Discover / Miami Marine Stadium
Save a National Treasure
REGION: South
LOCATION:
Miami, FL
TYPE: Building
Miami Marine Stadium is a former entertainment venue on Biscayne Bay. | Photo: Rick Bravo
Miami Marine Stadium is a former entertainment venue on Biscayne Bay. | Photo: Rick Bravo
Opportunity
Restore a premier entertainment venue on the shore of Biscayne Bay.

Overview

Miami Marine Stadium, which has been closed for 20 years, is a sentimental favorite of many Miami residents. Thousands once viewed power boat races here, attended Easter sunrise services, or experienced their first concert under the stadium’s signature cantilevered roof. On any given night, private boats would also surround the floating barge that served as the stadium’s stage. When the 326-foot-long, fold-plate roof was poured in 1963, it was the longest span of cantilevered concrete in the world.

National Significance

The 6,566-seat arena is the only stadium in the United States built for the purpose of watching power boat races. It was designed by Hilario Candela, a Cuban-born architect who at age 27 conceived a stadium that is now viewed as a masterwork of civic architecture and modern construction.

Campaign Goals

  • Work with local partners and the City of Miami to restore Miami Marine Stadium as a flourishing entertainment venue.

Ways To Help

Donate to our campaign to save Miami Marine Stadium.

Tell us why Miami Marine Stadium matters to you.

Posted on January 08, 2015

Excerpted from Miami Herald:

Miami officials are expected to vote today on a plan to spend millions on improvements to land next to the historic Miami Marine Stadium in order to lure the Miami International Boat Show to Virginia Key next year. “We’re just really excited about the opportunity and we’re really excited about what we’re going to learn in 2016 and ’17, and possibly beyond,” said boat show manager Cathy Rick-Joule. “I see that this will continue to be a part of the Miami International Boat Show in the foreseeable future.”

Learn more about Miami Marine Stadium >>

Read the full story >>

Posted on December 22, 2014

During a hearing held in early November, the National Trust was gratified that — for the first time ever — the Miami City Commission expressed unanimous support for restoring Miami Marine Stadium.

However, while expressing support for the stadium’s restoration, the Commission raised some tough questions about a larger proposal for development around the stadium that — in addition to restoring the stadium — included a significant commercial footprint on Virginia Key. This particular plan was not shared in advance with the National Trust, and in our view, was not developed with the transparency and due diligence that one should expect for such a prominent public site.

Over the past five years, the National Trust has worked diligently to support efforts to restore Miami Marine Stadium. And we stand ready to support the City of Miami in its planning to preserve this important National Treasure.

Looking ahead, our commitment to saving and restoring Miami Marine Stadium for future generations remains unchanged. We invite you to stay tuned here on SavingPlaces.org, where we will continue to share important updates about our work to make this vision a reality.

Thank you for your support, and for all that you do to help save the past to enrich the future.

Posted on November 13, 2014

Written by Jason Lloyd Clement, Project Manager

The Progressive Insurance Miami International Boat Show and Friends of Miami Marine Stadium today announced a win-win agreement that will provide ideal accommodations for the world’s largest boat show while paving the way for the restoration of Miami Marine Stadium – a long-shuttered masterpiece of modern architecture that in 2009 was declared one of America’s most endangered historic places by the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

At a press event held this morning at Miami Marine Stadium, representatives from the Miami International Boat Show announced that they have committed to hosting the boat show in 2016 and 2017 at the stadium and its grounds while exploring it as a long-term home. The announcement follows months of speculation over the boat show’s future in the city due to the renovation of the Miami Beach Convention Center, which is slated to begin in 2016.

The first confirmed reuse of Miami Marine Stadium and its grounds since their closure in 1992, the agreement with the Miami International Boat Show allows the restoration of the stadium to begin in earnest.

“In 2016, the Miami International Boat Show will celebrate its 75th year in Miami. What better way to commemorate the significance of this historic annual tradition than by bringing the show to Miami Marine Stadium – one of Miami’s most iconic and beloved marine venues,” said Thom Dammrich, president of the National Marine Manufacturers Association, which owns and produces the show. “With unique features to accommodate the more than 100,000 boaters who travel from throughout the globe to experience the best the boating industry has to offer, Miami Marine Stadium could be poised to be a home for the boat show in 2016 and beyond.”   

“The Miami International Boat Show is the premier event of its kind in the country and a significant economic force in Miami, drawing thousands of local residents as well as tourists from around the world,” said Miami Mayor Tomás Regalado. “And Miami Marine Stadium is a beloved place that holds special memories for generations of Miamians. By bringing these two together, this agreement ensures that both of these important institutions are on the path to a bright future here in Miami.”

“This is the kind of agreement that the National Trust has envisioned since we named Miami Marine Stadium to our annual list of America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places in 2009,” said Stephanie Meeks, president of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. “Having the Miami International Boat Show as the first confirmed reuse of the stadium in almost a quarter century hastens the day when Miamians will once again be able to come together in this iconic National Treasure.”

“All of us who love Miami Marine Stadium have waited a long time for this day,” said Hilario Candela, the Cuban American architect who designed the stadium when he was 27 years old. “Not only do we finally have a tenant at the stadium, but the fact that it will be a new home of the Miami International Boat Show is especially appropriate. The stadium was envisioned as a center for boating and a gathering place for people who love boats. To have it now return to embrace its original use is symbolic and especially gratifying.”

Gloria Estefan, a Trustee of the National Trust for Historic Preservation who has served as the “Voice of Miami Marine Stadium” and single-handedly elevated the campaign to restore it to an international audience of millions, made the announcement at this morning’s event.

“I have wonderful memories of performing at Miami Marine Stadium and of attending the Miami International Boat Show.  To have both, together in one place, is a perfect match,” said Estefan. “For people in Miami, boating is in our DNA. I look forward to the day when the stadium is once again filled with people coming together to create long-lasting memories of their own.”

Joining his wife at the event, Miami-Dade Special Ambassador Emilio Estefan added: "Having the opportunity to host the world-renowned Miami International Boat Show at Miami Marine Stadium is a winning situation for both the stadium and the City of Miami. The Miami International Boat Show is one of our city’s premier events that so positively impacts our residents, hotels, restaurants, taxi drivers, and all areas of business. Congratulations to Friends of Miami Marine Stadium, the National Trust for Historic Preservation, and Mayor Tomás Regalado for this exciting announcement."

Please check back often for additional updates on Miami Marine Stadium. Also, donate today to support the National Trust's ongoing work at this National Treasure.

Posted on November 04, 2014

Excerpted from Soul of Miami:

What happens when Miami’s most iconic structure inspires top street artists from around the world? Find out at an exciting pop-up exhibition kicking off Art Basel and featuring artists from the Art | History Mural Project. Hosted by the Art History Mural Project, the National Trust for Historic Preservation, and Friends of Miami Marine Stadium, the exhibition is free and open to the general public.

More about Miami Marine Stadium >>

Read the full story >>

 

Posted on September 19, 2014

Written by Jason Lloyd Clement, Project Manager

What do Miami Marine Stadium, the iconic Sydney Opera House, and Frank Lloyd Wright’s famed Prairie-style Robie House have in common?

They have all received major preservation grants as part of the Getty Foundation's Keeping It Modern Initiative, which will address the considerable challenges involved with the conservation of modern architectural heritage through support for key model projects. 

The Getty Foundation will awarded $180,000 to Friends of Miami Marine Stadium to evaluate and restore the waterfront stadium’s concrete exterior. Consultants will also devise ways of conserving some of the best examples of the graffiti that blankets the long-closed building and that has become part of its identity over the years.

Modern architecture is one of the defining artistic expressions of the 20th Century and is increasingly at risk. Architects and engineers often used experimental materials and novel construction techniques to create innovative forms and advance new approaches to architecture. These cutting-edge building materials and structural systems were often untested and have not always performed well over time. Heritage professionals do not always have enough data on the nature and behavior of these materials to develop the necessary protocols for conservation treatment. Keeping It Modern is addressing these challenges by funding model projects that can point the way toward new methods and standards for the conservation of modern architecture.

Please join us in celebrating this major milestone in the stadium's rebirth!

Please check back often for additional updates on Miami Marine Stadium. Also, donate today to support the National Trust's ongoing work at this National Treasure.

Posted on September 03, 2014

Written by Jason Lloyd Clement, Project Manager

Dying to explore Miami Marine Stadium? We've got your golden ticket!

On Saturday, September 20, the National Trust for Historic Preservation will open the gates as street artists from around the world are unleashed inside Miami's most iconic building – paint brushes and spray cans in hand.

Their mission? To create stunning new murals inspired by the stadium and the grassroots campaign to save it.

Participants will receive full access to the site as the new murals are installed, as well as a special photographic print of other pieces created as part of the ART | History Mural Project – an innovative fundraising effort that is enlisting contemporary artists from around the world to help bring Miami Marine Stadium back to life.

There are two tour times – 2:00 PM and 4:00 PM – and a limited number of tickets are available to the general public for $40 each. 

Don't miss your chance to experience Miami's modern masterpiece like never before. Get your tickets today!

Please check back often for additional updates on Miami Marine Stadium. Also, donate today to support the National Trust's ongoing work at this National Treasure.

Posted on September 03, 2014

Excerpt from The Miami Herald:

With momentum gathering behind a campaign to renovate the stadium, the glass and graffiti could soon be gone. A group called the Friends of Miami Marine Stadium is working to resuscitate the 50-year old structure, declared an endangered architectural treasure by the National Trust for Historic Preservation. Pop stars Gloria Estefan and Jimmy Buffet have headlined the drive to raise $30 million to save the iconic stadium overlooking the water on the edge of Virginia Key.

Read the full story >>

More about Miami Marine Stadium >>

Posted on July 22, 2014

Written by Jason Lloyd Clement, Project Manager

PBS NewsHour's report last night features everything I love about Miami Marine Stadium – stunning views of the city, Elvis and Jimmy, the rattle of spray paint cans, vintage boat racing clips, and "Conga." 

The full piece, which can be streamed here, goes behind the scenes at our recent event with Gloria Estefan and the ART History - Friends of Miami Marine Stadium Mural Project. It also offers a fantastic, 360-degree look at the stadium from inspiration, construction and full use to eventual abandonment and artistic rebirth. It is truly a must see!

Please check back often for additional updates on Miami Marine Stadium. Also, donate today to support the National Trust's ongoing work at this National Treasure.

Posted on July 21, 2014

Written by Jason Lloyd Clement, Project Manager

For more than 30 years, Los Angeles-based artist RISK has made the world his canvas, creating colorful murals on everything from highway overpasses to dilapidated buildings, walls, trains, and buses. Late last month, Miami Marine Stadium became his muse thanks to the ART History - Friends of Miami Marine Stadium Mural Project.

Watch in this clip as RISK works his magic, and stay tuned to PBS NewsHour for an upcoming report on our efforts to save the stadium as part of their ongoing series, Culture at Risk.

Please check back often for additional updates on Miami Marine Stadium. Also, donate today to support the National Trust's ongoing work at this National Treasure.

Posted on July 04, 2014

Written by Jason Lloyd Clement, Project Manager

When architect Hilario Candela first visited the site where Miami Marine Stadium would eventually be built, he described the beautiful natural settings as the “place where the land and the sea kiss." Today, I can’t help but imagine sitting in the stands and watching fireworks dance over the Biscayne Bay.

Happy Fourth of July, stadium supporters!

Please check back often for additional updates on Miami Marine Stadium. Also, donate today to support the National Trust's ongoing work at this National Treasure.

Posted on July 02, 2014

Written by Jason Lloyd Clement, Project Manager

Last weekend, Gloria Estefan announced a half million dollar gift to save and restore Miami Marine Stadium.

Today, we're happy to debut a special message from her with a simple call to action: Miami Marine Stadium needs you. Check it out below!

Please check back often for additional updates on Miami Marine Stadium. Also, donate today to support the National Trust's ongoing work at this National Treasure.

Posted on July 01, 2014

Written by Jason Lloyd Clement, Project Manager

It might have been 100 degrees in the shade, but that didn’t stop Miamians from turning out to help save a National Treasure!

On Saturday, June 28, international superstar and leading Miami businesswoman Gloria Estefan hosted a “Day of Art and Action” to celebrate Miami Marine Stadium. The festivities kicked off with a headline-grabbing announcement by Gloria herself – her foundation will donate half a million dollars to fund the stadium’s restoration.

Following the big news, Gloria lead 50+ contest winners inside the stadium as an all-star lineup of street artists painted nine new, large-scale murals inspired by the iconic structure and the grassroots movement to bring it back to life. The winners were selected as part of our Instagram contest, which garnered close to 450 entries in a matter of days. As for the murals, they were commissioned by the Art History Mural Project, which is bringing an international roster of artists to the stadium throughout the summer to create pieces that will be photographed and sold as prints to raise funds for the restoration.

It was a magical day best summed up in Gloria’s own words: “I am thrilled to help this spectacular building return to what it should be – an iconic Miami gathering place that brings people together to enjoy music, sports, and other cultural events. The joy, vibrancy and, creativity we see here at the stadium today are familiar to people of previous generations, who spent so many wonderful days here. I look forward to the day when this place once again hums with that creative activity, and I’m happy to help make that vision become a reality.”

Please check back often for additional updates on Miami Marine Stadium. Also, donate today to support the National Trust's ongoing work at this National Treasure.

Posted on June 30, 2014

Excerpt from NBC 6 (Miami) Coverage
 
Gloria Estefan announced today that she is donating $500,000 to the effort. Estefan, who last year was named the "Voice of the Miami Marine Stadium," has been a driving force behind the restoration project. She says she remembers the stadium in its glory days before its gates closed in 1992. "I remember specifically when Dr. Beat became a hit for the first time worldwide and we had our concert here, it was the first celebration for us of really stepping out onto the world stage," Estefan said.

Estefan's contribution was only part of the daylong celebration at the Marine Stadium. Today, several artists began painting 9 large-scale murals inside the iconic venue.

Craig O'Neil works with the Art History Mural Project. "We're creating a print edition based on these murals and other fine artworks as a way to directly raise funds for the Friends of the Miami Marine Stadium," O'Neil said.

Watch the full story >>

Posted on May 30, 2014

Excerpt from South Florida Business Journal

"Tourism Cares, a nonprofit devoted to restoring historic travel destinations, held the event. Gathering at Virginia Key with Miami Mayor Tomas Regalado, the 325 volunteers hailed from 29 states, four countries and 83 companies. The stadium fell into disuse 21 years ago after Hurricane Andrew and was scheduled for demolition until the community action group Friends of Miami Marine Stadium was formed. The National Trust for Historic Preservation named the stadium a national treasure in 2012."

Read Full Story >>

Learn More About Miami Marine Stadium >>

Posted on February 05, 2014

Written by Jason Lloyd Clement, Project Manager

Produced by the Little Gables Group, this video debuted as part of the Coral Gables Museum’s recent exhibition on Miami Marine Stadium. And even though I’ve seen it a hundred times now, it still gives me goosebumps! Check it out for never-before-seen footage of the stadium and a touching interview with architect Hilario Candela. 

Here's my favorite quote from Hilario: “What a privilege I had to do it. What a privilege I’m having of looking at it again. I’m not interested in mummifying the stadium whatsoever. I think we preserve the stadium not to keep it. We keep the stadium to go to the next phase of its life. The stadium should be about fun. It has to happen, because Miami deserves it.”

Please check back often for additional updates on Miami Marine Stadium. Also, donate today to support the National Trust's ongoing work at this National Treasure.

Posted on January 15, 2014

Written by Jason Lloyd Clement, Project Manager

Last month was Art Basel and this month was Jimmy Buffett – Miami Marine Stadium is certainly feeling the love! On Thursday, January 9, Jimmy Buffett joined National Trust Board Member Gloria Estefan at the Coral Gables Museum for a sold out celebration of Miami Marine Stadium, a venue they both played at in the 1980s.

During the event, 400+ attendees heard from several different speakers, including National Trust President Stephanie Meeks and stadium architect Hilario Candela, before NBC 6 anchor Jackie Nespral interviewed both stars about their memories of the stadium and their ideas for its reuse.

Before the event began, Gloria and Jimmy received a special tour of “Concrete Paradise,” the Coral Gables Museum’s critically-acclaimed exhibition on Miami Marine Stadium. The exhibit, which closed this past weekend, had over 8,000 visitors during its three-month run. 

Jimmy closed out the night by playing a set of nine songs with longtime steel drummer player Robert Greenidge. He played: Everybody's Talkin’, Cuban Crime of Passion, Grapefruit Juicyfruit, Son of a Son of a Sailor Feat. Emilio Estefan, Migration, Volcano, No Woman No Cry, A Pirate Looks At 40, and Margaritaville Feat. Gloria Estefan and Emilio Estefan.

The highlight of the night was, of course, the group rendition of one of Jimmy’s biggest hits – "Margaritaville." Check out this video snippet of the performance, and if you feel compelled, please – by all means – sing along!

Please check back often for additional updates on Miami Marine Stadium. Also, donate today to support the National Trust's ongoing work at this National Treasure.

Posted on January 09, 2014

Written by Jason Lloyd Clement, Project Manager

What a morning! The Miami Marine Stadium team has a little extra pep in its step this morning, and not just because tonight is the night for our big celebration with Jimmy Buffett and Gloria Estefan.

We're beaming because coverage of the event is front page news in today's Miami Herald! 

The entire story is incredible, but here is our favorite part in which Jimmy's recalls playing at the stadium: "'I remember very vividly,” Buffett said. “It was the perfect opening act. It put people in a rather festive mood. It was like being in a water carnival. There was space between the barge and the first seats in the grandstand. There were people swimming in there. It was not out of control exactly, but it was rockin’. It was also extremely hot. At one point, I told my stage manager, ‘When this thing’s over, take my guitar, because I’m goin’ in.’ And the rest is Miami Marine Stadium history."

You can catch the full story here: http://hrld.us/19UYCqI

Please check back often for additional updates on Miami Marine Stadium. Also, donate today to support the National Trust's ongoing work at this National Treasure.

Posted on December 20, 2013

Written by Jason Lloyd Clement, Project Manager

Few places capture the spirit of South Florida quite like Miami Marine Stadium.

From the roar of hydroplanes to dazzling performances on the bay, it was here that Miami turned its cultural heartbeat into a spectacle the world couldn’t resist.

Join us at the Coral Gables Museum on Thursday, January 9, from 6:30-10:30 PM as we relive those glory days with two legends who once graced the stadium’s dramatic floating stage – Jimmy Buffett and Gloria Estefan.

Hosted by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, this celebration will shine a spotlight on these two musical icons as NBC 6 anchor Jackie Nespral interviews the stars about their memories of the stadium’s past, as well as their hopes for its comeback as a world class sports and performance venue. Jimmy Buffett will close the evening with a short performance.

All guests will receive a one-year membership to the National Trust, as well as free admission to “Concrete Paradise,” the Coral Gables Museum’s critically-acclaimed exhibition dedicated to Miami Marine Stadium. Complimentary cocktails and heavy appetizers will be served throughout the evening. There will also be a silent auction featuring original stadium seats signed by the stars.

Click here to purchase your tickets. All proceeds benefit the National Trust's work to restore the stadium, as well as our host for the evening – the Coral Gables Museum.

Please check back often for additional updates on Miami Marine Stadium. Also, donate today to support the National Trust's ongoing work at this National Treasure.

Posted on December 20, 2013

Written by Jason Lloyd Clement, Project Manager

Art Basel has come and gone, but I can't stop looking at all of these amazing photos of supporters who turned out to show some love for Miami Marine Stadium.

Check some of my favorite shots below, and click here to see many more smiling faces saving places.

Please check back often for additional updates on Miami Marine Stadium. Also, donate today to support the National Trust's ongoing work at this National Treasure.

Posted on December 04, 2013

Written by Jason Lloyd Clement, Project Manager

Every December, Miami is transformed into one of the world's largest art fairs as 200 galleries from around the globe descend on the city, each one hoping to outdo the other with over-the-top installations and events. Attendance easily exceeds 50,000 for the four-day spectacle, which spotlights the work of over 4,000 artists from North America, Latin America, Europe, Africa, and Asia.

As the city prepares to kick off this year's festival on Thursday, buzz is building about an unexpected participant – Miami Marine Stadium!

AUDEMARS PIGUET and Galerie Perrotin are proud to present "Curiosity," an awe-inspiring installation by an artistic duo known as Kolkoz that will turn the stadium and its basin into something you don't see very often in Miami – a snowy winter scene.

Benjamin Moreou and Samuel Boutruche who make up Kolkoz have long explored the relationship between the real and the virtual. The installation – a Swiss chalet – floats alongside the stadium, creating a unique dialogue with the iconic structure. It is accessible by barge, presenting a waterside view that you won't want to miss. And yes, the stadium is lit at night!

This weekend, the National Trust will be on the scene with a special offer for "Curiosity" visitors – a chance to win a tour of Miami Marine Stadium with the architect himself, Hilario Candela. We will also have a stadium-inspired photo booth so you can commemorate your Art Basel experience in style.

If you're in town, please join us at Miami Marine Stadium (3501 Rickenbacker Causeway) on Saturday, December 7, from 12:00 PM-10:00 PM, or on Sunday, December 8, from 10:00 AM-4:00 PM. The event is free and open to the public. Parking will be available in the stadium's main lot. 

This event was curated and produced by MA3 Agency, a New York creative consultancy. We would like to thank Friends of Miami Marine Stadium, MA3 Agency, ACT Productions, the City of Miami, the Miami Department of Environmental Resources Management, and the many other groups and governmental agencies that made this project happen at the stadium.

Please check back often for additional updates on Miami Marine Stadium. Also, donate today to support the National Trust's ongoing work at this National Treasure.

Posted on October 24, 2013

Written by Jason Lloyd Clement, Project Manager

We are very pleased to announce that our partner, American Express, will donate $80,000 to underwrite an engineering analysis of the pilings that are sunk in the water and that support the stadium’s grandstand. This is an important first step in restoring the stadium, and we could not be more grateful for their generous support. More details on the study can be found in this Miami Herald article.

This evening from 7:00-8:30 PM at the Coral Gables Museum, Don Worth, co-founder of Friends of Miami Marine Stadium, will host an evening of interactive presentations and public discussion on the future of Miami Marine Stadium and the impact a revitalized stadium will have on Miami’s economy and culture. Timothy J. McClimon, president of American Express Foundation, will kick-off the event with a formal announcement of this new grant.

Please check back often for additional updates on Miami Marine Stadium. Also, donate today to support the National Trust's ongoing work at this National Treasure.

Posted on October 23, 2013

Written by Jason Lloyd Clement, Project Manager

These days the stadium may be off limits, but the creative minds at the Coral Gables Museum have done an outstanding job bringing it back to life.

On Thursday, October 17, the museum debuted Concrete Paradise: Miami Marine Stadium, an original exhibition devoted to Miami Marine Stadium’s flashy past, its edgy present, and its spectacular proposed comeback as a world-class sports and performance venue. Curated by renowned author and architectural conservator, Rosa Lowinger, this interactive exhibit brings the glory days of Miami’s most daringly modern structure back to life through stunning video footage, rare photos and keepsakes, original art installations, photo murals of the stadium’s infamous graffiti, and an antique hydroplane. It concludes with a special section dedicated to the stadium’s next chapter featuring never before seen site renderings and opportunities for museum visitors to share their vision for the structure’s future.

Here's what the curator herself had to say about it:

"This exhibition is an ode to an extraordinary, Cuban-influenced building that is celebrated for its modern-day edginess, but also manages to be serenely beautiful and quietly inspiring. I’ve been fortunate to experience so many amazing places in my career in conservation, and I truly believe that the stadium is our city's Eiffel Tower. As we like to say, ‘It's so Miami.’"

The exhibit, which is being presented by American Express, is open for public viewing Tuesday-Sunday through January 5. Hours and ticket prices vary, so please visit CoralGablesMuseum.org to plan your trip. And before you go, check out the video preview below. 

Please check back often for additional updates on Miami Marine Stadium. Also, donate today to support the National Trust's ongoing work at this National Treasure.

Posted on July 12, 2013

Written by Jason Lloyd Clement, Project Manager

On Thursday, July 11, Miami’s city commissioners voted 4 to 1 to give our partner, Friends of Miami Marine Stadium, control over the full site surrounding South Florida’s long-shuttered modern masterpiece on the water. This milestone decision effectively begins our campaign to restore, expand, and re-open Miami Marine Stadium as sustainable community asset on the Biscayne Bay.

Mayor Tomás Regalado said it best moments after the vote: “Today we right a wrong that has been there 20 years.”

While this is only the beginning of our campaign, we ask that you please join us in thanking Miami’s city leaders for supporting our vision for this iconic structure.

Please check back often for additional updates on Miami Marine Stadium. Also, donate today to support the National Trust's ongoing work at this National Treasure.


Posted on June 21, 2013

Written by Jason Lloyd Clement, Project Manager

Want to help turn the beat around at Miami Marine Stadium? Well, you're not the only one!

The one and only Gloria Estefan has signed on to be the "Voice of Miami Marine Stadium." As our spokesperson, Gloria will rally local support for the stadium and help our partner, Friends of Miami Marine Stadium, raise the $30 million needed to return the venue to public use.

Gloria Estefan

Estefan, who played on the stadium’s famous floating barge in the mid-1980s, called it “magical’’ and “an amazing piece of architecture” that should be restored to a central place in the city’s cultural landscape.

“We are a very young city, but we’ve been here long enough to have a history, and it behooves us to save places like this,’’ Estefan said in an interview with The Miami Herald. “I’ve been around the world, and there is nothing like this anywhere that I’ve been.’’

And Gloria hasn't wasted any time when it comes to making the case for the stadium. A couple of weeks ago, she personally called the city commissioners urging them to save the modern masterpiece.

Picture that for a minute – an international singing sensation ringing up members of the Miami City Commission to help protect a building she loves. (Also imagine what it must have been like to receive that call!) Her timing couldn’t be better, either; in a few weeks, the commission will review a comprehensive plan that, if approved, will allow the Friends of Miami Marine Stadium to continue its restoration efforts at this National Treasure.

If Gloria can take a minute to advocate for Miami Marine Stadium, we’re hoping you can too. Join Team Gloria by contacting the commissioners and asking them to approve the plan. Then, ask your friends to support the stadium and spread the word. Every email makes a difference. So let’s follow Gloria’s example and take a minute to help out this one-of-a-kind place.

Thanks for your support!

Please check back often for additional updates on Miami Marine Stadium. Also, donate today to support the National Trust's ongoing work at this National Treasure.

Posted on May 06, 2013

Jason ClementWritten by Jason Lloyd Clement, Project Manager

Since Miami Marine Stadium was named a National Treasure last year, I've had the distinct pleasure (when is going to Miami not a pleasure?) of visiting the stadium on two separate occasions. Both times, the same thing happened to me: the unreal view of the city from the stadium's seats stopped me dead in my tracks and rendered me utterly speechless. I know people use this expression all the time, but in this case, it is very true: you have to see this place to believe it!

As project manager, nothing would make me happier than to bring each and every one of you down to MIA with me, but I was thinking that maybe we could just start with Flickr. Check out this inspiring gallery of photos below, and if you haven't already, join us in urging Miami's city leaders to help save the stadium. The time is now to take action for this modern masterpiece on the water!

Please check back often for additional updates on Miami Marine Stadium. Also, donate today to support the National Trust's ongoing work at this National Treasure.

Posted on March 26, 2013

Written by Karen Nickless, Project Manager

Calling all stadium lovers: it's time to take action!

Our local partner, Friends of Miami Marine Stadium (FMMS), has been fighting to save Miami Marine Stadium since February 2008, when the City of Miami unveiled a master plan for the Virginia Key that did not include the beloved structure. In response, Don Worth (a local preservationist who loves the stadium), Jorge Hernandez (a National Trust board memeber), and Hilario Candela (the stadium’s architect) formed FMMS to save the stadium from demolition. In just five years, the group has donated time, funds, and expertise to take the stadium from almost certain demolition to a site plan designed to not only save the structure, but to do so in a sustainable way.

Once the city approved a reasonable master plan for Virginia Key in March of 2012, they entered into a Memorandum of Agreement with FMMS and the Miami Sports and Exhibition Authority, designating FMMS as the only entity authorized to raise funds for the renovation and operation of the stadium. This was contingent on the development of a site plan. FMMS worked with a steering committee selected by the city manager to develop the plan, which includes boundaries and construction costs as well as other aspects of restoration and operation.

On December 18, 2012, the City Steering Committee unanimously approved the plan and sent it forward for approval by the Miami City Commission. On March 14, FMMS presented the comprehensive plan to the C. Two of the five city commissioners have already voiced their support, but we need one more "yes" vote to reach a majority. 

Please take a moment to contact the three remaining commissioners and urge them to approve the site plan and stay the course with the FMMS, the only organization whose sole purpose it is to save the stadium.

Please check back often for additional updates on Miami Marine Stadium. Also, donate today to support the National Trust's ongoing work at this National Treasure.

Posted on December 13, 2012

Written by Karen Nickless, Project Manager

Photographer Jay Koenigsberg When Art Basel takes over Miami, you never know what kind of modern art you might see. For instance, you might see a giant alligator floating in Biscayne Bay. Titled "Floating Tile Art: Gator in the Bay," the gator is built upon a self-propelled barge and features a crane boom that allows the gator's mouth to open and close.

Of course, Biscayne Bay is no stranger to modern art. Since 1963, Miami Marine Stadium has graced its shores. It has been studied, painted, painted on (by graffiti artists), and photographed. Jay Koenigsberg has taken “the art of Miami Marine” to a different plane, with his high dynamic range photography. The artist, technique, and subject are a perfect match.

On December 3, 200 people attended the opening reception for Jay’s exhibit at the National Hotel in Miami Beach. A member of the National Trust’s Historic Hotels of America program, the National provided a stylish backdrop for the event. 

Jorge Hernandez and Don Worth, co-founders of the Friends of Miami Marine Stadium began the evening by noting the role the National Trust has played in the effort to save and restore Miami Marine Stadium. Don Worth introduced Delphine Dray, owner of the National Hotel. No stranger to preservation projects, Ms. Dray is responsible for the restoration of the National, an Art Deco landmark that epitomizes the mood and décor of the 1940s. Introduced to the Marine Stadium this summer, she knew immediately that she wanted to help save the stadium.

Architect Hilario Candela spoke of the special place the stadium holds in the hearts of Miamians, saying "When a community adopts your building, then you know you have succeeded as an architect." After Hilario spoke, Jay Koenigsberg discussed the technique that he used to make the photographs and Jay and Hilario signed prints.  

Please check back often for additional updates on Miami Marine Stadium. Also, donate today to support the National Trust's ongoing work at this National Treasure.

Posted on November 26, 2012

Written by Karen Nickless, Project Manager

Miami Marine by KoenigsbergArt Basel in Miami is the most prestigious art show in the Americas, showcasing more than 2000 artists of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. It's also Miami's best party, an opportunity to show off the town. On the evening of December 3, from 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM, Miami Marine Stadium will take its place as part of Art Basel, with the opening reception for an exhibit of high dynamic range images by photographer Jay Koenigsberg.

Jay Koenigsberg is a pioneer of high dynamic range photography. His cutting-edge work captures the spirit of Miami Marine Stadium with its depth and sense of motion. The reception and exhibit, which are free and open to the public, will be at The National Hotel on Miami Beach, an Art Deco gem built in 1939. The reception is in honor of Hilario Candela, the architect of Miami Marine Stadium. If you are in the area and plan to attend, please RSVP.

The nuts-and-bolts of saving the stadium continue as well, as the Friends of Miami Marine Stadium work with the City of Miami on the Marine Stadium Plan. The supporting Naming Rights Package and Capital Plan Study are also almost complete.

Please check back often for additional updates on Miami Marine Stadium. Also, donate today to support the National Trust's ongoing work at this National Treasure.

Posted on September 26, 2012

Written by Karen Nickless, Project Manager

Photo by National Trust

Part of the National Trust’s commitment to Miami Marine Stadium is providing extensive marketing support to inspire the Miami community to get excited about the restoration of this modern icon. On Wednesday, August 29, a team of four staff members from the National Trust’s marketing department met with Friends of Miami Marine Stadium co-founders Jorge Hernandez, Don Worth, and Hilario Candela to discuss ways to get Miamians and others involved moving forward.

Photo by National Trust

The energy and creativity in the room reflected the sheer impact the stadium has on the senses, which some team members had just seen for the first time. The National Trust team quickly turned the many creative ideas from the meeting into a concrete marketing plan designed to highlight the reemergence of Miami Marine Stadium from its “Sleeping Beauty years.”

Photo by National Trust

A multi-faceted plan, it includes working with Friends of Miami Marine Stadium to spread the word through social media, garnering national media attention, and using events to draw attention to the stadium project. For me, these events are the most exciting part of the plan. These days, most people only experience the stadium from a distance as a closed, overgrown, fenced off site, but our upcoming events will allow Miamians to experience the stadium from different perspectives. These events are still in the planning stages, so I can’t tell you what’s in the works, but I can assure you, they will be done in signature Miami style!

Please check back often for additional updates on Miami Marine Stadium. Also, donate today to support the National Trust's ongoing work at this National Treasure.

Posted on July 17, 2012

Written by Karen Nickless, Project Manager

I’m Karen Nickless, the National Trust's project manager for Miami Marine Stadium.

Since 2008, the National Trust has been working with Friends of Miami Marine Stadium to save and restore this iconic stadium. In 2009, the stadium was included on the National Trust’s annual list of America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places, raising awareness of its possible demolition. That same year, the National Trust helped fund an engineering study. Progress continued apace, culminating with a Memorandum of Understanding earlier this year between the City of Maimi, the Friends of Miami Marine Stadium, and the Miami Sports and Exhibition Authority. As a result, both groups have until September 2012 to submit a business plan, and until March 2014 to raise the funds need for restoration.  

So many people have helped us reach this place, and it has been a pleasure working with them. Jorge Hernandez, professor of architecture at the School of Architecture of the University of Miami, used the site as a project for a studio class in 2009, with Hilario Candela, Miami Marine Stadium’s architect, teaching along with him. The students’ plans for the stadium's restoration (many since adopted by the City of Miami) were innovative and thought provoking. It was a joy to attend their final presentations and to witness the creative energy across generations. The students learned from Hilario, and then convinced him that the graffiti that now covers his stadium should be preserved as part of its history.   

I’ve worked on many preservation projects that seemed to move at glacial speed. Miami Marine Stadium has not been one of them. Now the momentum from the past four years will be needed to get over the final (and large!) hurdles to the finish line – a functioning Miami Marine Stadium. 

Please check back often for additional updates on Miami Marine Stadium. Also, donate today to support the National Trust's ongoing work at this National Treasure.

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Ryan Camarena on June 23, 2014
The Miami Marine Stadium has been a place of interest for me, although it has not been easy to photograph and document. I hope that the Miami locals and others enjoy this photo as much as I enjoy photographing the stadium.
norman leathers on September 22, 2013
I donate to the campaign to renovate the marine stadium as a gesture to preserve one of the few beautiful architectural structures in Miami and in an outrage against the corrupt political beings who have allowed this travesty to take place under false pretenses of a structure not being stable and too costly to repair.
BRUCE BENSON on September 09, 2013
I REMEMBER GOING THERE AS A KID WITH MY DAD WHEN I WAS ABOUT 6. I THOUGHT IT WAS THE COOLEST THING EVER. I WENT THERE FOR MANY YEARS AFTER THAT AND I NEVER GOT TIRED OF WATCHING THE RACES THERE. I WILL ALWAYS REMEMBER ALL THE GREAT TIMES I HAD THERE. IT HURTS TO SEE ALL OF THE PAINTING AND THE PLACE FALLING APART. I BELEIVE PLACES LIKE THIS AND OTHER OLD LAND MARKS SHOULD BE SAVED. THANKS FOR ALL THE MEMORYS
Catherine on July 14, 2013
I worry about the impact to marine life in the area with added boat traffic, noise, and pollution. I've paddled in that area and often see manatees. I'm also wondering what plans there are to make sure that events are run as green and environmentally friendly as possible, considering it is next to water. For example, what effort will be made to make sure that litter from large crowds at events does not end up in the water? Will items sold be environmentally friendly/biodegradable? Will you ban plastic bottles or straws or styrofoam cups from the stadium? Will you make sure there are no plastic bags in the stadium that can blow into the water and harm marine life? I went paddling today in Fort Lauderdale. From one tiny corner of Victoria Park, I was able to completely fill a laundry basket with litter, mostly plastic water bottles and also styrofoam cups. The stadium should include many many trash and recycling bins, including in the parking lot. Perhaps the stadium could also put up posters encouraging guests to throw away trash properly, etc.? Thanks so much.
Roberto Gadala on May 08, 2013
Marine Stadium is an amazing asset for Miami - for boaters like me it provides a beautiful setting where we can spend the day and wait for the sunset which will in turn reveal the real beauty of the spot - Miami Skyline at night - the view is breathtaking and inspiring. An additional bonus is the fact that the spot offers the perfect space for waterskiing - Unfortunately some political preasure has been applied and now the area has been designated a "No Wake Zone" to favor the row club - regardless of this, the area should be preserved and Miami should take advantage of it again. We can hold concerts, races, waterskiing competitions, exhibitions, etc.
Karen Hutchison on April 24, 2013
I worked at the concession stand when I was in high school. I attended many events held there, long after my high school days. It was such a beautiful structure and so progressive for its' time. What a shame to see it being destroyed from neglect and vandalism. It was not only for locals, but it attracted tourists for the concerts (not all were R&R), boat racing, fire work displays, and worship services....can't it be saved?????? So much history......
alex frias on April 24, 2013
I remember as a kid going their with my family and seeing many different venues from performers to boat races. I would love to be able to share this with my kids. This is a Historic place for me and many others please figure out a way of rebuilding this place
Anon on April 24, 2013
I'd love to see some concerts out there! Just like my aunt did back in the day, but it's going to be quite the scandal when those who actual appreciate all the art that's been put up over the years will probably be replaced by a modern architectural stadium.
William on December 16, 2012
My mom tells me amazing stories about when she used to go there as a kid. I hope I will also get that chance in the future...
Architect Hilario Candela on July 02, 2012
[Taken from an Interview with "Preservation" Magazine] For many years, Miami Marine Stadium has been an iconographic image in Miami. We don’t have many, and I think we need to protect those we have. It’s also one of the only open spaces where all residents can get to the water. We want it to become a gathering place again.

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