South Florida knows how to throw a party. And it better, considering how important hospitality is to the regional economy. From conferences and conventions to fairs and festivals, the event business picks up as temperatures up north drop. Some are for out-of-towners exclusively, others celebrate South Florida for South Floridians.
To get a sense of the economics and local emotions involved, The Sunshine Economy spoke with the driving forces behind four big events that dot the South Florida map.
When I was in elementary school, I wrote an "autobiography" called "I Want to Be Like Judy." It had a pink construction paper cover and came in second in the school library contest. I never imagined that 30-something years later, Judy would say to me, "Let's take a selfie!" (See our virtual tour - link below.) I loved all her books, but "Starring Sally J. Freedman as Herself" was one of my very favorites. I read it over and over. Ten times? Fifteen?
N.D.B. Connolly grew up in South Florida and couldn't wait to leave. That's when he realized just how attached he was to the region. That's also when he started to look at the history of Miami and how for more than a century Jim Crow laws made life in the Magic City painful and difficult for African-Americans.
Say you walk into an office building. On the reception desk is a nice, lush, green-leafed plant with white dots on it. You think, “how nice and outdoorsy.”
Chances are it's a deathly, toxic plant called a "dumb cane."
That's one of the tidbits included in Michael Largo's most recent publication, "The Big, Bad Book of Botany." It’s an encyclopedia-style book about botany sprinkled with surprising, funny and historical tales of plants.
If you missed our Twitter chat about Jewish cuisine and Jewish delis, catch the recap here.
Ted Merwin didn't set out to become a deli historian. About ten years ago, Merwin was working on his Ph.D. dissertation about the popular culture of second generation Eastern European Jews -- such as vaudeville and silent comedy -- in 1920s New York.
The 30th anniversary of the Miami Book Fair International is upon us. In honor of this great event, our tireless staff has gone through the Fairgoer's Guide and each picked out what he or she won't be missing this year.
Please share what you'll be looking forward to in the comments. Maybe we'll run into each other at the WLRN booth.
From our prior literary projects, we know South Florida has a lot of aspiring bards. So in celebration of the 30th anniversary of the Miami Book Fair International, we asked you to help us tweet-compose a poem.
Richard Blanco -- a Miami-raised poet who wrote the presidential inaugural poem this year -- started us off with the first line: "Why the stars? Well, just look up, look"
We left the rest up to you. Read the result below.