Best Mile of Miami 2009 | Biscayne Boulevard between 54th and 79th streets | Best Restaurants, Bars, Clubs, Music and Stores in Miami | Miami New Times

Summary of the short film, "A Perfect Day in MiMo": Timmy wakes up in Motel Blue, fond memories of his visit to Boulevard. Where is that smell coming from? Oh, right! He brought the stripper back to his room! Quietly, Timmy puts on his clothes, leaves a $20 bill on the nightstand, and sneaks out. The Miami sun is out, and a cool breeze is blowing off of the Little River, making him hungry for pancakes, fresh fruit, and a stiff latte. Luckily, Uva 69, the Vagabond Market, and Jimmy's are all open. Afterward, Timmy strolls down the sidewalk that should have trees dug into it any day now on his way to Legion Park, where he runs some full-court ball and bathes in Biscayne Bay. Too snobby to get back into his old clothes, Timmy buys some new threads at Julian Chang and then catches a couple of innings of the Florida Marlins game on the flat-screen TVs at Kingdom. Lunchtime! Nothing like a hot dog from Dogma before doing some renovation work on the Shalimar Hotel and sitting outside the Kubik lot wondering why no one has done anything about this eyesore. But you know what's not an eyesore? That Coppertone sign! Timmy could watch that dog tear that little girl's bathing suit off for hours. Too bad he's got cars to wash at Metro. Thanks for the tip, Mrs. Johnson! How'd you like to meet me at Michy's for some seafood linguine? And then maybe afterward we can have an affair in an empty apartment above Balans? Awesome! I'll go get a haircut at the Chop Shop and pay my pimp at the Sinbad. Drinks at Red Light and then it's back to Boulevard. Nighty-night, Timmy. You can do it all over again tomorrow.

Wiber Marrero, who is a personal trainer at Intense Warehouse Fitness in Kendall, popped his MMA cherry last December at the American Airlines Arena during the Mixed Fighting Alliance's There Will Be Blood promotion. The former Army Ranger, who boasts black belts in jujitsu and kickboxing, dropped opponent Ronald Peña with a wicked roundhouse kick to the head 23 seconds into the first round. The chiseled brute's impressive KO sent Peña to the emergency room with a broken jaw and a handful of teeth.

Every basketball court has its own personality. There's the court filled with dudes who call a foul if you so much as breathe on them, the court with the And 1 wannabes, the court with the old men with knee braces who shoot inexplicably well from beyond the three-point line, the court that tears off all the flesh from your hands and knees if you happen to stumble, the court where the only way you can get in on a game is by knowing someone or having someone on the court sprain an ankle or tear a knee ligament. Then there are the courts at Flamingo Park. On any given day, this place can take on any and all of the above characters, and no one overstays his welcome. The courts are smooth and clean, and the atmosphere is always alive. Well lit and always buzzing, it's a great place to catch a pick-up game in the evening. And with a beach breeze gusting in during the day — not to mention the park's swimming pool just a stone's throw away — it's the ideal spot to play when the sun is out.

Located in the heart of South Beach, it is a short walk from Collins Avenue and Lincoln Road and is always filled with soccer games, racquetball enthusiasts, tennis players, folks walking their dogs, and beautiful people. The eclectic mix of ballers and overall SoBe vibe is what makes playing ball at Flamingo such a trip.

Claire Nelson

Picture this: A major American city. A dilapidated but beloved sports facility. A stadium that's fondly remembered for its world-class sporting competitions, thrilling rock concerts, and noteworthy presidential appearances. One that has been praised for its architectural beauty and drawn spectators from the four corners of the earth — but is at this very moment in danger of demolition. It's too late for the Orange Bowl and Bobby Maduro Stadium (and maybe even Hialeah Park), but the city of Miami could finally do the right thing by preserving Miami Marine Stadium. Maybe city leaders don't understand the value of this elegant 1964 Modernist masterpiece or its stunning bayside location, but the people do, and the people have banded together as Friends of Miami Marine Stadium to save their facility. Step one in the restoration game was completed last year, when the city's preservation board conferred historic status on the building. That alone won't save the aging edifice, which was badly damaged during Hurricane Andrew, but it can open the faucets to grants, tax breaks, and other inducements that could convince politicians to want to "take credit for rescuing" the stadium.

Like sister pastimes golf, polo, and hedge fund fraud, tennis has always been rank with the stink of exclusivity. But although guys named Nigel who tie their sweaters around their necks usually play tennis, once you take the sport out of the country club, it can be as accessible as a game of hoops. All you need is a $20 racket, some dirt-cheap balls, and a place to play. There are larger public courts in Miami than the three-net Surfside Tennis Center (and certainly more exclusive ones), but it's tough to beat the spot's availability. During the week, klieg lights blast the courts, keeping them open until 10 p.m. Perhaps Surfside residents take their game to private clubs, because there's seemingly always a free court. Stop by the administration shack and ask about upcoming no-cost clinics. One tip for tennis newbies: Remember the model number of your ball and try to use only that one. Players get testy when you use their balls, even though the specifications are usually identical. Snobbery can be a tough habit to break.

Coppertone sunscreen's advertising was probably responsible for more tourism in Miami than the sun itself, so it's only fitting that the company's iconic sign is back in public view. You know the one: the little dog pulling the bathing suit off the girl. Somehow that strange combination of innocence, fun, and naughtiness became emblematic of Miami itself, and seems about as inseparable from our identity as the Citgo sign is with Boston. How such fantastic pictorial mythology got stuck in a warehouse for so long is a mystery to us, but thank god for Antolin Carbonell, an Upper Eastside tour guide and historian, who spearheaded the effort to find the sign a new home in the MiMo district. You can find the Coppertone girl (modeled after the granddaughter of company founder Charles E. Clowe), locked in her Sisyphean battle to keep her trunks up, on the north-facing wall at 7300 Biscayne Blvd., just two giant toddler steps from the Vagabond Motel, whose original sign was also made by the Tropicalites company. She must feel right at home.

I once knew a girl from Calcutta

Whose breath stunk like old dookie butta.

Her brother loved booze

And getting tattoos

And he needed a new pair of shoes.

Their neighbor, the chef on a mission

Needed shiny new gear for his kitchen.

They lived down in Dade,

Where they worked every day,

Just for rent and electric and clothes.

So they needed a place they could go,

Seven days out the week and save dough.

Paying rock-bottom price,

Having double fun twice,

And returning with something to show.

I said, baby, hold on to your chest,

But that city up north to the west,

Got cheap mouthwash and kicks,

Cooking pots, pans, and lids,

Drive-in movies and whips,

Plus a corndog and chips,

It's the Swap Shop

You already know.

Maybe it's just us, but the fashion trends are starting to turn over at a slower pace. I mean, are people still seriously wearing kaffiyehs? Shouldn't those have been replaced with some other vaguely ethnic-looking garb to be appropriated by hipsters by now? African lip plates or Aboriginal-style loincloths or something? Um, maybe the trend slowdown is actually a good thing. But there's one fashion statement we've seen popping up all over a certain segment of downtown Miami: tees by Gold Saturn. David Jon Acosta, a Miami native and graduate of the Art Institute of Miami, started up the T-shirt line last year, naming it after his car — a gold Saturn. The line, which comes in girls' and guys' sizes, features a colorful mix of graphics, including a collection of pills arranged in the shape of a peach, happy mushrooms, and an artful box of cigarettes labeled Saturn Golds. The tees may not have the most recession-friendly price tag of $42, but if you're going to spend money, it's a good idea to spend it locally.

A sea cow pokes its snout above the surface as is traverses the waters along the 1.5-mile jetty that juts from Black Point Marina to Biscayne Bay. Manatees are just one of the wondrous sights to encounter at the county-owned dock and park where couples and families spread blankets on the grassy hill overlooking the boat ramps. From their elevated green perch, onlookers have front-row seats to herons diving for fish and alcohol-lubed mariners struggling to get their vessels out of the water. Regulars are the dock ghouls who fiend over the sight of a papi chulo — the guy who thought he was impressing his date with his fancy boat but is now lashing out at her because he can't get the darn thing on the trailer. Ideally located near Biscayne National Park, Black Point is open from dusk till dawn.

Now that this country has a new generation of war veterans, the danger we face is forgetting about the last one. Vietnam vets had the misfortune to be the first in our history to return to a country that was largely disenchanted with the purpose of the conflict, making the meager support they received from the government that sent them into battle all the more painful.

Since 1978, Vietnam Veterans of America has been the most powerful voice in lobbying the government for more support and is still the only congressionally recognized service organization dedicated exclusively to Vietnam vets and their families. Yet, it's still underfunded and depends heavily on your donations. The good news is that it couldn't be easier. Just go to or call 800-775-VETS to schedule a day for their trucks to come to your house. You don't even need to be home; just put your donations on the curb inside of a box labeled "VVA" and they'll do the rest, even leave you a tax-deductible receipt. The motto of the VVA is "Never again will one generation of veterans abandon another," so by supporting the last generation, you'll be supporting this one as well.

Best Of Miami®

Best Of Miami®