The SunPost covers four districts, but it began in South Beach and still covers the Miami Beach beat best. The fact that it now distributes 48,000 weekly copies from Coral Gables to Aventura is evidence of its recent growth and the improved quality of its journalism. Under the editorial direction of Erik Bojnansky, the paper has in the past year or two hired former New Times staffers such as Robin Shear, now managing editor, and columnists Rebecca Wakefield and Celeste Fraser Delgado. (As much as some readers may have liked the goofy club gossip of "Cubby," you have to admit the current roster of writers is significantly more professional than that of a year or so ago.) With two full-time staff writers, the Post covers everything from serious local news to politics to movies and dining. Its editorials can be fiery, its letters section the most extemporaneous around. The latter might not be all that professional, but it sure is fun -- as is much of this tabloid success story.
Not the average freebie broadsheet cluttering the counter at your local cafeteria, El Clarin shines by eschewing printing news or opinion and cutting straight to business. The huckster happy rag features a dense tangle of sales pitches shilling everything from $70 divorces to pain-free abortions (offering a ten percent discount with an attached coupon) to cheap car insurance and a dentist who makes home visits, guaranteeing to fix that busted grill for just $49.99. The design-challenged pub's cover usually boasts a leering riot of Miami's ambulance-chasing yokels, including the occasional celebrity such Ana Maria Polo, the mugging arbiter of Spanish television's Caso Cerrado. Need a high-power santero, palero, or voodoo priest to reconnect you with a lost loved one or hurl a hex at the judge in a pending court case? Madame Karla, Tata Tatandi, and Papa Raul Don Petro offer reasonable investments in supernatural intervention. Seeking entertainment for your next office party? Try contacting Mariachi Tequila 2000. Bummed by contracting trifles? Pages of handymen are just a phone call away from building that glamorous add-on to your dream home minus the permit hassles. You can also find a private dick to track down a cheating spouse if that love potion fizzles, or call the Boing Boing escort service to help mop up the heartache during the rebound.
Romina Nabhen exudes the enthusiasm of a marketing newcomer, owing to her lack of cynicism, utter wholesomeness, and genuine friendliness. Not only is the 25-year-old an accomplished and independent public relations achiever, but also she's a Magic City native. Almost. "I'm from Miami even though I was born in Argentina!" she exclaims with believable verve. Nabhen quietly reps for Coral Gables wine bar and shop D'Vino, Miami restaurant Centro, and several other boutique eateries, plus she's the Florida face of Tiffany & Co. She never forgets a name or a face and always introduces her husband, Julian.
Matheson Hammock Park offers many options for couples, families, and friends looking for a picnic destination. Most notable is the two-story coral pavilion standing tall and dignified amid the green foliage like a misplaced artifact from Atlantis. The first floor is equipped with tables and a grill for comfortable midday munching. The roof offers plenty of leg-room, with an exalted view of the lake and surrounding flora. If you prefer a more earthly experience, spread that red-checkered blanket under the shady boughs of lofty trees or absorb some rays in the patch of grass in front of the pond. Sip some juice or burn off the calories from that sandwich as you stroll along the sun-sheltered nature trails. If the abundance of coral structures and Biscayne Bay breeze leave you longing for a bit of Tritonesque revelry, a calm man-made atoll pool can fulfill your saltwater longing without giving you a postlunch cramp.
Barron Sherer and Kevin Wynn can typically be found in a dark room, leaning toward a flickering screen and intently watching moving images of the past. They are cocurators of Cinema Vortex, a nonprofit organization dedicated to collecting and screening Florida's old movies. At The Wolfsonian-FIU they run the Public Domain Playhouse series, which uses old advertisements, news reels, home videos, and propaganda flicks to illustrate provocative points. The two men spend a great deal of time in the Louis Wolfson II Florida Moving Image Archive in the dungeonlike basement of the main branch of the Miami-Dade Public Library. The temperature-controlled space is filled with dusty reels, black wax platters, and elaborate screening machines. There's also footage from closed-down companies, home movies, and fragile, magnetic-tape memories. Their dedication to preserving the past is admirable, to say the least. "What we find goes back to this old-timey thing when film had to be physically driven through a projector. There's a certain evocation of a simpler -- quote, unquote -- happier time. Which of course, wasn't that happy," Wynn laughs. The stash in the library's basement reveals a time before reality television and music videos, an era when people didn't know how to act in front of a camera. Sherer and Wynn get to see the past that has been whitewashed from the selective American memory, when people of color were seen onscreen only in a domestic capacity. Back in those days, films circulated without restraint. They were screened in classrooms, conference rooms, or clubs, and then they were discarded and forgotten. Old reels capturing important moments in history would turn up in someone's basement or attic. The treasure hunt for films has just about ended, Wynn laments. We are living in litigious times, and companies nowadays would rather lock up their employee training videos and commercials in a vault than let them fly free, to be readapted, cut, and edited into art. "Twenty years from now, the pool of film video that is in the public domain is quite likely to be the same pool we have now, because material produced more recently just isn't going to show up," Wynn warns. Together these two provide an opportunity to look into the past, using celluloid recollections to reveal contemporary truths.
Delano South Beach
Gentlemen, please take note: A classy lady wants to be taken to a classy place on the first date; she wants a handsome man who can offer intelligent conversation in an elegant atmosphere; and a perfect cocktail will add just the right lubricant to relax the nerves and loosen the inhibitions. While a dinner may be too formal for a first date, you can never go wrong with drinks at a swanky hotel. Escorting your lady through the billowing curtains of the Delano's vast lobby is an excellent way to make a great first impression. The Delano is quintessential South Beach, a veritable playground to the stars, and whether you decide to sit at the Rose Bar or under the palms alongside the infinity pool, you will have the perfect backdrop while getting to know your possible new mate. With plenty of people to watch and celebrities to spot, the Delano offers enough diversions in case your date is a dud, but if it's going really well, you can get cozy on a settee in the lobby or sneak out the back for a romantic stroll on the beach.
Kendall Ice Arena
Escape the heat and embrace your inner Russian triple-axel champ: Chill out at this enormous twin-rink arena. Don't know how to skate? No problem. This is where falling on your ass is not only okay but also desirable. Where else can you make your date laugh uproariously while still eliciting her compassion? Maybe she'll even make a fuss over your boo-boo. You can flail about, or you can take a private lesson together, which also ensures some physical contact. The best part here is the price -- six bucks if you come on a Wednesday afternoon or Thursday evening -- so you'll have enough left over for a nice dinner after you've worked up an appetite. Check the Website for public skate times.
It's one thing to glance at downtown's twinkling lights while you're moving along with a stream of commuter traffic at 60 mph. It's another thing altogether to park down by the bay, cut the engine, and check out the skyline in all of its glory. The best viewing spot is a gravel lot under the MacArthur Causeway on Watson Island. Just pull off at the exit for Parrot Jungle and follow the road around to the water. You might have to share it with a couple canoodling in a Cadillac, but you'll get an unobstructed sight line across Biscayne Bay to the business district's crystal canyons, with the illuminated Port of Miami bridge in the foreground.
A long enough stretch for a serious power walk (about four miles) and close enough to the water for a romantic stroll, this stretch is a favorite of locals and tourists alike. Originally built in the Eighties and renovated in 1996, the boardwalk wends behind the fabulous beach hotels, providing views of sparkling pools and oiled sunbathers on one side and the powerful pull of the Atlantic on the other. On any given Saturday you'll find yourself next to serious joggers, darkly cloaked families on a stroll after shul, and couples relishing a romantic vacation. It is also a popular spot for professional photo shoots, so don't be surprised if you see nubile teenagers posing with surfboards or silicone melons heaving out of Brazilian bikinis as spray-tanned beauties strike a curious pose in the sea oats. Covered benches spotted along the path provide a reprieve from the midday rays or a cozy nook for a little sunset lovin', and public parking lots are located near both the north and south ends.
While some Miami-area high schools have nonnative mascots like bulls and Vikings, Ronald W. Reagan/Doral Senior High School, set to open this fall, has gone far afield for its: the bison. Hunted nearly to extinction during America's frontier days, the bison has since made a comeback, roaming Western plains and, apparently, a Miami high school. The Ronald Reagan Bison will wear green, blue, and gold.

Best Of Miami®

Best Of Miami®