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What's Happening  by Todd Mangatal

todd@ariousentertainment.com

 

Greetings to my on-line family:

Want to begin by saying "Miami Nice"!  It was very nice, and extremely warm.  However, I'm glad to be home to get some well deserve rest.  Sleep was absolutely out of the question in Miami, and Carnival in Miami was something to experience!

We arrived on Friday and took a little time getting settled into our hotel which was great, "Big up" to the Management and Staff of the Sheraton Biscayne Bay, especially Roger the Front Desk Manager.  This is truly a five star hotel.  Our room was on the 15th floor over- looking the bay and the  exclusive Brickell section of Miami.  Actually if you've seen the opening of the TV show "CSI Miami", that's one of the shots they use.  This was really a treat.   That night we attended the "King and Queen" competition & the Panorama show at Hialeah Park/Racetrack.  This park had a great setting and was a very good place to hold these events.  We were very impressed with the elaborate costumes that were competing.  I especially liked the Queen costume called "Nandi" Queen of the Zulus and the King from the same band which was "China Mas".  Big up to "China Mas" you guys really put some work and thought into your presentation.  Maybe we can link up and get you involved in DC Carnival.  I 'm sure you would win all the prizes and be a welcomed addition to the event.  After having a few drinks while chilling and talking with friends from the DC area (Big shout out Angie Van Neil) the talk was very enlightening and thanks for the support.  At this point  we had lost track of the time and didn't realize it was after 3:00 am, so we rolled out and raced across town to attend the "Mad House", but by the time we got close to the "Mad House" we realized it was almost 4:00 am and decided to just go back to our hotel and get some rest, which was unfortunate because we had been looking forward to going to the "Mad House" since last year.  I heard it was off the hook on Friday.

Saturday we started the day with breakfast in North Miami Beach @ "Wolfie Cohen's  Rascal House" located at 17190 Collins Ave Miami Beach. http://rascalhouse.com/rascal_home.html   This place has been around since the 1950's, when you  walk in you feel as if you've been transported back in time, and it's a diner style restaurant.  I would highly recommend this spot for breakfast, lunch or dinner.  The prices are good and the Menu has a lot to choose from.  The waitresses are attired in white dresses,  just like what you would have seen in the 50's. We were promptly seated even though the place was pretty crowded, and I noticed they had a unique seating system.  This was something I had never seen done before and it works. There where 3 separate lines, one (1) for parties of 1 or 2, another for parties of 3 or 4, and another for 4 or more.  This is a great system and kept things flowing very smoothly.  Once we were seated our waitress greeted us with a smile and brought us water ( which is rare nowadays) and asked if we would like coffee.  I ordered Eggs, Sausage and Home Fried Potatoes, my wife Susan had the same except she had Bacon instead of sausage.  Next thing we knew the waitress returned with 3 plates of pastries and breads. Of course I asked "Are you sure you're delivering this to the right table" since we had not ordered pastries.  She assured us that there was no mistake, this was part of the breakfast. Of course this was truly a surprise, normally we don't eat any sweets in the morning but these were irresistible.  On one plate there were several different types of Breads, the second plate had several types of Muffins and the third plate had several types of Danishes.  About 5 to 10 minutes later our breakfast arrived, not on a plate but on a platter.  After we stuffed ourselves, here comes the manager with a big plate of slice sponge cake for us to sample, which was very tastee. We then went over to South Beach and cruised "Ocean Avenue", and then purchased a bunch of cocktails and chilled for a bit in South Beach.   Saturday Night we hosted a little "get together" at our hotel  with friends from the DC and Toronto,  which was very nice.  Then we headed back to South Beach to checked out the sights (and there were many,) not only was it Carnival in Miami but the "Source Awards" were also being held on Monday, October 13th.  Therefore, there  were plenty of stars, wannabe's and groupies on the beach that night.  But we had a ball window shopping at the Shop's at Lincoln Rd. to Washington, Collins and Ocean Avenues.  After hanging out till about 3 am we rolled by the "Mad House" to check it out since unfortunately we hadn't made it  by on Friday.  Of course, it was packed and since tiredness was getting the best of us we called it a night at 4 am. 

Sunday morning after having approximately 3 hours of sleep we had breakfast at a nice little Cuban restaurant in Key Biscayne we found last year.  I cannot recall the name, even though we had dinner there the night before, as well as last year.  The food is very authentic and is an extremely good value.  The Cuban sandwiches are wonderful. Breakfast cost $3.50 for about 3 eggs, bacon, potatoes and Cuban toast.  So if you like Cuban food  and want check it out, follow my directions.  Pay the $1.00 toll and go across the Rickenbacker Causeway, after you pass "Mad House" on your left, "Sundays on the Bay" on your right, and Virginia Key Park  you will come to the town of Key Biscayne, and the restaurant is located in the first building you come to on the right, before the Gas station.  

Up until this point Miami had been great and we were really enjoying ourselves. We had even forgotten about the fact that there were 3 carnivals scheduled to take place in south Florida on Sunday.  We received a call from some members of the community stating that there was a charge of  $20.00 to see the parade in Homestead.  This was hard to believe since carnival is an event for the people. Also in all of the advertising it was stated that they were offering free bus rides to Homestead and free parking (Coming to find out THIS WAS FALSE).  But as usual "We don't follow rumors"  So we headed down to Homestead (which was about an hour away from Downtown Miami).  Like I stated earlier they advertised free parking, this again was untrue, because when we arrived at the gate of the Homestead Speedway they were collecting $20.00 per person before you even entered the parking lot. FREE PARKING MEANS YOU PARK YOUR CAR FOR FREE BEFORE YOU PAY ANYTHING.  With this setup parking was  $20.00 per person.  At this point we started to get really turned off by this, and we refused to enter, because we were just not "feeling" this set-up.  Therefore,  we turned around and decided to get a bit closer to see the set up at the stadium.  So we headed to the back gate which was about a 2 to 3 mile ride from that entrance.  We did have an opportunity to saw the stadium and the vending area, but it looked like it was in the middle of the sun.  After experiencing this we absolutely couldn't support this Carnival.  Keep in mind it wasn't about the money thing, because we had passes.  At this point we had a choice to go in the gate of the speedway or make a left and go to the State Park.  We chose the State Park which was a great choice because after living in Florida for 7 years and many visits, we saw our first Alligator who looked as if he was going to Carnival (hope he had his $20.00.)  But on a serious note, seeing an Alligator in that area tells you just how far removed from the people this event was.  

So at this point we came to the conclusion that 3 carnivals in South Florida was a blessing because we had a choice not to support an event that could only be driven by greed.  That's just us because our goal is to promote the culture to the people and not get rich quick at the expense of the people and the culture, and besides Carnival is for the people and is an excellent opportunity to expose the culture to the masses.  Well, we headed back up north to the Broward County Carnival (located in Ft. Lauderdale) to see what was happening at there event.  Thank God for cell phones and the internet, because the radio stations were no help with finding this event, since they were only advertising the Homestead Carnival. Unfortunately, we did the same thing since that was the only information we received.  We called our family in Tampa who received our weekly e-mails, and they proceeded to look at one of our previous e-mails that mention the 2nd and 3rd Carnival, and then did a search for the Stadium.  We got the address and headed that way, and found it.  Once we arrived at the Stadium in Fort Lauderdale the parade was just getting underway, and the first truck we saw had DJ Smalley (Baltimore) as the DJ (Smalley is one of our favorite DJ's.) This was our idea of what carnival should be - it's for the people by the people.  The police presence was minimal (which is always good.)  The trucks stayed on the road all day, and the admission was $5.00 to enter the festival area, were there were a great amount of vendors selling a variety of food & Crafts.  This was the first year for Broward Carnival and they did a great job.  For the amount of space they had the place was rammed.  By the way, the 3rd carnival was cancelled because of the Marlins Baseball game, they were using the same stadium.  It seem both events were successful and south Florida can handle at least 2 carnivals on the same day.  We left Fort Lauderdale at about 8pm and headed back to Miami for a change and a quick nap.  

Some friends were heading over to South Beach to The "Level nightclub, so we headed over to the "Level" located at 12th & Washington, but when we arrived at 10:30pm the line was around the building and the cost was $30.00, and I'm sure the drinks were over priced again.  As long as you support greed you will continue to get used.  THAT'S NOT FOR US.  So we decided to look for something  we would enjoy. We only walked 1 block down 12th Street to Collins and came across "Sunday Reggae at the Marlins".  This was the kind of spot I'd been searching for quite some time, the Vibes were right, the atmosphere was cool and Irie, and the music was just right!  We "limed" at this spot drinking 2 for 1 drinks and just "vibing" to the great tunes the DJs were spinning, and got "tore up".  We don't recall the names of the DJs, we just remember there was a male DJ spinning first, and later a female DJ took over, and they both did a wonderful job keeping the vibes flowing.  Additionally, there was a band that performed, with 2 great artists who sang/DJ'd several tunes.  These guys were very, very good.  Again, don't recall their names.   The only names we do recall are Red Stripe and Appleton Rum, they were our best friends for the night.

All in All our annual trip to Miami was great as usual and I hope the organizers of the Homestead Carnival made all the money they hoped to make.  The many feedbacks from our On-Line Community was very negative, and many were disappointed with the set up and the high price (to be exposed to their culture,) along with the false advertising of Free Parking, Free Bus Rides, etc.  Hopefully, the organizers of the Broward Carnival will keep us informed of what's happening with them throughout the year, so we can spread the word to the community.  Their Carnival in our opinion was what a Carnival should be, relaxed, access to the parade by the public, many trucks and costumes, and a good central location.  Oh, Burning Flames was playing on one of the trucks in the parade, and I could swear that I saw Fayann Lyons on one of the trucks (but don't quote me on that, we still had a lot of "juice" in us and just couldn't focus.)

Our trip to Orlando on Monday was wonderful and it's nothing like "liming", drinking and talking with good friends.  Even though our time there with our close friends was short, we enjoyed every moment of it.  Gilly/Denise/Michelle/Anthony/Melissa and all the kids it was nice seeing all of you.  Sorry Denise the word is now really out...thanks to me (Todd), so stop hating and worrying, life's too short.

PLEASE PEOPLE DON'T FORGET JACKSONVILLE CARNIVAL THIS WEEKEND (OCTOBER 17 AND 18).  Unfortunately, Miami was too much for us and we are not going to mke it, but we will be there in spirit.  GOOD LUCK THEO AND THE CREW!  Thanks for the support, and we will definitely be there next year.  Sorry we missed you in Miami.  Anyway, let's hook up for DC Carnival

   

"Peace Out" to all of you!

 

Let us know your opinion.  Hit up the message board under carnivals!

 

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Scroll down to view all the upcoming events, announcements & "Shout Outs"!

Special Birthday wishes goes out to a special friend Jackie (tenderbun).  Hope you  have a wonderful time on your special day!  

Sheila it was very nice seeing you and hanging out at the X-roads.  Don't forget our dinner date!

Sonia it's always nice seeing you!  Big Shout out to Charlene hope all is well with you in London!

 

 

THIS WEEKEND

 

Jacksonville Florida

Carnival Comes To Jacksonville Florida

Friday, October 17, 2003

'We Glowing Again Wear White 03'

Featuring

 The Supreme Team, Jax Steel Pan Jammers, B.I.G. Sounds, DJ Chunks
with M.C. Wassy

@

The Inn at Baymeadws
 8050 Baymeadows Circle West, Jacksonville, Florida
(off Baymeadows Road behind Bank Of America & Arbys)

Admission: $15 in advance - $20 at the door
Time: 9:00pm

For more Info

View Flyer

www.jacksonvillecarnival.com 

 


Saturday 18 2003

Carnival Organization Of Jacksonville, Inc.

(COOJI)
 Invites you to the
4th Annual Caribbean Carnival

@

HEMMING PLAZA 

Downtown  Jacksonville Florida 

Free Admission

10am Until

GET YOUR LAST 2003 CARNIVAL
"JUMP UP IN FLORIDA"

Take a Florida Carnival vacation get Miami and Jacksonville carnivals in the south before facing the cold winter season!

For more Info

View Flyer

OR Log onto: www.jacksonvillecarnival.com 

 

MIAMI FLORIDA

 

HAPPIEST HOURS

REGGAE     REGGAE     REGGAE

FRIDAY     SATURDAY     SUNDAY

FRIDAYS 6PM-10PM     NO COVER

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REGGAE SUNDAY

11PM - 3AM

POETRY UNPLUGGED OPEN MIC

9PM -11PM

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listen to WAVS AM on the net @ www.wavs1170.com 

WVCS 1080 AM    SATURDAY'S 7AM TO 9AM

FOR INFO E MAIL HUMBLE LION @ 

normlawg7@hotmail.com 

 

 

WASHINGTON DC

 

Upcoming Events

@

Crossroads Entertainment Complex

www.crossroadsclub.com 

Wednesday October 22nd 2003     -     Bounty Killer

Saturday November 1st 2003     -     Sizzla

More details will be forthcoming, or Log on to site  www.crossroadsclub.com

 

FRIDAY NOVEMBER 14th 2003

GET READY FOR THE GALA EVENT OF THE YEAR

10th ANNUAL CARIBBEAN AMERICAN HERITAGE AWARDS

A CELEBRATION OF CARIBBEAN CONTRIBUTION TO AMERICAN LIFE

A NIGHT OF MUSIC AND FELLOWSHIP

FEATURING 

THE IMAGE BAND

@

THE JW MARRIOTT HOTEL WASHINGTON DC.

DOORS OPEN 7PM

FOR TICKET INFO CALL 202-829-1887

OR LOG ONTO: www.icsdc.org 

Commitment to the community

 

 

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