Top 12 things to do this weekend in South Florida

At the beginning of 2020 I got a green T-shirt made to wear on St. Patrick’s Day (a level of preparation I’ve never been accused of), on the back the outline of a large shamrock surrounding the name Fitzmagic and the number 14.

It’s unworn, but looks like a relic from a very distant past — that’s how long it’s been since we celebrated St. Pat’s around here.

On Friday, the City of Fort Lauderdale will turn its weekly Starlight Musicals concert in Holiday Park into Summer St. Patrick’s Day with many of the features that make the annual downtown parade and festival so much fun. This includes a performance by the excellent U2 tribute band U2 by UV, a nationally touring group founded in South Florida.

The free, BYOB Starlight Musicals have always been popular summer staple, a community-bonding, toes-in-the-grass, picnic-blanket throwdown that continues to grow as new residents pile into the quickly evolving downtown core. This summer’s concerts, this Friday’s gathering in particular, feel especially necessary.

In an interview, U2 by UV guitarist Jeff Clemens said the band is hopeful “the crowd is every bit as fun and excited to be there as they are for St. Patrick’s Day.” Yes. Yes, we are.

Starlight Musicals take place 7-10 p.m. Fridays through Aug. 13. The remaining dates in the series are: July 2, Smooth STB (Santana tribute); July 9, Mikey’s Hotswing Latin Band; July 16, Valerie Tyson Band; July 23, Andrew Morris Band (country); July 30, Miami Sound-Byte Band (pop-funk); Aug. 6, Shane Duncan Band (party rock); Aug. 13, Southern Blood.

In the center of Saturday night’s Art Walk sprawling through Flagler Village and the MASS District in downtown Fort Lauderdale, the community-minded creatives at C&I Studios will screen their new short film, “Something Beautiful,” at 7, 8 and 9 p.m. The cinematic celebration of black beauty (in many forms) provides the theme for an evening that includes spoken-word performances, black-owned business vendors, live music and more. Visit

New York’s Blue Note Jazz Club continues its partnership with the Rhythm Foundation at the North Beach Bandshell during a Saturday celebration of cultural ties between Havana and New Orleans, featuring the LGBTQ-empowering anthems of Big Freedia, Big Easy brass icons the Soul Rebels and special guest Cimafunk. Tickets start at $35. Visit

Cuba Libre Restaurant & Rum Bar on Fort Lauderdale’s Las Olas Boulevard will launch a new brunch menu this weekend, serving Cuban-influenced favorites 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Distinctive offerings include French Toast a la Cubana (vanilla custard-soaked brioche bread with panela-infused sweet plantains and whipped cream) and Pollo y Waffle (crispy fried boneless chicken thighs on a quinoa waffle, with mango salsa and a drizzle of dark rum-molasses syrup). Bottomless pitchers of mimosas, sangria and Bloody Marys cost $20 per diner. Information, reservations:

If you’re a fan of the classy, drink-y vibe at the Wilder in downtown Fort Lauderdale, you should know that on Monday (June 28) a pop-up dinner series called Bad Girls Club will premiere at a nearby sister property, Roxanne’s Liquor Bar & Kitchen. The event marks the formal debut of Ruby Stephan (cooking) and Tamara Jovanovic (cocktailing) as hospitality Super Friends. Stephan is director of operations at Knallhart Management (Roxanne’s, Rhythm & Vine, the Wilder, the Easton), and Jovanovic is the group’s beverage director. For details about Bad Girls Club, visit

Yacht-rock faves Hall & Oates will return to Hard Rock Live at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood on Sept. 22, with lyrical English rockers Squeeze opening. Tickets ($156, $106, $91, $71, $51) go on sale noon Friday at A venue presale is under way via the Hard Rock Facebook and Twitter pages.

Lionfish will be the focus of Rock the Marina & Lionfish Derby, a music festival and culinary education event in Boynton Beach on Saturday, June 26.

Lionfish will be the focus of Rock the Marina & Lionfish Derby, a music festival and culinary education event in Boynton Beach on Saturday, June 26. (Joe Burbank / Orlando Sentinel)

Rock the Marina & Lionfish Derby takes over Boynton Harbor Marina in Boynton Beach on Saturday, with live music, other entertainment and education sessions focused on the ocean environment and how to prepare and cook lionfish. The Lionfish Derby hunt for the invasive species runs 8 a.m.-2 p.m., followed by Rock the Marina events on the waterfront 2-5 p.m. with music from popular local bands Spider Cherry and Vibes Farm. Visit

The Honest Liars bring the rough stuff to the Poorhouse in downtown Fort Lauderdale 10 p.m. Friday. Visit … Jazzy electro-rock explorers Electric Kif, one of my favorite local bands (see the South Florida Coronavirus Shut-in Dinner Party Playlist), play Lagniappe House in downtown Miami, at 8:30 p.m. Saturday. Visit Electric Kif will unveil the album “Dreamlike” Aug. 2 and on Friday released the title track (with pianist Aaron Parks). Visit … Ace South Florida blues guitarist Albert Castiglia returns to the Funky Biscuit in Boca Raton 9 p.m. Saturday, the room where he recorded his most recent album, “Wild and Free.” Tickets start at $20. Visit

The six-story AutoNation IMAX 3D Theater at Fort Lauderdale’s Museum of Discovery and Science and the “Fast and Furious” action-movie franchise were made for each other. The latest chapter in the film series, F9: The Fast Saga,” hits the big screen this weekend (the premiere screening at 7 p.m. Thursday will be preceded by a car show courtesy of Powersource Motorsports). Tickets cost $15, $12 ages 2-12 and military. Visit (Note: Tickets to see Scarlett Johansson in Marvel’s “Black Widow” when premieres at MODS on July 9, are on sale now).

Marvin Dixon will lead a group of comics to Stage 954 at the Casino @ Dania Beach 8 p.m. Saturday with a show called “50 Shades of Comedy — The All White Edition.” Tickets start at $25 at

Funnyman Ron White is on his way to Hard Rock Live on Saturday, Dec. 18, with tickets ($106, $91, $66 and $51) on sale 10 a.m. Friday at The venue presale is underway through the Hard Rock Facebook and Twitter pages.

The Weekender – South Florida Events Newsletter


Get a roundup of the best events and things to do in South Florida so you can make it an epic weekend.

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