On Monday night, it felt good to go crazy,” wrote art blogger Jordan Levin. She was talking about Bringing Art to Life, a night of free performances at the Pérez Art Museum Miami, Frost Science  Museum and Knight Plaza, where more than 3,500 attendees celebrated the transformative energy of the arts in Miami.

The party marked the 10th anniversary of the Knight Arts Challenge, which this year gave $7.8 million to recipients in four U.S. cities for their innovative ideas on engaging and enriching communities through the arts. Miami had 43 winners of a collective $2.5 million award across an impressive range of ideas, mediums and cultures, with a particular focus on black culture, history and experience. And noteworthy this year was the selection of 25 arts champions: civic and arts leaders who were each given $10,000 in Knight Foundation funds to direct to local artists or arts organizations of their choice.

The artists were stars for the night, enjoying the spotlight right at the center of the city’s glittering arts scene. The eclectic mix of people ranged from humorist Dave Barry to New World Symphony’s Howard Herring to drag queens in bright sequins. Thousands mingled on the terraces and plazas surrounding PAMM and Frost Science, enjoying bands, DJs, dancers, poetry and projections.

Although Art Basel tends to get all the credit for positioning Miami as an arts hub, the Knight Foundation has unequivocally been a key driver. For more information, visit the Knight Foundation website at www.knightfoundation.org/10.