About the Author
Lissette is a Miami native, working in the heart of Downtown as a publicist and freelance writer. She has also served as a bilingual spokesperson with more than a dozen national and regional press appearances to-date on stations including Telemundo, ABC and FOX. Lissette earned a B.A. in Public Relations and Leadership Studies from Florida State University.

Secret Garden Promises More Enchantment In Celebration Of Its Three-Year Anniversary

The most attended yet secretive pop-up party during Wynwood’s Art Walk, Secret Garden, celebrates its three-year anniversary, welcoming all experience seekers to an “Enchanted” journey.

On February 13th, starting at 7pm until 3am, Secret Garden’s creators bring the Enchanted edition to one of Wynwood’s most exclusive venues, MANA. This Kylie Jenner-approved venue spans over six acres with 32-foot ceilings and is known for bringing Miami’s culture to life by hosting high-quality productions.

Enchanted brings you an innovative kind of art walk, different from any before. As soon as you step into MANA, you will be transported into the magical world of Alice in Wonderland, feeling the eerie moss underneath your feet as the enchanting forest swarms over you. Siglo will be presenting Down the Rabbit Hole with a full on maze incorporated into the art gallery, as well as a special installation presented by Poetry of I.

After finding your way out of the Rabbit Hole, guests are invited to the Mad Hatter Tea Party taking place on the main stage with a special performance by PILLOWTALK, Superlounge and many more.


Photo courtesy of MANA Wynwood.

“The amount of creativity at Secret Garden feeds off one another, giving a truly amazing experience,” Secret Garden co-founder Matthew Ohashi said. “We bring together the best talent Miami has to offer, and since our inception three years ago, we have stayed true to our motto of supporting the local artist.”

This art walk experience is designed to have guests trembling on their feet at the intricate details of this garden.

Enchanted invites art walk enthusiasts to escape the hectic city life for a night to explore one-of-a-kind art installations in the mysterious Secret Garden, while indulging in Miami’s finest artists, musicians, performers, and craft food & beer vendors.

Limited free passes and more information are available on EventBrite. You can also share your RSVP with friends on Facebook.

RISE NEWS is a grassroots journalism news organization that is working to change the way young people become informed and engaged in public affairs. Anyone can write for us as long as you are fiercely interested in making the world a better place. 

Cover Photo Credit: Secret Garden/ Facebook

For $99 a Month, MealPass Gets You Gourmet Lunch Everyday Of The Week

Adulting is hard, and having to feed yourself everyday is arguably the hardest part about it.

If you’ve got the cooking thing down, you probably spend hundreds of dollars each month on groceries and hours each week preparing your meals.

If you opt for buying your meals everyday, you’re probably spending hundreds of dollars on delivery orders, expensive salads and pizza cravings.

A potential solution?

MealPass. For $99 a month – breaking down to about $5 a day – you get lunch every weekday from one of the best restaurants in Downtown Miami & Brickell.

Launching this week, the platform seeks to provide locals with affordable lunch options while helping restaurants put their name and menu on the map.

Here’s how it works: Starting at 7 p.m. the night before, users can log in to see the menu for the following day, make their pick and head out to pick up at lunchtime. Participating restaurants offer one prix fixe meal a day.

On Thursday, Jan. 14, MealPass hosted their official launch party with more than 300 eager foodies in attendance for a sneak peek at the restaurants on board.

Tasting were available for Miami staples including Suviche, Brother Jimmy’s, Novecento and Dolores But You Can Call Me Lolita.

According to conversations I had with participating restaurants, they take a portion of the subscription dollars and are mostly eager for the added revenue on the backend through exposure of their restaurant.

“This will help people tell others about our location, come for other meals throughout the day, and we anticipate to start seeing more traffic,” said a team member from Spaghettino. “We are very excited to be a part of this program.”


The gathered crowd at the MealPass kick off event Thursday Jan 14 in Miami.

MealPass founders Mary Biggins and Katie Ghelli were inspired to launch the program from their own dining experiences in college. They enjoyed finding new places to eat and wanted to consolidate the options in Miami to help locals expand their dining routine.

“We’re excited to help consumers easily discover all the best lunch options in Brickell,” Ghelli told RISE NEWS.

Mary Biggins is also co-founder of a similar and widely successful program, ClassPass.

With ClassPass, subscribers pay $99 a month to take classes at dozens of different fitness studios in a given city.

The company receives a bulk discount on classes from their providers in exchange for helping them reach new customers. According to the company, more than 10.8 million reservations were made in 2015 – a 700% leap from the year before.

Unlike ClassPass, which has a three-time per month limit per studio, MealPass does not have restrictions as menus will rotate daily and the company doesn’t anticipate users will want to eat the same thing every day.

The menu has a wide selection.

Gourmet salads and acai bowls from Cold Pressed Raw, hearty pasta dishes from Garzon on your “cheat day,” even decadent dessert and crepes from YUZU.

Friday’s menu included Chicken Teriyaki from Sushi Maki, Chicken Mac & Cheese from American Social, Sausage, Egg & Cheese from Toasted, Cheese Quesadillas from Batch, Couscous Fish Salad from Fit2Go, and more than 50 other decadent options to choose from.

If you’re looking to indulge in lunch from some of the best restaurants in our city for only $99 a month, you can sign up at

You can also follow MealPass on social media:

Instagram: @mealpassapp
Twitter: @mealpassapp

Do you run a start-up or small business? We might be interested in writing about you! Send us a story pitch to [email protected]

RISE NEWS is a grassroots journalism news organization that is working to change the way young people become informed and engaged in public affairs. Anyone can write for you us as long as you are fiercely interested in making the world a better place. 

Photo Credits: Lissette Calveiro/RISE NEWS.

The Definitive Guide For A First Timer At Art Basel Miami Beach

By Lissette Calveiro

While others across the country are indulging in chilly weather and hues of red and green, Miami is getting ready to kick off one of the most exciting times of the year: Art Basel Miami Beach. More than 70,000 visitors, 267 galleries and 32 countries flock to sunny South Florida to celebrate creativity, innovation and the contemporary art.

If this is your first time in the city for this festival of expression, it may be a little overwhelming. Our advice is to grab tickets to the main show and sprinkle in a couple of off-site shows and local events. Grab a pen and your calendar and get started by exploring our picks below.

The Main Event

Photo Credit: See-ming Lee/ Flickr (CC By 2.0)

Photo Credit: See-ming Lee/ Flickr (CC By 2.0)

Art Basel Miami Beach is the sister fair to the original Art Basel, founded in Basel Switzerland in 1970. In Miami Beach, it capitalizes on the unique geographic and cultural conversion of both North America and Latin America. In 2013, an Art Basel stop was added in Hong Kong as the city is known as a gateway between East and West Cultures.

This year’s Miami Beach sioree is lead by Noah Horowitz, former head of NYC’s Armory Show. The 500,000 sq. ft. exhibition space is divided into nine sectors: Galleries, Nova, Positions, Edition, Kabinett, Survey, Public, Film and Magazines. Each sector allows visitors to navigate the fair and experience the many dimensions of modern and contemporary art.

To fully grasp the experience, make a day out of Art Basel alone. The Miami Beach Convention Center is equipped with two self-serve restaurants, five cafes, and an outdoor café across the street at the Botanical Gardens. Plus, there’s flowing Champagne to help you appreciate it that much more.

Art Basel Miami Beach takes place from December 3rd through the 6th in the Miami Beach Convention Center at 1901 Convention Center Drive, and various other locations. One-day tickets cost $47; permanent tickets cost $100. Buy them here.

Satellite Shows

Some of Art Basel’s best festivals and galleries are held off-site, so it’s best to attach a few of these to your schedule. These satellite shows orbit the main event and are hosted by locals and visitors alike. Explore our favorites below.


Photo Credit: See-ming Lee/ Flickr (CC By 2.0)

SCOPE returns to South Beach from December 2nd through the 6th with 120 exhibitors from 22 countries, plus several special sections. For a fourth year, the fair collabs with VH1 on a music series featuring up-and-coming artists. A special collaboration between Cricket Wireless and Carl Pascuzzi will feature a #SelfieVortex for those attending for the ‘gram. There’s also an invite-only party with recording artists Mack Wilds and Lil’ Dicky on Friday night at Nikki Beach, sponsored by SCOPE, VH1 and BMI.

Spectrum Miami is a contemporary art show conveniently located in the heart of Miami’s Arts & Entertainment District between Midtown and Downtown Miami. From December 2nd through the 6th, the celebration features an international slate of artists, galleries, music and entertainment. The 2015 theme explores the act of illumination and creativity emerging from the artist. Special programming includes Art Labs, Art Talks, Spotlight Artist and Launchpad Programs. Bonus: Thursday and Friday entrance is free.

PULSE Miami Beach returns to Indian Beach Park (4601 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach) starting with a big “Opening Celebration” at 4 p.m. on December 1st. The show features a panel discussion put together by Hyperallergic, an interactive piece by Kate Durbin called “Hello, Selfie!” and a live performance by Kalup Linzy. On December 5th, PULSE celebrates the City of Miami via a talk at 5 p.m. on “Future Visions of Miami” and a “Sunset Celebration” from 5 to 7 p.m. There’s a complimentary shuttle from the convention center, and the fair is open daily from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. through Saturday.

Wynwood Walls. Photo Credit: Ines Hegedus-Garcia/Flickr (CC By 2.0)

Wynwood Walls. Photo Credit: Ines Hegedus-Garcia/Flickr (CC By 2.0)

On the mainland, Wynwood Walls (2520 NW 2nd Avenue, Miami) has tons in store including “Walls of Change” with 14 new murals and installations and the debut of a new adjacent space called “The Wynwood Walls Garden.” The walls are by Case, Crash, Cryptik, el Seed, Erenest Zacharevic, Fafi, Hueman, INTI, The London Police, Logan Hicks and Ryan McGinness. Over in the “garden,” the Spanish art duo Pichi & Avo are doing a mural on stacked shipping containers and in the events space, Magnus Sodamin will be painting the floors and walls. The VIP opening is on December 1st in the early evening, but then it’s open to the public from 11 p.m. to 2 a.m.

INK Miami Art Fair celebrates their 10th anniversary and maintains their exclusive focus on printmaking and works on paper. They’re back in the Suites of Dorchester (1850 Collins Avenue, South Beach) from Wednesday, December 2nd, through Sunday. Highlights include a lithograph by Louis Lozowick called Subway Station, NYC (1936) at Susan Teller Gallery’s booth and A World in a Box (2015) by Mark Dion published by Graphicstudio/U.S.F.

Check out a full list of fairs and festivals at GMCVB.

The “etc.”

You’ve heard it hundreds of times, Art Basel Miami Beach inspires a week of art galleries, exhibitions, design shows, music, entertainment, etc. That “etc.” represents the local restaurants and venues hosting celebratory soirees focused on art and what they already do best. For a first timer, these are a great way to enjoy the week of self-expression without the pressure of walking around art galleries trying to find the Picasso.

Photo Credit: American Social

Photo Credit: American Social

American Social Brickell (690 SW 1st Court) presents “The Art (Basel) of Craft Beer” all week featuring craft beer and food specials for the brew & foodie connoisseur. The Miami River celebration kicks off on Monday with $5 AmSo Burgers and $5 Local Florida Beers. Tuesday follows with $10 Chicken BLAT Sandwiches and $4 Craft Beers on tap. Wynwood Wednesday rolls in with $5 JWB 24th Brown, LaRubia and Concrete Beach Rica. The grand finale on Thursday offers $4 local craft beers all day, ladies’ drink specials and a pop-up art installation by Ray Fernandez.

Sip & Shop in Art Basel style at Batch Gastropub (30 SW 12th Street) on December 2nd from 6:30 to 10 p.m. The night of drinking and shopping features Instagram boutique brands including Lovestrung, M & CO and Luna Miami. The Glam Station, courtesy of 212 Beauty, lets ladies enjoy mini-manicures, make-up touch ups and a braid bar. If you want to add a little bit of art to your own body, The Henna Touch will share their talents and provide gratis henna designs. Wine and Whiskey Specials take center stage all night, as well as $5 Jim beam, $6 Jameson and $20 Bottomless Sangria and Sparking Wine. An RSVP will get you a complimentary drink so you’re ready to trek through the rest of your evening programming.

YogArt returns for their 5th anniversary for a series of 3 yoga sessions taking place at Wynwood Walls during the hustle and bustle of Art Basel weekend. Presented by Cavicchioli and sponsored by The Sacred Space Miami and jugofresh, the sessions take place on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Each session is an hour long, followed by healthy bites and sips. Led by Dawn B. Feinberg, the Friday evening and weekend morning classes will have live music by DJ Drez, The Mayapuris, and Marti Nikko. It’s the perfect way to experience Wynwood Walls’ newest installation, Walls of Change, which adds 14 new murals created by globally acclaimed street artists. Tickets for YogArt Basel at the Wynwood Walls are $35 per session and are available online in advance, as well as on-site the day of the event. Mats will be provided but are limited. A portion of the proceeds generated from YogArt ticket sales go to support local Design District Miami-Dade Magnet High School, DASH.

The stylish Viceroy Miami (485 Brickell Avenue) hotel invites Basel-goers to its signature restaurant, 15th & Vine Kitchen and Bar, for a special brunch showcasing masterpieces by Duaív, an accomplished painter and classically trained musician whose immigration to the United States was sponsored by Yo-Yo Ma. From 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday of Art Basel Weekend, visitors can admire the artist’s uplifting work presented on (4) floor-to-ceiling columns in 15th & Vine, while savoring à la carte brunch favorites including blueberry-lemon pancakes, black beans ranchero, grilled flatbreads, gulf shrimp tacos and other chef specialties. Guests also can pair brunch with $15 unlimited mimosas or Bloody Mary cocktails and bask in a view of Biscayne Bay. Their swanky rooftop nightclub, FIFTY Ultra Lounge, later hosts an Art Basel after-party offering panoramic views of the Magic City and a rotating roster of internationally renowned DJs.

Absolut’s handcrafted luxury vodka, Elyx, and non-profit organization Water For People, are celebrating their five year partnership on the opening night of Art Basel at the exclusive art-deco Delano Hotel in South Beach (1685 Collins Avenue) on Thursday, December 3rd. A cadre of leaders and influencers will co-host the event featuring bites, cocktails and special performances throughout the evening. During the event, guests will have the opportunity to view a sculpture created by artist Antony Gormley, which will be sold to raise funds for Water for People. The charity event is limited to VIPs, but we’ve scored a pair of tickets exclusive to Rise News readers. Open to public, Elyx’s new pop-up water truck and copper pineapple boutique will conclude its three city tour in Miami’s Collins Avenue during Art Basel.

A pink snail looks across Biscayne Bay for Art Basel in 2010. Photo Credit: Ines Hegedus-Garcia/Flickr (CC By 2.0)

A pink snail looks across Biscayne Bay for Art Basel in 2010. Photo Credit: Ines Hegedus-Garcia/Flickr (CC By 2.0)

For more pop-up parties and local events, read a guide by Racked Miami.

To help alleviate the likely traffic jams from Miami to Miami Beach, the two cities have joined forces to provide alternative travel options including a free Shuttle Service, new trolley routes, a water taxi and special Uber Yacht service. Verify prices and routes at

A stroll through South Beach, Midtown and Downtown through the week is enough to show that Art Basel Miami Beach brings the world of art, music, food, culture and innovation together for an unparalleled experience of surprise and delight. Let us know where you will go in the comments below.

Cover Photo Credit: Philipp Meier/ Flickr (CC By 2.0)

Rise Readers Can Win Free VIP Tickets To Absolut Vodka’s Art Basel Miami Beach Party

By Lissette Calveiro

Absolut’s handcrafted luxury vodka, Elyx, and non-profit organization Water For People, are celebrating their five year partnership on the opening night of Art Basel at the exclusive art-deco Delano Hotel in South Beach (1685 Collins Avenue) on Thursday, December 3rd from 7 to 10 p.m.

The charity event is limited to VIPs, but we’ve scored a pair of tickets exclusive to Rise News readers. To enter, follow @RiseNewsNow on Twitter and Retweet our original Tweet and share our Art Basel First Timer’s Guide on your feed to enter.

We will notify one lucky winner on the evening of Wednesday, December 2nd.

Pioneering gallerist – Sean Kelly, world-renowned art curator – Jérôme Sans, Paddle8 cofounder and art-world disrupter – Alexander Gilkes, international marketer and Absolut Elyx CEO – Jonas Tåhlin and Water For People’s CEO – Eleanor Allen will co-host the outdoor gala, featuring a barbecue and bespoke cocktails.


During the event, guests will have the opportunity to view a sculpture created by artist Antony Gormley, which will be sold to raise funds for Water for People by online auction house Paddle8.

Widely acclaimed for his sculptures, installations and public artworks that investigate the relationship of the human body to space, Antony Gormley is a world-renowned artist.

The auction of Gormley’s sculpture will begin on Tuesday, November 24 and conclude on Wednesday, December 9. Two experiential lots – a private group tour of the Sean Kelly Gallery and a cocktail class at the new brand home, the Elyx House, in New York – will also be up for auction.

The celebration is part of a five-year partnership between Absolut Elyx and Water For People to provide safe water to more than 100,000 people worldwide. Proceeds from the auction could provide over 10,000 people with access to safe water for generations to come.

READ MORE: Definitive Guide For A First Timer At Art Basel Miami Beach

The event will also feature an exciting music line-up with a DJ set from Jasmine Solano and a live performance by Elliphant.

Jasmine Solano’s solid track record includes soundtracks for New York Fashion Week runway shows and the MTV World’s Scratch the Surface show that she produced and hosted. Swedish buzzworthy artist Elliphant has already amassed an impressive 40 million+ Spotify plays, 28 million+ video plays and an incredible 55k+ Shazam tags.

She has worked with Grammy Award nominees and winners Skrillex, Dr. Luke, Diplo, Major Lazer and Joel Little, the man responsible for producing Lorde’s critically acclaimed debut album.

For every bottle of vodka sold, Elyx will provide access to one week of safe water (140 liters) to someone in need through Water For People’s work.

For every bottle of vodka sold, Elyx will provide access to one week of safe water (140 liters) to someone in need through Water For People’s work.

“We are thrilled to partner with a host of luminaries for the benefit at Art Basel to raise awareness of the global water issue,” said Jonas Tåhlin, CEO of Absolut Elyx. “Through art, we hope to inspire others participate in this global dialogue in putting an end to water poverty within our lifetime. Our partnership with Water for People, Sean Kelly, Antony Gormley, and Jérôme Sans will shine a spotlight on the campaign while raising money to affect real change.”

The philanthropy partnership with Water For People launched in September. For every bottle of vodka sold, Elyx will provide access to one week of safe water (140 liters) to someone in need through Water For People’s work; for every copper pineapple drinking vessel sold, access to one month of water (560 liters) will be provided. Elyx’s new pop-up water truck and copper pineapple boutique will conclude its three city tour in Miami following stops in New York and Los Angeles during Art Basel.

Photo Credits: Submitted

Immigration Activists Deliver More Than 520,000 Signatures From People Who Want NBC To Dump Trump From SNL

By Lissette Calveiro

On Wednesday night, undocumented rights activist and dreamer Juan Escalante made a trip to Rockefeller Center carrying a large box that had a 522,080 taped on it.

That number represents the amount of people who’ve petitioned NBC to drop Donald Trump as a host of tonight’s Saturday Night Live,” following his continuous racist remarks about Latino immigrants. What this number also represents is people who feel disrespected, and are flat out fed up with, the antics of Donald Trump.

The #RacismIsntFunny campaign was a collaborative effort between multiple organizations including America’s Voice,, CREDO Action, Latino Rebels,, NCLR, UFW, Voto Latino Action Fund and many others.

Juan Escalante serves as Digital Campaign Manager of America’s Voice, leading the delivery of the signatures and getting them in the hands of NBC Executives.

Read More: Latino Kids Hurl Profanity At Donald Trump In Video

Aside from the hand-delivery of signatures, many of these organizations are working to host peaceful protests throughout the day to help amplify the voice of the Latino community. The hashtag #RacismIsntFunny connects people on social media and streamlines the ability to reach more people.

In case you don’t remember, NBC previously dropped the Miss USA Miss Universe Pageants that Trump is associated with.

“At NBC, respect and dignity for all people are cornerstones of our values,” the company said in a statement back in June. “Due to the recent derogatory statements by Donald Trump regarding immigrants, NBC is ending its business relationship with Mr. Trump.”

Now, NBC has allowed Trump to return as the host of one of their most successful television shows.

One SNL encore episode costs advertisers $26 thousand for a 30-second bit; on special nights it can cost upwards of $100 thousand. Add Trump to the recipe and this becomes one of the network’s most important nights for ratings and dollars. It’s this “hypocrisy,” as Escalante puts it, that the Latino community and its allies should not stand for.

Read More: Mike Tyson Just Endorsed Donald Trump Because Of Course He Did

The now 530 thousand signatures seek to remove Donald Trump from hosting Saturday Night Live, but it doesn’t look like the network will budge.

The flash drive inside the box also holds a note with Escalante and other organization’s contact information but no one has reached back with any comments. An open letter has also been delivered to SNL talent inviting them to engage in dialogue on the subject matter.

Donald Trump may very likely continue his host duties tonight, but Escalante encourages leaders to continue to do more.


Juan Escalante delivers petitions to NBC HQ in NYC. Photo Credit: Juan Escalante

“If they turn off the show tonight because of Donald Trump’s comments, they should turn it off indefinitely,” Escalante told Rise News. “SNL has had a troubling relationship with the Latino community in the past and we need make sure to draw the line.”

Trump is still in the top tier of the GOP primary.

As Escalante notes, Trump is an “showman” but the lack of substance and explanation toward his policies will catch up to him. Trump is an expert at getting reactions from people and it’s only a matter of time before he gets enough bad ones, Escalante said.

Escalante and his team visited the weekly “overnight line” for SNL tickets and staff tells them, it’s the shortest line they’ve ever seen.

Trump strongly believes his appearance will cause a huge boost to ratings, per usual.

During a phone interview with Fox and Friends, Trump dismissed the possibility of SNL dropping him. “Lorne Michaels is a very smart guy. NBC are very smart people,” Trump told the hosts of the Fox News morning show. “If they want to do a show with a third of the ratings, they might do that.”

Read More: How Donald Trump Is An IRL Internet Troll

Will ratings go up? Maybe. Will Trump actually make people laugh? Quite likely. What triumphs the “Trump Effect” of tonight’s SNL episode is the unity seen with groups like Escalante’s. Many are angry, and even more are over the appeal of Trump.

With studies showing you need much more than 40 percent of the Latino vote to win a presidential election, tonight may be a seminal moment in the campaign.

So, Mr. Trump, your show tonight might be HUUUUGE, but the voices of the Latino community can be just as impactful. Visit to learn more about the petition and ongoing campaigns.

Like this piece? Rise News just launched a few weeks ago and is only getting started. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to stay up to date with global news. Have a news tip? (No matter how big or small!) Send it to us- [email protected] 

Photo Credits: Juan Escalante

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