This marks the fifth year Miami New Times has turned over a full issue to celebrate 30 of our town’s most remarkable residents. You’d think that a whole presidential term’s worth of telling the tales and featuring the portraits of the Magic City’s deepest thinkers, most talented artists, and best rabble-rousing activists would have left the pot a bit empty. But the truth is we’ve only begun to scratch the surface.

Just take a look at the wattage and diversity this year. Brent Grimes is the breakout star of a resurgent Miami Dolphins franchise. Sean Wildchild is the creative brain behind South Florida’s most eye-scorching costumes and dance routines. And Gloria Estefan, the queen of Miami, needs no introduction whatsoever.

But that’s just the start of this year’s issue, which runs the tropical gamut from the women behind an urban farming renaissance to a newly minted hometown TV star to the most famous jai alai master on Earth. There’s a bread-baking genius, a hacker bent on doing good, and a man boldly bucking literary trends. Their stories and photos are an incredible reminder of our fortune to call such an evolving, endlessly fascinating city home.

Photography by Stian Roenning