Celebrating 100 years of the Collins Canal

The Collins Canal Centennial Celebration on Saturday November 3rd, marks 100 years since the opening of the Collins Canal. The all-day family event is hosted by the Miami Design Preservation League, Collins Park Neighborhood Association, the City of Miami Beach and SOBE Arts and is taking place at The Bandshell on 2100 Washington Ave. In case of rain, the event will move to the 21st street recreation center next door.

The celebration begins at 10 a.m. and ends about 6:30 p.m. It features musical performances, food trucks, various activities for children, and historic walking tours of the Collins Canal and Collins Park neighborhood provided by the Miami Design Preservation League.

Miami Beach pioneer John Collins created the canal in 1912 in order to move his avocado crops across Miami Beach since it was not connected to mainland then. Keeping with the theme of the canal’s history, a class on growing and maintaining avocado trees is being taught in the Miami Beach Botanical Garden at 10 a.m. that day.

City Commissioner Jorge Exposito is also presenting a proclamation commemorating 100 years of history. Attendees are encouraged to dress in period costume and arrive in canoes, kayaks and paddleboards. They are discouraged, however, to enter the canal with motorized boats. “The canal really got Miami Beach started,” said Carolyn Klepser, freelance historic researcher who is assisting in the planning of the upcoming event. This is the first of several 100-year celebrations that the city of Miami Beach is preparing, including the City’s 100th birthday in 2015.

The all-day event is free for all attendees. Artist Herbert Hofer created the Collins Canal poster. Miami Ad School students Lindsey Mills and Jesse Abbott created flyers for the event.

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