You might’ve heard but there’s something big going down at the Adrienne Arsht Center this week (besides this Saturday’s Queen tribute). Nearly all of the 24 Democratic presidential candidates will take over downtown Miami for two days of debates tomorrow and Thursday. Head here to learn more about the field of candidates, and how we got here.
While the debates are drawing plenty of national eyeballs, it was basically impossible for locals to get into the building without shelling out serious cash. So we rounded up a list of places hosting watch parties, a look at some other events happening in response to the debates, and a glance at what traffic will look like around the Arsht Center.
Watch Party at Books & Books – The Café at Books & Books, located at the Arsht Center, will host the closest watch party to the actual event on both nights of the debate.
Watch Party at 1306 Miami – This watch party at 1306 is co-hosted by She the People and the New Florida Majority and will begin with a happy hour and panel discussion before Wednesday night’s debate.
Unions for All Rally and Watch Party – Several chapters of SEIU and the state Public Services Union will rally outside the Arsht Center and then head to Mike’s to watch the debates on both nights.
Watch Party at CVLTVRA – The restaurant at the Gabriel Hotel will host a happy hour with drink specials on both nights of the debate.
Kendall Democrats Meeting and Watch Party – The Kendall Democrats are hosting their regular monthly meeting and a watch party at the Kendall Civic Center on Wednesday, June 26.
Miami Gardens Democratic Club Watch Party – The Miami Gardens Dems will host watch parties on both nights of the debate at the Stadium Hotel.
Miami Beach Democratic Club Watch Party – The Miami Beach Dems are hosting watch parties at Barceloneta on both nights of the debate.
Young Dems Watch Party – The Downtown Dems along with the Miami-Dade Young Dems will host a watch party at Gramps on Wednesday, June 26.
Womxn’s Watch Party – And on night two, the Miami-Dade Democratic Party along with Ruth’s List Florida, the state Democratic party, the Latino Victory Fund and many more organizations, will host a watch party at Gramps on Thursday, June 27.
COUNTER PROGRAMMING: In addition to watch parties, several organizations will also be hosting events for particular causes around town and outside the Arsht Center.
Drilled Live – The Drilled podcast, which focuses on the oil industry and its impact on the climate crisis, will host a live recording at the Frost Science Museum ahead of the debates on Tuesday, June 25.
Green New Deal March and Rally – Supporters of the Green New Deal will march and rally at the Freedom Tower on Wednesday, June 26, to demand that candidates support the climate-focused resolution.
Medicare for All Rally – Supporters of the healthcare expansion plan will rally outside the Arsht Center on Wednesday, June 26.
Puerto Ricans Demand Action – Alianza for Progress, the Florida Immigrant Coalition and other organizations will rally at the Torch of Friendship on Wednesday, June 26, to demand that candidates discuss and present a plan for supporting and prioritizing Puerto Rico.
Republican Women Rally – Representatives from the Federated Republican Women of North Dade plan to rally outside the Arsht Center on both Wednesday and Thursday.
Underwater Climate Rally – Organizations like ReThink Energy Florida, the Miami Climate Alliance, and more, will rally outside the Arsht Center on Thursday, June 27, to draw attention to the climate crisis and to demand action from the candidates.
Post Debate Discussion – After the dust has settled, the Miami-Dade and Coral Gables Democratic Party organizations will meet to discuss the debate on Friday, June 28.
Pre-debate Senior/Retiree Breakfast – The Alliance for Retired Americans and the Democratic National Committee are hosting a breakfast at the Teamster Local 769 Union Hall before Thursday’s debate.
HEADS UP ON TRAFFIC: As you might expect, a big gathering of 20 national and local elected officials will mean a lot of traffic.
According to the Miami Police Department, Biscayne Boulevard will be shut down between Thirteenth and Fourteenth Street from 4 p.m. to 1 a.m. on both days.
Here are the full details on the detours from Miami PD:
Vehicles travelling northbound on Biscayne will be directed west on Northeast Eleventh Street to Northeast First Avenue, then north to Northeast Fifteenth Street, then east towards Biscayne.
Vehicles travelling southbound on Biscayne will be directed west on Northeast Fifteenth Street to Northeast Second Avenue then south to Northeast Tenth Street then east towards Biscayne.
Vehicles getting off of the I-395 ramp on to Northeast Second Avenue will be directed to go either north or south on Northeast Second Avenue around the closure.
Vehicles travelling east on I-395 towards Miami Beach will be allowed to take the ramp onto Biscayne and Northeast Eleventh Terrace.