Wynwood Welcomes Miami Music Week Revelers and Spring Breakers Stung by Curfew | Miami New Times


Party On! Wynwood Bars and Nightclubs Happy to Capitalize on Miami Beach's "Incompetence"

Where are spring break and Miami Music Week revelers to go if South Beach is too sorry for party rocking?
Oasis Wynwood is a spacious outdoor bar and nightlife spot.
Oasis Wynwood is a spacious outdoor bar and nightlife spot. Photo by Michele Eve Sandberg
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On Monday, following a string of shootings and rowdy spring break crowds that rocked the South Beach entertainment district, Miami Beach declared a state of emergency. Beginning tonight, the city will enforce a midnight curfew, pretty much hamstringing Miami Music Week festivities planned on the beach.

But if South Beach is too sorry for party rocking, where are spring break and Miami Music Week revelers supposed to take their cash and energy? Well, if they're coming to the mainland, bar and club owners in Miami's Wynwood entertainment district say they're ready to take Miami Beach's tired, poor, huddled masses yearning to breathe free.

"We’re happy to capitalize on the bad policy and incompetence of Miami Beach officials," Moishe Mana, owner of the Mana Wynwood convention center, promises New Times via email. "Local municipalities need to stop passing the buck on where nightlife and entertainment should be located."

Mana Wynwood is set to host two large Miami Music Week events Thursday and Friday, and the business-minded entrepreneur says the neighborhood is poised to step up where Miami Beach stepped down.

"Wynwood will be Miami's permanent arts and entertainment district, with policies and procedures to match," he asserts.

Other business owners in Wynwood are raising their eyebrows at Miami Beach officials' decision to close up shop in the middle of one of Miami's landmark entertainment weeks, during which revelers will be thronging to the city's Ultra Music Festival and looking to stay up late.

"So you're gonna pay to go to Ultra and then have to be tucked in bed by midnight?" Adam Gersten, owner of Gramps Bar in Wynwood, asks rhetorically.

Whereas South Beach is rolling up the sidewalks at midnight, the party in Wynwood can go on until 3 a.m. under Miami's code of ordinances, according to a statement from the Wynwood Business Improvement District (BID). (Venues in downtown Miami can stay open as late as 5 a.m. and the clubs on 11th Street have 24-hour licenses.)

"As Miami Music Week approaches, the BID, City of Miami Code Compliance and the City of Miami Police Department would like to remind you of the Wynwood noise pilot program regulations. Under the pilot program, all amplified sounds must cease at 3 a.m. Any operator that does not follow the below regulations are subject to closure and fines," reads a BID statement sent to New Times.

Aleksander Sanchez, operations manager for Wynwood BID, tells New Times the group has taken steps to prepare for an influx of Music Week attendees.

"We've already installed extra garbage bins to make sure people can throw their trash away properly, and there will be a bolstered police presence," he says.

Cmdr. Freddie Cruz, who oversees Wynwood's Neighborhood Enhancement Team of police officers, did not respond to phone calls and emails from New Times requesting comment on the Miami Police Department's weekend preparations.

Gersten notes that Wynwood is used to large crowds of partygoers, and that the bars and clubs in Wynwood tend to collaborate, rather than compete, with one another.

He says they're ready for any large crowds banished from the neon jungle across Biscayne Bay.

"It's business as usual," Gersten says. "And if we have the capacity, we're happy to help repair an otherwise ruined Miami Beach vacation."
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