The Miami Maritime Stadium positioned on the Virginia Key in Miami, Florida, was the initial function designed stadium for powerboat racing in the United States. The 6,566 seat stadium was designed in 1963 on land donated by the Matheson relatives for “H2o Sports”. It was created by Hilario Candela, then a 28-year-outdated new immigrant from Cuba.
The Stadium was host for quite a few planet course powerboat occasions which include Unrestricted Hydroplane, Inboard, Outboard, Performance Craft, Inventory, Modified, Grand National divisions as properly as other special party races. The Stadium was also the site of a variety of nationally televised occasions which include the Bill Muncey Invitational and the ESPN All American Problem Collection. The last major race in the Stadium was the 1987 Inboard Hydroplane national Championship.
The Stadium used a floating phase in entrance of the grandstand for numerous activities these kinds of as classical concert events, Rock and Roll exhibits and the annual Easter Sunrise Assistance.
Due to limits in use, political pressures from inside the Town of Miami, and the absence of correct marketing the Stadium observed a gradual decline in occasions. It was also competing for arena occasions and concert business enterprise with an expanding variety of function-designed, weather-enclosed services these kinds of as the James L. Knight Middle and the Miami Arena, and following its 1992 closure would have confronted competitiveness with the American Airlines Arena, the BankAtlantic Middle and most-not long ago the BankUnited Middle at the College of Miami. At the similar time the Town leased considerably of the Stadium grounds to many ventures which include the Miami Rowing Club, and several marinas and dining establishments. This designed an atmosphere not conducive to the unique intent of the Stadium, namely powerboat racing. Several proposals had been floated just before the Miami Town Commission in the course of the nineteen eighties to no avail. 1 drawback was the restriction the Matheson relatives put upon the Stadium when the land was donated for its design. By the early nineteen nineties powerboat racing in the Stadium was in fact only a memory.
In 1992 Hurricane Andrew struck the Miami-Dade County spot. Engineers for the Town condemned the composition. Other unbiased engineers declared the composition seem whilst needing refurbishing. Given that that time the Stadium has been allowed to sit with no try at routine maintenance. Vandalism has been good at the Stadium because the hurricane.
The stadium is a breeding floor now for quite a few of Miami’s graffiti artists. Practically each individual inch of the internal partitions of the stadium show anything from amateur to pro parts or toss-ups.
The stadium was employed in an episode of Burn off Notice in the 3rd time as a assembly spot, and it was showcased in the finale of the 18th time of The Amazing Race.
 Record of the stadium
* 1963 – Ralph Munroe Maritime Stadium opened, named for the one particular of the earliest white settlers on Biscayne Bay. It cost $two million. A velocity boat racer, James Tapp, was killed on opening working day.
* 1968 – Stadium was officially named a fallout shelter in situation of nuclear assault.
* 1971 – Mitch Miller of Sing Together with Mitch fame done at the stadium. The cheap seats bought for $one.
* 1972 – President Richard Nixon walked onto the phase and singer Sammy Davis Jr. hugged him just before a crowd of far more than 6,000.
* 1972 – Chris Dundee and his brother Angelo Dundee promoted Boxing exhibits at the Stadium. Some of the Boxers who appeared had been previous Heavyweight Winner Jimmy Ellis, Frankie Otero, Florentino Fernández, Roberto Ayala, Vernon McIntosh, Jimmy Summerville, Randy Clark (boxer), Angel Estevez, Joe Cartwright, Ralph Coley, Leroy Walker (boxer) and other folks.
* 1985 – Jimmy Buffett performs are living at Miami Maritime Stadium in August as element of his Sleepless Knights Tour where “insanity rules as tens of countless numbers rocked in the water. Having fun with the audio from their chairs, their boats, or just wading in the bay, they experienced all arrive to celebration with the pirate songster of Key West.” A video clip of the performances was produced on VHS and laserdisc below the title Are living by the Bay.
* 1991 – Phil Donahue did a display from the stadium. His showcased visitor: New York Gov. Mario Cuomo.
* 1992 – On eighteen September, county building authorities ordered the stadium evacuated straight away mainly because it is unsafe.
* 2002 – Miami Mayor Manny Diaz promised to refurbish the Maritime Stadium.
* 2009 – Miami Mayor Tomas Regalado guarantees to help save Miami Maritime Stadium[one]