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What to Do in Miami This June: Summer Shorts & the American Black Film Festival

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The best of what to do in and around Miami this month

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The American Black Film Festival brings film and television's famous black actors, producers, directors, and more to South Beach for the nation's largest gathering of the black entertainment community. Plus, catch Grammy-winner Chance the Rapper perform and learn the strange history of Stiltsville.  

AFAR Local is our monthly insider guide to the best of what’s happening in cities around the U.S.

June 1 | Museum
“Hurricane Andrew: 25 Years Later” Opening Day
It’s been 25 years since Hurricane Andrew, the most devastating hurricane to ever hit South Florida, made landfall. The HistoryMiami Museum is remembering the tragedy with a major exhibition that tells the story of the hurricane from its formation to its aftermath. The opening reception coincides with the first day of Miami’s hurricane season; it will include a talk by meteorologist Bryan Norcross, who curated the exhibit, as well as drinks, snacks, and a first look at the footage, artifacts, and photography in the exhibit, which runs through January 15, 2018.
6:00 PM | HistoryMiami, 101 W. Flagler St., Miami | $10 | website

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June 1 - July 2 | Theater
Summer Shorts
Like wine tasting for theater, the annual Summer Shorts festival is the best way to get a sample of multiple genres of plays and musicals. The festival showcases 10-minute productions by City Theater, the only theater company in the United States dedicated to short plays and mini musicals. This year’s highlights include a piece by Hamilton creator and Tony Award–winning composer Lin-Manuel Miranda.
Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts, 1300 Biscayne Blvd., Miami | $39 | website

June 3 | Education
Third Annual Coralpalooza
Held the weekend before World Oceans Day on June 8, the Third Annual Coralpalooza on Key Largo is dedicated to celebrating and promoting awareness of the local coral reefs. As part of the event, registered divers will be going under to plant new coral and monitor existing reef colonies. For everyone else, the Coral Restoration Foundation is hosting a day of activities and games centered around coral reef education.
Coral Restoration Foundation Exploration Center, 5 Seagate Blvd., Key Largo | Free | website

June 3 | Film
After Hours Cinema: “Raiders of the Lost Ark”
Just as the summer heat begins to drive everyone crazy, Coral Gables Art Cinema offers up the perfect reason to get inside. After Hours at the theater is a seasonal affair showcasing cult favorites such as Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, Reservoir Dogs, and Repo Man. Don’t miss seeing the adventures of Indiana Jones in Raiders of the Lost Ark on June 3, then buy tickets for each of the following Saturday shows—right now, this air-conditioned paradise is the hottest ticket in town.
11:59 PM | Coral Gables Art Cinema, 260 Aragon Ave., Coral Gables | $8 | website

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June 3 | Environment
Rain Barrel Workshop
Just in time for Miami’s very, very rainy summers, Miami-Dade County is putting together a free public service workshop on harvesting rainwater. Hosted at the Tropical Audubon Society, the workshop will cover the why and the how of rainwater harvesting, and rain barrels will be available for purchase so you can bring the knowledge home and get to work harvesting immediately. Just a few benefits of adopting the harvesting strategy are reducing pollution from stormwater runoff and providing free, nonchlorinated, pH-neutral water for your garden. It’s an easy way to do some good for the environment while simultaneously lowering your water bill.
10:00 AM - 11:30 AM | Tropical Audubon Society-Doc Thomas, 5530 Sunset Dr., Miami | Free | website

Ribs from Swine, a restaurant participating in Coral Gables Restaurant Week.

June 5 - 25 | Food
Coral Gables Restaurant Week
The events and exciting restaurant deals that make up the Coral Gables Restaurant Week actually go on for three weeks. Old favorites and newbies with something to prove will offer prix-fixe menus at discounted prices, allowing you to taste it all for a fraction of the cost. Expect signature dishes for 20 percent off (or more) and specially created menus just for the event. Participating restaurants include BrickTop’s, Fratellino Ristorante, Swine, and the Local.
Locations vary | Prices vary | website

June 11 | Education
Stiltsville & Key Biscayne Cruise with Dr. George
Head out into Biscayne Bay by boat and you’ll soon run into something odd. In the middle of the water, there’s a row of stilted homes perched above the waves. Called Stiltsville, the small collection of homes is what’s left of a larger overwater settlement, and the history of the houses is quite a tale. Miami historian Dr. Paul George will lead a storytelling cruise through the bay and around the stilted homes that will shed light on how Stiltsville came to be and how it got to where it is now.
6:00 PM - 8:00 PM | Island Queen at Bayside Marketplace, 401 Biscayne Blvd., Miami | $60 | website

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June 13 | Music
Chance the Rapper
Chancelor Bennett—aka Chance the Rapper—made headlines earlier this year for his generous donation to his home city of Chicago’s public school system. But it’s his 2016 mixtape, Coloring Book, that earned him esteem in the music world—along with three Grammy awards. You won’t want to miss the future legend when he lights up the American Airlines Arena in Downtown Miami for one night only.
8:00 PM | American Airlines Arena, 601 Biscayne Blvd., Miami | From $46 | website

June 14 - 18 | Film festival
The American Black Film Festival
The annual American Black Film Festival is the nation’s largest gathering of the black film and television community, so expect some famous faces among the VIPs. The festival will showcase more than 1,000 feature films, documentaries, and shorts, as well as web content. Highlights include the 20th Annual HBO Short Film Competition, a comedy competition, panel discussions, and acting classes at various venues around South Beach.
Times & locations vary | From $30 | website

July 7 | Book ahead: Music
Paul McCartney
Be part of a belated 75th birthday celebration for Sir Paul McCartney at his July show at the American Airlines Arena. This Beatles alum needs no introduction, and seeing him live is a must for any music lover. The night will be an homage to the Beatles and their hits, as well as a chance to hear McCartney’s solo work live.
8:00 PM | American Airlines Arena, 601 Biscayne Blvd., Miami | From $60 | website

Patricia Guarch Wise is a Miami native and the blogger behind Miami Nice. Her interests include paella, paranormal activity, Proenza Schouler, and her Pekingese named Bonnaroo. 

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