A toast to you, and wishing our friends, readers and advertisers all the best for this holiday season.
May you enjoy the companionship of family and friends as you celebrate the season.


Season’s Greetings!  If you have a moment, pour yourself a cup of coffee and let me spend a few minutes with you as you thumb through our latest issue.

Thanksgiving fittingly ushers in the holiday season.  It provides us a good time to reflect and express gratitude before the hustle and bustle otherwise distracts us.

Over the past several issues, we’ve taken our readers to visit some of Miami’s fine cultural and community institutions: Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden, History Miami, the Perez Art Museum Miami, the Barnacle, Villa Vizcaya and the National Park Service, both of which are celebrating their centenary this year. Many readers have favorably commented on this special series exclusively published in “SOMI.”  I appreciate hearing from you, thanks.

In this issue we return close to home as we celebrate our “hometown.” We have many great family-oriented events happening in our hometown: our two art festivals, Santa’s Parade of the Elves, Safe Streets Halloween, the Twilight 5K, car shows and more, are part of the fabric of what makes SOMI so special.

Community events shape who we are, and whether you dress in a Halloween costume with your kids, put on a pair of running shoes for the 5K run, stroll through the artist tents on Sunset Drive for our annual art shows and car shows, the experience of coming together is a refreshing and exhilarating experience.

In this issue, we’ve got some new businesses in town to introduce you to in our What’s New in Town feature, and some which are planning to open, and which you’ll be reading about in our February/March issue.  In the category of “What’s New,” obviously the most significant for our community is the one being planned for the redevelopment of The Shops at Sunset Place.  Now locally owned and managed, the team is in the process of making improvements, signing new leases and presenting a long-term plan. You can read more about what’s on the horizon on page 35.

In 2017, the City of South Miami will be observing its 90th Anniversary.  This would be a good time to develop a strategic plan that will lead us to our centenary in 2027.

I must commend the City of South Miami administration for their attention to the beautification needs in our retail and restaurant district with new street signs, sidewalk repairs, tree plantings, attending to the flower planters and more.

And on my New Year’s Resolution List is to continue to push for more pedestrian and bicycle safety concerns. We definitely need a landscaped pedestrian crosswalk across Red Road at 73rd Street – that’s something that simply has to get done with the cooperation of the county.  The need has been apparent for years – let’s get it going.

The building of our town center is a significant “branding” effort that requires a sustainable marketing campaign and other infra-structure improvements that will require support from our municipal, county and state elected officials, commercial property owners, our area merchants and professional businesses, the chamber of commerce – and you, our shoppers and diners, who walk the tree-lined streets in our “hometown.”

And so after Black Friday, Shop Small Saturday and Cyber Monday, I hope you can enjoy the pleasant presence of family and friends in this joyous holiday season.

Enjoy the SOMI experience in 2017 and remember to SHOP SMALL IN SOMI all year round!

All the best,
JES Signature



Shout out-dec-jan 2017


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