This was my first year being able to attend Black Smoke Miami. The first two years I was out of town at other cigar events so schedule-wise it just didn’t work out. This year finally came and I really wanted to make it down to Miami and experience Black Smoke Miami for myself. Due to work not being very consistent I was not able to make it for the entire weekend, but since I couldn’t do it all, my motto is ‘do what I can until I am able to do it all’. That is exactly what I did!
Prior to Black Smoke Miami this year, there was a threat of a major hurricane coming for Florida, which had many attendees concerned. Tobacco Kennedy, the event organizer, went on record on Facebook-live to lay to rest, any rumors of hurricane Dorian ruining the event. If it did hit it would be after Black Smoke. Kennedy said “Don’t listen to the news, listen to me”. That was probably the best advice given by Kennedy because other than a little rain, Black Smoke went on without a Hitch.
I won’t get into my drive down to Miami, I will spare you the boring details, but I will begin the experience of my day trip as I arrived at the Miami Lakes Hotel and Golf Club which was the primary host hotel. I made my way to the pool area where Boston Jimmie was kicking back with some brothers of the leaf from Memphis, Tennessee listening to blue’s and sipping on some whiskey and of course smoking Cigars.
The weather was beautiful just a slight breeze and sitting in the shade made for a nice intro to Black Smoke Miami. This was only the beginning. I hung out by the pool for a while until it rained and then we just moved to the tiki-hut to continue hanging out. We were waiting to attend the “Rep Your City” party which was held on the golf course of the same property. A little after 7 PM we made the short walk to the golf course and began the evening reppin’ our City!
Rep Your City Party
As we walked into the party, the space was still filling up because people were still getting ready and arriving fashionably late (white people are always early haha) so there was a little time to mingle with the early birds until the party really got going. One of the first people I spoke with was TK, of course I had to greet the man, the myth and legend and one of the principle individuals responsible for putting on such a dope event.
As I dapped my brother up, someone jokingly said “Wait you’re Black?” I said “yep I’m just light skinned!”, We all laughed and had a good time. Not many know but I have a little anxiety, so sometimes during large events and while it’s still early, I awkwardly browse. While I was getting acquainted with the area I ran into a good friend of mine Heather Callahan who is a veteran cigar rep for many wonderful brands but currently was exclusively there for Hiram and Solomon cigars (one of Stogie Press’ awesome sponsors). Heather was along side the national brand ambassador – Jennifer Nichole. This was my first time meeting Jennifer Nichole and she is as much of a doll in person as she is online. It was good to finally meet this sister of the leaf and reunite with Heather.
I browsed all of the vendors and purchased some cigars from the Hiram and Solomon table first, I also got an Eastern Standard lancero from Robert Caldwell (I am a huge lancero guy) and I also visited the Epic Cigars table and met Dean Parsons for the first time and got a few of his craft to try.
When the party really gets started
Around 8:30/9pm the ‘Rep Your City’ party really got started. The DJ was playing all my favorite songs from the 90s and early 2000’s; which is my era. The Rep Your City party was really like an old school party with women and fellas dancing, everyone was really having a good time.
One of the highlights of the party was an older gentleman who was dancing to Nelly’s song “hot in here”, if you were there you definitely saw it. I can only hope to be that hip when I am older. Word on the street he is from Las Vegas and has been to every Black Smoke event with his wife. Not to make it a big deal but the guy is white and was still bussin moves! He put me to shame haha!
A cigar party In Miami would not be complete without Cigar Mike emceeing the party. During the height of the parties energy, Cigar Mike had people representing their cities on stage. Eventually Boston Jimmie and I ended up on stage to represent Melbourne Florida. We were the only 2 representing the 321, but best believe we held it down!
From what I could tell, other cities and states who really held it down and repped their city hard was St. Louis, Virginia, Dallas Texas, New York, DC, Baltimore, and last but not least Miami (the home team).
There was a little bit of rain during the party, but in true Florida fashion a little water didn’t stop the show and the rain only lasted a few minutes and stopped. The party kept going the entire time! I met many people who I have known through social media such as Bo$$man and Ray Farmer, Shirley Knox Mclellan the owner of fire and smoke cigar parlor in Baltimore Maryland and of course Nephew aka Howard Holman from Baltimore who is also on the board for the Miami Mega Herf coming later this year. I got pictures with a few people and even met some new faces and realized how far my reach has grown since beginning to be a contributor to Stogie Press back in February.
Regrettably, when the Rep Your City party ended I was a bit tired and did not attend the after party at Top Notch Cigars that 305 Cigar Divaz hosted. I had a 2 hr and 45 minute drive back home. Like I said earlier, my visit to Black Smoke Miami was only a day trip. Even though I was unable to be there for the entire weekend I still had a really good time for the single event that I was blessed to attend.
I personally recommend that you make Black Smoke Miami a priority even if you can only do part of it. The fellowship and events are all worth your time. Don’t let the name “Black Smoke” fool you, it isn’t an event only for black cigar smokers, it is an event to celebrate black cigar smokers and what they do for the industry, but everyone is welcome to attend. The love and acceptance at Black Smoke Miami is top notch and everyone just wants to have a good time and party and enjoy what the cigar lifestyle offers. Until next time, thank you for a great day!
If you have not seen this already, here is Boston Jimmie’s walk through video of the Rep Your City event.