The Urban Beach Week is the largest Urban Festival in the world that caters toward the Hip Hop Generation from 23 and over. Around 300,000-350,000 participants make the annual trek to South Beach for four days full of fun, food, festivities, entertainment, music and more.
How Did It All Start?
Urban Beach Week started back eight years ago as a small urban fashion show for a few thousand people interested in something different for Memorial Day Weekend in Miami.
In 1999, there was a smaller crowd but little did people know it was the start of something that was going to be big in the future.
A lot of urban clothing companies wanted a place where they could show off their new fashions. To model their clothes, those fashion companies brought in entertainers, actors and models to put a spotlight on their fashion. There were fashion shows every day all day. The response was extremely positive and very successful.
It was actually called Urban Fashion Week in the beginning.
With the warm weather, beautiful scenery, exotic location and large beaches, the event became a new hot spot for other to look towards for vacations and especially Memorial Day Weekend.
Soon after, recording artist and record labels and other entertainers begin to generate the idea that instead of using the same places such as New York and California to shoot videos, Miami could be the focal point.
For the first time, dozens of music videos begin shooting in Miami and brought notice to even more people. People wanted to live and feel what it was like as if they were in a video.
With the success of the very first Memorial Day Weekend word begin to spread to people all over the internet, the Black Beach Week Newsletters and word of mouth that Miami was the place to go for May.
The very next year in 2000 over 250,000 people shocked Miami when people arrived for an all-out party.
Since then, the event has grown and generated plenty of events such as the Celebrity Basketball Game, reggae festival, vendor area, shopping district, pool parties and has become the ultimate beach party for the Hip Hop culture. Last year was a record setting date as over 350,000 people witnessed the event first hand.
This year between 300,000 - 400,000 people will attend.
What happens at the event?
The actual event occurs on three streets along the popular South Beach Art Deco District. The hotels, clubs, shops, concerts and etc. all take place in one area so there isn't a need to drive anywhere to get to your destination. There are taxis within distance who can take you to any short distance.
What does the Gilligan family do?
We stay at home; we don’t go anywhere near South Beach as usually a bunch of people get shot. Also it is my daughter Katie’s 4th birthday so we will be having friends over and have a BBQ. What could be more American than cooking ribs with Coca-cola?