City guide to Milwaukee

Introduction to Milwaukee

Sunrise at the marina in Milwaukee

Milwaukee, Wisconsin, is “A Great Place on a Great Lake”. Milwaukee was once known as the “Beer Capital” because of the three breweries that were there, Miller’s, Pabst, and Schlitz. Now only Millers’ remains but there are many micro breweries such as Spreckers in town. Milwaukee is also known as the “City of Festivals”.

Milwaukee has strong ethnic communities of Hispanics, German and Polish families on the south side of the city. When it comes to St Patrick’s Day though, the whole city is Irish.

The city became known as the “City of Festivals” when the late Mayor Henry Maier started a summer parade to show off the ethnic communities within the city. The parade no longer exists but throughout the summer there are three-day festivals at Milwaukee’s lake front (Maier Festival Park) which is put on by the different groups. There is Polishfest, Bastille Days, Germanfest, Mexican Fiesta, Festa Italiana, Pridefest, Indian Summer, and the largest of all Irishfest. The city is also host to Summerfest, an 11-day music festival, which has drawn national attention.

While in Milwaukee stop at the Milwaukee Art Museum and see the wings of the building open up into the eastern sun. Tour the public museum, the Milwaukee County Zoo, Discovery World where you can see fresh water and salt water fish, the Betty Brimm Children’s Museum, and take in a movie at the domed IMAX Theater. Visit the Oriental Theater on the city’s east side. It is a landmark ornate movie palace.

If you visit in August attend the Wisconsin State Fair and enjoy a fantastic cream puff while you walk around and see what the dairy state has to offer.

Walk along the river walk in downtown and see the Fonz from Happy Days. The Bronze Fonz is a piece of public art on the Milwaukee River.

If you like to swim there are many public pools but there is also Lake Michigan with Bradford Beach and South Shore Beach.

Want to fish? Just drop a line in off of one of the many piers. If you want to go after the Coho salmon in the lake you can rent a charter fishing boat for four hours. Have the fun of fighting with 30 pounds of fish.

In the winter there is ice skating at Cathedral Square and a man made downhill ski slope at Crystal Ridge. Dress warm in the winter because when the wind comes in over the lake it is really cold.

Milwaukee is home to the Milwaukee Brewer’s baseball team, which makes it home at Miller Park. They can play in any weather because of the park having a roof that can be closed if need be. The Milwaukee Buck’s basket ball team calls the Bradley Center home. If you have an interest in football Milwaukee is just 120 miles south of Green Bay the home of the Packers.

Milwaukee has something for everyone and it is “A Great Place on a Great Lake”.

Photo by Indy Kethdy on flickr

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