Season of Festivals Offers Global Journey
Heralded as the "City of Festivals," Milwaukee showcases its rich heritage with a procession of ethnic and cultural celebrations throughout the summer. The Henry W. Maier Festival Park along the shores of Lake Michigan becomes a portal to the world as guests are invited to explore the arts, cuisine, history and entertainment of a new culture nearly every weekend.
Kicking off the season of festivals, PrideFest (http://www.pridefest.com/) produces the largest Gay/Lesbian, Bisexual and transgender pride festival in Wisconsin. Enjoy the festivities June 12-14, 2009. Partake in the food, entertainment and the marketplace.
Come celebrate at Polish Fest (http://www.polishfest.org/), America's largest Polish Festival, June 19-21, 2009. Satisfy you appetite with generous helpings of authentic Polish fare. Experience historic exhibits, folk art demonstrations and old-world crafts. Polka to one of the many bands. Enchanting Polish legends come to life, traditional Polish dance troupes swirl and twirl, and scrumptious dishes make Polish Fest a truly delightful experience.
Be a part of the world's largest music festival June 25-July 5, 2009. Summerfest (http://www.summerfest.com/) is an eleven-day event offering the best in regional and national entertainment on 10 different ground stages and an ampitheater featuring a diverse array of music. A smorgasbord of the area's finest restaurants serving mouth-watering fare, world-renowned comedians, a children's play area, daily demonstrations and activities, and exciting amusement park rides provide something for festival goers of all ages.
Romance, nostalgia, and rich Italian delicacies fill the air at Festa Italiana (http://www.festaitaliana.com/), America's premier Italian cultural event. From July 16-19, 2009, enjoy the pomp and circumstance of the Sicilian brass marching band, browse the cultural exhibits or be a part of the colorful religious procession following Sunday mass. Every night offers explosive fun with a dazzling Italian-style fireworks show.
Grab a stein and cool off with your favorite brew at North America's largest annually held German festival, German Fest (http://www.germanfest.com/). Indulge in unforgettable German cuisine. Marvel as craftsmen demonstrate old world artistry. Enjoy a colorful brass band or stroll through the Marktplatz for unique German gifts. Join us July 23-26, 2009 for a wunderbar experience.
The newest festival to join the line-up of lakefront festivals, Arab World Fest, takes place August 7-9, 2009. Cuisine, entertainment, and cultural showcases will highlight the traditions, customs and heritage of the Arab culture. Don't miss the live camel rides!
Irish Fest (http://www.irishfest.com/), the world's largest Irish cultural festival, brings the Emerald Isle to Milwaukee's lakefront August 13-16, 2009. Cultural exhibits, displays, theater, poetry readings and demonstrations bring alive the spirit of Old Ireland's folklore and charm, while contests, raffles, sporting events and comedy shows add to the levity. Celebrate Irish music and dance on over a dozen stages or just enjoy the roaming performers dressed in traditional costumes strolling the festival grounds. Visit the extensive marketplace to take a piece Ireland home with you.
Spice up your life at Mexican Fiesta (http://www.mexicanfiesta.org/) August 21-23, 2009! A south-of-the-border extravaganza featuring mouth-watering food, rousing mariachi bands, foot stomping rhythms, and an elaborate swirl of traditional dancers. Learn the culture and heritage of Mexico and other Latin countries.
The Indian Summer Festival (http://www.indiansummer.org/) offers a fun and entertaining way to experience the diversity of both traditional and contemporary American Indian culture. Held September 11-13, 2009, the festival celebrates the rich American Indian heritage with authentic tribal villages, storytellers, traditional handcrafts, dance troupes and lacrosse. Other highlights include a competition Pow Wow, fireworks, food and an Education Day on Friday.
Other festivals taking place around the city in different locations include:
- Jazz in the Park (http://www.easttown.com/) Thursday evenings June 4 - September 24, 2009 in Cathedral Park Square
- Riversplash (http://www.milwaukeeriversplash.com/) June 5-7, 2009 in Pere Marquette Park
- Lakefront Festival of Arts (www.mam.org/lfoa) June 19-21, 2009 Milwaukee Art Museum grounds
- Bastille Days (http://www.easttown.com/) in Cathedral Square Park July 9-12, 2009
- Wisconsin State Fair (http://www.wistatefair.com/) August 6-16, 2009 at Wisconsin State Fair Park
- Holiday Folk Fair International held November 20-22, 2009 at Wisconsin State Fair Park
VISIT Milwaukee markets Greater Milwaukee to tourists, convention and meeting planners nationally and internationally and is dedicated to ensuring our guests are warmly welcomed and enjoy an enriching experience in this jewel of the Great Lakes. VISIT Milwaukee has over 700 members, including hotels/motels, restaurants, attractions, services and area businesses. Tourism generated $2.6 billion in spending in Greater Milwaukee in 2007 and supported nearly 65,000 local jobs. The Spirit of Milwaukee and Potawatomi Bingo Casino are strategic partners with VISIT Milwaukee, providing funding support for conventions and tourism programs. For more information call 1-800-554-1448 or visit http://www.visitmilwaukee.org/.
Milwaukee Hotels Land On Second Annual Stay List
Milwaukee's own Hotel Metro and Iron Horse Hotel have been named by the editors of National Geographic Traveler magazine as two of the "129 Hotels We Love" for 2009. Traveler selected hotels in the United States, Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean based on the collected experiences of veteran journalists and local experts. Nominations were based on key criteria: Is the hotel engaged with the local community? Does it subscribe to sustainable practices that respect the region? Does it truly capture the spirit of its setting?
Hotel Metro is an eco-friendly, boutique property with a sleek style that blends art deco and 1930s European Art Moderne décor. The facility was the first hotel in Milwaukee to receive certification from Travel Green Wisconsin, a program that reviews, certifies and recognizes tourism businesses that have made a commitment to continuously improve their operations in order to reduce their environmental impact. One of the hotel's most popular "green" initiatives is its fleet of Hampton Malibu Cruiser bicycles, offering guests the opportunity to get around town without leaving a carbon footprint.
Housed in a 100-year-old timber frame construction warehouse in Milwaukee's Menomonee Valley, the Iron Horse transformed an historic building into a modern luxury hotel relevant for today's savvy business traveler as well as the discriminating motorcycle enthusiast. Unique amenities include a library, secured covered motorcycle parking, an on-site bike wash, packed saddle bag lunches and road trip maps. By keeping much of the original building in tact, using recycled materials whenever possible and employing energy-efficient operations, this hotel has treaded lightly on the environment.
The Iron Horse was also included in Conde Nast Traveler's 2009 Hot Hotel list. The list highlights posh places to stay for under $200 a night.
VISIT Milwaukee markets Greater Milwaukee to tourists, convention and meeting planners nationally and internationally and is dedicated to ensuring our guests are warmly welcomed and enjoy an enriching experience in this jewel of the Great Lakes. VISIT Milwaukee has more than 600 members, including hotels/motels, restaurants, attractions, services and area businesses. Tourism generated nearly $2.7 billion in spending in Greater Milwaukee in 2008 and supported over 66,000 local jobs. The Spirit of Milwaukee and Potawatomi Bingo Casino are strategic partners with VISIT Milwaukee, providing funding support for conventions and tourism programs. For more information call 1-800-554-1448 or visit http://www.visitmilwaukee.org/.