Welcome to the Grapevine

News you can use. - Sunlight is the best disinfectant

Friday, May 17, 2013

The Grove may be dark this 4th of July

At the BID (Business Improvement Meeting) Thursday morning, Coconut Grove's 4th of July was discussed. We may not have fireworks at Peacock Park this year. Nothing is definite at this point, but it looks as if the Chamber of Commerce is out of the fireworks business. And I can't say that I blame them, for one thing, not many people knew the Chamber was putting on the event and another thing, it wasn't really put  on too well because it lacked funding. So it was a thankless job for the Chamber.

In the past, the Chamber tried to make money on the event by selling beer and drinks and hosting food vendors, which were few and far between. The best year was when there were food trucks, but the Grove is so prejudiced against the trucks, that they won't be back, so a few vendors are set up and it really doesn't matter because people bring their own picnics, which I don't blame them for either.

It all came down to the fireworks which were not really appreciated by the crowds because they felt they were too short. Figures go from about 9 to 12 minutes, but at $1000 a minute as the cost, it wasn't much.

One other event that has disappeared is the Coconut Scavenger Hunt, that was a lot of fun, but it ended up all falling on my shoulders and I've been going up north for July 4th week these past couple of years, so there is no Coconut Hunt any more, as all of my helpers, and there used to be plenty, have all flown the coop. In the last year or so, we didn't even paint the coconuts, we used the left over ones, but I was stuck lugging them around, making up the clues then physically hiding them early on July 4th morning, which took hours. 2011 was the last year.

For a couple of years we had the fire shows and cirque du soleil shows with Cirque du Grove. Those were held the whole 4th of July weekend.

2010 may have been the peek year for 4th of July in Coconut Grove, even Lucie and Desi Arnaz Jr. where here! There was something going on from morning to night.

CocoWalk still has the hot dog eating contest and The Barnacle still has their old fashioned picnic, but the two big events, the Coconut Hunt and the Fireworks seem to be a thing of the past, although as I said, maybe not the fireworks, there is hope that the City of Miami will bare the cost and throw the show, but with other fireworks put on by the City, like in downtown at Bayside, and with Coral Gables and Key Biscayne putting on fireworks shows, I don't see it happening here unless a group steps up and takes the event on.

It is expensive at $1000 a minute, this is a great business. we read about high tech jobs, this is a high priced techno job. The BID has offered $8000 to the Chamber to put on the event, but the Chamber pays $50,000 or more for the whole park event with music, food, drinks and fireworks and they don't really reap any rewards. I brought up the fact that the Chamber should do it just for the sake of keeping the tradition alive, but that's easier said than done.

So right now, it's not sure if we'll have fireworks in Peacock Park this year. Above you see our Grove Spider-man, Shaun, he isn't even around anymore. So much is changing in the Grove that made this place the Grove. I do hope the US flags go up in June before Flag Day as they usually do. At least that gives us some semblance of 4th of July.

For linking to this one story, just click on the time it was posted & just this story will open for sharing - only through social media. Not copying and pasting.


Anonymous Anonymous said...


May 17, 2013 7:47 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm a newbie to the Grove. So I'm curious, can the "old Grove" be defined? What did it use to be like? I would love to know to see what I have missed :)

May 17, 2013 9:17 AM  
Blogger Tom Falco said...

Well, we are talking about before 2005, but you can get an idea of the past 8 years by reading the Grapevine archives, starting with May 2005.

May 17, 2013 9:22 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yea, pre-2006 for sure. You know, when there was insane traffic on the main roads during the weekend because there were just so many people here. Its sad having lived through the transformation from a very popular, lively area, to the ghost town it is now.

May 17, 2013 9:49 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

it was awesome amazing nightlife bigger named franchises people cruising showing of there cars and motorcycles there was life in the grove.sure it could get a little loud on weekends maybe in traffic but when you moved here you knew that.it was so much fun.now i have to get in my car to go to brikell or the beach to people watch and have fun.ive been living in the grove for years and me and my family are finaly going to make the move to the brikell area which reminds me of the old grove.

May 17, 2013 9:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Keep the fireworks!

That's a destination kind of event that keeps people milling around the Grove for a while.

May 17, 2013 10:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Perhaps it's time to welcome some different events, more affordable ideas (vs complaints), new blood even, to create a "New" Grove... I don't think any of the other neighborhoods gained popularity by pining for the old days.

I don't mean moving away either - the old Grovites are cherished and valuable, it's a shame so many are already gone and benefitting other neighborhoods. I mean being ambassadors of the Old Grove while engaging the people who are moving in.

May 17, 2013 12:09 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We are moving after being here for years.just had enough of all the artsy fartsy stuff i miss the old vibe.all of are friends old grovites have left and are enjoying the brikell vibe

May 17, 2013 2:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Grove restaurants should not be offended that food-trucks are popular and attract crowds at a 4th of July event, most restaurants here offer average food, you can get a lot better quality food for the same price in Coral Gables, South Beach and South Miami. If everyone raised their standards instead of wanting to be part of a meaningless clique and being as obstinate and stupid as Marc Sarnoff then Grove would have continued being a top destination today and yes it all started in 2005 beginning of Coconut Groves when Marky Marc got elected.

May 17, 2013 5:59 PM  
Blogger HectorinMiami said...

Ghost town? I think sterile, functional and even peaceful is how I see Coconut Grove now. I remember when Main Hwy was as busy as Ocean Drive and paradoxically a lot safer.

Of course, the current biking and running culture in the area would not be able to use (abuse?) the Cocowalk/Mayfair section of Main Hwy/Bird Ave like it does today.

Eventually, the plan is to redevelop the entire area for private concerns like Midtown but more "pedestrian" friendly.

May 23, 2013 12:07 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home