Author

About the Author
Rich Robinson is the CEO and publisher of Rise News. He is also a journalist and a native of Miami. Robinson graduated from the University of Alabama and can be followed on Twitter @RichRobMiami.

Miami Vignette: The Boys Who Gave Their Library Their Favorite Stuffed Animal

Miami Vignettes are very short stories about interesting aspects of life in South Florida that RISE NEWS finds in the community while reporting on other things. Sometimes little stories can have a big impact. Share yours with us: editor@risenews.net. Also be sure to sign up for our newsletter so you never miss our most important Miami stories.  

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6 year old Milan and 3 year old Sascha Saravia love their huge stuffed Woolly Mammoth.

They were given it and another huge toy dinosaur as a gift from a family friend a few years ago.

But they decided to give it away to one of their favorite places, Brockway Memorial Library in Miami Shores so that other kids can enjoy seeing it too.

Brenda Holsing, the Youth Services Librarian at Brockway said that the mammoth has been a hit with the scores of children who see it each day since it was donated a few months ago.

The mammoth that the Saravia boys donated to Brockway Memorial Library in Miami Shores.

Their dad Adrian Saravia said that the decision to give away the mammoth was a joint venture between the two boys.

“They visit the library at least three times a week and it’s a place that they enjoy a lot,” Adrian said. “And it just seemed like a nice thing to share with other kids.”

The boys are in the library’s summer camp program and also attend a monthly science program there during the regular school year.

From left to right: Adrian Saravia and his two sons Sascha and Milan on the wholly mammoth they donated to Brockway Memorial Library in Miami Shores.

So they spend a lot of time in the small, community run library.

“We feel very safe and comfortable and feel that they’re in a nice environment where they can meet people in the community,” Adrian said. “We’re very lucky to have a library so close and to have such a good group of people who care for the kids.”

Adrian said that the boys intend to eventually donate their giant toy brontosaurus to the library too.

The mammoth is now found on top of a book shelf opposite a longtime Brockway Library resident, the dragon.

 

——Here’s Something Completely Different: ——

The TV Weatherman Who Is Trying To Save Miami From Drowning

RISE NEWS is South Florida’s digital TV news network. Sign up for our awesome email newsletter to make sure you never miss a story!

Have a news tip about this topic or something completely different? Send it to editor@risenews.net.

Miami Vignette: The Coconut Capitalist

Miami Vignettes are very short stories about interesting aspects of life in South Florida that RISE NEWS finds in the community while reporting on other things. Sometimes little stories can have a big impact. Share yours with us: editor@risenews.net. Also be sure to sign up for our newsletter so you never miss our most important Miami stories.  

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COCONUT CAPITALISM – Isidro Carrazana is an 80 year old man who works 7 days a week cutting down coconuts from people’s properties with a 30 foot pole around the Miami area.

For the record, yes he does ask for permission first from the homeowner.

He is from Cuba and moved to South Florida 27 years ago.

He lives near North Shore Hospital and sells his coconuts to various vendors around town.

He told us that he makes $50 to $75 a day.

The work certainly hasn’t made him rich, but it has allowed him to pursue the American dream.

——Here’s Something Completely Different: ——

The TV Weatherman Who Is Trying To Save Miami From Drowning

RISE NEWS is South Florida’s digital TV news network. Sign up for our awesome email newsletter to make sure you never miss a story!

Have a news tip about this topic or something completely different? Send it to editor@risenews.net.

Lower East Coast Is Bringing Miami’s Hipsters And Zine Fans To Allapattah

What’s News In This Story?


 

–Lower East Coast (3418 NW 7th Ave, Miami) is a small storefront that features zines and has a hipster feel.

-It’s one of those independent places that Miami doesn’t seem to have enough of.

–Founded by longtime friends and coworkers Steven Sanz and Rees Escobar, Lower East Coast is starting to get some buzz in the Miami artsy scene. 

–It also serves as a pop up venue for musicians that Lower East Coast Management represents, and others. 

–The shop is one of the anchors to a bunch of recent activity  in the Allapattah area. 

The full story: 

Lower East Coast is a small hipster shop that specializes in selling local zines, independent magazines and local apparel brands that are a bit obscure and weird.

It’s also something that co-founders Steven Sanz and Rees Escobar say that they have to do for Miami.

“We’ve been friends for a long time and we’ve been talking about doing something for Miami and this is what we landed on,” Sanz said in an interview with RISE NEWS.

The shop is an outgrowth of Lower East Coast Management, a local talent agency that manages the careers of artists like Denzel Curry and PSYCHIC MIRRORS.

Sanz and Escobar first met over 15 years ago and have similar interests.

They decided to launch a Lower East Coast storefront during last year’s Art Basel.

Since then, they have hosted a series of pop up events with artists they manage, and others.

They also sell street wear brands like the Miami based Stray Rats and their own original tees.

“Everything we do is small batch runs,” Sanz said. “What we do is very niche. When you work with the young art kids, the rarer it is, the cooler it is.”

The interior of the shop is an all-white industrial space with high ceilings. It also features wood bleachers were you can sit and read through the collection of rare zines.

Ultimately Sanz said that they are trying to create a sense of community in Miami with Lower East Coast.

“It’s inspired by places we visit in New York and London,” Sanz said. “We need more mom and pop shops here. It’s something we’re missing.”

***HOT TIP-  You can also watch World Cup games and hang at the store. Lower East Coast is also partnering with Hialeah thrift and consignment store, Ropa Vieja, to sell a variety of select 90’s soccer kits and a custom, limited edition World Cup T-shirt. 

**IF YOU GO: Open Wednesday through Sunday from 12 PM to 8 PM.

Lower East Coast (3418 NW 7th Ave, Miami, 33127)

——Here’s Something Completely Different: ——

The TV Weatherman Who Is Trying To Save Miami From Drowning

RISE NEWS is South Florida’s digital news network. Follow us on Facebook to make sure you never miss a story!

Have a news tip about this topic or something completely different? Send it to editor@risenews.net.

There Are Now Robot Floor Cleaners At Miami International Airport

What’s News In This Story?


–Miami International Airport (MIA) is now home to two autonomous cleaning vehicles that help polish the floors of busy Concourse D. 

According to a press release announcing the program, the robots are programmable, self-driving machines that are capable of running for more than four hours at a time.

-The robots can polish up to 80,000 square-feet of terminal floor space in four hours, which is roughly equivalent to two football fields.

–C&W Services runs facilities maintenance at MIA and they claim the robots will free up time for their 672 on-site cleaning professionals to focus on other projects. 

“We’re excited to launch these customer-oriented cleaning initiatives at MIA, which is one of C&W Services’ most prominent U.S. partners,” said Milagros Diaz, Operations Director for C&W Services at MIA said in a statement. 

–MIA sees over 44 million visitors each year and over 125,000 per day. It is one of the busiest airports in the United States. 

 

——Here’s Something Completely Different: ——

The TV Weatherman Who Is Trying To Save Miami From Drowning

RISE NEWS is South Florida’s digital news network. Follow us on Facebook to make sure you never miss a story!

Have a news tip about this topic or something completely different? Send it to editor@risenews.net.

The TV Weatherman Who Is Trying To Save Miami From Drowning

What’s News In This Story?


–John Morales is the chief meteorologist of NBC 6. He has also become one of the leading voices on climate change in South Florida. 

Morales is not afraid to use his platform to talk about climate change. 

–He frequently ties daily weather events to the broader context of what’s happening with climate change. Examples of this include the increasing frequency of “King Tides” in Miami and the increase in days that are good for mosquito development.

–Morales was born in upstate New York and raised in Puerto Rico. He studied atmospheric science at Cornell University and worked for the National Weather Service before getting into local tv in 1991.  

–He helped Miami’s Spanish speaking community get through Hurricane Andrew while he was at Univision- a job that he held until 2003. He then worked at Telemundo’s Miami affiliate for six years before scoring the chief meteorologist job at NBC 6 in 2009. 

 –Morales helped the American Meteorological Society increase its standards for broadcaster meteorologists- a move that some feel helped increase the number of tv weather people who believe that climate change is caused by humans. 

——Here’s Something Completely Different: ——

La Gringa For Miami: How A Special Election Is Changing Politics In South Florida

RISE NEWS is South Florida’s digital news network. Follow us on Facebook to make sure you never miss a story!

Have a news tip about this topic or something completely different? Send it to editor@risenews.net.

On Father’s Day This Group Made Miami’s Homeless Dads Smile

What’s News In This Story?


–Valencia Gunder and her non-profit organization Make The Homeless Smile made a special effort for Miami’s homeless dad’s on Father’s Day

–Gunder, who spent nearly a month homeless in 2009, started the organization in 2014 to give back. 

–Gunder said that she knows that Father’s Day can be sad for dads who live on the streets because many of them aren’t in touch with their children. 

–25 volunteers spent a few hours feeding over 100 people under the shadow of the Freedom Tower in downtown Miami. 

–An organization from Tallahassee called Coach’s Closet brought sneakers to give to the homeless and a barber was on hand to give out free haircuts. 

–Gunder and her group do this every third Sunday of the month at the same spot on NE 1st Ave and 6th St. 

 

——Here’s Something Completely Different: ——

La Gringa For Miami: How A Special Election Is Changing Politics In South Florida

RISE NEWS is South Florida’s digital news network. Follow us on Facebook to make sure you never miss a story!

Have a news tip about this topic or something completely different? Send it to editor@risenews.net.

La Gringa For Miami: How A Special Election Is Changing Politics In South Florida

What’s News In This Story?


Eileen Higgins has a good chance to win an open seat on the Miami-Dade County Commission Tuesday. 

Higgins is a Democrat. If she wins the election, then Democrats would have 7 of the 13 seats on the Commission.  

-Despite being technically non-partisan, the race has become politicized by both the local Democratic and Republican parties. 

-Bruno Barreiro represented the 5th district (which stretches from Miami Beach to Little Havana and includes much of Downtown Miami) for 20 years. He was forced to step down in order to run for Congress due to a new state “resign to run” law. 

Zoraida Barreiro has benefited from the support of the Miami-Dade Republican Party.

-Barreiro’s wife, Zoraida is running to succeed him in the seat. She was born in Cuba and helps run her family’s home healthcare business in Miami. 

-Higgins was born in Ohio and raised in New Mexico. She also spent time in Latin America running Peace Corps operations and in Washington, D.C. where she worked for the State Department. She now runs a marketing company. 

Eileen Higgins has motivated Democrats and inspired the Miami-Dade Democratic Party to back her. Will it be enough?

-A white woman (hence the “la gringa” nickname)  probably wouldn’t have stood a chance in this district in recent decades. But Higgins has run a smart campaign that has motivated Democrats to get off the sidelines and commit resources to getting her elected.

-Higgins also speaks close to fluent Spanish, which has helped her while campaigning in the nearly 63% Hispanic district. 

-If Higgins can win, experts think that Democrats will copy her campaign and make other local races like the upcoming 2020 Mayor race a partisan affair. 

Higgins and Patrick Hidalgo look at a canvassing list on an iPhone.

***”Why Does Any Of This Matter?”***: Because local elections in Miami have historically been non-partisan and that is about to change, probably to the benefit of Democrats. 

——Here’s Something Completely Different: ——

There’s A Secret Buddhist Temple In This El Portal House

RISE NEWS is South Florida’s digital news network. Follow us on Facebook to make sure you never miss a story!

Have a news tip about this topic or something completely different? Send it to editor@risenews.net.

 

Miami Shores Vice Mayor Puts His Money Where His Mouth Is On Solar Energy

What’s News In This Story?


-Miami Shores Vice Mayor Sean Brady has installed a solar panel system on his roof, a step that he hopes encourages others to get on board with the technology. 

-When he was elected to the village council in 2017 Brady said that he was challenged by a resident about what he had actually done on climate change. 

-The resident said to Brady: “I really don’t want you doing this pie in the sky stuff, what have you personally done to be able to reduce your carbon footprint?”

-Brady said that he was glad he was able to tell the resident that he was pursuing a solar panel system at his home. 

Some of the solar panels on Miami Shores Vice Mayor Sean Brady’s house.

-Brady said that the system has been running since the end of April and that it usually generates more power than he uses on a typical sunny day. 

-Brady should make up for the price of the system in 7 years time due to his lower monthly electric bill. He eventually wants to be off of the FPL grid entirely. 

-Brady said that Florida’s regulatory environment is not conducive for consumers who are interested in going solar. 

Brady shows off his solar panel system. He said that the system should be pay for itself in 7 years due to energy savings.

-As a result, Brady said that he wants Miami Shores to lead the way by making things easier for residents to install solar units.

-An example of this is the fact that the village has waived permitting fees for panels for the next year. 

-There is also a local Northern Miami-Dade Solar Co-op that Brady hopes can build enough scale to make a difference. Miami Shores has signed on as a partner with the co-op. 

Brady in front of his Miami Shores home.

-Brady said that he wants Miami Shores to eventually put solar panels on all of the village’s municipal buildings and he hopes to see change in state laws so that homeowners can have more choices on the issue. 

——Here’s Something Completely Different: ——

There’s A Secret Buddhist Temple In This El Portal House

RISE NEWS is South Florida’s digital news network. Follow us on Facebook to make sure you never miss a story!

Have a news tip about this topic or something completely different? Send it to editor@risenews.net.

Haitian Radio Host Called A Race Baiter By NoMi Councilman, After Controversial Rant The City May Have Paid For

What’s News In This Story?


–North Miami Councilman Scott Galvin called popular Haitian radio host Rotschill Anderson a race baiter after the media personality went on a controversial on-air racial rant. 

-Galvin claims that the city has paid Anderson in the past to allow North Miami staff to promote the city on air. Galvin also said that it was his understanding that the city had paid for a May 1 appearance by Assistant City Manager Arthur H. Sorey III.

-Sorey was on the show to encourage residents to vote for a $120 million bond measure. But he also sat through a rant from Anderson that some found to be racist.

-Anderson strongly supported the bond and asked his listeners to vote for it because he felt it would improve the city’s heavily Haitian western section. 

-But it was the language that Anderson used that has gotten attention: “The big white guy, the big jewish guy- they are going to come into your community, says that your community is ugly and its nasty… gentrification will kick in.” 

-A quick public records search finds that North Miami has paid Anderson’s radio station at least $1,800 so far in 2018 for “public relations.” 

-But city manager Larry Spring told RISE NEWS that Galvin is wrong and that the city did not pay Anderson for the May 1 show.

-The city council has temporally suspended all payments to media outlets until they can craft a new policy to prevent a future incident. 

——Here’s Something Completely Different: ——

There’s A Secret Buddhist Temple In This El Portal House

RISE NEWS is South Florida’s digital news network. Follow us on Facebook to make sure you never miss a story!

Have a news tip about this topic or something completely different? Send it to editor@risenews.net.

Senator Lied About Her Mother Being Dead During Irma To Skip Power Outage Line

What’s News In This Story?


–State Senator Daphne Campbell lied about her mother being ill in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma. Her mother had been dead for at least a year by that time. 

RISE NEWS was the first to expose text messages Campbell sent to a FPL lobbyist one day after Hurricane Irma impacted South Florida. 

–The messages revealed that Campbell tried to use her status as a State Senator to get FPL to turn on electricity at her home.

–Her reasoning for the abuse of power? She had a sick mother at home who needed electricity to run an oxygen machine. 

–Campbell texted: “Can someone helps [sic] me with the power. I do have a sick person in my house and she’s using oxygen. The address is… [address redacted]. Same than my children’s house…[address redacted]. Thanks Senator Campbell.”

–The problem (one of many with that rationale) is that Campbell’s mother was dead at the time, according to Campbell’s own words. 

–Campbell was caught by the Miami New Times in the latest lie after reporter Jerry Iannelli came across a Youtube video from 2016, where Campbell talked about her dead mother. 

“My father and my mother died,” she says around the 2:20 mark of a video posted to Youtube in 2016

-A Campbell staffer tried to defend his boss to the New Times by saying that she wasn’t actually talking about her biological mother. “Instead, Campbell was referring to a long-standing family friend whom she allegedly refers to as ‘mom.'” The staffer did confirm that Campbell’s biological mother was dead. 

–Campbell called the original RISE NEWS report “fake news”. About that… 

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Read More: State Senator Claimed She Had a “Sick Mom” During Irma Despite Her Mom Being Dead (Miami New Times

Original RISE NEWS story from 9/17/17: EXCLUSIVE: Senator Tried To Use Connection To FPL Lobbyist To Get Power On For Her Family Post Irma

——Here’s Something Completely Different: ——

There’s A Secret Buddhist Temple In This El Portal House

RISE NEWS is South Florida’s digital news network. Follow us on Facebook to make sure you never miss a story!

Have a news tip about this topic or something completely different? Send it to editor@risenews.net.

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