Miami Beach

Miami Beach Tech Hub Responds To Mayor With Invitation

Feb 26, 2014
Hillary Lindwall/WLRN

A Miami Beach tech company invited Mayor Philip Levine to their lab for a visit this week in response to comments Levine made at the U.S. Conference of Mayors meeting last month. Levine said he could not see Miami Beach becoming a tech hub.

"It's the dumbest idea in the world," Levine said at the Mayors meeting, according to the Washington Post. "People cling on to things that are not the highest and best use for their city. Miami Beach is never going to be a high tech hub. As much as it sounds great, it's sexy, that's not who we are."

How The Beatles Stole Miami's Heart (And Vice Versa)

Feb 14, 2014
State Archives of Florida / floridamemory.com

Suffice it to say, almost everyone tries to score a trip to South Florida in February.

And, in February of 1964, that was true of the band almost everyone wanted to see: The Beatles.

Trade Liverpool for the swimming pool -- that's what John, Paul, George and Ringo did.

Fresh off their record-setting performance on The Ed Sullivan Show, The Beatles made one more stop in Washington, D.C. for their first public U.S. concert.

But Sullivan the showman knew what he had. And he wasn't letting it go so quick.

North American Bitcoin Conference Comes To Miami

Jan 27, 2014
Hillary Lindwall/WLRN

Bitcoin users from around the world attended this year's North American Bitcoin Conference this past weekend at the Miami Beach Convention Center.

Moe Levin, who organized the conference, says attendance exceeded his expectations.

"I was expecting 800 people and now there are 1,200," Levin said. "It [was] a hugely successful Bitcoin conference."

Conference goers attended workshops held by Bitcoin-accepting and facilitating merchant vendors, like bitpay and 3DCart.  

Alicia Zuckerman / WLRN

After almost two decades a famed South Florida live music venue is no more.

Located on the corner of Jefferson Avenue and Lincoln Road on Miami Beach, in the historic Van Dyke building built in 1924, Van Dyke Cafe had its last call on Sunday, Jan. 26. Patrons were invited for a special celebration and toast at 5 p.m. to commemorate the closing. The venue was well known for hosting live jazz and became a staple of the beach's people-watching haven, Lincoln Road Mall.

WLRN's Top Five Stories Jan. 20-24

Jan 27, 2014
Courtesy of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Among the stories you liked most this past week are a race between a car and a bus and a debate on the state of Miami Beach as a tech hub.

Daniel DiMassa

Editor's Note: This is a community contributor post that has been edited for clarity.  The views expressed here are those of the author and not WLRN or WLRN-Miami Herald News.

My name is Daniel DiMassa and tech start-ups are more of a religion than passion to me.

Digital Currency Conference Hits Miami Beach

Jan 27, 2014
Hillary Lindwall/WLRN

Hundreds of Bitcoin users flocked to Miami Beach this weekend for the North American Bitcoin Conference

Bitcoin is a form of digital currency that Florida Atlantic University finance professor Charles Evans says will change the way international business is conducted.

WALTER MICHOT / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

On The Florida Roundup: six gay couples in South Florida sue over the state's constitutional provision, passed by referendum in 2008, limiting marriage to a man and woman.

We then look at the American Dream for another national minority group: Latino-Americans. Two new polls examine the outlook and views of Latinos.

And Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine causes a furor with his comment that trying to make his city a high-tech hub is "the dumbest idea in the world."  The mayor will join us to explain why he's standing by that assessment.

ANDREW ULOZA / Miami Herald

Editor's Note: This is a community contributor post.  The views expressed here are those of the author and not WLRN or WLRN-Miami Herald News.

Mayor Levine,

Congratulations on your installation as the Mayor of Miami Beach. When I first moved to Miami I lived on Ocean Drive, and it still holds a warm place in my heart.

Six Same-Sex Couples Sue For The Right To Marry In Florida

Jan 21, 2014
Arianna Prothero / WLRN

Six couples from South Florida are legally challenging the state's ban on same-sex marriage.

Same-sex couples have never been allowed to marry in Florida. But six years ago a majority of voters chose to amend the state constitution to ban gay marriage.

Speaking at a press conference on Tuesday, attorney Shannon Minter argued minority rights should never be put up to a popular vote.

CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

In dire financial straits, the church that has stood on the corner of Lincoln Road and Drexel Avenue for almost a century is considering leasing out a chunk of its historic property for $100 million.

Early plans call for Tristar Capital to build a multistory building on the Miami Beach Community Church’s small courtyard fronting the Lincoln Road Mall.

As a historic property in a historic district, it could be difficult to get city approval for development on the site. As a congregational church, its members also have to approve the deal.

Elaine Chen / WLRN

By Sculpting Through His Grief, Local Artist Finds Spotlight

Dec 6, 2013
Charles Soto / Instagram

Charles Soto started tattooing four years ago, after his mother died following a long illness.

“[It] was a moment in my life of desperation. I hit rock bottom," he says. "I was dead broke."

Three years later, Soto reconnected with his estranged older brother, just months before the latter died of HIV complications. His grief influenced his art with dark overtones, but also put him in the sightline of a company now displaying his work during Art Basel.

Alicia Zuckerman / WLRN

Basel is back in town and the annual artistic spotlight is swiveling around Miami, highlighting nooks and crannies the city normally passes by with nonchalance. Now in its 12th year, Art Basel Miami Beach has not only grown, but changed the landscape of the city and South Florida.

It’s easy to be cynical about the general milieu. I have been snarky about the crowds and traffic before and I most likely will be again. But taking a step back and appreciating what Basel has changed can be boiled down to a few simple questions.

Yahoo Images/Cejas.me

After last month's election, Miami Beach was left without having a Latino on the city commission. This got the city, which is 53 percent Hispanic, talking. In an editorial, the Miami Herald called on newly elected mayor Phillip Levine to institute what sounds like an ethnic quota when it comes to making appointments. Then Miami Today came out strongly against that proposal.  The Miami New Times explores an interesting issue: Do our commissions look like our communities?

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