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Art Deco Weekend: Bigger, Better and Tastier

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Now in its 35th year, Art Deco Weekend has grown from a small neighborhood party into a 15 block, open-air, historical and often hysterical Festival. This past weekend's three-day event , offered a visual feast for the eyes and yummies for the tummies in a unique architectural environment...oh and there are the almost-naked, fit, young bodies available for viewing too. Hey, it's the beach, skin is in!

Ocean Drive was transformed into a promenade filled with culture, architecture, vendors, fun fashions, a parade with costumed two and four-legged creatures posing for pictures, live music, lectures, a film series, vintage cars, food trucks and an assortment of fun characters strolling the street from noon through the wee hours of the night.

Once again, the Miami Design Preservation League hosted the event and introduced a new venue. Eighteen affordable food booths which represented some of the lively restaurants that line the famous Drive, provided take-away items to munch on. Prices for the nibbles and drinks ranged from $3 to $10.

A Fish Called Avalon offered goodies such as chef Kal's signature New England clam chowder for $6 or a jumbo lump crab cake with lemon pommery sauce and organic baby greens, also at $6. Kitchen had super hot dogs or chicken wings for $7. The Clevelander had a pulled pork sandwich for $8 and domestic beer for $6. The Place offered any brand of beer for $3 and Mango's Tropical Cafe had a Cuban mojito for $10. Considering the location, prices were reasonable and the variety of light bites was interesting.

"This is a really good initiative for the restaurants," said chef Vita of Park Central. "We're offering a Paella or Philly cheese steak sandwich for $7 and we've got red or white wine for $3. We're looking forward to doing this every year from now on."

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