Miami Beach city officials taking steps now to cancel Spring Break in 2024

MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – Spring Break on Miami Beach could look very different in the years to come.

The city is trying to get ahead of Spring Break crowds after a violent, deadly bout this year.

Mayor Dan Gelber said during a commission meeting Monday that he wants to make Miami Beach a less attractive destination for Spring Break partiers.

A violent spring break put Miami Beach on a national stage.

Two people were shot and killed on busy Ocean Drive during a 72-hour period, which prompted a State of Emergency and temporary curfew.

Despite droves of police on the streets from various South Florida agencies, the crowds were tough to manage.

During Monday’s meeting, city leaders discussed ways to essentially cancel Spring Break in 2024.

During the meeting, Gelber bluntly opposed rowdy Spring Breakers coming to Miami Beach.

“We are doing everything we can to tell the world we don’t want you here,” Gelber said.

Gelber and city officials said after a pattern of violence and chaos in the past, they anticipate violence in the years to come unless drastic measures are implemented.

So how do they plan to cancel Spring Break?

On Monday, commissioners unanimously passed a resolution “directing the city administration to explore attracting a private entity to plan and produce a private event on Ocean Drive and surrounding areas” during select March 2024 weekends.

That could mean ticketed events with metal detectors, and efforts to make South Beach less attractive to Spring Breakers.

“This is not an all-inclusive resort where people can do what they want,” Gelber said. “We certainly aren’t Las Vegas or New Orleans.”

They also voted to support the city manager identifying two high impact Thursday-Sunday weekends in March of next year to consider a curfew in light of the known annual public safety issues.

Miami Beach officials also voted in support of a South Beach curfew and shutting down liquor sales early next March.

A final decision on the liquor sale crackdown has not been made.

On Monday, Miami Beach police released citywide numbers between Feb. 27 and March 27, which includes peak Spring Break time.

A total of 488 arrests were made, and more than half were felony arrests.

As for guns, police said 105 firearms were impounded.

Gelber added they are sending a message through the anticipated curfew and crackdown on liquor sales to take the party elsewhere.

The possibility of rolling back liquor sales will be revisited in a meeting next month.

About the Authors:

Bridgette Matter joined the Local 10 News team as a reporter in July 2021. Before moving to South Florida, she began her career in South Bend, Indiana and spent six years in Jacksonville as a reporter and weekend anchor.

Christina returned to Local 10 in 2019 as a reporter after covering Hurricane Dorian for the station. She is an Edward R. Murrow Award-winning journalist and previously earned an Emmy Award while at WPLG for her investigative consumer protection segment "Call Christina."