Miami Beach

Beach Buzz: South Beach Seafood Festival returns Friday, Oct. 23, and Saturday, Oct. 24

SoBe Seafood Fest founder Tod Roy, front center, at Sept. 28 preview party at Dream Hotel, with mascots and participating chefs: Ralph Pagano, Scott Linquist, Eduardo Perez, Todd Roy, Dustin Atoigue, Tyler Bienvenu, Kelly Blanco and Erica Delgado.
SoBe Seafood Fest founder Tod Roy, front center, at Sept. 28 preview party at Dream Hotel, with mascots and participating chefs: Ralph Pagano, Scott Linquist, Eduardo Perez, Todd Roy, Dustin Atoigue, Tyler Bienvenu, Kelly Blanco and Erica Delgado.

The third annual South Beach Seafood Festival returns Oct. 23-24. Presented by Hess Wines and hosted by Coca-Cola, the event features a Friday night Chef Showdown and Saturday main festival, both at Lummus Park on Ocean Drive.

The second annual Chef Showdown (7 to 11 p.m. at Ninth Street and Ocean) will pit 12 local chefs in six Fight Night battles, with the audience serving as judge.

Competitions will include: Coyo versus Bodega (Battle Taco); Red, the Steakhouse versus Smith & Wollensky (Battle Surf & Turf); Poseidon versus Alter (Battle Octopus); CIBO versus City Hall (Battle Shrimp); and Oceanaire versus Drunken Dragon (Battle Tuna).

The evening’s main event, Battle Lobster, will feature Chef Ralph Pagano, owner of Naked Taco (and the event’s emcee) against Chef Andre Bienvenu of Joe’s Stone Crab.

Saturday’s Seafood Festival (1 to 9 p.m. at Seventh and Ocean) features more than 50 menus from top Miami chefs/eateries offering delicacies such as stone crabs, lobster waffle cones, steak & lobster skewers, shrimp tacos, oysters, gyros, crab cakes, lobster mac ‘n cheese and more.

The festival also features live music, culinary and mixology demos, lounge parties, a kids’ zone and health village. It is produced by Miami event company, CI Management.

A portion of the proceeds will benefit Community Initiatives Foundation in support of the EAT SMART Campaign to fight childhood hunger and childhood obesity in Miami-Dade County.

Saturday’s festival prices are $25-$150; Chef Showdown prices start at $150. For tickets and/or details, visit

GEMS to become permanent fixture

The Miami International Film Festival (MIFF) will host a four-day, 14-film minifestival dubbed GEMS (formerly MIFFecito) Oct. 22-25 at Miami Dade College’s Tower Theater Miami.

The Fest kicks off Oct. 22, with director John Crowley’s Brooklyn, a film adapted by Nick Hornby (An Education) from the Colm Toibin best-selling novel starring Oscar nominee for Atonement, Saoirse Ronan.

GEMS will close Oct. 25, with Warner Bros.’ highly-anticipated The 33, starring Antonio Banderas, Juliette Binoche, Rodrigo Santoro, Mario Casas and Lou Diamond Phillips. Prior to the screening, a master class will pay tribute to movie composer James Horner (Titanic), who also composed the music for The 33. Horner died in June in an aircraft accident at age 61.

“GEMS will now be a permanent addition to our programming, a preview of our 33rd main edition March 4-13, 2016,” festival Executive Director Jaie Laplante said.

Tickets for opening and closing night films/receptions are $50 and $85, respectively. All other films are $13 for general admission.

For a complete list of films, times and prices, visit: or call 1-844-565-6433.

Art From The Heart

The Aventura Marketing Council (AMC) will host its fourth annual Art from the Heart event 10:30 a.m. Thursday at Aventura Turnberry Jewish Center, 20400 NE 30th Ave.

Approximately 75 AMC member charities, nonprofits, schools and religious organizations have registered to receive five free pieces of artwork each — and must show up to the event to collect them.

The artwork includes a 2-foot Betty Boop statue, M&M Entertainment sericell, Simpsons sculpture signed by Disney creator Tim West, and E.T. and Lady Liberty serigraphs by artist Melanie Taylor Kent. Total retail value: $2,375.

All artwork has been donated by Gloria and Herb Barker, owners of Barker Animation Art Galleries at The Village at Gulfstream Park and The Promenade Coconut Creek.

“The event is an incredible way to say thank you to our charitable and nonprofit members in good standing. The Barkers are simply the most generous people — always wanting to help the organizations that do so much good for this community,” AMC President Elaine Adler said.

Emcee for the event will be Aventura Mayor Enid Weisman. To RSVP, call 305-932-5334.

Breast cancer awareness events

▪ The Hadassah Mitzvah Chapter sixth annual Fit for Pink Breast Cancer Awareness Day is Sunday at Olympia Gym, 20355 Biscayne Blvd., Aventura. For a minimum $5 donation, participants can take any or all classes including spinning at 9 a.m.; body forging at 10 a.m.; cardio boxing at 11 a.m.; yoga at noon; and Zumba at 1:15 p.m. Proceeds benefit Hadassah for Breast Cancer Research, Education and Treatment. For details, call 305-576-4447.

▪ H3 (Health. Hope. Healing) will host a seminar, Natural Strategies to Reduce Breast Cancer Risk on Sunday from 1 to 3 p.m. at Miami Beach Botanical Garden. Speaker will be Ann Fonfa, a breast cancer survivor and founder of The Annie Appleseed Project. RSVP required; donations accepted. For details, call 305-531-2046, email visit

▪ Pulse 163, a boutique fitness studio at 3447 NE 163rd St. in North Miami Beach, will host a Pulsing for Pink barre class with Ciara Tunstall on Saturday, to raise funds (and “the barre”) for breast cancer awareness. The “by donation” class will be 10:30 to 11:30 a.m., with mimosas following, to benefit the Braman Family Breast Cancer Institute. RSVP to or call 305-454-0549.

Beach Buzz appears every other Sunday, and focuses on people and businesses throughout the Beaches, Aventura and Miami. To reach Debra K. Leibowitz, call 305-531-7887 or email, or become a fan of her Beach Buzz page on Facebook.