Every Thursday in November, Essencia Lounge and The Palms Aveda Spa host "Sip & Spa," featuring deep discounts and a free, earth-friendly VeeV signature cocktail for the first hour. Includes 50% off appetizers, drinks and select spa treatments. 6-10 p.m. The Palms Hotel & Spa, 3025 Collins Ave., Miami Beach. Details: (305) 908-5460 or email@example.com or www.thepalmshotel.com.
Cheers to this: Canyon Ranch Hotel & Spa is offering a daily Rioja Happy Hour, featuring a $5 appetizer special and $5 glass of Rioja wine. 5-6 p.m. Ends Nov. 21. Canyon Ranch Hotel & Spa, 6801 Collins Ave., Miami Beach. Details: (305) 514-7000 or www.canyonranchmiamibeach.com.
Dr. David Burney discusses his excavation work over two decades at the Makauwahi Cave in Hawaii as part of the Kampong's 2010-2011 Lecture Series. Dr. Burney, a paleoecologist and conservation biologist who has published more than 100 scientific articles, is director of conservation at the National Tropical Botanic Garden in Hawaii. Includes a reception sponsored by Whole Foods Market. 6:30 p.m. Reception. 7 p.m. talk. The Kampong, 4013 S Douglas Road, Coconut Grove. Members free. Others $10. Details: (305) 442-7169 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
REFUGE IN THE CATSKILLS
The Jewish Museum of Florida presents "Last Days of the Four Seasons: A Photo-documentary by Rick Nahmias." The collection of large-format photographs tells the story of a group of Eastern European Holocaust survivors who bought 44 acres in New York's Catskill Mountains, creating The Four Seasons Lodge. Ends Jan. 2. Jewish Museum of Florida, 301 Washington Ave., Miami Beach. $6-$12. Free Saturdays. Details: (305) 672-5044 or www.jewishmuseum.com.
ACROBATS AND ANTICS
Cirque Du Soleil's "Kooza" unfolds under its signature blue-and-yellow big top; a spotlight on acrobatic performance and the art of clowning. 4 p.m. Tuesday-Friday. 8 p.m. Friday-Sunday. Ends Dec. 19. Bicentennial Park, 1075 Biscayne Blvd., Miami. $35-$355. Details: www.cirquedusoleil.com/kooza.
Legal Services of Greater Miami offers up legal advice for artists and arts organizations. Refreshments will be served. Must be a member or join LegalArt. 6-9 p.m. Morgan, Lewis & Bokius at Wachovia Financial Center, 200 S Biscayne Blvd., suite 5300, Miami. Annual LegalArt fee is $30 individuals and $45 organizations. Details: email@example.com or www.legalartmiami.org.
The Miami-Dade Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce, Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau and the Miami Design Preservation League partner to launch 90-minute gay and lesbian walking tours of South Beach. The tours, which are to be held every fourth Friday of the month, detail contributions of gays and lesbians in Miami Beach's history, architectural gems and hot spots of South Beach gay life. Ends with a free drink at TWIST. 6 p.m. LGBT Visitor Center at Historic City Hall, 1130 Washington Ave., suite 100, Miami Beach. $20. Details: (305) 531-3484 or www.gogaymiami.com.
Architecture for Humanity Miami, which aims to bring sustainable design to disadvantaged communities, holds a fundraising cocktail party. All proceeds benefit the organization's projects in Miami and Haiti. 7-11 p.m. Loft 168, 168 SE First St., Miami. $20 in advance. $25 on site. Details: http://crush3r.com/page/ngacfoayzg.
Dr. Wayne Clough, secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, gives a free lecture on "New Perspectives at the Smithsonian" as part of The Patricia & Phillip Frost Art Museum's Steven & Dorothea Green Critics' Lecture Series. As 12th secretary of the Smithsonian, Dr. Clough is responsible for leading the world's largest museum and research complex with 19 museums, nine research centers, the National Zoo and research in more than 90 countries. 8 p.m. Florida International University's Wertheim Performing Arts Center, 11200 SW Eighth St., Tamiami. Details: (305) 348-2890 or http://thefrost.fiu.edu/critics.htm.
Mingle with the stars — for a cause — at the Fourteenth Annual Best Buddies Miami Gala, themed "Celebrating Fifty Nations." This international-themed evening features a cocktail hour, gourmet dinner, live auction and a performance by Jason Derülo. Proceeds benefit Best Buddies, a nonprofit organization that works to create opportunities for those with intellectual and developmental disabilities. 6:30 p.m. Watson Island. Details: (305) 374-2233 ext. 207 or firstname.lastname@example.org or www.bestbuddiesmiamigala.org.
Journey to Miami Beach estate Villa Vecchia, home of area philanthropists Norma & Luis Quintero, for a fabulously fashionable fundraiser benefiting The Gloria Estefan Foundation and St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. Features a Roberto Cavalli 2011 Spring Collection runway show, seated dinner, cocktail party and surprise musical performance by an artist with ten number one hits on the Billboard chart. 7 p.m. Villa Vecchia, 4821 Pine Tree Drive, Miami Beach. $500-$10,000. Details: (305) 695-7015 or email@example.com.
Learn how to whip up fantastic holiday dishes sure to delight at a Holiday Potluck Cooking Class taught by The Ritz-Carlton Coconut Grove's Executive Chef Philippe Pinon. The menu includes a harvest salad, sweet-potato-and-orange bisque, slow roasted turkey, special stuffing and a pear-walnut pie. Participants will take home the recipes and a Ritz-Carlton apron. 4-6 p.m. The Ritz-Carlton, Coconut Grove, 3300 SW 27th Ave., Coconut Grove. $52. Details: (305) 644-4680.
Miami Dade College art students put on "Dream Givers," an independent art exhibition and acoustic music event. Proceeds go toward an ongoing effort to bring much-needed school supplies and children's clothing to Llalla, a small, impoverished community in the mountains of Peru. Affordable artwork will be available for purchase. 2 p.m.-midnight. Soya e Pomodoro, 120 NE First St., Miami. Free. Details: (305) 675-5844 or firstname.lastname@example.org or www.llallaland.org.
Enjoy fine cuisine, dancing and an auction at the 54th annual Vizcayan Ball benefiting Vizcaya Museum and Gardens. 7 p.m. Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, 3251 S Miami Ave., Coconut Grove. $600 and up. Details: (305) 856-4866 or email@example.com.
The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation holds its first Hope Gala, featuring live music, dinner, dancing and a Fund-A-Cure auction. Benefits diabetes research. 7 p.m. InterContinental Hotel Miami, 100 Chopin Plaza, Miami. $180 per person. $1,800 for table of ten. Details: (954) 565-4775 or firstname.lastname@example.org or www.jdrf.org/southflorida.
Baptist Hospital celebrates its 50th anniversary with a Gold Anniversary Ball. 6:30 p.m. champagne reception and auction opening. 8 p.m.-midnight dinner and dancing. Baptist Hospital, Lakeside, 8900 N Kendall Drive, Kendall. $750. Details: (786) 596-8954 or email@example.com.