By Susan Simpson….
The City of Sunny Isles Beach served up a spectacular weekend of events to celebrate its 14th Anniversary. Given that parks and public gathering spaces have been a priority for the City Commission, it was most fitting that the festivities kicked off with the dedication of the City’s largest park, Heritage Park on Saturday, June 18, 2011. Once the Honor Guard grasped the attention of the crowd of over 300, City Historian Richard C. Schulman gave the invocation, Janelle Sanchez sang the National Anthem, where a midway game off in the distance provided the backdrop of ‘bombs bursting in air’ at the perfect time. The dedication of the memorial wall included special presentations by Senator Gwen Margolis and Golden Beach Councilwoman Judy Luskin.
As Mayor Edelcup spoke of the many amenities of Heritage Park, the fountains came to life and the park was officially opened. Thousands of people enjoyed the variety of songs per- formed by the Sunny Isles Beach Orchestra with several guest singers which was followed by Music Through the Ages with Meshelle and Company. Adults and children alike lined up to have their likeness hand drawn by a caricature artist, get their face painted, and shoot hoops with our basketball coaches. Strolling balloon artists, stilt walker, jugglers and acrobats filled out the day but the best attraction by far was the interactive water feature that will be there every day for the enjoyment of all park patrons.
On the bright and sunny Sunday afternoon of June 19, the City celebrated the 14th Anniversary with a family style barbecue for over 3,000 guests and the official cake cutting ceremony where the City Commission literally served their people from the official city cakes as Viva Classic Rock and Roll led the crowd in a rocking rendition of Happy Anniversary. The tropical themed rides and games were the perfect accoutrement to the 4th Annual Sunny Isles Beach Offshore Challenge powerboat race that attracted thousands of spectators to our beautiful stretch of fine sand beach where 34 boats raced from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. And as a curtain falls at the end of a play, the clouds rolled in to close another fantastic weekend of anniversary festivities.
And no sooner than it is over, we start our plans for next year’s extravaganza of anniversary events. By then all residents should have their official City Resident ID card which they will need to partake in the festivities as a resident. If you don’t have yours, be sure to stop by the Visitor’s Center or Pelican Community Park with your identification and utility bill. The sooner you get yours, the better informed you will be on all of the opportunities that are afforded to our residents. You never know what you may be missing!