to the American Airlines Arena for a concert by Ozuna on the eve of Christmas Eve.
Here are the best events happening in Miami this weekend.
Bayskate Miami is back for a fourth year. After a spooky, Halloween-inspired skating spectacle in 2017, there's a holiday shindig happening for 2018. Bayskate's Holiday Boogie goes down in front of the historic Pepper Fountain in Bayfront Park. In addition to free skating, there will be a Veza Sur beer garden with craft beverages, local food, and beer games; Gnome Forest picnic area; Ace Parlor cocktail spot; Botran coquito bar; and Chomp Park food village. Lace up and have a blast. 4 to 11 p.m. Thursday, December 20, 4 p.m. to midnight Friday, December 21, and 1 p.m. to midnight Saturday, December 22, at Bayfront Park, 301 Biscayne Blvd., Miami; bayskatemiami.com. Admission is free.
Purdy Lounge has likely served you your fair share of shots over the years, but they're barely legal. Relax — they've had their permits all along. But the Miami Beach lounge turns 18 this Friday, and in true Purdy style, they're throwing a massive celebration. Dance the night away on the light-up floor and arrive early — there's an open bar from 10 p.m. to midnight. 10 p.m. Friday at Purdy Lounge, 1811 Purdy Ave., Miami; facebook.com. Admission is free.
Remember the TV show Celebrity Deathmatch? For a bunch of clay people fighting, it was amazing. Well, a Good vs. Evil Celebrity Deathmatch will happen in real life at the Hangar, pitting supervillains against heroes for everyone's favorite monthly queer, 18-and-over party. Four battles will take place, including Harry Potter versus Lord Voldemort (Sam Vincent versus Florida Elizabeth Man) and Princess Leia versus Darth Vader (Brandy Castro versus Christian Acevedo). Hair is sure to fly, so stay vigilant out there. 10 p.m. Friday at the Hangar, 60 NE 11th St., Miami; thehangar305.com. Admission is free with RSVP.
The Heavy Pets have played more than 1,200 shows since 2005. So how about another one, close to home during the holidays? The Fort Lauderdale-bred indie-funky-reggaeing rock band is teaming up with the West Palm Beach rockers of Surfer Blood for the Holiday Ball. In addition to offering all kinds of jams — including tracks from the Heavy Pets' 2018 LP, Strawberry Mansion — this is a charitable affair too. Guests are encouraged to bring a new, unwrapped toy for a drive, and there will be raffles for cool prizes to benefit the nonprofit 4Kids. 7 p.m. Friday at Revolution Live, 100 SW Third Ave., Fort Lauderdale; jointherevolution.net. Tickets cost $14.
That heinous Christmas sweater Aunt Barb gave you in 1995 can finally have its moment. The always-wonderful shop/bar Thrift Shop is hosting an Ugly Sweater Party. Since this is America and we compete for everything, the person with the best ugly sweater will win a $200 bar tab. There is perhaps nothing better than winning an ugly-sweater contest in a thrift-shop environment. #Goals. 7 p.m. Friday at Thrift Shop, 28 NE 14th St., Miami; eventbrite.com. Admission is free.
If you haven't yet made it to one of the Frost Science Museum's musical laser shows, you've missed out on visual accompaniment to some of the best music by the Beatles, Lady Gaga, Michael Jackson, Daft Punk, and even selections from the Stranger Things soundtrack. But if you're the kind of person who looks forward to December all year so you can listen to non-stop Christmas music, you really need to make it over to the museum for Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker Fantasy Laser Show, which debuts at the planetarium this Friday. A shortened version of the show will also run from Wednesday, December 26 through Saturday, Jan 5. 7 p.m. Friday, December 21 at Phillip and Patricia Frost Museum of Science, 1101 Biscayne Blvd., Miami; frostscience.org. Admission costs $8 to $10.
A flick on 35mm will screen this Saturday night at Coral Gables Art Cinema. It's a mystery film, which is part of the fun. The folks at Gables Cinema won't say what it is. There are a few clues, though: It's 25 years old, a mouse has authorized its showing, and, supposedly, it's a favorite of Marilyn Manson's. Perhaps you'll figure out what it is before you get there. Or you can just show up and enjoy the surprise. 11:30 p.m. Saturday at Coral Gables Art Cinema, 260 Aragon Ave., Coral Gables; gablescinema.com. Tickets cost $8.
R House's popular Sunday Drag Brunch was recently extended to Saturday too. Both days, savor unlimited small plates brought to your table and continually replenished, as well as a choice of hearty entrées, including cinnamon French toast and truffled skirt steak and eggs. While you dine, watch live drag performances every 15 minutes. Seatings at 11:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at R House, 2727 NW Second Ave., Miami; 305-576-0201; rhousewynwood.com. Brunch packages start at $40.
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Among the rising stars in the reggaeton realm is Ozuna. After hitting American Airlines Arena in September, he's back for another spin. The 26-year-old has only two studio albums under his belt — 2017's Odisea and August's Aura — but he has dozens of hits. Aside from his solo stuff — which includes smashes such as "Si No Te Quiere" and "Te Vas" — he's been featured on tracks with the likes of Daddy Yankee, Bad Bunny, and Chris Jeday. 8 p.m. Sunday at American Airlines Arena, 601 Biscayne Blvd., Miami; aaarena.com. Tickets cost $79 to $199.
Didn't get invited to a loved one's holiday performance? Who needs little Johnny's recital — head to this one instead: The Winter Concert Series VI at the Little Haiti Cultural Complex will present some of the most promising youth performers in the area, spanning music, spoken word, and dance. Hosted by Tradisyon Lakou Lakay Inc., a youth organization providing arts opportunities for local kids, the event is an important fundraiser too. 7:30 p.m. Sunday at Little Haiti Cultural Complex, 212 NE 59th Ter., Miami; eventbrite.com. Admission is a $10 suggested donation.