Photographs by Bob Quesada of The 13th Annual Rotary Key Biscayne Wine and Food Fest

The Rotary Club of Key Biscayne Foundation recently completed its XIII Annual Wine and Food fund raiser on Friday, January 26th. The event sold out quickly and turned into another resounding success with the help and support from the Rotary Club of Key Biscayne, The Nobis Foundation, The ARC of South Florida, our long standing partner Manos del Sur and community members at large.

Thirteen participating restaurants from our community prepared food delicacies to match the wines. Twenty four wineries competed for the recognition of Best in Show White and Red.

According to five independent judges, the winning white wine was B de Chanzy, a Rose from Provence, France, a delightful blend of Grenache and Syrah.

The winning red wine was a Merlot from Deerfield Ranch in Sonoma Valley, CA.

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News: Matt Haggman Resigns from Knight Foundation

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

The Knight Foundation just circulated this letter:

Our friend and colleague, Matt Haggman, Knight Foundation program director for Miami, has resigned, effective July 21. Chris Caines, who has ably served as Matt’s associate, will assume responsibilities as Knight interim program director for Miami.

Since Matt joined Knight in 2011, we have invested more than $28 million in supporting high-growth entrepreneurship in Miami and South Florida. We intend to continue this important work and to generate a more connected, better supported community of entrepreneurs. Our goal continues to be to make Miami a hub of ideas and innovation.

Chris has been working closely with Matt, our grantees and partners. He embodies Knight Foundation’s commitment to informed and engaged communities and will continue the work seamlessly.

Matt leaves Knight with our profound gratitude for his leadership and efforts. Please join me in wishing him well in his next endeavors.

Mike Abrams of The Miami Herald is circulating the rumor that Haggman may be running for Congress – http://www.miamiherald.com/opinion/op-ed/article148195384.html

Posted in News   

Knight Cities Challenge is now open for ideas

The Knight Cities Challenge is now open for ideas. The challenge seeks ideas that make the 26 communities where Knight invests more vibrant places to live and work. Applicants can win a share of up to $5 million for innovative projects that answer the question: What’s your best idea to make cities more successful?

Applications will be accepted until Nov. 3. Ideas should focus on one or all of three key drivers of city success: attracting and keeping talent, expanding economic opportunity, and creating a culture of civic engagement.

If you have questions about the challenge, you can join us for virtual office hours or in-person events to learn more. The schedule, which is regularly updated, can be accessed here.

To enter the Knight Cities Challenge go to knightcities.org and answer a few questions. For more information take a look at this blog post. Follow @knightfdn and #knightcities on Twitter for updates and please spread the word through your networks.

Posted in News   

Knight Arts Challenge 2016 Finalists Announcement

PRESS RELEASE
Knight Foundation names 68 finalists in Knight Arts Challenge Miami

MIAMI – Sept. 13, 2016 – Sixty-eight ideas were named finalists today in the Knight Arts Challenge Miami, a community-wide initiative funding the best ideas for the arts in South Florida.

Emerging from nearly 1,000 submissions, the finalists propose a range of projects to help make art general in Miami, a place where high-quality arts and cultural experiences can be found throughout the many neighborhoods. They include creating the country’s only contemporary art gallery in a national park, blending art and technology to engage transit riders, embedding artists in city planning departments and launching a Native-American film festival.

“The Miami of today is radically different from the Miami of 2008 when we first launched this challenge. Artists and cultural organizations have pushed this community to seek high levels of excellence, while continuing to experiment with new ideas. Our belief in this city, and our investment in its people, is born out every day in the performance halls, galleries and streets of Miami, and again by the 68 finalists in this year’s challenge,” said Victoria Rogers, vice president for arts at Knight Foundation.

A full list of finalists is below and at knightarts.org.  Knight Foundation will announce the winning ideas, which will share $2.5 million, on Nov. 28, 2016.

This is the ninth year of the Knight Arts Challenge Miami, which offers matching funds for the best ideas for the arts. Applicants must follow only three rules: 1) The idea must be about the arts; 2) the project must take place in or benefit South Florida; 3) the grant recipient must find funds to match Knight’s commitment.

Since 2005, Knight Foundation has invested $122 million in the South Florida arts, supporting both large institutions, to help them better engage the public, and smaller, grassroots groups through the challenge. Previous Knight funding for local institutions created a new media program that includes the signature “Wallcasts” at the acclaimed New World Symphony campus, helps present Ibero-American films at the Miami International Film Festival, and is bringing every Miami-Dade third-grader to the Pérez Art Museum Miami. 

For more on Knight Foundation’s arts program, visit knightarts.org or follow Knight Foundation on Facebook, or #knightarts and @knightfdn on Twitter and Instagram.

About the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation
Knight Foundation supports transformational ideas that promote quality journalism, advance media innovation, engage communities and foster the arts. We believe that democracy thrives when people and communities are informed and engaged. For more, visit knightfoundation.org.

2016 Knight Arts Challenge Miami Finalists

III Points Festival
To provide a platform for local artists by commissioning them to create large-scale installations on the festival grounds with the prospect of moving them to other locations throughout the year

Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts
To introduce South Florida’s hip-hop culture to an international audience by bringing the Breakin’ Convention, a festival of dance and theater, to Miami

Ali Cultural Arts
To expand the presence of women in the audio engineering industry with a training program for young women and girls in a historic Pompano Beach building that once boarded African-American jazz musicians

Alma Dance Theater
To use contemporary dance to raise awareness about Alzheimer’s disease and dementia and to engage people afflicted by them

Amir Baradaran
To rethink how people produce knowledge and share memories with a large-scale, participatory art project that uses augmented reality and artificial intelligence

Angel Fraser-Logan Dance Company
To inspire a love of dance by bringing Miami native and Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater’s Jamar Roberts to South Florida to mentor and teach students, and to choreograph and perform new work

ArtCenter/South Florida
To bring art into public planning by embedding artists in city governments as part of a residency program that helps to develop solutions to policy concerns

Artists Within Reach Collective
To foster the next generation of artists by having well-known artists offer professional guidance to young creatives by addressing the question, “If you could go back in time, what advice would you give your younger self?”

Artists in Residence in Everglades (AIRE)
To tell the story of the cultural and ecological forces that shape South Florida by opening a permanent gallery at Everglades National Park’s Ernest Coe Visitor Center, the only space in the country devoted to contemporary art within a national park

The Barnyard
To bring Coconut Grove together with an art and culinary event inspired by Judy Chicago’s famous 1979 art installation, “The Dinner Party”

Bas Fisher Invitational
To experiment with new models for presenting art through Nomadic Miami, a series of roving exhibitions, performances and programs in specific locations determined by cutting-edge artists

Nerissa Street
To train South Florida’s teen girls to become leaders in film and media by immersing them in the production of a short film from script to screening in four weeks

Alexey Taran
To explore the dark side of desire, disorders and inner struggles through an experimental theater performance incorporating artists from both sides of the Florida Straits

Boca Raton Museum of Art
To commemorate the 70th anniversary of Everglades National Park by commissioning glass artist Koen Vanmechelen to meet with residents and scientists in South Florida and create an exhibition based on the environmental issues facing the region

The Bridge
To provide artistic support for musicians by building out an event space and recording room with free production and streaming services

CANVAS Art Charities
To infuse a neighborhood with art with the CANVAS Outdoor Museum, which connects five underused blocks along the West Palm Beach waterfront with installations, including one powered by solar panels that will light the area for nighttime use

Carl Juste
To explore the many layers and similarities between Cuban and Haitian cultures through
a book of photographs and essays, and an accompanying exhibition

CINTAS Foundation
To celebrate Cuban writers through new fellowships in creative writing for Cubans living on the island and in exile

City Theatre
To create a new format for musical theater with the 10-Minute Musical Initiative, a platform for short pieces by the producers of the Summer Shorts series

KROMA
To engage the community in restoring the art installations in Coconut Grove’s Elizabeth Virrick Park to reflect the original vision of architect Kenneth Treister

Combat Hippies
To encourage public conversations about the trauma of war by touring a new spoken word performance based on the stories of local veterans and refugees from the Middle East

Community Justice Project
To engage new audiences in the literary arts by bringing workshops led by poet Aja Monet to grassroots leaders involved in social justice issues

Dana De Greff
To foster a love of words at an early age with PageSlayers, a weeklong summer camp for Opa-locka fourth- and fifth-graders that exposes them to writing beyond the standard school curriculum

Dance NOW! Miami
To engage South Florida audiences with the restaging of “Ritmo Jondo,” a pioneering work of modern dance created in 1953 and set to the music of Catalan composer Carlos Surinach

Dania Beach Creative Arts Council
To enliven neighborhoods and provide employment for artists by creating murals across the city

Design and Architecture High School
To develop the skills of young animators by offering student workshops with local professionals on scriptwriting, storyboarding and more, in addition to screening student films

Diaspora Vibe Cultural Arts Incubator
To connect Caribbean communities and artists by commissioning 20 artists to spend time in South Florida neighborhoods, conduct community-focused research and create public artworks that respond to people’s stories and histories

Everett Osceola
To highlight the words and works of indigenous peoples by launching the first southeastern Native American film festival

April JAMM Festival
To celebrate jazz by expanding the April jazz festival at a local club to venues around Miami and including master classes and school lectures

Florida International University
To honor Miami’s Cuban heritage by creating cultural exchanges between Havana and Miami guitar orchestras at the Miami International GuitART Festival

Florida International University
To celebrate contemporary approaches to art and design by bringing experts in Germany’s Bauhaus movement and Leonardo da Vinci’s art to present exhibits, lectures and courses in 2019

Fringe Projects
To stretch the bounds of public art by partnering with R&R Studios on BEAUTY FOR ALL!!!, an LED-activated mural in downtown Miami that counteracts the ever-present messages of consumption on signs in the city

Guitars Over Guns
To use art to oppose violence by collaborating with police to melt bullet casings and guns and recast them into musical instruments that will lead a peace rally involving local musicians and artists of all ages and backgrounds

Historic Hampton House Community Trust
To build on the legacy of the Historic Hampton House, the segregation-era motel in Brownsville once home to a popular jazz club, with a music education program for local youth

HistoryMiami
To connect South Floridians to the impact and emotion of 1992’s Hurricane Andrew with a large-scale exhibition on the 25th anniversary of the hurricane’s landfall

Hotbox Art
To create a catalyst for transforming a West Palm Beach historic district by turning the shotgun homes there into spaces for artist residencies and community engagement

IFE-ILE
To link Afro-Cuban culture in Miami and Havana by providing dancers and instructors from the island to participate in a cultural exchange project as part of the group’s annual summer dance festival

Interactive Initiative
To engage neighborhoods in art by transforming building facades with large-scale projections of interactive video and animations by local artists

Juggerknot Theatre Company
To explore Miami’s many layers by presenting immersive, real-time theater experiences in three motel rooms that tell the stories of three of Miami’s emerging neighborhoods

Karen Peterson Dancers
To promote Miami as a leader in inclusive arts by launching the first International Physically Integrated Dance Festival featuring dancers with and without disabilities performing together

Key West Literary Seminar
To instill pride in Florida’s place in American literature by providing a free, five-day summer program for Key West High School students on the literary and cultural history of the island

Sosyete Koukouy
To immerse more South Floridians in Haitian culture by recreating a Haitian village on the streets of Miami where visitors can experience the country’s culture

Locust Projects
To provide artists with the tools they need to do their work by creating a lending library of items such as power tools, a 3-D printer, video production equipment and more

Michael Graves Education Inc.
To heighten public awareness about the importance of the Everglades to Miami’s future with life-size sculptures of endangered animals made through origami

Miami Beach Cinematheque
To bring a rare collection to the community by digitizing and displaying the cinematheque’s archive of film memorabilia and ephemera.

Miami Classical Guitar Society
To elevate Miami’s classical guitar culture through concerts by internationally renowned guitarists, an international competition, educational master classes and live stream of the society’s annual festival

Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs
To engage the community in the Dance Theatre of Harlem’s first local performance in a decade, with activities surrounding the event at the South Miami-Dade Cultural Arts Center

Miami Hispanic Ballet Corp.
To bring a world-class dance experience to Miami’s multicultural audiences through
the International Ballet Festival of Miami, which presents more than 20 companies from around the world in addition to workshops and classes

Miami Light Project
To explore the art of cabaret by bringing the Philadelphia-based Bearded Ladies Cabaret to Miami for workshops that culminate in a performance with local and Philly-based performers

Miami Music Club
To create a space for underground musicians and artists to come together by producing a series of concerts at traditional art spaces

Miami Music Institute
To explore race relations in American history by presenting two operas at the Miami Music Festival, “Appomattox” by Philip Glass and “Let Freedom Sing” by Bruce Adolphe, coupled with community programming

Miami New Drama
To find common ground for diverse audiences by creating bilingual adaptions of classic plays including “Our Town,” “A Streetcar Named Desire” and “Miss Julie” at the Colony Theatre

Nathaniel Sandler
To introduce more people to the collections of museums through essays, tours and events focused on the many interesting items the institutions have but aren’t able to display year round

ProjectArt
To immerse neighborhoods in the arts by placing emerging artists in five libraries where they will have studio space in exchange for teaching arts classes in low-income communities

Children’s Hope Chest of Dreams
To bring the best in African-diaspora cinema to Overtown through a new film series at the Lyric Theater and nearby Gibson Park

Ramiro Almeida
To provoke conversations about downtown Miami today, and what it could be in the future, by building a replica of the area using Legos and having artists exhibit their work throughout it

Reading Queer
To bring more queer voices to South Florida by expanding the annual Reading Queer Literary Festival with a series of main stage performances, writers’ workshops and literary installations

Storefront for Art and Architecture
To demonstrate how South Florida can adapt and flourish in times of rising sea levels by having artists and designers propose solutions at an ideas festival

Rhythm Foundation
To create a cultural dialogue with communities hit by terrorism and war through “Axis of Love,” a concert series featuring instrumental music from conflict zones

RudduR Dance
To inspire the next generation of dancers with a mentorship program that culminates with a site-specific show at a historic landmark

Susan Karie Braun
To connect Miamians through immersive storytelling with “Metronovelas,” a weekly short-film series that “premieres” on Miami-Dade Public Transit when riders cue it using an augmented reality app

Symone Titania
To tell the stories of the barbecue vendors of South Dade’s Goulds neighborhood with a photo documentary project and community celebration

Tarell Alvin McCraney
To create the 305/One Festival, which celebrates the unique storytelling and solo performers coming out of Miami with a series of performances, film screenings and cultural activities

The M Ensemble
To promote a new home for theater in Liberty City, Sandrell Rivers Theater, where M Ensemble will be a resident company, with a yearlong engagement initiative

Torrance Carter
To foster the love and knowledge of film among students by bringing AdHoc Cinema, a traveling film and music series, to local schools

The Screening Room
To expand multimedia artistic programming in Miami through new installations at Wynwood’s The Screening Room

Wifredo Fernandez
To develop a space for creatives in the Overtown/Miami River District that provides lodging, a café, and creative work and commercial space space for artists and entrepreneurs

YoungArts
To showcase artistic talent by expanding the free, outdoor Outside the Box series featuring new and reimagined multidisciplinary mash-ups created by talented YoungArts alumni at the organization’s iconic space

About the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation
Knight Foundation supports transformational ideas that promote quality journalism, advance media innovation, engage communities and foster the arts. We believe that democracy thrives when people and communities are informed and engaged. For more, visit knightfoundation.org/.

Photographs of South of Spice by Bob Quesada

This past Tuesday, hundreds of Foodies stormed the Southern tip of South Beach looking to experience the ultimate gastronomic crawl…and my oh my!!!… did they ever!!!

La crème de la crème of the world-class restaurants in the South of Fifth neighborhood rolled out their red carpets and proceeded to showcase their greatest hits to welcome the participants of South of Spice.

Only in its second year, South of Spice is quickly becoming the “must do” event for all foodies in the South Florida area. Its popularity can be attributed to three factors: affordability, quality and execution. Where else can you experience eight Top-Tier restaurants for $45.00?

Now, this is not a one meal, one dish type of set-up. We are talking about an unending parade of samples of the best each restaurant has to offer. You can eat as much as you want. Each restaurant also included complimentary beverages to accompany the samples. We are talking from a wonderful Sterling Vineyards Merlot at Red, The Steakhouse to Caipirinhas at Fogo de Chão.

As if the price and the quality weren’t enough, there are motor coaches, provided by miRide, on constant rotation to effortlessly chauffeur you from doorstep to doorstep. You don’t have to walk if you don’t want to but after several waves of delicious samples, a little walking helps.

Another good thing about the event is that South of Spice benefits the CI Foundation and their community initiative Eat Smart, which finds a balance between battling childhood hunger and providing healthy meals to promote youth nutrition.

The participating restaurants were: Red, the Steakhouse; Cibo Wine Bar; Il Mulino; Fogo de Chão; Izzy’s Oyster Bar; The Local House; Radio Bar and Craft Social Club .

We couldn’t visit all of them this time around but we can’t wait for next year!

Here are a few images:

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#ThankYouMiami for Fashion – Five FOMO-Inducing Miami Swim Week 2016 Moments

Image by Alexander Tamargo / Getty Images for 1 Hotel and Homes South Beach
Tori Praver and daughter Ryan. Image by Alexander Tamargo / Getty Images for 1 Hotel and Homes South Beach

Have you ever suffered from FOMO? Well, every time I leave Miami I’m plagued by major fear of missing out and last weekend it hit an all time high as Brad and I jetted off to California right smack in the middle of Miami Swim Week. Swim Week is one of my favorite weeks of the year for three reasons: (1) it is my chance to catch up on the swimwear trends of the upcoming season, (2) the rosé and champagne filled parties are always super fun, and (3) I can stock up on bikinis at bargain prices. Alas, this year it was not meant to be for me but I was super grateful that #ThankYouMiami contributor Celeste was able to capitalize on (and cover) the beautiful chaos in our absence. Thanks to her excellent reporting and our ace investigative skills, I was fully aware the entire time of how much awesomeness I was missing while out of town. Here are the five Miami Swim Week 2016 moments that elicited the most FOMO:

1. Miami Fashion Bloggers modeling at Miami Magazine’s Splashion 2016
On Wednesday, July 13 several Miami Fashion Bloggers, including our tot-loving, trouble-making friends Evelyn Torres of Brickellista Files and Kelly Saks Guerra of Kelly’s Kloset, kicked off Miami Swim Week by strutting their stunning bikini bodies down the runway. The event started off like your run-of-the-mill swimwear runway show but the blogger babes turned it into an entertaining affair by putting their personalities on full display. I award full points to Ginger Harris who broke out a flawless bird of paradise pose on the catwalk. (I mean, I can’t even get my leg half as high in the comfort and privacy of a yoga studio.) Way to show the world that Miami bloggers bring it, ladies!

Image by Thaddaeus McAdams / ExclusiveAccess.Net
Ginger Harris. Image by Thaddaeus McAdams / ExclusiveAccess.Net


2. 6 Shore Road by Pooja x Jose Cuervo’s #BeachToBar Party at the FAENA Hotel
On Friday, July 15 it was all about the 6 Shore Road by Pooja x Jose Cuervo limited edition swimsuit collar. Celeste reports:

“Right upon entry we were greeted by Jose Cuervo stocking up the pool bar with amazing ready-to-drink margaritas, in every flavor you might have ever fantasized. Although we can definitely vouch the deliciousness of every flavor after trying them all, the refreshing watermelon margarita was our favorite and the perfect poolside companion during 6 Shore Road by Pooja’s Resort 2017 reveal. Across the pool we could see pastel florals swaying in the wind and decorating the crowns and bodies of 6 Shore Road’s girls—until surprise host Adrienne Bailon brought the unique designs over for a closer look. (We were delighted to have the pleasure of catching up with her and admiring the curve hugging one piece she was rocking!) From the collection, the long sleeve one-piece caught our eye because it looked feminine and the model vouched for how comfortable it was to wear. That said, the entire collection was beautiful in its retro-inspired goodiness. It’s exciting to see a comeback of one pieces and those retro high waisted bikini bottoms past generations had the pleasure of experiencing back in the day.”

Image by Celeste Guerra
Image by Celeste Guerra / ThankYouMiami.com


3. ESCAPE Miami at The Sagamore Hotel
Back for its 4th year in a row, the ESCAPE Miami Style Lounge curated by Annie Vazquez of The Fashion Poet and Peroni was hot, hot, hot. Celeste recounts:

“On Saturday July 16 the ESCAPE Miami Style Lounge transformed the usually serene environment of the Sagamore Hotel into a hustling-and-bustling pool party celebrating Miami’s visionary entrepreneurs. We stopped by to meet local up-and-coming businesses who were showcasing their products on-site. The main attraction was the fashion show launching ZK Swimwear by the beautiful Zuleyka Rivera. The former Miss Universe 2006’s swimwear line may be inspired by her home of Puerto Rico, but thanks to its delicately crafted patterns and tropical vibes fits seamlessly in the Miami style. Pool parties can get messy—especially given how brutally hot this summer has been—so we couldn’t have been more grateful for ESCAPE Miami’s beauty vendors. We were able to keep ourselves looking (and smelling) presentable with our DIY signature scent from Akscent Perfumes, beautifully braided tresses by Blo Blow Dry Bar, and expertly groomed brows from the Brow Lash Brow Bar. They worked hard to us on fleek from head to toe, while we cooled off with deliciously naughty mango slushies by Kryogenifex.”

Miami-Swim-Week-2016-Escape-Miami-Style-Lounge-Peroni-Style-Celeste-Guerra
Zuleyka Rivera. Image by Celeste Guerra / ThankYouMiami.com


4. The Mommy & Me Cuteness from Tori Praver of Tori Praver Swimwear and Sharleen Ernster of Hot-As-Hell
To our absolute surprise (and delight), Miami Swim Week 2016 was all about working moms and their super cute kids, with designer mamas Tori Praver and Sharleen Ernster leading the way. In addition to celebrating her 10th year showing her collection at Miami Swim Week, Praver shared some incredibly adorable moments with her husband, her daughter and her son while living our dream life (i.e., daily SoulCycle, green juice, avocado toast and ocean views) at the penthouse of the 1 Homes South Beach. Meanwhile, Ernster kicked some serious butt with the debut of her second collection for Hot-As-Hell and the first-ever children collection, Hot-As-Halo. Hot-As-Hell’s Miami Swim Week 2015 show took us for a walk on the wild side. This year, it gave us all the feels thanks to the show’s mommy (and mommy-to-be) models and their mini-me’s, including Ernster and her two beautiful daughters.

Image by Frazer Harrison / Getty Images North America
Sharleen Ernster and daughters. Image by Frazer Harrison / Getty Images North America


5. “HEALTHY” Rooftop Party Launch hosted by MIKOH Swimwear at 1 Hotel & Homes South Beach
Exhausted from a general lack of food, sleep, and “me” time, Miami Swim Week goers need nothing more than a relaxing day by the pool as the weekend comes to a close. The 1 Hotel delivered just that with the launch of their “HEALTHY” Sunday rooftop pool party series on July 17. Fresh cocktails, juices, and bites, accompanied by the sounds of DJ Hannah Bronfman, was just what the doctor ordered to recover from a long week.

Image by World Red Eye for 1 Hotel and Homes South Beach
Image by World Red Eye for 1 Hotel and Homes South Beach

Photographs from the W South Beach Style Suite by Bob Quesada

One of the coziest events held during Miami Swim Week turned out to be the Style Suite put on by the W South Beach.

One of the townhouse style bungalows served as the setting for this event, which featured a Bikini Beer Garden, a Beauty Bar by Botox Cosmetic Labb and PopUp shopping by RAC.

Here are a few images:

Bob Quesada on Instagram   Twitter

Read to Learn Books for Free Distributes Over 100,000 Books

at the Read to Learn bookshelfPRESS RELEASE

CHILDREN COLLECT THOUSANDS OF BOOKS FOR COMMUNITY
From the beginning of the 2015 school year to the present, Read to Learn Books for Free has distributed over 113,307 books to the children of our community.

Read to Learn Books for Free works on two community-based levels: young children are able to select books for free from 40 bookshelves found in a variety of locations around the county, such as juvenile court to community service offices, clinics, park and community centers. Because the books fly off the shelves, they are restocked weekly. To meet the demand of stocking 3,500 books per week, children’s books are always being collected.

To donate books, visit www.MiamiBookFair.com to find a Read to Learn Books for Free donation bin closest to you.

During the past year, our community has truly come together to share the love of reading by providing children from our community the opportunity to select and keep free books from the Read to Learn Books for Free bookshelves. These books have been provided by so many others in our community via book drives, special events and personal donations. Read to Learn Books for Free, a literacy initiative sponsored by Miami Book Fair and The Children’s Trust, has been diligently collecting books to insure that all kids in our community have free access to books, and to the joy and adventure of walking through windows and doors made possible by reading.

Read to Learn Books for Free would like to say thank you to the children of Temple Beth Am, Ponce de Leon Middle, Cushman, Southwest Miami High, Casa Dei Bambini Montessori, Palmetto Elementary, Gulliver Academy, Carver Middle, Palmer Trinity, Leewood K-8 Center, and Glades Middle School, who together have collected over 6,000 books during the 2015-16 school year.

Read to Learn for FREESpecial thanks to Limmud Miami who, during a one-day book drive, collected 285 children’s books; to the members of the Jack & Jill Club who collected 231 books; to Ponce de Leon Middle school student Braulio Gonzalez and Librarian Mercy Mont-Ros for collecting 1,717 books; and to Anjana Mishra, who along with her two children Shreeya and Shaunak of Palmer Trinity and Leewood K-8, have since 2014 collected 5000+ books. Hats off to Etta Gold, Librarian for Temple Beth Am for collecting over 580 books in just a couple of months, and much gratitude to Miami-Dade County Public Schools for its donation of almost 4,000 books from its warehouse.

Much appreciation goes out to the Miami Alumnae Chapter of Kappa Alpha Theta, a women’s fraternity, who received a $1,000 grant from the Kappa Alpha Theta Foundation. With that money, Read to Learn Books for Free was able to purchase 236 bilingual books in Spanish and French. Said Kirstie Bray, “Because the goal of the Foundation is to partner with alumnae chapters to support projects that support the Fraternity’s educational and philanthropic efforts, we felt that Read to Learn Books for Free would make a good service project for our alumnae chapter.”

Read to Lean Books for Free is so grateful to Publix Supermarkets and TD Bank for their donations: the staff of Publix collected over 9,000 books for their drive, and TD Bank donated over 6,000 books purchased from First Book. We are continuously thankful to a variety of organizations for hosting on-going books drives: to Miami-Dade Public Library for collecting more than 5,600 books; to the City of Coral Gables for spearheading an on-going book drive and thus far collecting over 700 books at the Coral Gables Youth Center; to the Miami-Dade Police Department for collecting 400+ books; and, to Florida Memorial University for collecting almost 400 books.

R2LB4F thanks Kappa Alpha Theta for all these books!

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Photographs of 6 Shore Road The Beach to Bar Party by Bob Quesada

During Swim Week we were invited to the Beach to Bar Party, the launch of the limited edition swimsuit collaboration between 6 Shore Road & Jose Cuervo Ready to Drink Margaritas poolside at The Faena Hotel – Miami Beach.

The 6 Shore Road collection by designer Pooja Kharbanda, who is an industry leader in swimwear & women’s apparel, was inspired by lazy beach days. 6 Shore Road captures the spirit of carefree days amongst friends. Intended for sipping champagne at the bar and dancing as the sun goes down, the effortlessly sexy styles easily transition from day to night.

The authentic Cuervo Margaritas, made exclusively with Cuervo Gold, are the world’s number one ready-to-serve margaritas and come in six flavors: classic lime, strawberry lime, mango, watermelon, grapefruit-tangerine, and coconut-pineapple.

 

For those of us who count calories, the Authentic Cuervo Light Margaritas offer the same great taste as the original, but they have fewer than 95 calories per serving. These no-guilt margaritas come in three flavors: classic lime, wild berry, and white peach.

We sipped as many flavors as we could (responsibly, of course) and they all tasted great!

Here are some images:

Bob Quesada on Instagram    Twitter

Photographs of SWIMMIAMI Official Opening Night Party by Bob Quesada

Hundreds of people gathered under the palm trees at the W South Beach’s Wet Deck to enjoy the official opening night party of SWIMMIAMI, kicking the Miami Swim Week into overdrive.

The show featured swimwear by Kay & Elle, OMG Miami and a special presentation by Roberto Cavalli.

Musical entertainment was provided by reggaeton singer Vikina Lopez and a special performance by Kent Jones who brought down the house with his #1 hit “Don’t Mind”.

The show was presented by Planet Fashion TV along with sponsors: SWIMMIAMI, W South Beach, Bobble and LaCroix.

Follow Bob Quesada on Instagram, Twitter

Here are some images of the event:

 

Photographs by Anthony Jordon of Social Tech Live Fashion & Tech Show Pre-Party on 7/13/16

On Wednesday, July 13th, 2016 at 6 PM at the Flamingo Theater in Brickell hosted the Social Tech Live Fashion Show & Tech Pre-Party.

Social Tech Live, Tiny Girl Fashion, The Flamingo Theater (Miami Comedy), DesignLab Miami, NV Global Entertainment, & FIU Business brought a tech-fashion spectacular. This was an opportunity to get social with the Miami Technology Community while enjoying music, fashion, and technology.

Fashion tech pieces were created by Design Lab students. In attendance were members of Design Lab Miami, showing everyone how you can create your own fashion tech pieces.

Special performance by Jayquan & DJ Rush

Sponsors: DesignLab Miami, Morchano Shot Rite, Miami Comedy, NV Global Entertainment.