Coral Gables

Joseph Kaplan FAMILY PHOTO

Joseph Kaplan was a published poet. He was an accomplished labor lawyer for nearly five decades. And he was a devoted father and public servant.

In his role as a lawyer, he did pro bono work. Among those he represented: labor leader Cesar Chavez’s United Farm Workers Union. Kaplan was on the front lines during the drive to unionize orange groves in Central Florida. Chavez was a labor activist focused on improving the lives and working conditions of farmworkers.

Kaplan, a longtime resident of Miami Beach and Coral Gables, died Thursday at age 90.

JAMES CORNER FIELD OPERATIONS FRIENDS OF THE UNDERLINE

Ambitious plans for construction of the Underline, a 10-mile-long “linear park” for people on foot and on bikes that would run beneath the elevated Metrorail tracks, got a significant lift with the announcement Wednesday of a $22.3 million federal grant for the project.

The BUILD transportation grant to Miami-Dade County’s transit agency will pay for design and construction of a two-and-a-half mile segment running through Coral Gables, said Meg Daly, founder of Friends of the Underline, the nonprofit group that has conceived and coordinated the plan.

AP

Siding with the Florida Retail Federation and upholding the constitutionality of state laws, an appeals court Wednesday rejected a 2016 move by the city of Coral Gables to ban the use of Styrofoam food containers.

A three-judge panel of the 3rd District Court of Appeal overturned a ruling by a Miami-Dade County circuit judge who found three state laws unconstitutional and determined Coral Gables was not prevented from enacting the Styrofoam ban.

Arnulfo Franco / AP via Miami Herald

In Panama, the alleged sins of the father may have been echoed in South Florida by the sons. Two sons of former President Ricardo Martinelli – who’s facing a corruption trial back in Panama – were detained here this week.

Linda Robertson

Cut-through traffic has gotten so bad in one formerly tranquil pocket of Coral Gables that a pickup truck barreling through the neighborhood lost control and rammed into a house, coming to a stop with its nose nudging into the living room. A black skid mark is still visible on the yellow pillar by the front door.

It has come to this in gridlocked Miami: Drivers desperately seeking shortcuts to avoid traffic jams are frightening and angering people who just want to jog, bike, chat or walk their dogs on their own neighborhood streets.

Actors' Playhouse / Courtesy

A new musical examines the complex politics of Cuba in the 1950s through the lens of one couple's Cuban immigrant experience. 

"Havana Music Hall" follows the story of a husband and wife musical duo, Rolando and Ramona Calderon, who are close to getting a big break and hitting the world stage when Fidel Castro takes control of Cuba in 1959. Havana Music Hall takes the stage at Actors' Playhouse in Coral Gables on Oct. 10 at 8 p.m and will run until Nov. 18.

Frost Chopin Festival Comes to Miami

Jun 22, 2018
Courtesy of Kevin Kenner

University of Miami’s Frost School of Music and the U.S. Chopin Foundation are partnering to organize the first ever Frost Chopin Festival and Academy.

The Frost festival will give 20 pianists a chance to to immerse themselves in the work and legacy of composer Frederic Chopin. Most of the participants are from across the U.S. and some international.

Pianists were selected to  participate in masterclasses with Chopin experts and the week-long event will include public performances and lectures on Chopin's music and personal life.

WLRN Education reporter Jessica Bakeman spent time talking to black students at Miami Country Day School, a private institution with a predominantly white student body. According to the students, racism presents itself in many ways.

Bakeman reports on Sundial:

Weston City Hall
Caitie Switalski / WLRN

The city of Weston wants to ban weapons in city buildings and parks. The city of Coral Gables wants to ban the sale of assault-style weapons inside city limits. But as of now, both of those actions would break a state law that establishes that only Tallahassee can regulate firearms in Florida. 

In fact, local officials who try to enact their own gun-control policies right now face fines up to $5,000 or even removal from office. 

Leslie Ovalle / WLRN News

Guests for Sundial on Wednesday, Feb. 28:

City of Coral Gables Mayor Raul Valdes-Fauli discussed the city commission vote that banned assault weapons even though state law forbids local governments to pass gun laws.

Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School opened its doors to students today for the first time since the Feb. 14 mass shooting.  WLRN reporter Caitie Switalski spoke to us about how students, parents and faculty handled being back in the school. Also, MSD student David Hogg told us how he felt on his first day attending class after the shooting. 

Al Diaz / Miami Herald

This week on The Florida Roundup...

It's official: Coral Gables is the first city in Florida to enact a ban on plastic bags. Retailers are no longer allowed to supply them or they could be fined up to $500. This is just one of the new local government prohibitions on carrying containers.

Former Trainer Opens Fire At Coral Gables Gym, Killing Two Employees Then Himself

Apr 8, 2017
Al Diaz / Miami Herald

A gunman opened fire near the tony Equinox fitness center at the Village of Merrick Park in Coral Gables Saturday, killing two former co-workers before killing himself, police sources said.

Flckr

This week on The Florida Roundup...

John Power / WLRN

The city of Coral Gables believes Waste Management employees can also be crime fighters.

 

 

Coral Gables Chief of Police Ed Hudak Jr. was fascinated by the idea of Waste Watch, a crime prevention program. “This neighborhood watch initiative enhances the safety of Coral Gables neighborhoods and provides law enforcement with an extra set of eyes on the street to protect our community and citizens,” says Hudak.

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