The Miami Springs Centennial Committee (which includes¬†Julia Arias, Captain¬†Nihal Perera,¬†Michael Gavila, Jaime Petralanda,¬†Kathy Doyle, Alex Aguiar, and¬†Seth Bramson)¬†shared some of its amazing proposals in a report to the Miami Springs City Council this week.¬† The committee’s proposals included:

  • Aviation Playground

  • Centennial Collectable Pins

  • Centennial Golf Tournament

  • Centennial History Book

  • Centennial Trees

  • Glenn Curtiss Aviation and Food festival

  • Glenn Curtiss Circle Park name installation/ Street rename

  • Glenn Curtiss Motorcycle show/ Derby race

  • New Year‚Äôs Eve 2026 Fireworks Display

  • School Activities/ Traveling Trunk

  • Smithsonian Exhibit

  • Statue/Monument unveiling

  • Other Projects for the Community¬†

Aviation Playground

  • Targeted Audience: Community Children
  • Proposal: Design and purchase aviation themed playground equipment to create a playground possibly on the property behind Historical Society museum.
  • Rationale: This would be a permanent community improvement which will endure long after the Centennial celebration, and will remind our youngest generation of the place aviation has played in the history of Miami Springs.
  • Projected Cost: $50-75,000
  • Source of funds: Centennial Committee fundraising; community and aviation company pledges.
Miami Springs Centennial Logo - 1926 - 2026
Miami Springs Centennial Logo – 1926 – 2026

Centennial Collectible Pins

  • Targeted Audience: Community event participants and sponsors
  • Proposal: A contest will be conducted (in 2024) to design a series of pins that celebrate various aspects of life in Miami Springs and aspects of our history. The goal is to have 12 pins, one for each month. The culminating pin will be the Centennial Committee seal and will be presented to all who have attended at least one event per month, and have collected the other 11 pins.
  • Rationale: We will be selling other memorabilia of the year, but we want to generate enthusiasm for participation in all events, and we think this is a fun and inexpensive way to generate community pride.
  • Projected Cost: $1,250 for 1,000 pins Total: $15,000 (Prizes for designers could be a sets of pins)
  • Source of funds: Centennial fundraising and community sponsors.

Centennial Golf Tournament

  • Budget: Will be sponsored by Dasi LLC a local aircraft inventory solutions provider
  • Location: Golf course and Curtiss mansion, or just the Golf course
  • Event fee: Tiered sponsorship entry levels
  • Date: July 2026
  • Recommendation: If the pre-event party and breakfast are held at the Curtiss mansion, with all items provided by the mansion it should be a 50/50 income split.
  • All monies remaining after the costs of the Tournament that are paid will be donated to the Centennial Celebration.
  • Can remain an annual event if successful.

Centennial Release of History of Miami Springs Book 

  • Title: From Country Club Estates to Miami Springs: The Centennial History of an incredible City
  • The material is about and dealing with the history of Miami Springs.
  • Contractual arrangements need to be finalized so that (Seth) may begin working on the book in a timely manner. Introduction, chapter titles and first chapter will be presented to the person who is the designated contact for the City for their approval. The material as well as each completed chapter will also be forwarded to the City Manager in order that he may review and suggest additional items for each chapter if he so chooses.

Centennial Trees 

  • Targeted Audience: MS Communit
  • Proposal: MS would purchase and plant five golden poinciana trees to be planted at City entrances and near the Circle. Ideally, these will be planted immediately or on Arbor Day, April 26, 2024 so that they are thriving by 2026.
  • Rationale: Since we are a Tree City, we should celebrate that title by a lasting contribution to our environment in honor of our Centennial. A golden Poinciana at each entrance, and one close to the center of the City will remind our community of our illustrious past and our commitment to a green future.
  • Projected Cost: $2,500
  • Source of funds: The normal City budget for tree planting.

Glenn Curtiss Aviation and Food Festival

  • Budget: Committee is currently requesting $10,000.
  • (Advertisement and equipment rentals)
  • Location: Country Club banquet hall or Curtiss Mansion
  • Event fee: Ticket tiers from $75 – $200
  • Date: May 2026
  • Recommendation:
    • This event should be opened to all restaurants interested in participating, both in and outside of the City.
    • The name is a work in progress and can be changed.
    • Will be an annual event.
    • Provide incentives for guests like a raffle during the initial event.
    • Committee Member Bramson will present a historic lookback at local restaurants during the initial event.

 

Glenn Curtiss Circle Park name plate installation and Curtiss Parkway renaming

  • Proposal: Captain Glenn Curtiss Parkway on every street sign in Miami Springs
  • Proposal: Glenn Curtiss Circle Park, new much larger name plate situated in a very conspicuous location on the circle please, as he deserves both of these recognitions.
Plaque honoring Glenn Curtiss, the "Father of Naval Aviation" at the National Naval Aviation Museum in Pensacola, Florida
Plaque honoring Glenn Curtiss, the “Father of Naval Aviation” at the National Naval Aviation Museum in Pensacola, Florida

Glenn Curtiss Motorcycle Show and Soap Box Derby Race

  • Targeted Audience: all residents young and old from all over Miami
  • Proposal: to enlighten all in attendance of Glenn Curtiss’s Birthday weekend the amazing achievements of Glenn Curtiss was able to achieve as the fastest man on Earth holding that record for years in a row on a motorcycle.
  • Rationale: This event will dramatically announce our Centennial bringing all Miami residents and motorcycle enthusiasts together not only for our Centennial but annually on 21st May birthday weekend of the incomparable Glenn Curtiss our founder.
  • Projected Cost: Minimal due to Citizen’s participation with their own motorcycles and as well as the soap box derby done by the citizen’s as well.
  • Location: None other than on Captain Glenn Curtiss Parkway.

Glenn Curtiss the Fastest Man on Earth on his V-8 Motorcycle

2026 New Year’s Eve Fireworks Display

  • Targeted Audience: Entire Community
  • Proposal: What a fun and impactful way to greet the Centennial Year!
  • Rationale: This holiday event will dramatically announce our Centennial and bring all our citizens together for a festive evening!
  • Projected Cost: ?
  • Source of Funds: The Centennial Fundraising and a contribution from the City, considering we did not spend City funds on 4th of July fireworks in 2023

School Activities including Traveling Trunks

  • Targeted Audience: Students, Curtiss Explorers Essay Contest for Middle School, Miami Springs Senior High Aviation Academy Open House. Senior High school Students will also be invited to assist at Centennial events for Community Service.
  • Projected Cost: Trunks (3) $600
  • Essay contest: Prizes $500
  • Source of Funds: Donations from Community Sponsors.

Smithsonian Exhibit

  • Targeted audience: The Miami Springs, Hialeah and Opa Locka Communities
  • Proposal: To bring a Smithsonian Museum exhibit to the Mansion for a portion of the Centennial Year. This is a possibility we are investigating.¬† For our 90th Anniversary, the Curtiss Mansion hosted a traveling Smithsonian Exhibit called Waterways. We are hoping to work with the Smithsonian to possibly create a traveling exhibit on early aviation. Other possibilities include displaying an existing archived display of Posters of Early Aviation through WWI (minimal cost) or hosting an existing traveling exhibit called SPARK! featuring places of Innovation, since our Founder, Glenn Curtiss, was a great inventor.
  • Projected Cost: TBA
  • Source of funds: Grants plus sponsors

Statue/Monument unveiling

  • Budget: $115,000 – $200,000 (3 Installations and pedestals)
  • Committee is currently requesting $20,000.
  • Location: Behind Cavalier Clock in front of War memorial on Curtiss
  • Event fee: Free unveiling but paid event afterwards
  • Date: TBD but it‚Äôs recommended for the unveiling to be the first major event to kick-start celebrations.
  • Recommendation:¬† 3 pedestals are to be included to avoid vandalism, each at $5,000.
  • The unveiling can be free but a paid cocktail/fundraiser event can be held afterwards at the mansion.
  • Invite local historian to give short speech about Glenn Curtiss and his achievements/contributions during the unveiling.
  • Committee Member Perera is willing to pay up to $100k in donations from his own saved income for the use of a statue of Glenn Curtiss and one or two large size aircraft models that won‚Äôt exceed his budget.¬† (Side note:¬† I can’t say enough good things about Captain Perera and his continued commitment to our beautiful city.)
Curtiss Jenny at the Glenn Curtiss Museum (Photo Credit: Jorge Santin)
Curtiss Jenny at the Glenn Curtiss Museum (Photo Credit: Jorge Santin)

Other Projects Proposed for Community Groups:

  • Decades Fashion Show and Luncheon
    • Targeted Audience: Women of the Community
    • Proposal: We have invited the Miami Springs Woman‚Äôs Club to consider hosting this Centennial Event and Fundraiser.
    • Rationale: Glenn Curtiss founded our City during the Roaring Twenties, and each decade has witnessed history and style trends. This should be a fun way for the women of our City to relive the history while fundraising for the many charities supported by our Woman‚Äôs Club.
    • No Cost to the City or Committee (except for the monthly pins presented to the attendees.
  • Historical Play
    • Targeted Audience: Entire Community
    • Proposal: The Pelican Playhouse has promised to update and stage the play written about the history of Miami Springs for the City‚Äôs 75th Anniversary.
    • Rationale: This would hopefully produce an artistic work that could be revived every 10 years to educate newcomers to our City and our children, and foster a sense of pride in our history. We would hope to have special matinee performances for the children of our community.
    • Cost: Advertising and support of the Playhouse plus pin distribution to attendees.
    • Source of funds: Admission and Sponsorships
  • Additional Proposed Community-Hosted Events:
    • Church Choirs invited to host Church Concerts, inviting the Community to their Congregations.
    • Encourage neighborhoods to plan Centennial Block Parties throughout the year to foster a festive, friendly spirit. These could be occasions to plant trees on the medians

      in the neighborhoods to celebrate our tradition as a Tree City USA

  • Bicycle Race & Scavenger Hunt

  • Centennial Parade (sponsored floats)

  • City Picnic and Movie Night

  • Glenn Curtiss Exhibit

  • LED projection informational walk

  • Roaring 20‚Äôs party at Curtiss Mansion

  • Video Mapping Light show or Drone show

What do you think?

What activities are you most excited to see for the Miami Springs 100 Year Centennial Celebration in 2026?  Let us know in the comments below or via social media.

1 COMMENT

  1. Nestor:
    Thanks for a great report on this upcoming important celebration! My recommendations are:
    1. A bronze statue of Glenn Curtiss on a pedestal on Curtiss Parkway is an absolute must.
    2. Synthetic (not cotton) t-shirts should be made in all sizes and sold at cost to everyone in Miami Springs. The front should read boldly “I LOVE MIAMI SPRINGS” and the back should have something decorative honoring the 100th anniversary.
    3. Putting “CAPTAIN GLENN CURTISS PARKWAY” on every street name sign in town is extremely confusing and inappropriate. At most, that should be put on every street name sign that is on and parallel to Curtiss Parkway. Even that has the disadvantage of necessitating a small, hard-to-read, font whereas the existing “CURTISS PARKWAY” or “CURTISS PKWY” is shorter and therefore caters to a larger, more readily identifiable, font.
    4. Change the name of the existing Glen Way streen from “Glen” to “Glenn”.
    5. I favor a drone show over a fireworks show to differentiate it from the annual fireworks show and to introduce most residents to this amazing technology. Most people in Miami Springs have no idea what a drone show is.

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