Things To Do

Carnaval Miami is more than just the Calle Ocho festival. We’ll prove it to you.

The Calle Ocho festival means food, music, dancing - and crowds.
The Calle Ocho festival means food, music, dancing - and crowds.

When you think “Calle Ocho festival,” you think of 20 packed blocks jammed with music, food and dancing. You remember spending sweaty afternoons in close proximity to hundreds of thousands of your best friends. Possibly watching some dude eat 158 croquetas in eight minutes.

But the Calle Ocho festival – which takes place March 11 from Southwest 12th to 27th avenues – is only a part of Carnaval Miami. If massive crowds aren’t your thing, here are a few other events you might want to check out.

Tap That Craft

2-5 p.m. Feb. 10, SHOTS, 311 NW 23rd St.; $35 online, $50 at the door

Sample craft beers from some of your favorite local breweries (like Wynwood Brewing Company, Lincoln’s Beard Brewing and the MIA Beer Company, among others). Enjoy that Wynwood vibe with live music from Problem Kids and live painting by street artist Atomik, who designed the Carnaval Miami poster.

Carnaval Miami poster by Atomik.

Carnaval on the Mile

March 3-4, Miracle Mile, Coral Gables

2018 marks the 20th anniversary of the weekend-long festival of art, food, booze and music. There’s also entertainment for kids. For the adults, there are indulgences like the first-ever Cordials & Candy, a late night pop-up on the mile with pastries and cordials. There will be crowds, but nothing like you’ll find on Calle Ocho.

Cork & Fork

1 – 10 p.m. March 3; noon – 8 p.m. March 4, Miracle Mile, Coral Gables; $65 online, $75 at the door

Enjoy cooking demonstrations, tastings and mixology sessions with such chefs as Cindy Hutson (Ortanique); César Zapata (Phuc Yea); Eileen Andrade (Finka) and Ingrid Hoffmann (Simply Delicioso).

Carnaval Fútbol 5v5

March 31, Kendall Soccer Park

Register your youth soccer team, then watch players ages 8-18 compete for futbol greatness. $175 by Feb. 15; $200 after Feb. 15.