The Ten Best Things To Do This Weekend in Miami

Categories: Weekend Guide

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Courtesy of McCormick Place
Say what you will about the Magic City, there is never a lack of stuff to do on the weekends -- OK, things do tend to slow a bit through the sluggish summer heat. But next time you're whining about how bored you are, just think of those poor mid-Westerners, nothing but the plains to stare at until fall hits and they jump on hay rides or whatever they do out there.

Lucky for us, Miami's just getting warmed up (not literally, thank Christ; the heat is finally starting to break). The next three days are packed with cultural fun and festivals galore, so grab that stale Red Bull, some empanadas, and hit the ground running.

See also: DWNTWN Art Days: Ten Must-See Art Events

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Viva Chile! 13th Annual Chileno Festival in Miami Kicks Off Saturday

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Photo by Cristian Pimimo Baradit
We all know Miami is an ethnic melting pot, full of culture and cuisine from regions around the world. Fortunately for us, this city is always game for a festival to celebrate these rich traditions. This month, it's Chile's turn in the spotlight when the Chileno Festival gets started September 20.

The 13th Annual Chileno Festival is a family festival in which the Chilean community celebrates the 2004 Independence of Chile. Started by the owners of Chilean restaurant Sabores Chilenos, Ingrid and Pierre Encina, the festival includes various Chilean bands, artists, folklorists, and more. The couple wanted to bring a piece of their home back to Miami.

We spoke with the organizers about what to expect at this year's celebration.

See also: Flamenco Festival's Celia Fonta: "Flamenco 'Alante' is an Endangered Art"

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Celebrate Your Female Side with Wynwood's LadyFest This Weekend

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Courtesy of Charo Valero / LadyFest
A very wise person once asked the deep, philosophical question: Who run the world? That same sage soul answered the ultimate question: girls. That's right, ladies, we run the world. It's high time everyone gets the memo.

We jest, but in all seriousness, being a woman is a special thing and it's not celebrated enough. That's all about to change with the first ever LadyFest Miami.

Gently put, LadyFest is a community event put together wholly by women for women with the overall goal being to "build a sustainable community and celebrate diversity through critical dialogue, cultural performance, and artistic expression within the context of a women-centered space," explains one of its many organizers, Charo Valero.

See also: DWNTWN Art Days: Ten Awesome Free Events to Attend

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DWNTWN Art Days: Ten Must-See Art Events

Categories: Art, Culture

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Courtesy of Fringe Projects
DWNTWN Art Days is finally upon us. For the next three days, Downtown Miami gets a chance to show off its artistic assets, taking a slice of the spotlight from their happening neighbors in Wynwood.

The weekend-long celebration of exhibited and public art starting Friday features over 150 events for us to take in. Many of the events ask visitors to flex their creative muscles and get involved, while others invite you to simply enjoy the talent of the dozens of artists participating.

To help guide you in this epic adventure, we've compiled ten of the coolest art events.

Happy hunting!

See also: DWNTWN Art Days: Ten Awesome Free Events to Attend

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Books & Books To Open New Location at Arsht Center

Categories: Books, Literary

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It's a great time to be a book lover in South Florida. Popular literary destination Books & Books will once again expand its reach when it opens another location in the former Sears Tower on the campus of the Adrienne Arsht Center.

The new location, set to open by the end of the year, will house a café open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner daily with seating for about 100, the Miami Herald reports. The Arsht Center spot is the latest addition to the Books & Books family, which includes outposts in Coral Gables, Miami Beach, and Bal Harbour.

See also: Miami Book Fair International Brings National Book Award Winners, Finalists to Miami

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Siudy Between Worlds: Love in the Time of a Flamenco Apocalypse

Categories: Dance

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Courtesy of Pablo Croce Productions
Romeo and Juliet struggle through a Mad Max world to the sensuality, discipline and stirring rhythms of flamenco as warring tribes compete for resources in the aftermath of civilization's collapse. No, not a drug-assisted night at an edgy Latin dance club on South Beach but the basic plots of Siudy Entre Mundos (Siudy Between Worlds), Pablo Croce's flamenco production starring Venezuelan choreographer and dancer, Siudy Garrido coming to the Arsht Center this Saturday and Sunday.

Executive producer Pablo Croce, celebrated film-maker and Latin Grammy nominee, took a few moments from preparing for the show's return to South Florida to guide us through this post-apocalyptic land of exotic dance. Originally staged in 2009, following the economic and political troubles Spain experienced, Croce said that events like these were in his mind during the show's development. But then so were so many other recent global events similarly apocalyptic in kind.

"If I were to put together notable events that have occurred over the last 15 years and show them to you in 15 seconds, you would be dramatically affected by the sorts of things that have been happening," he explains.

See also: Flamenco Festival's Celia Fonta: "Flamenco 'Alante' is an Endangered Art"

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Beatriz Milhazes' "Jardim Botânico": PAMM Features One of the World's Most Successful Female Artists

Categories: Art

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All works by Beatriz Milhazes
Mariposa, 2004
Women get a rough deal in the art world. They're underrepresented in the collections of many museums, on the walls of many galleries, and in leadership positions at arts organizations (where they're usually paid less than their male counterparts). So "Jardim Botânico," an exhibition of work by Brazilian artist Beatriz Milhazes opening at PAMM this evening, isn't a big deal just because it's Milhazes' first survey in North America.

It's also a big deal because the exhibit encompasses two gigantic galleries and is made up of over 40 works borrowed from owners around the world -- works created by a woman.

See also: As Miami's Busiest Art Season Looms, Top Galleries Leave Wynwood For Downtown and Miami Beach

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Cuba Out of Cuba: "Keeping It Alive For Future Generations"

Categories: Art

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Photo by Neil Vazquez
As any second-, third-, or fourth-generation Cuban-American can attest, it's difficult to really connect with your roots. Bereft of the sights, sounds, flavors, and customs of your homeland, the desire to identify with your new American surroundings is greater than the nostalgic influences around us. For collaborators Alexis Rodriguez-Duarte and Tico Torres, it took meeting the godmother of Cuban music, Celia Cruz, to spark an interest in their homeland's culture.

The pair were living in London, working on establishing themselves in the world of editorial photography and styling. "We just called her hotel, and she answered the phone," said Torres. Soon they would all be having high tea at Cruz's hotel suite. It was a long way to go for two Cuban expats, raised in Hialeah, but it was just the journey they needed to set off a rediscovery of their forgotten heritage.

See also: Cubamerican Airs on WPBT2 Thursday: "It's the Story of Our Exile"

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DWNTWN Art Days: Ten Awesome Free Events to Attend

Categories: Art

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Courtesy of Miami Downtown Development Authority
Last year's Beached Miami Bike Tour.
For anyone who's into art, DWNTWN Art Days can leave you feeling like a kid in a candy store: totally overwhelmed, overstimulated, and about to embark on an epic sugar high. So many options, so little time.

So to keep you on track for the third annual incarnation of this art extravaganza, we've put together a list of the most awesome events happening this weekend. From an I Love Lucy look-a-like contest (yes, seriously) to bike tours, there are all kinds of adventures to be had.

See also: DWNTWN Art Days Kickoff Features Exhibits, Short Films, and Food Trucks

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The Guest Cast Talk Dark Humor and '80s Nostalgia (Video)

Categories: Film and TV

There's no sense denying it: The 1980s was the heyday for horror movies -- the decade even had its very own scream queen (Jamie Lee Curtis, for you '90s babies). Present day thrillers are arguably lagging behind; that is, unless someone brilliantly concocts a film that fits right in with both modern cinema and the original Friday the 13th and Halloween. (Yes, both those films have been shamefully remade in the last decade, so the originality must be noted).

Enter the filmmaking team of Adam Wingard and Simon Barrett: one directs and the other writes. Their latest collaboration stars Downton Abbey alum, Dan Stevens, as the world's worst (and creepiest) houseguest in the appropriately titled The Guest.

The film centers on Stevens' character, David, who returns home from war and goes to visit the family of a fellow soldier. What follows is plenty of violence, some mysterious deaths, and a whole lotta '80s music. Everything from the soundtrack, to the close-up shots, to the font used evokes the yearning for that decade.

The starting point for Wingard was essentially a back-to-basics, nostalgic inspiration: "I wanted to do a film that encapsulated sort of why I became a filmmaker to begin with."

See also: Young Stars of The Maze Runner Bring Dystopian Tale to Life

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