You spent the weekend jogging the Rickenbacker Causeway in preparation for the caloric destruction that’s about to go down. But now it’s time to switch gears and concentrate on the real task at hand: figuring out how to cope with the upcoming stress of the holiday. Thanksgiving weekend in Miami has been historically one of the best for parties, so now you need to decide where to spend it. From South Miami to Mid-Beach and more, here are the top ten Thanksgiving weekend parties in Miami-Dade. Choose wisely.
1. Bougie’s Annual Thanksgiving Eve Block Party. All your friends who swapped life in the sunny climes for unflattering layers in the North are already messaging you about this annual bash. The streets surrounding this South Miami bar will be shut down for a block party filled with pre-Thanksgiving debauchery. Chances are you’ll run into half of your graduating class here, so before enduring the unwanted nostalgia, you might need to throw a few back during happy hour from 4 to 8 p.m. DJs Proof, Obscene, and A-Train will take over the decks inside while Write Sounds and Uma Galera perform on the outdoor stage. But a word to the wise: Don’t even think about driving — parking will be scarce, and you’ll spend your Thanksgiving eve circling in search of a spot. 4 p.m. Wednesday, November 21, at Bougainvillea’s Old Florida Tavern, 7221 SW 58th Ave., South Miami; 305-669-8577; bougiesbar.com. Admission is free.
What’re you gonna wear to the ’80s Prom?
Photo by Monica McGivern
2. The 16th-Annual ’80s Prom. Grab the Aqua Net, scour the racks at Goodwill for an ill-fitting dress, and head to Gramps for ’80s Prom. The annual celebration turns 16 this year and is planning a sweet-16 bash. As you anxiously prepare for the influx of questions from your family around the Thanksgiving table the next day, dance the nerves away with Lolo, DJ Hottpants, Carmel Ophir, Ray Milian, and Carlos Menendez on the decks and a special ’80s cover set by the State Of. Don’t forget to pose for a classic prom-style pic in the photo booth. 8 p.m. Wednesday, November 21, at Gramps, 176 NW 24th St., Miami; 305-699-2669; gramps.com. Tickets cost $10 via eventbrite.com.
Ice-skate in the Basement.
Photo by Monica McGivern
3. Thanksgiving Eve. You’ve been scouring the web for the perfect Thanksgiving stuffing recipe to impress your out-of-town friends and family. But all you really need to do is tell them you know of a club with an ice-skating rink and a bowling alley dubbed by New Times one of Miami’s best, and that’s the only thing they’ll talk about at dinner the next day. At the Edition’s subterranean disco, catch a special Thanksgiving eve performance by Autograf, Malone, and T.Dade, along with sets by Fly Guy and Disco Neil in the Bowl. 11 p.m. Wednesday, November 21, at Basement, 2901 Collins Ave., Miami Beach; 786-257 4548; basementmiami.com. Admission is free with RSVP before midnight via eventbrite.com.
Come dressed in white.
Photo by Karli Evans
4. The White Party. It’s all about partying for a good cause at Vizcaya’s White Party, benefiting Care Resource. The elegant extravaganza, put on by event producer Jake Resnicow, will include a performance by Kimberly Davis, music by Deejay Smeejay, an open bar, and light bites. The iconic white soiree encourages guests to come dressed for the theme “A Return to Elegance” for a chance to take home two tickets for next year’s party. Don your fiercest white outfit and party under the stars at one of the most beautiful places in Miami. 7 to 11 p.m. Saturday, November 24, at Vizcaya Museum & Gardens, 3251 S. Miami Ave., Miami; 305-250-9133; vizcaya.org. Tickets cost $250 plus fees via whiteparty.org.
Miami’s Palomino Blond.
Photo by Nicole Cordoba
5. Florida Femme Fest. Florida acts Palomino Blond, Dulceblood, Ela, Borri, Luna, and Vagnauts are coming together for a post-Thanksgiving show that’ll have you sweating out any lingering alcohol from the tryptophan turnup. The fest, presenting Florida-based femme-led acts, aims to “replace the all-too-common male-dominated lineup with something more varied, inclusive, and inspiring for people like us in the audience,” according to the fest’s Facebook event page. Support your local femmes and make new friends this Thanksgiving weekend. 7 p.m. Saturday, November 24, at 229, 229 NE 65th St., Miami. Admission costs $10.
Spend your weekend with rock ‘n’ roll, booze, and drag.
Photo by Karli Evans
6. Gender Blender. The weekend after Thanksgiving is usually spent in regret after going three plates deep. But once you spend your Sunday at Miami’s best LGBTQ+ party with local rock ‘n’ roll bands, booze, and drag, you’ll feel a whole lot better. Get unapologetically rowdy with drag performances by Jahsyra Pryce, Remy Black, and Persephone Von Lips, along with music by live bands No Dice and Glass Body and a DJ set by Culture Prophet. 10 p.m. Sunday, November 25, at Las Rosas, 2898 NW Seventh Ave., Miami; 786-780-2700; lasrosasbar.com. Admission is free.
Shop for records at Black Friday Rave.
Photo by Karli Evans
7. Black Friday Rave. You spent an exhausting day on the hunt for Black Friday deals at Dolphin Mall. Anyone who can endure that torture deserves to rave the pain away. If you planned to splurge on a III Points ticket but just blew all your cash, you’re in luck: Black Friday Rave at 229 will offer performances by Jonny From Space and III Points festival performers INVT, True Vine, and Sister System for only $5. Other diversions include art by Alex Cumba and Julia Zeitune, Ammy Juliet, Carlos Americano, Eric Corbin, and Galen Bradley, plus stress-free shopping at pop-up shops by Gorrin, INVT, Retro Vice Vintage, Space Tapes, and Twelve After Vintage as well as record stores by Terrestrial Funk, Adar, New Fair Deal, and Taimur and Ostara. Be sure to save some room for Milly’s Empanada Factory. 10 p.m. Friday, November 23, at a secret location. Tickets cost $5 via eventbrite.com.
Party on Eighth Street Thanksgiving weekend.
Courtesy of Ball & Chain
8. Thanksgiving Eve Bash. If your mom and tía mention wanting to “get lit” the night before Thanksgiving, bypass Blue Martini and head to Ball & Chain. The bar’s Thanksgiving Eve Bash will offer free well drinks to ladies from 8 to 10 p.m., karaoke on the Pineapple Stage beginning at 9, and a DJ set by Danny Stern.
If your go-to karaoke song isn’t one by Gloria Estefan, are you really living in Miami? 8 p.m. Wednesday, November 21, at Ball & Chain, 1513 SW Eighth St., Miami; 305-643-7820; ballandchainmiami.com. Admission is free.
Catch Afrobeta at Las Rosas.
Photo by Jayme Gershen
9. Tryptophan Plan. Do you have a plan for the aftermath of your tryptophan-induced coma? If it doesn’t involve a dance floor, you’re doing it wrong. Shake off what yo mama made ya for Thanksgiving dinner by jamming to the beats of Afrobeta, Galactic Effect, and Twyn. Head to Tryptophan Plan while the rest of Miami is couch-locked for the next three days. 10 p.m. Friday, November 23, at Las Rosas, 2898 NW Seventh Ave., Miami; 786-780-2700; lasrosasbar.com. Admission is free.
Donate a nonperishable food item for a free drink.
Photo by Branden Paillant
10. Friendsgiving With DJ Irie. If you’re looking to decompress before your house is invaded by loud relatives but are saving your cash for the Black Friday sales, search no further than the Wharf. Drink specials include $1 Wharf Lager pints and $3 glasses of wine this Wednesday from 4 to 7 p.m. Plus, donate a nonperishable food item to score a free cocktail. In true Miami fashion, catch some rays by the water and get down to beats spun by DJ Irie. Noon Wednesday, November 21, at the Wharf, 114 SW N. River Dr., Miami; 305-906-4000; wharfmiami.com. Admission free with RSVP via eventbrite.com.