It was great to be in the Grove Women's Club again. It's been a village treasure for over a hundred years. The club and the North Grove Homeowner's Association did a terrific job of producing the show. The turnout was good despite the rain.
I do recall that half of the candidates had memorable things to say. Ken Russell got a good round of applause when he stressed the Grove's uniqueness and and it's "soul". We need someone who will help preserve it.
Javier Gonzalez said, "I've been in retail and real estate for 35 years. I know BS and will do my best to keep it out of City Hall".
Grace Solares told us she has been fighting for Miami's citizens for over 20 years. She promises "transparency and greater public participation in government" (good applause as well).
The candidate sitting next to Teresa Sarnoff said, "Miami can't take any more Sarnoffs in City Hall" (applause). When it was Teresa's turn she reminded us in her monotone, "I am proud to be a Sarnoff". She added that she had once operated heavy equipment for her family's road construction business. Being a lover of tools, that got my attention.
That was it, short, polite speeches, no one actually debating each other, none of the fireworks we have come to enjoy watching Republican candidates tear each other apart. It wasn't allowed.
But five weeks from now each of us will vote for one of those folks on stage tonight. That person will decide much of the future of Coconut Grove. Tonight's "debate" will help many of us make that decision.