It's Time for Calle Ocho, Party People!

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All you street festival lovers, I know you know what time it is! Last week I asked and none of you answered. But I know that's purely a matter of laziness, because who doesn't love street fairs? Well, the granddaddy of all street festivals is fast approaching and it's celebrating its 30th anniversary. That's right, I'm talking about Calle Ocho.

Ah, I can smell it now. Delicious artery-clogging treats sold at stalls lining both sides of Calle Ocho. Churros. Empanadas. Pinchos. Arepas. Sure, there's healthier stuff like corn on the cob (if you tell them not to dip it in butter... but who wants that?) and ceviche (go for it. Not me!), but that's not what we come for. We come for the fatty foods. And the beer. Ay dios mio, so much beer!

And of course, there'll be music. Blocks of it spanning the expanse of SW 8th Street from 11th Avenue all the way to 27th. With so many stages, there's sure to be something to get rumba-ing in the streets. You can stop by the Miccosukee stage on 13th Court/ south and catch "El Caballo Viejo" himself, Roberto Torres. From there you can stop by the Power 96 stage, where Brooke Hogan, Shaggy, Baby Bash and Jean will be performing. Then you might want to go back to something a little more traditional, so head by the Telemundo 51 stage. You can catch Rey Ruiz there. If you're jonesing for some hip-hop you can cruise over to the Coca Cola stage on 22nd and check out Fat Joe, Ace Hood and Mr. 3-oh-5 himself, Pitbull. The Univision stage on 27th will feature Eddy Lover, Kinito Mendez, Baby Rasta y Gringo, Oro Solido, Melina Leon and Rey Ruiz will make a repeat appearance.

I'll be hopping stages, stalls and beer stands. If you see me on the ground in the late afternoon, please try not to trample me.

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Christopher Lopez