Since its inception in 2006, the LGBT group “Miami Beach Bruthaz” (MBB) has naturally held its lineup of festivities in the Miami Beach area.
But this year it will come to Wilton Manors and Fort Lauderdale for the first time.
The event started with founder Ian Smith organizing a Miami Beach getaway for himself and a couple dozen friends. Thirteen years later it has grown into one of the most popular LGBT events for gay men and women of color and their admirers.
Smith said one of the most exciting activities MBB has done was a cruise to Cuba in 2018.
“It was an amazing trip. The guys all enjoyed getting together as part of the MBB brotherhood and experiencing Cuba for the first time,” Smith said.
Of course the cruise stopped in Key West, too. The group met up with other guys who couldn’t make the trip but wanted to be a part of the event.
Since that first gathering in 2006 attendees have increased, although it has maintained a core group, Smith said. Participants have hit as high as the 300 to 400 range. People come from across the globe, mostly from the states, but also Canada, Brazil, Honduras and even Sweden and Australia.
“But our guys are consistent. It’s like a large family. Familiar faces come back year after year,” Smith said.
“MBB Does Wilton Manors at the Grand Resort and Spa” kicks off July 18 and runs through July 21.
The long weekend starts with a clothing optional Jacuzzi “jump off.” From there, you can expect everything from the MBB bar crawl to a day boat cruise, pool party, happy hour events, fashion shows, beachside lunch and beach bash.
Oh, and the “MBB Boyz” and DJs will be dancing and entertaining throughout the weekend at venues and locations in Wilton Manors and Fort Lauderdale.
The Grand Resort will also host the “MBB Penthouse Pride – Penthouse Party.
“We aren’t focused this year on big headliners per se, we really just wanted to explore new territory by bringing the event to Fort Lauderdale [and] Wilton Manors and bring our guys back together again. We’ve found that our guys aren’t so hung up about headliners; they really just want to connect and have fun. That’s our focus this year,” Smith said.
The annual “Bruthaz SpeakUP” event will be informal this year, Smith said, with the showing of two new episodes from the TYSONPlus indie video streaming service.
TYSONPlus features a diverse collection of shows that tell the stories of those within the LGBT and black community.
Smith said he’s trying to keep ticket pricing simple with events at $25 to $30. The day boat cruise is $75. You can purchase a package for the entire weekend for $150.
For those looking past 2019, the future of MBB will continue to incorporate travel, Smith said.
“We surveyed our attendees a few years ago … and that’s one of the reasons why we took MBB to Cuba last year. We’re potentially looking [to] maintain the event in the South Florida area, but travel internationally every other year,” he said.
For more details and ticket information, go to MiamiBeachBruthaz.com.