Urban Beach Week Kicks Off in Miami Beach

Thirteen years after it began, Urban Beach Week is back again in full force this weekend

Thirteen years after it began, Urban Beach Week is back again in full force this weekend.

Tens of thousands of revelers will flock to Miami Beach beginning Friday for the annual giant block party.

Some businesses aren't interested in the massive influx of partiers. Others accommodate the crowds, like Adrian Gonzalez, owner of David's Cafe on Collins Avenue in the heart of the entertainment district.

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"It's a good weekend for us, we have to adjust with a different crowd that comes into Miami Beach, our local crowd is like ants, they scatter out of Miami," said Gonzalez.

Urban beach week's reputation of rough crowds and run-ins with police has waned since the inaugural event back in 2000. A deadly police shooting in 2011 not only stained the weekend but also garnered unwanted attention when the video went viral on the Internet.

Wading through the crowd over the weekend will be hundreds of goodwill ambassadors, employees from Miami Beach and Miami-Dade County, volunteering their time.

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Program coordinator Ed Harris said the ambassadors have all the answers.

"If your car got towed, we can give you that information, lost and found, somebody got hurt, if somebody got arrested, so we tell him where to go and so forth, so we are giving information," Harris said.

For the second year in a row the theme for the weekend is respect the scene, a message to partiers to have fun but don't trash the city.

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"We have a saying," said Harris. "Come on vacation, don't leave on probation, respect the scene, if you know what I mean."

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