MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Let the celebrations begin! Miami is celebrating a major milestone this week, its 125th anniversary.

“We are going to have a series of events around our 125-year celebration to commemorate our history and to remember how we got here. Why we’re doing well and how we could continue to learn from our past and be successful in the future” said Miami Mayor Francis Suarez.

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The Magic City was founded on July 28th, 1896, by Julia Tuttle with just 444 people who had settled along the Miami River. Since then, Miami has blossomed into the city it is today, the gateway to the Americas with close to half a million people calling it home.

The celebrations will run all week long with a number of events that will look at Miami’s history, its bright future, and its diversity and dynamism. With all its beauty, there have also been dark times especially this past year.

“It’s been a very difficult time. We have what happened in Cuba, before the Surfside collapse, before that, the assassination of the Haitian president. Our community is hurting, our community has been through a lot particularly with COVID and the George Floyd protests last year,” said Suarez.

Perhaps one of the characteristics that make Miami so unique is its melting pot of people and their resilience.

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During the 125th anniversary, Suarez says it’ a good time look back at all those moments, good or bad, that have shaped Miami to what it is today.

“These moments are moments of reflection and moments we can take a breath collectively and realize how far we’ve come and how much further we can go,” said Suarez.

Events featured during the six-day celebration include:

  • July 26: Miami Innovation Luncheon at the Rusty Pelican
  • July 27: NFT Workshop and Local Artist Highlight at the Bakehouse Art Complex
  • July 28: City of Miami 125th Anniversary Celebration at the Perez Art Museum
  • July 30: Little Havana Fridays at Domino Park
  • July 31: Miami Day at various city locations, will include Grove Heritage Day at Coconut Grove’s Village Center and Village West

In keeping with the theme of honoring Miami’s history while embracing the future, the City of Miami is also recognizing Miami residents who have had a significant impact on the city’s history and progress.

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The honorees are:

  • Dr. Enid Curtis Pinkney, notable preservationist, community leader, and humanitarian
  • Arva Moore Parks McCabe, Miami historian, author, and preservationist
  • Dr. Paul S. George, Miami’s lauded resident historian and prolific author and scholar
  • Dr. Dorothy Fields, who has been instrumental in documenting Miami’s African American history through manuscripts and photography
  • Dr. Marvin Dunn, author, educator, and historian

Marybel Rodriguez