sports

Lisann Ramos

If you drive on Gratigny Parkway this weekend, try not to get too distracted by the wakeboarders soaring through the air at Amelia Earhart Park.

They may be hard to ignore -- they're the best in the country.

Wakeboarders from all over the U.S. are competing this weekend for the Wakeboard National Championships.

The event is a county effort to offer a greater variety of activities at public parks.

Screen shot / Fulham Football Club

Florida's public-private tourism agency has signed a deal to sponsor a professional soccer club in England's second-highest league.

The Visit Florida logo will appear on Fulham Football Club jerseys. The logo will also be on the three roofs of its London stadium, known as Craven Cottage, which is along the flight path for Heathrow Airport.

Fulham is owned by Shahid Khan, who also owns the NFL's Jacksonville Jaguars.

Rob O'Neal / Havana Challenge

In May, five 16-foot Hobie Cat sailboats left Key West for the inaugural Havana Challenge sailing race to Cuba.

"Three of them were broken, one sank and one was ripped into pieces," said Joe Weatherby, one of the race organizers. The three "broken" boats were patched up enough to limp into Havana Harbor -- 10 hours after leaving Key West.

Ebony Joseph / WLRN

A group of students from the Miami Lighthouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired got a hands-on "touch tour" of Miami Marlins Park on Thursday.

The students from Lighthouse’s summer music camp got a chance to feel and explore the stadium before the Marlins went head to head against the Washington Nationals.

The summer program gives sighted and visually impaired students a chance to work together and learn about each other.

Nadege Green / WLRN

Former Miami Heat player James Jones is now with the Cleveland Cavaliers, but that’s just where he works.

For Jones, Miami will always be home.

On Tuesday morning he kicked off his annual Crew 22 Summer Camp, now in its fifth year. The camp is organized through the James Jones Legacy Foundation and it’s a family affair.

Jones’ parents were on hand to help coach students in kickball and basketball skirmishes.

Brad Balukjian / Wax Pack Book

For millions of kids there were few experiences like getting a new pack of baseball cards. There was a simple but euphoric joy in tearing the thin metallic wrapper, being hit by the wafting smell of stale sugar and feeling the hard stock, glossy cards between your fingers.  

Brad Balukjian was one of those kids in the 1980s. He bought his first deck in 1986, a year that included players such as Dwight Gooden, Ken Griffey and Eddie Murray. Recently, the freelance writer came up with an idea. He bought a pack of 1986 Topps cards on Ebay -- unopened. 

Beckham Stadium Deal Moves Forward

Jul 17, 2015
Mark Stein / WLRN

The movement to bring a Major League Soccer franchise to Miami took a step forward on Friday morning, when David Beckham’s franchise ownership group tentatively agreed to finance and build a 25,000 seat soccer stadium on the Orange Bowl site, near Marlins Park.

 

Spring Training Facility Coming To West Palm Beach

Jul 7, 2015
HKS Sports & Entertainment Group

Governor Scott was in West Palm Beach Monday morning to sign a deal to keep baseball spring training in South Florida.

Florida has been fighting increased competition from Arizona as the preferred destination for Major League Baseball spring training, a big tourist draw for sports fans.

Governor Rick Scott signed into law a land swap between the city of West Palm Beach and Palm Beach County, removing the last obstacle to the construction of a $135 million spring training facility for two Major League baseball teams.

dnguah / YouTube

In March, hundreds of Brazilian-Americans in South Florida gathered at Miami’s Bayfront Park to protest massive corruption in Brazil. But many may not have known that one alleged perpetrator of all that graft back in their mother country owns a home – a really big one – just across Biscayne Bay.

Kenny Malone

A new soccer team in Miami, an FBI raid in Miami Beach and David Beckham’s Major League Soccer odyssey takes an American football turn. It's been a busy few weeks for South Florida soccer news.

Michelle Kaufman covers the beautiful game for the Miami Herald, so we asked her for the CliffsNotes summary of recent soccer events.

THE MIAMI CONNECTION

Embattled FIFA President Sepp Blatter is speaking at the beginning of the 65th Congress of soccer's worldwide governing body. Blatter faces a re-election vote Friday, in the face of new corruption and bribery charges against senior members of FIFA.

"These are unprecedented and difficult times for FIFA," Blatter said. "The events of yesterday have cast a long shadow over football and over this league's congress."

It was a somber opening to FIFA's meeting of international sporting bodies, an assembly that was celebrated with flag-bearers and other pageantry.

C.M. Guerrero / El Nuevo Herald

The soccer world is in shock today because of a massive corruption scandal involving the sport’s international governing body. The case reaches into Miami – and the accusations deal a big blow to soccer’s image in this hemisphere.

Luis Hernandez / WLRN

There's always something that can take us back to our childhood in an instant. It could be a toy, a song or maybe a game.

For many kids growing up in the early and mid-20th century on the streets of New York, or Boston or Philadelphia, that game was stickball. The streets, the parks and the alleyways became Yankee Stadium, or Fenway Park or Connie Mack Stadium. Stickball was as big as most major sports for kids in their early teens.

npr.org

The Monroe County Sheriff's Office is investigating the deaths of three people who all died Monday in separate incidents while snorkeling in the Keys.

Monroe Sheriff Rick Ramsay said Tuesday that having three fatalities on the water in one day was unprecedented.

Richard Gueringer, 71, of San Antonio, Texas, was taken to Lower Keys Medical Center after he lost consciousness in the water off Key West. He was pronounced dead at the hospital, according to Deputy Becky Herrin, a spokeswoman for the sheriff's office.

The Miami Open / Banco Itau

The big pro tennis tournament that starts Monday on Key Biscayne has had four different corporate names since its debut 30 years ago. But now the event is free of a commercial label. And that may be the smartest corporate move yet.

It was most recently the Sony Open. Now – and many hope from now on – it’s the Miami Open.

For that you can say obrigado – thank you – to Brazil’s Banco Itaú.

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