From the Editor: South Florida, we miss you—and we appreciate you

Let’s make a pact. Right here, right now, amid a public health emergency that has turned the length of a two-point conversion in football, the height of an undersized NBA point guard—or the far reaches of what I consider a “makeable” putt in golf (can you tell someone is missing sports?)—into a social distancing standard.

Let’s symbolically breach the 6-foot barrier, share a mental fist bump, and agree to the following.

Never again will we take South Florida for granted.

No more sunset strolls in the surf, bike rides along A1A, or wellness walks at one of our county parks (there are more than 100 in Miami-Dade alone) without acknowledging that we’re fortunate to have this slice of paradise as an outdoor backdrop.

No more nights on Ocean Drive or Lincoln Road or Las Olas Boulevard or Atlantic Avenue without a nod to the tri-county visionaries who had the foresight to give us walkable destinations—and the chance to turn people-watching into an actual thing.

No more dining out at waterfront restaurants, neighborhood gems and delicious dives without first raising a glass to the servers and bartenders and kitchen creatives who can’t wait for us to fill their tables and booths again. Don’t forget how intertwined this industry is with our day-to-day lives when you’re back to enjoying small plates and happy hour cocktails on some future Friday afternoon. And then remember that the folks responsible for that enjoyment were knee-capped by this pandemic.

No more driving past Fontainebleau, the hotels that front Fort Lauderdale Beach or the sky-high guitar at Seminole Hard Rock—which can be seen for miles and miles and miles and miles and miles (that’s for you, Pete Townshend)—without appreciation for a resort industry that helps to prop up one of the state’s economic pillars. Two years ago, tourists contributed some $91 billion to our war chest, supporting more than 1.5 million jobs. The hotel industry, alone, employs some 950,000 people in Florida, according to the American Hotel & Lodging Association. That same organization estimated in mid-March that nearly half those workers already had lost their jobs.

No more driving past PortMiami or Port Everglades without humming a few bars of The Love Boat theme in recognition of a cruise industry that, in 2018, sent 60 percent of its 14.2 million North American passengers to our terminals. Yes, cruise lines suffered a coronavirus beatdown like the one Hulk delivered to Loki in the first Avengers movie. But with an economic impact of roughly $9 billion on Florida, we need this industry to find its sea legs again.

Our four professional sports. Our live music venues. Our malls and mega retail outlets. Our tourist attractions. The list goes on and on and on. South Florida is all of these things—and so much more. We know what it’s like now to live here without all of these plates spinning at once. How can we take any of it for granted ever again?

As for those working the front lines of this pandemic, it’s impossible to take you for granted. You’re all heroes. And we’re forever grateful.

Stay safe everyone.


Caption: The group editor with his daughter at a Dolphins game in December

You May Also Like
W Hotel on Fort Lauderdale Beach to Host Post Tortuga Party

The Tortuga Music Festival on Fort Lauderdale Beach will bring thousands of concertgoers to the area for a weekend of live musical entertainment. The popular event is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year with headliners Eric Church (Friday), Shania Twain (Saturday) and Kenny Chesney (Sunday), each performing for more than 25,000 fans. However, the party

Read More
Paws Enchanted Masquerade Ball to Benefit the Humane Society of Broward County

The annual PAWS Gala benefiting the Humane Society of Broward County occurs at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday, April 22, at the Marriott Harbor Beach Resort & Spa in Fort Lauderdale. This year’s theme is the “Enchanted Masquerade Ball,” presented by Spirit Airlines. Chairwomen Alyse Lemstrom and Sheryl Maher and their committee have organized the event with proceeds

Read More
Dan Marino Foundation Celebrates Autism Acceptance and Awareness Month

The Dan Marino Foundation in Fort Lauderdale will celebrate the autism community with various initiatives and events during Autism Acceptance & Awareness Month throughout April. The nonprofit organization is dedicated to improving the lives of children, teens, and adults with autism. When Dan and Claire Marino created the nonprofit in 1992, the prevalence of autism

Read More
Visit Lauderdale Celebrates Broward’s Cultural Diversity

Did you know Broward County is home to a rich, vibrant tapestry of cultures, with people from more than 170 countries speaking 147 languages living here? This dynamic array of diversity is not only prevalent in every corridor of the county — it’s proudly celebrated in the attractions, festivals, and food the destination offers. And

Read More
Other Posts
Jack & Jill Center to Host Team Pouncey Bowl for Change Fundraiser

Jack & Jill Center’s Young Professionals Network will host its annual charity bowling tournament from 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, April 15, at Manor Lanes in Fort Lauderdale. The Team Pouncey Bowl for Change community event will feature a day of bowling, a live DJ, arcade games, a raffle, a full bar and

Read More
Gutenburg Burger Opens at Time Out Market Miami

Gutenburg Burger, a German-American burger concept, recently debuted at Time Out Market Miami, home to chef-inspired events, arts and culture, and live entertainment. Chef Jorge Kauam launched the eatery to honor Germany’s history of high-quality beef and highlight the hamburger’s proclaimed roots in his new menu.  “Our buns are a mix of a brioche and potato

Read More
Gulfstream Park Village’s Free Cone Day Returns Next Month

Gulfstream Park Village’s popular Free Cone Day will return on Wednesday, May 17 at Häagen-Dazs. From 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., guests are invited to enjoy one free mini cone or cup with the ice cream flavor of their choice. Additionally, Gulfstream Park Village Center will transform into a family-friendly village carnival with free entertainment

Read More
NAMI Broward to Hold Annual Artful Minds Event in Dania Beach

The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Broward County will host the Second Annual “Artful Minds” event from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, May 6 at MAD Arts in Dania Beach, 481 South Federal Highway. The art exhibit showcases the relationship between art and mental health through artwork in various mediums created by artists

Read More