Andrea is a freelance writer, editor and cookbook author. Deadlines drive her to stress bake but she's yet to blow an assignment or burn a cookie.
The hottest spots for bowling Miami has to offer
Make it turkey time all the time, Miami. Bowling is back and everyone from families and teens to first dates are jumping on the bandwagon. The game of our youth is far from the same, with alleys shying away from beer and pretzels to offer craft cocktails (like the kind you’ll find at one of the best Miami bars) customized lighting systems and elevated menus on par with the top restaurants Miami restaurants. Bowling, Miami, is not a sport to be ignored, particularly when high-tech play and club-like venues options abound. Here’s where to go to strike up some fun in South Florida.
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Get in the holiday spirit by surrounding yourself with nearly a million bright, animal-shaped lights draped throughout Zoo Miami. Families can stroll through the park and enjoy carousel rides and nightly carollers, and glimpse the twinkling displays. Santa will be around for photos, plus milk and cookies will be served (for an additional fee). Be sure to check the Zoo’s website for information on themed nights, like December 4’s ugly sweater event and Santa and elf look-a-like nights on December 17 and 18.
Frustrated by her inability to find a high-quality indoor play area that catered to adults as well as kids, Miami Beach mom Joyce Frohman opened this 15,000-square-foot Wynwood complex in late 2017. While kids enjoy laser tag, bumper cars, a mind-blowing 7-D theater, coin-operated games and a four-story playground, parents relax with a cup of Panther coffee and complimentary Wi-Fi. It’s a win-win for all.
Avoid the masses and have your own party when you rent out this private space in Doral that features seven gaming areas for kids and adults: a video game area, a climbing wall for older adventurers, a space for toddlers and more. Teens can get in on the fun, too: MiniTown transforms into a hip lounge space on demand. Plus, your rental includes a team of planners to handle the details as well as the cleanup.
The arcade may be hidden in an unassuming strip mall, but its unmatched collection of retro games has made it a legend in South Florida circles. Head to Kendall to relive your youth or introduce the next generation to more than 100 classics (think an ’82 Tron and an ’88 Tetris) and a wall of rare pinball machines. It’s where old-school, one-token games meet Japanese candy.
The 7 things every first-timer should know before hitting the Miami Book Fair
The epic literary event known as the Miami Book Fair returns for its 36th years with nearly 600 authors in attendance (Joyce Carol Oates, Susan Rice and Ibram X. Kendi, among others). It’s seven days of readings, book signings and shopping, which is daunting if you’ve never braved the festival. Here’s what to know before you go. 1. Show up early. Free parking goes fast, as do the good seats if you’re headed to an author event, which is general admission. 2. Plan ahead. Readings and talks require tickets, and they do sell out. Visit miamibookfair.com for a list of dates and authors and the opportunity to buy in advance online. 3. Look for signed copies. Books & Books gets visiting authors to sign copies throughout the year and sells them at the street fair for the same price. 4. Think free. First-time authors, student writers and other rising talents hand out free copies of their work at the street fair. Keep an eye out for what could be the next great American novel. 5. Hit up The Porch. Featuring a beer bar by Biscayne Brewery and live music, The Porch (at NE Second Ave and NE 3rd St) is the perfect spot to take a reading break. 6. Go international. Explore the world with the festival’s programming in Spanish via the IberoAmerican Program and Caribbean-themed ReadCaribbean events in Creole and French. 7. Find Waldo. Yep, the one and only master of hide-and-seek is taking a turn in Miami. Stop by the Children’s Alley on 11/22 at 10 am to join the hunt. Bonus Tip: Peruse t
Five Miami summer camps your kids will love
Summer break is just around the corner, but it’s not too late to sign up your offspring for the season’s best camps. FunCamps Parents love the 29-year-old camp for having two convenient locations in Miami (Pinecrest Gardens and the University of Miami campus) and catering to a range of interests: drama, robotics, magic, science, coding and, yes, dinosaurs. Sessions run for two weeks and include field trips, outdoor activities and swimming. Pinecrest Gardens, 11000 Red Rd. • University of Miami, 1330 Miller Dr, Coral Gables (funcamps.com). • Two-week sessions June 11–Aug 17 9:30am–3:30pm; $475–$585. Ages 5–12. Summer Camp at Frost Science Educators and scientists share their passion for everything STEM this summer, helping Miami students dissect squid, launch rockets and code games. The lucky campers spend time at Frost’s massive aquarium, its planetarium and various gallery spaces.Phillip and Patricia Frost Museum of Science, 1101 Biscayne Blvd (305-434-9600). Weekly sessions June 18–Aug 10 9am–3pm; $350, members $295. Grades K–8. Nature Camp at the Deering Estate Kids get to spend the day swimming, hiking, kayaking and exploring the grounds surrounding the grand estate. Arts-and-crafts activities, science experiments and field trips round out the fun.Deering Estate, 16701 SW 72nd Ave (305-235-1668, deeringestate.org/summer-camp). Weekly sessions June 11–Aug 17 7:30am–5pm; $175–$200. Ages 6–14. Ransom Everglades Summer Camp Even the littlest campers can find something to keep
Four Miami lifestyle gurus tell us how to get ready for the New Year
With the New Year comes new beginnings—or something like that? Most of us would love to get it together in 2018, but even the most motivated soul searcher will tell you that self-transformation is daunting. To help ease the transition to becoming a fully actualized person (or whatever better version of you the next year holds), we’ve recruited four of Miami’s top lifestyle experts with experience in personal development to talk about energy, closets, career and, yes, self. Scott Singer The secret behind many Miami movers and shakers, Singer brings years of experience in corporate recruiting to ambitious upstarts across South Florida. Turn to Singer (and his blog!) to learn how to spruce up your LinkedIn profile and revamp your résumé as well as strategies for job-search success. Transform your career: “Ensure that your résumé clearly demonstrates a continued history of accomplishments. Be prepared with tangible, strategic examples of how you’ve demonstrated professional success, measurably improved the overall profitability of your employer and elevated the performance of those around you through coaching and mentoring.” Annie Vazquez Though she’s mostly known for her popular style blog, the Fashion Poet, Vazquez’s spiritual side is what’s drawing Miamians to her latest venture, Annie the Alchemist. In addition to sharing her finds—from Miami-made candles and crystals to sage and affirmation cards—Vazquez offers chakra balancing in individual and group sessions to help clien
Four ways to get your winter groove on at Kendall Ice Arena
Who says Northerners get to have all the cold-weather fun? In Miami, chilling out means hitting the Kendall Ice Arena. Miami-Dade’s largest indoor facility features two NHL-size rinks, a snack bar, an arcade, a gym, a ballet studio and more. Kids from across South Florida come to partake in its plethora of classes and events. Here’s what is on the schedule. Get lessons from a pro The arena’s “Learn to Skate” program for beginners uses methods designed by U.S. Figure Skating and USA Hockey to give students a solid foundation, whether the goal is competing in the Olympics one day or showing off during open sessions. Group classes (eight-class packs are available) include lessons in choreography and synchronized skating. The Snowplow Sam group is tailored for children ages three to five. Private lessons are also available. Join a league While overlooked as a viable sport for South Florida kids—understandably—youth hockey is a thing at Kendall Ice Arena. The rink’s program continues to grow with classes that range from Learn to Play to more advanced options like Stick and Puck, plus an in-house league and a travel team. Nail a triple axel Have a budding figure skater on your hands? Kendall offers training options on and off the ice, such as ballet and video-analysis sessions as well as seminars, clinics, conditioning and jump classes—all directed by nationally ranked coaches. Regular testing throughout the program is intended to take students from novices to competitive athletes.
These are the exhibits debuting at the new Bass museum
The newly transformed Bass Museum of Art reopens to the public on October 29 with some major improvements: The $12 million renovation adds nearly 50 percent more space to the museum, including four additional galleries (bringing the total to eight) and a designated education facility. To match its new facade, the Bass (as it’s now known) is set to debut an eclectic group of new exhibitions. Moniker, Dazzle Fungus The graphic installation is designed to grow as visitors continue to add patterned stickers to the existing work, eventually creating a kaleidoscopic wall meant to engage participants as they enter the museum. Permanent Ugo Rondinone, “good evening beautiful blue” Encompassing the entire second floor and spanning three decades of the artist’s work, this exhibit centers around Vocabulary of Solitude, a 2014 installation by Rondinone of 45 life-size clown figures engaged in activities like sleeping and running. While there, don’t miss his 42-foot Miami Mountain—a permanent installation at the adjacent Collins Park. Oct 8–Feb 19 Pascale Marthine Tayou, “Beautiful” Known for his ability to transform visitors’ understanding of objects and narratives, Tayou (whose site-specific Welcome Wall hangs in the lobby) puts on a sprawling display comprising pieces from the past decade, including the colorful Fresque de Craies (2015), which consists of hundreds of chalk pieces beneath West African tourist figures, gold foil and plastic eggs. Oct 8–Apr 2 Mika Rottenberg Rottenberg’s
Seven easy ways to take your kiddie party to the next level
Face paint? Nice try. Cupcake towers? That’s so 2015. Kids’ parties have come a long way from pony rides and pizza, but parents don’t need to spend a fortune to keep up with the times. Get creative and throw an epic celebration for your little ones with help from these South Florida companies reinventing the game on backyard bashes. Backyard movies FunFlicks brings the theater experience to you with a giant HD projection, concert-grade speakers, a DVD or Blu-ray player and a technical host to help you keep the feature running smoothly. Add popcorn, candy and lawn chairs for a chill night of fun, or open the pool and throw on a beach-inspired flick for a “dive-in movie” experience. 305-594-4443, funflicks.com/fl/miami Cookie dough Skip the ice cream: flavored cookie dough is the next big dessert trend in the children’s party circuit. MdoughW creates all sorts of raw confections, such as flat bites and layered jars, that are best for little hands. These stuffed cookie cups come in a variety of flavors, too—from sprinkle funfetti and white-chocolate churro to chocolate-chunk fudge brownie. mdoughw.com Foam party Not just for Ibiza, foam parties are all the rage with tweens these days—and turning your backyard into a South Beach club circa 1995 is easier than you think. Miami-based Confetti & Fog FX cranks up the fun, advising on equipment (spring for the black light!) and handling the setup, from delivery and operation to pickup. Clean up, however, is all on you. 1085 W 21st St
Four fun theater camps your kids will actually like
Parents whose kids are curious about the theater have more than one way to introduce them to the performing arts. Miami’s children’s theaters and big-name playhouses offer a range of programs that both foster a love of performance and develop talent with classes, productions suitable for and starring youngsters, and backstage experiences with real Broadway actors. For everyone from precocious tots to tweens with real theatrical aspirations, here’s where Miami’s next generation of entertainers earn the spotlight. Miami Children’s Theater Founded in 1996, MCT bills itself as a “children’s theater for children and by children,” offering a range of performance options from its home base at the multimillion-dollar Russell Theater at the Dave and Mary Alper JCC. In addition to no-audition-needed beginner classes for actors ages 6 to 13 (which close with a final show) and full-scale company productions that you can take the kids to see (up next: Ragtime), MCT partners with Pinecrest Gardens and Coral Gables Youth Center for off-site performances. Area Stage Company This South Miami theater company gives youngsters a glimpse into its world via a constant stream of kid-friendly productions and a range of classes that cover acting, voice and dance. Programs are available to students ages 5 to 25 in both group and private settings, but it’s the near-monthly shows featuring tons of local talent that will both entertain and impress children onstage and off. This summer, the conservatory’s
Five awesome Miami-inspired workouts you need to try
After years of being ahead of the trends in food, nightlife and (more recently) arts and culture, South Florida has quietly infiltrated another arena over the past decade: fitness. Call it a beach-body by-product. Inspired by the sights and sounds of our diverse scene, local exercise innovators have developed—and continue to evolve—some of the nation’s most popular workouts right under our noses. Here are five butt-kicking classes tailor-made for and inspired by the Miami lifestyle, and the stories behind them. The Attitude: Vixen Workout Sex appeal and confidence are hallmarks of the Magic City, so it was only a matter of time before someone channeled that energy into a fitness routine. Today, former Miami Heat dancer Janet Jones and her ever-growing #vixenarmy are inspiring women across the country to tap into their inner superstar via stageworthy (and super sexy) choreography that not only helps them de-stress but also incorporates full-body workouts and toning into each of its 150 proprietary routines. “I was born and raised in Miami, and my teenage years were spent in the nightclub scene in South Beach,” says Jones. “Add to that my professional experience in the world of entertainment and you have Vixen. Like Miami nightlife, it’s hard to explain—you just need to experience it.” And lucky for Miamians, that’s easier than ever: Vixen, which started in 2012 at Street Jamz Dance Studios, opened its very first stand-alone studio in Wynwood this winter (547 NW 28 St). The Vi
4 fun Miami cooking classes for kids
Whether you’re tired of hearing complaints about your dinners, looking for an extra set of hands during meal prep or you just want to keep the kids busy for a few hours, it’s easier than ever to inspire your future Gordon Ramsays and Anthony Bourdains. From classes teaching simple skills to elaborate cake creations, these programs help your kiddos go culinary. The Biltmore Culinary Academy Housed inside the historic Biltmore Hotel, the academy offers kid-focused programs throughout the year, including weeklong camps for children ages 9 to 15. New to the schedule is “Family Fun Cooking Class,” a three-hour experience for two adults and two kids. Menus include an entrée, a side and a dessert, with options that feature everything from chicken skewers and quesadillas to fried rice, brownies à la mode and chocolate truffles. 1200 Anastasia Ave, Coral Gables (305-913-3189, biltmorehotel.com/bca). Various dates and times. $660/family. Sweet Life Cake and Candy Supply Sweet Life may boast aisles of drool-worthy baking and decorating materials, but it’s the stellar classes that have devotees of all ages flocking to the shop. Search the shop’s online calendar for options like a sushi-themed fondant-modeling class for tweens and gingerbread-house pajama parties for ages 5 and up—and check out its Instagram for an up-close look at each. 12394 SW 127 Ave (305-382-1089, sweetlifecakesupply.com). Dates and times upon request. Starts at $35. The Real Food Academy Do you have a picky eater? T
Four Miami hotels with cool art exhibits and installations
Not satisfied with claiming the city’s top restaurants and entertainment, Miami hotels are adding art exhibits to their rosters of amenities. With contemporary works on display by the likes of Andy Warhol and major installations by international artists such as Fernando Botero, resorts and boutique hotels are making a case for the art-loving guest—especially during Art Basel Miami Beach 2016, when a number of new shows debut. The Sagamore Hotel Miami Beach Perhaps the best-known hotel to merge hospitality and art (it’s known as “The Art Hotel”), the Sagamore hosts monthly programming and collaborations with local, national and internationally renowned museums, nonprofit institutions, galleries and emerging talents. Exhibits include “Femme Fatale,” highlighting representations of women, and a 100-year retrospective of French lingerie (both debuted November 29). Photograph: Courtesy the Sagamore Hotel Miami Beach Four Seasons Hotel Miami Recognized by none other than the Pérez Art Museum Miami for its multimillion-dollar collection, this Brickell hotel is home to works by local and Latin American artists. In addition to the three oversize Fernando Botero statues in various lobbies, the hotel developers also commissioned works for guest-room interiors. Last year, the 14Thirty-Five lounge added new pieces by Spanish artist Antonio Domínguez de Haro; his work will be shown again during Art Basel, along with Romero Britto. Photograph: Courtesy Four Seasons Hotel Miami Boulan So