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Transportation
11:55 pm
Thu January 22, 2015

County Officials And Residents Gather For 2015 Transportation Summit

Public transportation vehicles were parked outside of the Miami Dade College’s Wolfson Campus Chapman Conference Center as part of the Transportation Showcase.
Credit Junette Reyes / WLRN

The future of Miami-Dade’s transportation system was the topic of the 2015 Transportation Summit, held at the Miami Dade College’s Wolfson Campus Chapman Conference Center today.

County officials and residents gathered to pinpoint problems and brainstorm solutions. 

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Music
11:53 pm
Thu January 22, 2015

Zap Mama And Antibalas Come Together In Celebration Of Afrobeat

Zap Mama will be performing alongside Antibalas on Saturday, Jan. 24 at the South Miami-Dade Cultural Arts Center.
Credit Photo Courtesy of Zap Mama Press

Saturday, Jan. 24 will see the union of two musical acts in celebration of Afrobeat music at the main stage of the South Miami-Dade Cultural Arts Center. 

Zap Mama and Antibalas will come together as one band. 

“We are merging the two bands, not [performing] one after another,” says Marie Daulne, the voice behind the female vocal ensemble Zap Mama.  

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News
10:56 pm
Wed January 21, 2015

State Rep. Kristin Jacobs Files Bill Banning Kratom

Federal officials say kratom acts like a stimulant at low doses and a sedative at high doses.
Credit kratomonline.org

Last year, debates over legalizing marijuana dominated Florida’s legislative session. But during the Legislative session 2015, a different substance could be taking center stage as a freshman state representative from Broward County takes on the feel-good herb called kratom.

Under a bill filed by Kristin Jacobs, kratom would become what’s known as a “Schedule 1” controlled substance. That puts it in the same category as bath salts and other street drugs that have a high potential for abuse and no accepted medical use.

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Theater
7:10 pm
Wed January 21, 2015

The 2015 Carbonell Nominations Are In

Credit Broward Center for the Performing Arts

 

The nominees for the 39th annual Carbonell Awards for South Florida theater have been announced.

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Feature
6:46 pm
Wed January 21, 2015

Could A New Tool Put Miami-Dade On A Track To End Homelessness?

Stock photo courtesy of Flickr user Jim Fischer.
Credit Jim Fischer / Flickr CC

Volunteers will go out late Thursday night to count the number of homeless people living on the streets of Miami-Dade County. Many of the 840 tallied last year are the hardest to help because they’ve been homeless for so long.

But the Miami-Dade County Homeless Trust has implemented a new tool members think could put a serious dent in the number of street homeless going forward. It’s called the VISPDAT, the Vulnerability Index Service Prioritization Decision Assistance Tool.

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News
5:22 pm
Wed January 21, 2015

Users Are Posting Incriminating Content On Social Media

Content posted on Instagram is being used as evidence in criminal cases.
Credit Jason Howie / Flickr Creative Commons (CC By 2.0)

The social media app Instagram claims 300 million users document their lives through uploaded daily worldwide. But not all of them use the app wisely, as some Miami Instagrammers have had their posts used against them as evidence in criminal cases.

One Miamian unknowingly published an act of voyeurism while another used the app to aid his criminal activity by uploading pictures of stolen goods for sale. 

But why do people turn to social media with incriminating content?

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Florida Grand Opera
5:08 pm
Wed January 21, 2015

Anonymous Donor Steps Forward To Save Opera In Broward County

Credit Broward Center for the Performing Arts

It looks like the greatest operatic hero in South Florida this season comes armed with a checkbook instead of a broadsword.

Weeks after the Florida Grand Opera announced that a funding shortfall might force the company to pull out of its Fort Lauderdale performance dates next season, FGO general director Susan Danis says an anonymous donor has stepped forward to help.

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Latin America Report
9:13 am
Wed January 21, 2015

Now Starts The Hard Part Of Pulling The U.S. And Cuba Out Of Their Cold-War Time Warp

A car in Havana sports Cuban and U.S. flags in advance of talks there to normalize relations between the two countries.
Credit Day Donaldson / Flickr/Creative Commons

Like Michael J. Fox struggling to power his DeLorean back to the future, the United States and Cuba on Wednesday start the labor of propelling their relations out of a Cold-War time warp and into the 21st Century.

Senior officials from both sides will meet in Havana to make history. They’ll launch talks to re-establish diplomatic ties that were severed 54 years ago in the wake of Cuba’s communist revolution.

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Mugshots
11:28 pm
Tue January 20, 2015

North Miami Beach Police Chief: We Made A Mistake

Bullet riddled target sheet shows mugshot black men arrested by North Miami Beach police.
Credit NBC 6

The North Miami Beach Police Department has been using mugshots of young black men for target practice during sniper drills.

The practice drew international headlines after Valerie Deant recognized her brother’s mugshot on a bullet-riddled target sheet at a Medley gun range after North Miami Beach police left.

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Culture
11:10 pm
Tue January 20, 2015

Photos: The Characters Of Magic City Comic Con

There was a little bit of everything at the Magic City Comic Con for fans, collectors and those just looking.

An hour before the opening of the inaugural Magic City Comic Con, hundreds of comic fans and cosplay enthusiasts were lined up around the Miami Airport Convention Center to find the latest deals on comic books, show off their costumes and meet their favorite artists.

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Politics
5:48 pm
Tue January 20, 2015

South Florida DREAMer To Join U.S. Rep. Lois Frankel For SOTU Address

Congresswoman Lois Frankel (l.) and 21-year-old Charlene Rupert (r.) take a selfie en route to Washington, D.C. for the State of the Union address.

During President Obama's State of the Union address tonight, a young, undocumented "DREAMer" from South Florida will be in the guest seat next to Democratic Congresswoman Lois Frankel.

Charlene Rupert, 21, of Palm Springs came to the United States from Venezuela with her grandmother when she was 11-years-old. She says she didn’t realize she was an undocumented immigrant until she was 16.

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Politics
4:03 pm
Tue January 20, 2015

A Few Familiar Guests At The State Of The Union Address

Credit Wikimedia Commons

President Obama’s annual State of the Union address aired Tuesday night. It’s customary for the president, the first lady and congresspeople to invite guests to the address, and Florida viewers may have recognize a few names and faces. The guests ran the gamut from former political prisoners to activists.

ALAN AND JUDY GROSS

The president invited aid contractor and recently freed Cuban political prisoner Alan Gross and his wife, Judy, to Tuesday evening’s address.

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Rainbow Circle
2:28 pm
Tue January 20, 2015

Rainbow Circle Meetings Provide Safe Spaces For LGBT Youth

The Rainbow Circle meetings at the South Miami-Dade Cultural Arts Center in Cutler Bay take place every Tuesday at 6 p.m.
Credit Pattrik Simmons

Tayson Defas had difficulty growing up in Ecuador where it wasn't easy for him to find his identity as an LGBT youth.

"I was born here, but I was raised there. And in Ecuador, the LGBT community is not very strong. It's even ridiculed on TV, so you can understand how I felt when I was trying to come out," he said. "At the time, I had no idea what the gay community was. I had no connection. I had no idea how to talk to gay people. I didn’t even know how other gay people looked like -- that's how much of a problem I had."

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Arts
2:22 pm
Tue January 20, 2015

National Endowment For The Arts Chair Found A Language In Music

NEA chair Jane Chu says she turned to music to express herself after the death of her father.
Credit freedigitalphotos.net

When Jane Chu was growing up in Arkansas, the daughter of Chinese immigrants, she remembers that her parents liked bok choy while she liked corn dogs. They spoke Mandarin and "book English," and that, she says, could only go so far when her father died when she was nine-years-old. But she played piano, and she says music is where she found a way to express emotions where words fell short.

Chu believes strongly in the ability of the arts to transform individuals, communities and the overall economy. 

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Environment
1:56 pm
Tue January 20, 2015

South Florida Researcher To Sit With Michelle Obama For SOTU Speech

Nicole Hernandez Hammer, Florida Field Manager for Moms Clean Air Force
Credit whitehouse.gov

A South Florida sea-level rise researcher will have one of the best seats in the house for the President’s State of the Union address Tuesday night.

Nicole Hernandez Hammer of Boca Raton will be one of First Lady Michelle Obama’s invited guests.

Hernandez Hammer says her research shows that cities and regions most vulnerable to the effects of climate change and sea-level rise also have large Hispanic populations.

“Most people don’t know about our vulnerability. That was really eye-opening and encouraged me to go into advocacy,” she says.

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