Plus, a Miami BBQ institution closes down.
The New Tropic
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🐈 A purrfect pass at Saturday’s Canes game

Plus, a Miami BBQ institution closes down.

By Zach Schlein

It’s Tuesday.

And there's more than enough 305 news to go around. Let's start with a fond farewell to a longtime local favorite...

💧 What Miami is talking about

Finally, a billboard that speaks for all Miamians. 💡 | Want to see your own picture in this space? Tag either #thenewtropic or @thenewtropic to be featured in our Instagram of the Day. (📸: @lalatinamiami)

😞 A beloved downtown Miami restaurant has closed up shop for good. Sparky’s Roadside Barbecue announced that it was shutting down late last week via social media and its official website

If I — hey, Zach here 👋 — can editorialize for a second: I’ve chewed the fat about my love of Sparky’s multiple times since I started writing with The New Tropic. I was lucky enough to have a friend introduce me to the BBQ joint years before I relocated to the 305, and once I did move here, it became a regular post-work hang, a deeply appreciated source of comfort food, and a reliable spot for discovering out-of-this-world psych-rock. When the pandemic struck and takeout orders became a must, “Sparky’s and Sopranos” became a cherished tradition for my girlfriend and me as — like seemingly everybody else — we finally watched the HBO series and took refuge in our favorite foods amid the insanity of 2020. 

Wrapping things up before I ramble any further and the waterworks start: A big shoutout to Sparky’s for the memories and audible “MMMMs” over the years, and a heartfelt thanks to all of the staff who made it such a special place to frequent. You can read more about the restaurant’s history and what’s next for co-founder Hans Seitz over at this Miami New Times story.

In other news...

🐱 Footage from Saturday’s gridiron game between the University of Miami and Appalachian State University went viral for reasons completely divorced from football. As seen in videos shared by attendees, a cat caught clinging to one of the Hard Rock Stadium’s upper decks was saved from a 30-foot fall after fans unfurled an American flag to catch the critter. Emilia Weiss, a certified emergency veterinary medic, was among the UM students who stepped in to help the frightened feline. (NBC News / The Miami Hurricane)

😷 An appeals court has sided with Gov. Ron DeSantis in the battle over mask mandates in Florida schools. On Friday, the Florida First District Court of Appeal overruled Leon County Circuit Judge John Cooper’s determination that the policy was an overreach of the governor’s powers. Meanwhile, 13 employees of the Miami-Dade County Public Schools have died since Aug. 16 from coronavirus-related causes, and the mortality rate for Florida children infected with COVID-19 has risen since late July. (AP News / Business Insider)

🐕 Miami International Airport is the latest 305 spot to be visited by Cobra and One Betta, a pair of pooches who’ve been trained to sniff out COVID-19. The airport started using the dogs’ snout services last month, and they’ve already detected two cases: one person tested positive while the other was on the mend from COVID-19. Cobra is a Belgian Malinois while One Betta is a Dutch shepherd, and they’ve made history as the first dogs to participate in this kind of program at a U.S. airport. The fuzzy duo put their skills to good use at Miami Heat games earlier this year. (Miami Herald)

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🍾 Get a taste of getREEF — a new way to order in — at an outdoor food bazaar featuring the best of Miami neighborhood dining along with a full bar and entertainment between Sept. 14-26 (Brickell)

🇧🇷 Celebrate South American cinema during The Inffinito Brazilian Film Festival's 25th edition taking place Sept. 4-18 (North Beach)


💕 Embrace the transformative power of dance during "Birds of Paradise," a new work by Miami-based choreographer Pioneer Winter celebrating self-expression through physical movement — runs Thursday, Sept. 16 - Sunday, Sept. 19 (Downtown)

⏰ Get an early start on the weekend and join selector Jan Anthony at Over Under (Downtown)


🎃 Ring in scary season and summon the Halloween spirit during Haunted Circus Miami — runs Friday, Sept. 17 - Sunday, Oct. 31 (Westchester)

🎤 Have a belly laugh with comedian Hasan Minhaj as he makes his Arsht Center debut with his sophomore stand-up hour, "The King's Jester" (Downtown)

🎨 Get closer to nature during "Canvas of the Wild," a collaboration between artists, scientists, and educators using art as a medium to engage and learn about the natural world (Wynwood)

🐶 Down some drinks and share good company with man's best friends during Yappy Hour at The Doral Yard (Doral)

😜 Freak out on the dance floor while Mike Servito and Will Renuart take over the decks at ATV Records (Downtown)


🌅 Party until sunrise as UK rave legends Sasha and John Digweed go b2b and take Club Space on an electronic odyssey (Downtown)

🎉 Join Jovigibs as the Miami musician and DJ debuts Forza, his new weekly Saturday night party at Over Under (Downtown)

🖼 Attend the opening reception of "Waiting Room," a new exhibit featuring works by interdisciplinary artists Brittany M. Watkins, Elise Thompson, and Lucia Riffel at Laundromat Art Space — runs Saturday, Sept. 18 - Friday, Oct. 16 (Little Haiti)

🔎 Uncover hidden connections and experiment with layering textures during a printmaking workshop led by artist and FIU Assistant Professor of Drawing, Jennifer Printz (Miami)


🎉 Tune in to a YouTube Live event celebrating the life and works of multimedia artist Asif Farooq (Online)

🌃 Bust out your blankets and lawn chairs for the film festival "Shorts Under the Stars: Animation" at the Deering Estate (Palmetto Bay)

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👋 That’s all for today

Hope to see you back here tomorrow for Hump Day.


Zach at The New Tropic

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