Welcome to Miami Beach.
Over the last century, it has been home to industrialists, heiresses, politicians, gangsters, hustlers, drug traffickers, conmen, crooners, movie stars, socialites, celebrities, gays and lesbians, superstar DJs, and lots of workaday folks too.
Today, it is mostly nice, clean, and tourist friendly. But it's still the kind of place where illegal topless sunbathing is tolerated, the super-rich frolic at beachfront hotels, and people never stop partying.
So obviously, as it turns 100, this occasionally naked, neon-drenched, no-sleep town would celebrate in only one way... With a "100-hour, non-stop" festival.
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In the run-up to the 100th anniversary of its incorporation on March 26, 1915, Miami Beach is planning five days of car shows, fashion shows, mass weddings, food truck roundups, and a free "Mega Centennial Concert Celebration" and beach party.
These "100 hours of exciting events" will go down on the streets and sands of South Beach. They'll get started on Sunday, March 22, with a Jackie Gleason Marathon in the Great One's former home, Fillmore Miami Beach. And they'll end on Thursday, March 26, with the big, all-day oceanside fiesta at Eighth Street and Ocean Drive.
So far, there's no word on the lineup for the centennial's main event. But we at New Times have some dream requests...
A Frank Sinatra hologram. Or maybe former Miami Beach resident Madonna doing the entire Erotica album, track by track, in era-appropriate 1992 dominatrix costumes.
Oh, how about Giorgio Moroder playing the Scarface soundtrack, live, for a puppet version of the cocaine cinema classic starring Pepe Billete as Tony Montana?
Seriously, we could keep fantasizing till the beach's bicentennial in 2115.
But the real lineup will be revealed in three days.
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Miami Beach's 100-Hour Centennial Celebration. Sunday to Thursday, March 22 to 26. South Beach (Eighth Street and Ocean Drive) and Fillmore Miami Beach (1700 Washington Ave., Miami Beach). Visit miamibeach100.com.
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