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The best things to do in Miami this month

January is officially here, which means it’s time to start planning out the best things to do in Miami this month

By Falyn Freyman and Time Out contributors |
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Shaq’s Fun House
Photograph: Courtesy Shaq’s Fun House

If you’re looking for some great things to do in Miami this month, you’re in luck. January is here, bringing with it all the promise of a brand new year (and decade!) as the city’s busy season swings into full gear. With the holidays out of the way, it’s an ideal time to explore the fantastic variety of best things to do in Miami, from fresh theater and museum shows to hot restaurant openings and more. Or perhaps you’d rather kick back and enjoy the cooler weather from one of the best waterfront bars in Miami before moving on to a month filled with concerts, beer festivals, Broadway and more. So try to carve some time this month between bouncing from the best restaurants in Miami to the best bars in Miami to sink your teeth into these events. You won’t regret it.

Best of the city under one roof

Bottomless brunch
Photograph: Courtesy Unsplash/Oolga Serjantu
Things to do, Quirky events

Bottomless Sundays at Time Out Market

Time Out Market Miami, South Beach

If you ask us, brunch is just better bottomless. So we’re pretty stoked Time Out Market Miami has jumped on the bandwagon to offer a sweet bottomless deal during Sunday brunch. For just $22 (plus tax and gratuity), enjoy four hours (11am–3pm) of unlimited mimosas, Bellinis and prosecco while you chill with friends and chow down on craveable meals from any of the Market’s 18 eateries. Please drink responsibly, and do keep your pants on!

Things to do in January 2020

1
Less Than Jake
Photograph: Courtesy CC/Flickr/Dan Cox
Things to do, Concerts

Less Than Jake

Pop-punk will never die, and neither, it seems, will Less Than Jake. The proud Gainesville band has kept going since their heyday in the late ‘90s and early 2000s, and over the last decade has released a plethora of EPs as well as 2013’s full-length See The Light. Though founding member Vinnie Fiorello departed the band permanently in 2019, they’re still chugging on without him.

2
Beer
Photograph: Unsplah/Dan Gold
Things to do, Festivals

Miami Beer Festival

This yearly hops-head’s paradise pours at least 200 beers from dozens of South Florida and international craft breweries. Yes, there will be DJs performing on the JumboTron and food trucks. Plus, you don’t have to feel guilty about throwing a few back: Ticket proceeds will go to Hialeah’s 1 Lucky Dog Rescue.

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3
National YoungArts Foundation
Photograph: Courtesy National YoungArts Foundation
Things to do

National YoungArts Week 2020

Do you like to party? Are you a patron of the arts? Mark your calendars for the return of National YoungArts Week 2020, when the nation’s most accomplished young artists come to Miami for a special one-time performance. The National YoungArts Foundation’s signature program welcomes 150 YoungArts finalists to Miami, where audiences can witness their talents first-hand in the areas of classical music, dance, jazz, theater and voice.

4
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Photograph: Joan Marcus
Things to do, Performances

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

Roald Dahl’s vibrantly colored fantasia, which has been delighting readers and moviegoers for generations, debuted on Broadway in 2017, and commences its national tour. A new Marc Shaiman score complements 19 songs, including the iconic earworms from the 1971 movie, while imaginative staging presents fresh takes on the Oompa-Loompas, Wonka’s candyland, the glass elevator and more.

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5
Luminosa
Photograph: Courtesy Jungle Island
Things to do, Festivals

Luminosa! Festival of Lights

Jungle Island, Miami

Jungle Island’s grand reimagining of an ancient Zen Buddhist tradition weaves enormous, beautifully handcrafted silk lanterns throughout its lush 18 acres, illuminating the story of Miami and its habitats in the process.

6
Billy Joel
Photograph: Shutterstock
Things to do, Concerts

Billy Joel

So you hopped a flight to Miami Beach for a winter getaway (or are lucky enough to live there). Now drive a few miles north to Broward to catch the Piano Man himself, Billy Joel, performing at the newly remodeled Hard Rock Live (yes, adjacent to the giant guitar hotel). Expect him to thrill fans with renowned hits and classic album tracks from his incredible five-decade career.

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7
Habitat at 1 Hotel South Beach
Photograh: Courtesy 1 Hotel South Beach
Things to do, Quirky events

Full Moon “Spirited” Dinner Series

This three-course dinner series at Habitat at 1 Hotel South Beach aligned with the lunar phases features Chef Thanawat Bates’s upscale, sustainably sourced Latin fare paired with craft cocktails by selected alcohol brands curated by hotel beverage director Steven Minor. January 10: Casa Noble Tequila

8
Juicy Beerfest
Photograph: Courtesy Unsplash/Evan Dvorkin
Things to do, Festivals

Juicy Beerfest

IPA and fruited-sour enthusiasts will get satiated at this celebration of beer, with selections from Jupiter’s Civil Society Brewing Co., New York’s Finback Brewery, Richmond’s Ardent Craft Ales and many others. Tickets include unlimited tastings and a custom festival glass. If you need to quell your buzz, the pop-up burger joint USBS will be ready to take your order.

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9
American Son
Photograph: Courtesy Adrienne Arsht Center
Things to do, Performances

American Son

Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts, Omni

An interracial couple’s search for their missing African-American son leads to a 4am visit to a police station—and the subsequent revelations, biases and hard truths this nocturnal journey unveils. Conceived on the front lines of contemporary racial anxiety, this woke, South Florida-set drama from Miamian Christopher Demos-Brown premieres in his hometown not long after its celebrated Broadway premiere.

10
Ice Cream We Love
Photograph: Courtesy Bal Harbour Shops
Things to do, Quirky events

Ice Cream We Love

Scoops on scoops of ice cream await you at Bal Harbour Shops during this third-annual event benefitting Holtz Children’s Hospital. Throughout the weekend, pop-up parlors will line the first and second level promenades of the swanky mall and serve up an array of flavors from 18 national and local vendors such as New York’s all-natural Van Leeuwen, Ohio’s beloved family-owned brand since 1870, Graeter’s Ice Cream and Miami’s Dasher & Crank.

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11
Jurassic World Tour Live
Photograph: Courtesy Unsplash/Alvaro Reyes
Things to do, Performances

Jurassic World Tour Live

Something has gone awry on Isla Nublar, and it’s up to you and a team of scientists to save the day. This original live-action show stars more than 20 characters, including a triceratops, a 43-foot-tall T. tex, Blue the Raptor and other life-size classics, all controlled via puppetry and robotics. CGI who?

12
Grace Potter
Photograph: Courtesy CC/Wikimedia/Mab1983
Things to do, Concerts

Grace Potter

This roots-rock singer-songwriter has had a lot of changes since the release of her 2015 album Midnight. She dealt with a divorce and the subsequent breakup of her band the Nocturnals (her husband was the drummer), then a second marriage and the birth of her son. Now she’s ready to reflect on it all with the release of her latest album Daylight. Maybe the next one will be called High Noon?

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13
Groove Cruise
Photograph: Courtesy Unsplash/Nestor Pool
Things to do, Festivals

Groove Cruise

Ever wonder what it’d be like to dance non-stop for 96 hours and escape reality with 2,200 new friends? This winter, find out as you set sail to Costa Maya, Mexico aboard Groove Cruise Miami 2020. From Thursday to Monday, you’ll party to some of the biggest names in EDM—from Loco Dice and Above & Beyond to KSHMR and Nora En Pure—on multiple different stages across the decks of the Celebrity Infinity. Expect eight themed experiences, artist activities and more, with six different suite categories to choose from. 1015 N America Way

14
New Order
Photograph: Stéphane Burlot
Things to do, Concerts

New Order

On the heels of last year’s epic sold-out show at the Fillmore, new-wave heroes New Order return to Miami to escape the English cold and play an unprecedented four-night residency at the historic aforementioned venue.

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15
Art Deco Miami
Photograph: Shutterstock
Things to do, Festivals

Art Deco Weekend

Relive all things Jazz Age at the Miami Design Preservation League’s annual festival, with live music, an Art Deco–inspired fashion show, a dog-costume competition, antique cars, food and craft vendors, and walking tours that gloss Miami Beach’s unique architecture. Celebrating women’s suffrage, this year’s theme is “Sheroes: Women Who Made a Difference.” Fifth to 15th Sts and Ocean Dr, Miami Beach at various times

16
Celine Dion
Photograph: Courtesy Wikimedia Commons/Anirudh Koul
Things to do, Concerts

Celine Dion

For the first time since 2009, Canadian icon Dion has relinquished her record-setting Las Vegas residency and hit the road: Her Courage World Tour swings by Miami this winter.

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17
I'm Old Fashioned
Photograph: Courtesy Miami City Ballet
Things to do, Performances

Miami City Ballet’s I’m Old Fashioned

Broward Center for the Performing Arts,

Miami City Ballet’s Program Two: I’m Old Fashioned includes four sensational ballets by visionary choreographers. Be captivated by the romance of Fred Astaire and Rita Hayworth gliding alongside MCB dancers in I’m Old Fashioned; the haunting vocals of 1960s songbird Dinah Washington remixed by acclaimed film composer Max Richter will take your breath away in This Bitter Earth; the beloved and brilliant Tschaikovsky Pas de Deux is an eight-minute marvel of ballet technique; and the colorful, lightning-fast Symphonic Dances will have you on the edge of your seat.

18
Cuban flag
Photograph: Courtesy Unsplash/Jonathan Buttle-Smith
Things to do, Performances

The Cubans

Colony Theatre Cinema, South Beach

Miami New Drama’s commitment to fostering new work by local playwrights of color continues with The Cubans, the debut play from Cuban-American writer Michael Leon. A culturally resonant spin on the classic American family drama, The Cubans is a prodigal-daughter-returns story about a family celebration thrown into tumult, with questions of identity and generational dynamics at the forefront.

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19
Rock club
Photograph: Courtesy Unsplash/ErnAn Solo
Things to do, Concerts

The Black Lips

Like many of us in the era of Trump and Lil Nas X, this Atlanta garage rock outfit seems to have both country music and the apocalypse on its mind. The singles for their new album Sing in a World That’s Falling Apart, due January 24, have taken a twangier direction than in the past. Personnel changes may have affected their state of mind, as they’ve recently recruited a new drummer and guitarist.

20
Chocolate
Photograph: Unsplash/Charisse Kenion
Things to do, Festivals

Chocolate Garden

Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden | Coral Gables, FL, Miami

Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden dedicates two full days to the beloved cocoa bean for this 14th-annual event. The main star of the show—if you couldn’t guess—is chocolate. Don’t miss your opportunity to taste samples from artisan chocolatiers, sit in on lectures and participate in all sorts of sweet demonstrations.

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21
Pegasus World Cup Invitational
Photograph: Courtesy Pegasus World Cup
Things to do, Sport events

Pegasus World Cup

The million dollar horse race ($9 million, to be exact) comes to Gulfstream Park. Not into horses? Come for the atmosphere, which, if similar to year’s past, will likely border on South Beach nightclub thanks to a day party hosted by LIV’s David Grutman plus food and beverage offerings from his luxe eateries Komodo, Swan, Bar Bevy and Papi Steak. Details on 2020’s entertainment to come. 

22
Altar
Photograph: Courtesy Unsplash/Joshua Eckstein
Things to do, Performances

Altar Boyz

Island City Stage,

If the Backstreet Boys were schooled in a Jesus camp, the result might look something like the fictitious quintet of this satirical musical comedy. The Middle American heartthrobs known as the Altar Boyz embark on the final concert of their Raise the Praise tour, in which they perform pious pop to swooning converts—until internecine acrimony, and a big-city audience skeptical of their message, threatens to torpedo the group.

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23
Gramps Wynwood
Photograph: Courtesy Gramps Wynwood
Things to do, Concerts

Beach Fossils and Surf Curse

They may not be as famous as Mac Demarco and never had as much hype as DIIV, but Beach Fossils is one of the most reliable outfits in the 2010s dream-pop scene that coalesced around the Captured Tracks label. Reno, Nevada band Surf Curse continues the jangly vibes on the bill, which also includes electro-pop singer/producer Negative Gemini.

24
AmericanAirlines Arena
Photograph: Courtesy CC/Flickr/HumongoNationphotogallery
Things to do, Concerts

Farruko

The rising Puerto Rican talent is defining a new generation of reggaetonistas by moving away from trap to incorporate more reggae stylings and a vision of the Caribbean where peace, love and all the weed you need are a way of life.

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25
Photo by Paul Weaver on Unsplash
Photograph: Courtesy Unsplash/Paul Weaver
Things to do, Performances

Ordinary Americans

GableStage, Coral Gables

The pioneering 1950s sitcom The Goldbergs, run by politically outspoken—and Jewish—actors Gertrude Berg and Philip Loeb, was targeted by the Hollywood blacklist at the height of its success, with fatal consequences. Joseph McDonagh’s world-premiere play Ordinary Americans revisits this historical stain from a humanist perspective, balancing comedy, tragedy and sociopolitical prescience.

26
O Cinema Wynwood
Photograph: Courtesy O Cinema
Things to do, Film events

O Cinema’s Wynwood Film Series

Multiple venues

Beloved indie movie house O Cinema may have fallen victim to Wynwood’s break-neck development when it closed earlier this year, but it’s making a triumphant return in its old ‘hood with a new monthly pop-up, the Wynwood Film Series. Free screenings of blockbuster hits, cult classics and indie faves will make their way to various venues throughout the area through a partnership with Wynwood BID. Jan 26: The Matrix at Wynwood Marketplace

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27
Hed PE
Photograph: Courtesy CC/Wikimedia/Terek
Things to do, Concerts

Hed PE

Floyd, Park West

So, this show at the Ground is probably not gonna be for everyone. Hed PE is a band from Orange County, California whose music fuses gangsta rap, punk, and reggae in a style they call “G-punk.” They’re also 9/11 truthers. No, really, they’re quite serious about it. In 2009 they released a whole concept album around the idea that al-Qaeda didn’t do 9/11 all by themselves.

28
Shaq’s Fun House
Photograph: Courtesy Shaq’s Fun House
Things to do, Quirky events

Shaq’s Fun House

Mana Wynwood Convention Center, Wynwood

An EDM carnival party thrown by none other than former NBA superstar Shaquille O'Neal? Why not? Mr. O’Neal returns to the 305 for the third installment of his incredibly bizarre traveling rave—this time as a warm-up to Super Bowl Sunday in Miami. In the past, Diplo, Steve Aoki and more have come out. A dance-off with Rob Gronkowski happened. Yeah, when we said “incredibly bizarre,” we meant it. The massive party at Mana Wynwood promises more outlandish, circus-themed hip-hop and EDM hijinks, with a lineup that includes DaBaby, Diddy, Diplo, Pitbull, Tiesto and more.

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29
Groundhog
Photograph: Courtesy Unsplash/Hosea Georgeson
Things to do, Performances

Groundhog Day: The Musical

Broward Center for the Performing Arts,

No, you haven’t seen this one before: Slow Burn mounts the South Florida regional premiere of this musical adaptation of Harold Ramis’ influential time-loop comedy, with a new triple-threat actor filling the enormous shoes of Bill Murray. Critically acclaimed when it opened in London and New York, the musical retains the plot contours of the movie, complemented by inspired songs from Matilda’s Tim Minchin.

30
Greece
Photograph: Courtesy Unsplash/Artiom Vallat
Things to do, Performances

Mamma Mia!

Actors' Playhouse, Coral Gables

Here we go again! Benny Andersson and Bjorn Ulvaeus, two of the dance-pop wizards behind ABBA, pack 22 of their songs into this durable jukebox musical set on a picturesque Greek island, in which a bride throws her wedding day into turmoil by inviting three men—one of whom is expected to be her father. It’s silly, it’s escapist and, if done well, it’s irresistible.

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31
ALEGRIA Cirque du Soleil
Photograph: Marie-Andrée Lemire/Cirque du Soleil 2019
Things to do, Performances

Cirque du Soleil: Alegría

Hard Rock Stadium, Miami Gardens

Cirque du Soleil revisits its smashing 1994 hit, bringing new life to the beloved production for its winter stint under the big top at Hard Rock Stadium. Alegría explores the classic power struggle between new and old orders through evocative gothic stage designs, colorful costumes and enchanting tunes—including the Grammy-nominated theme song. The decades-old show about hope and renewal was refreshed for new audiences, but purists will be delighted to see the same stunning acrobatics and memorable characters as the original.

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