From Cuban jazz performances to the Mango Strut to African Kwanzaa to Hanukkah light displays, it’s beginning to look a lot like Miami this weekend. Consider some of the following highlights of this weekend’s events.
At the MOCA, not the Copa
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Not sure what to do with guests on Christmas night? Take them to hear Latin jazz, Miami style — for free. Rain or shine, the Miami Big Sound Orchestra and Friends will play at 8 pm on Dec. 25 at the Museum of Contemporary Art, 770 NE 125th St., North Miami. The band combines 21st-century big band jazz with Afro-Cuban and Brazilian music, funk, and soul. Expect all kinds of instruments you may not normally find, from congas to bones. Free parking available.
Ponder with pundits at the parade
It’s that time of year when pundits come out to ponder and parade the wacky, and there is always so much fodder. The free King Mango Strut Parade takes place on Sunday, Dec. 27, in downtown Coconut Grove. The off-beat parade pokes fun at everything — and just about everyone. This year’s Grand Marshall is “Kim Davis,” the Kentucky clerk who refused to grant licenses to same-sex couples. This year’s theme is “The Farce Awakens,” a take on the new Star Wars movie. The young’uns can attend and lead the parade, although you might have some ‘splainin’ to do about the wacky. After the parade, listen and dance to local bands.
Free Kwanzaa concert and program
Celebrate African heritage and the principles and insights of Kwanzaa. Highlighting the principle of self-determination, Delou Africa presents a free annual Kwanzaa concert and program on Sunday, Dec. 27, from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Little Haiti Cultural Center, 212 NE 59th Terr. The program includes adult and youth performances of dance, drums, inspirational words and more.
Giraffes with lights
Some “animals” at Zoo Miami get a holiday makeover during the Zoo Lights annual event, which goes through Dec. 30, except the attraction is closed Dec. 24 and 25. From 7 to 10 pm, visitors pay $6.95 plus tax to enter ($11.75 for hot chocolate, cookies and a carousel ride; $15.75 for all that plus a picture with Santa.) The 3D experience includes animal-shaped light displays, thousands of tree lights and holiday music.
$7 late-night movies at Coral Gables Art Cinema
How about an after-dinner flick? Night owls who love movies will want to get in on the discount late-night movie screenings at the Coral Gables Art Cinema at 11:30 p.m. on Saturdays. Admission is $7 and includes a free popcorn. A Christmas Story, the warmly nostalgic and darkly humorous Bob Clark cult classic, will be playing. Coral Gables Art Cinema is located at 260 Aragon Ave.
Free winter wonderland in Plantation
Take a look at the festive displays and be entertained with performances at the Winter Wonderland at Plantation Historical Museum. Browse the Hanukkah, Christmas and Kwanzaa displays through Jan. 9.
To keep up with latest news on deals, discounts and free events in South Florida, sign up for the daily Miami on the Cheap newsletter or the daily Fort Lauderdale on the Cheap newsletter. For more tips on what to do this weekend, read the frequently updated Miami on the Cheap weekend roundup of free and cheap eventshttp://miamionthecheap.com/free-or-cheap-things-to-do-in-miami-this-weekend and the Fort Lauderdale on the Cheap weekend events and deals roundup. http://fortlauderdaleonthecheap.com/free-events-deals-this-weekend-in-broward-2-2-2/