The South Miami business and community leadership came together on the first weekend in May to recognize and support the work of the South Miami Drug-Free Coalition.

From a fund-raising bowling event, The King Pins Challenge, begun four years ago, on this fifth anniversary the Coalition expanded its awareness in the community and introduced “The Challenge Weekend.”  The events included a SOMI Spring Sidewalk Sale among local retailers on Saturday, a Sunday Benefit Brunch hosted at area restaurants, and later that afternoon, Miami Dolphins legendary great Mercury Morris lead a Parenting Challenge Dialogue.  The “crowning event” on Sunday evening was The King Pins Challenge V bowling tournament and SOMI Silent Auction hosted at Splitsville Luxury Lanes.

This bowling tournament is a family fun event that brings civic and business leaders, law enforcement, high school students and professional athletes to the 13 lanes at Splitsville to raise funds for the South Miami Drug-Free Coalition. The coveted King Pins Challenge trophy, awarded to the team that raises the most funds was presented this year to the South Miami Police Explorers Post 256. Now in its fifth year, The King Pins Challenge is the principle annual fundraising event for the coalition. Teams from Chamber South, City of South Miami, First National Bank of South Miami, South Miami Hospital, South Miami Police Department, South Miami Police Explorers, South Miami Senior High and Team FootWorks competed on the lanes at Splitsville, which has hosted the event since its inception.

Honorary Co-Chairs for this fifth annual event were Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos & Lourdes Gimenez, and NBA Hall of Fame Finalist Tim Hardaway with wife Yolanda. They were joined by Mercury Morris of the Miami Dolphins Perfect Season team, and NFL free-agent Kennard Cox, founder of Outside the Huddle Foundation.

Event sponsors: Chamber South, Community Newspapers, Informed Families, Mack Cycle & Fitness, Police Benevolent Association, SOMI Magazine, South Miami Hospital, South Miami Rotary, Splitsville Luxury Lanes, Team FootWorks and The Shops at Sunset Place.



Top Row: SOMI Sidewalk Sale at The Dressing Room, Tupelo Honey with Gail Blum, and Studio LX.

Second Row: Sunday Benefit Brunch at Barceloneta, Town Kitchen + Bar enjoyed by Pat Levy and Scott Mesh, and two dishes prepared at The MexZican Gourmet.

Third Row: Parenting Challenge Dialogue with Mercury Morris, and moderated by Walt Liebman, local marriage and family therapist and father to Vice Mayor Josh Liebman; Against the Grain book signing; Walt & Barbara Liebman, Josh Liebman, Mercury Morris, South Miami Drug-Free Coalition Director Margaret P. Sotham, and Tiffany Morris of Outside the Huddle Foundation.

Fourth & Fifth Rows: The King Pins Challenge V with the Mariachi performing in recognition of May 5, Cinco de Mayo; Splitsville buffet being enjoyed by guests; Mayor Stoddard lays down the first ball; dad with daughter on the Kids’ Lane; Team FootWorks members high-fiving a strike; City of South Miami team member Carlos Marenco, proud winner of the raffle drawing of a pair of bicycles donated by Mack Cycle & Fitness.

Bottom right photo: Dolphin legend and member of the 1972-73 Perfect Season team Mercury Morris, NFL free agent Kennard Cox, event producer and publisher of SOMI Magazine John Edward Smith, Coalition Director Margaret P. Sotham and NBA Hall of Famer Tim Hardaway, who has been the celebrity guest emcee for the past five years.

For additional photos of The King Pins Challenge V, go to

The King Pins Challenge V photos by
Robert Parente.



About Author

Leave A Reply