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Your guide to Milwaukee’s beer gardens

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Couple with dog at Estabrook Beer Garden
 

Your guide to Milwaukee’s beer gardens
Drinking al fresco has never been more fun!

In 2012, Milwaukee’s first beer garden since Prohibition – actually, the country’s first beer garden since those dark, dry days – opened to the public. The idea quickly took off, as evidenced by the lineup below, and summertime imbibing hasn’t been the same since. 
 
2900 S Shore Dr. 
 
Overlooking Lake Michigan, this expanded beachside beer garden features the Miller 1855 Bar, with its nearly 30-foot concrete and cedar counter complete with 20 top handles. The beer menu offers suds from Leinenkugel’s, including its collaboration with Hofbrau, Blue Moon varieties and more. And for the edibles, South Shore Terrace offers carrot fries, a cheese board, Milwaukee Pretzel Co.’s soft pretzels, chicken drums, and, of course, cheese curds. Hours are Wednesday through Friday from 4-10 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. - 10 p.m. Street parking available. 
 
3000 W. Park Ave
 
The home park of Chill on the Hill  prides itself on featuring a selection of local food along with rotating taps of Wisconsin craft beer. This means you can chow on a bratwurst in a pretzel bun and wash it down with Tyranena Rocky’s Revenge or Vintage Brewing Co.’s hibiscus saison. Enjoy live polka music and an authentic pig roast every Saturday or Quizmaster Trivia Wednesday nights. Hours are noon to 9 p.m. daily once open. Parking available. 
 
3565 North Morris Blvd., Shorewood
 
Tucked into an adorable Shorewood park, the Hubbard Park Beer garden sits adjacent to the Milwaukee River. It’s an ultra-scenic way to sip from your stein, which could be filled with Sprecher Black Bavarian, Spotted Cow or a rotating IPA. If beer gardens are a morning activity for you, Hubbard Park also offers a delectable bloody mary. And if you’re hungry, Hubbard’s got a nice mix of sausage, cheese and pretzel offerings. Open Monday to Friday, 3-9 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday, 12-9 p.m. Parking is limited.
 
1800 N Swan Blvd, Wauwatosa
 
With both indoor and outdoor seating, The Landing features a changing menu of local craft and imported beer, along with red, white and sparkling wines and a menu that includes local favorite Cranky Al’s pizza, giant pretzels, obatzda, beer brats, hot dogs, popcorn and fountain drinks, along with specials offered periodically by SA Braai. Hours are Wednesday through Friday from 3-9 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from noon to 9pm once open. Parking available
 
4600 Estabrook Dr.
 
Established in 2012 as the first public beer garden in America in more than 100 years, Estabrook’s beer garden is an expansive affair right next to the Milwaukee River. Food is limited to beer garden basics of bratwurst, hot dogs, and giant pretzels, but they’re no less delicious. The garden features beers imported from the Munich Hofbräuhaus and all beer is served in half or full-liter glass mugs. Visitors arrive by foot, bicycle, automobile, kayak and canoe.
 
8831 North Root River Parkway, Greendale 
 
As the newest permanent beer garden, Whitnall Park has got it all. Not only does the park house the stunning Boerner Botanical Gardens, but the beer garden includes domestic and craft beer and cider, Pepsi products, wine and a variety of snacks. Parking available.
 
Location Varies
 
This summer the Traveling Beer Garden will visit 13 parks over 16 weeks to serve up thousands of glasses of suds. Each temporary beer garden features craft beer, gourmet sodas, hard root beer, hard ginger beer, and more from Sprecher Brewing. There will also be live music featured at all stops Wednesday through Saturday evenings from 5-8 p.m. Hours are Monday through Friday from 4 to 10 p.m., Saturday, Sunday and Holidays from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. with last call at 9 p.m. Parking depends on location. 

 

 
14 Ways to Salute the 414 this Milwaukee Day

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On April 14 (aka 4/14), Milwaukeeans celebrate the people, places, businesses and spirit that make the city unique. Whether you’re a 414 resident for life or just happen to be in town on this most auspicious day, it’s the perfect excuse to do something Totally Milwaukee! These 14 activities are also great ways to keep the Milwaukee Day spirit alive all year long.
  1. Take a walk on the lakefront.
  2. Drive over the Hoan Bride.
  3. Start your day with a cup of local coffee.
  4. Get a meal at the Milwaukee Public Market that includes products from at least two vendors.
  5. Take a picture with the Bronze Fonz.
  6. Close Wolski’s. (Closings that are completed on 4/14 and closings that begin on 4/14 are both acceptable.)
  7. Watch the wings on the Milwaukee Art Museum open or close.
  8. Try the cheese curds somewhere new. You might find a new favorite!
  9. Listen to some local tunes on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee.
  10. Bowl a few frames.
  11. Explore a Milwaukee neighborhood you've never lived in, but might like to.
  12. Order the flavor of the day at the frozen custard stand of your choice.
  13. Take a tour (walking, food, brewery or otherwise) and learn something that you didn’t know before.
  14. Crack open a local beer and toast to Brew City!
 

 

 
5 Milwaukee Bed & Breakfasts Perfect for a Romantic Getaway

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Couple relaxes on the grass on the Milwaukee lakefront in autumn
Fall is the perfect time for a romantic getaway, and a bed & breakfast is the perfect place to get cozy for a special weekend away! Whether you and your sweetie want to enjoy a charming oasis in the heart of downtown or enjoy a calming getaway in a nearby village, Milwaukee has a B&B that will make your heart flutter.
 
Experience Milwaukee’s Irish hospitality at County Clare Inn & Pub. This cozy getaway is in easy walking distance of much of downtown Milwaukee’s popular attractions, from the lakefront festival grounds to the nightlife and shopping of Brady Street. Guests will enjoy complimentary breakfast, parking in a private lot and a luxurious double whirlpool bathtub. The on-site pub and restaurant is the perfect place to end your evening with Irish cuisine and live music every weekend.
 
Just minutes away from downtown, enjoy the romance of the Victorian era at Manderley Bed & Breakfast. The stunning cream city brick Queen Anne Mansion features much of the style of the era with six fireplaces, intricate woodwork, stained glass windows and hand-painted walls. Stay in one of four rooms and dine on handmade breakfasts that feature vegetables from the on-site vegetable garden and even eggs from the backyard chickens!
 
The historic Schuster Mansion Bed & Breakfast is still a testament to the past; your stay includes a guided tour of the mansion’s many stories and treasures. A sumptuous custom homemade breakfast will help you rise in the morning, and fresh baked cookies alongside tea and coffee in the Butler’s Pantry is the perfect snack. For the full experience, make sure to reserve a place at the mansion’s famous Victorian High Tea.
 
Located in charming, historic Cedarburg, the Washington House Inn was originally built in 1886. It served as an inn until the 1920s and was renovated and returned to its original purpose in 1984. Since then, it has served as an elegant, romantic retreat for visitors to Cedarburg. A variety of unique rooms are available for your getaway, including majestic two-level suites. A deluxe continental breakfast can be enjoyed in your own room or in the Gathering Room, and a complimentary wine and cheese social hour is hosted each afternoon.
 
Just a short drive outside the city, you’ll find the beautifully restored Westphal Mansion Inn Bed & Breakfast nestled amongst the scenic beauty of the Kettle Moraine region. Enjoy the charming Old World atmosphere in eight suites, each bearing the name of a great literary figure, alongside modern luxury. The Westphal Mansion Inn is known for elegant four-course breakfasts that feature the best of local farm fresh produce during summer and fall. You’ll also enjoy a complimentary wine and cheese social hour each evening and fresh baked cookies.
 
But what should you do on this romantic getaway? Don't worry - we've got that covered too.
 

 

 
Beer Garden Grub Worth Toasting

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By Jennifer Posh
Content & Copywriting Specialist
VISIT Milwaukee
Women toasting at The Bavarian Bierhaus
 
The classic German tradition of the beer garden is back in a big way in Milwaukee’s local parks! These community gathering spaces aren’t just a great place to raise a glass – though you’re welcome to bring your own food, it’ll be hard to resist the Bavarian classics and picnic favorites served up alongside steins of beer. So come take a seat at a shared table and enjoy good beer, good friends and good food – prosit!
 
Milwaukee’s newest destination for a German good time is a brewery, beer hall and two beer gardens, all in one! Choose a spot on the full-service Beer Garden patio attached to the Beer Hall to enjoy the complete menu of Bavarian favorites from jaegerschnitzel to bienenstich.
 
Set on the banks of the Milwaukee River, this beer garden features beers imported from the Munich Hofbräuhaus. The daily menu includes brats, hot dogs and giant pretzels, but for a special treat, come for Friday Fish Fry or Saturday Schnitzel (both while supplies last).
 
Located in nearby Wauwatosa next to the TOSA Pool, The Landing serves a changing selection of craft and import beer. In addition to beer garden classics, The Landing also offers “Cranky’s Pizza” from locally beloved doughnut/pizza place, Cranky Al’s. Enjoy a few slices along with your brew!
 
Enjoy a rotating selection of craft beers and even handmade maple root beer on tap at this relaxed beer garden. It also has an impressively broad food menu, serving up small bites like beer cheese nachos, salads, sandwiches, pizza and ice cream alongside the expected wursts. Plus a pig roast every Saturday!
 
Click here for a map of Milwaukee beer gardens - most will stay open into October as weather allows, so come enjoy!
 

 

 
What your favorite Wisconsin State Fair food says about you

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By Jennifer Posh
Content & Copywriting Specialist
VISIT Milwaukee
Wisconsin State Fair
 
The animals, the bands, the rides – everyone has their own favorite part of the Wisconsin State Fair, but there’s one thing we can all agree on: the food! The fair is famous for over-the-top treats served at more than 200 concession locations. You’ll find classic fare and new (and ever wilder) delights served up at the various food vendors, but did you know that you can tell a lot about someone from their preferred State Fair food? It’s true! 
 
Family eating cream puff at Wisconsin State Fair
Cream Puff: You’re young at heart, but you also appreciate the classics. Tradition means a lot to you, and you know that waiting for something just makes it better.
 
Baked Potato: You are responsible. You plan ahead and know the importance of looking before you leap. 
 
Fried food at Wisconsin State Fair
A deep-fried, bacon-wrapped something on a stick: You are a thrill-seeker. A renegade. You don’t believe in doing anything halfway.
 
Cheese Curds: You’re dependable. You know what you like and you never compromise on it. Friends and family admire your strong sense of self.
 
Line at Milk House at Wisconsin State Fair
Flavored Milk: You’re laidback. Why rush when you could just soak in the atmosphere? You probably actually read the program.
 
Do you recognize yourself or someone you know in these descriptions? Make sure to share this post with them!
 
You can find a comprehensive list all the “Fair Fare” here
 
The Wisconsin State Fair runs August 4-14, 2016.
 

 

 
Cultural Festivals in Milwaukee

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By Molly Nugent
Marketing & Communications Intern
VISIT Milwaukee
 
Milwaukee is a melting pot of different heritages and cultures, and we love to embrace and celebrate all of them here in our beloved “City of Festivals.” No matter where you’re from, you’ll have a blast exploring the city’s different ethnic backgrounds at many of our upcoming festivals. Clear your schedules for some amazing cultural festivals where there’s bound to be amazing food, live music from around the world and hey, you might learn something new!
 
Bronzeville Week
Culture, art and history merge together at Bronzeville Week, a weeklong celebration of Milwaukee’s Bronzeville District. In the early 1900s, Bronzeville was an economic and social hub where African-American culture, music, food and art were celebrated. The future of Bronzeville District looks bright, with redevelopment plans in full swing, to bring back the unique and fun atmosphere it once had. To celebrate Bronzeville’s past, present and future, join us August 6-13 on North Avenue and 7th Street. To kick things off on August 6, don’t miss the Bronzeville Cultural and Arts Festival, where you’ll find food vendors, booths of local organizations selling African-inspired clothing and jewelry, live music and much more. The rest of the week is chock-full of events to promote local businesses and residents like a neighborhood cleanup, a networking mixer, a bike ride, a softball game and many more exciting things to do. 
 
IndiaFest
Enjoy a free day of culture, food, music and more at IndiaFest at Humboldt Park on August 20. Here you can gaze at colorful, traditional Indian dress and dancing while you listen to music from classical to contemporary. At IndiaFest, you can’t forget the food! Treat yourself to many different kinds of traditional food from spices to curries. This is your chance to experience a “mini India,” right in the heart of Milwaukee, so make sure to check out this unique opportunity.
 
Mexican Fiesta
From August 26 through the 28, join in on three days full of fun food, Mariachi and Fiesta at the Mexican Fiesta on the lakefront. Learn about Mexican art and culture at the cultural pavilion, where more than 100 members will display an extraordinary array of pieces, along with workshops. Put on your dancing shoes at the salsa dancing contest, check out the hottest cars and motorcycles at the Hot Wheelz contest or for a more unorthodox contest, enter the sizzling hot jalapeno eating contest! After that excitement, learn more about who you are and where you came from at a genealogy exhibit. Everyone is invited to the Mexican Fiesta to embrace the beauty of Mexico’s rich history, art, music and food!
 
Milwaukee Dragon Boat Festival
Check out one of the most exciting ways to experience Asian culture at the Milwaukee Dragon Boat Festival at Veterans Park on July 30. Vibrant colored, traditional boats will fill the lagoon, as you and about 20 other people will work as a team to cross the finish line first. After the competition, there will be hands-on opportunities to make opera masks and lanterns, participate in a dragon parade or even learn how to speak and write Chinese. Along with that, enjoy this beautiful day on the water with many cultural performances and local Asian Cuisine.
 
Indian Summer Festival
On September 9 through the 11 make sure to check out the Indian Summer Festival at Henry Maier Festival Park. The mission of Indian Summer Inc. is to educate, preserve and promote American Indian cultures; showcase the diversity that exists within tribal cultures and provide economic opportunities and strengthen communication and understanding. The “Circle of Art” is a perfect way to soak up the rich history and culture of American Indian cultures. Feast your eyes on anything from sculptures to flutes to traditional artifacts, all of which are for sale for you to bring home. On Saturday, the Indian Summer Music Awards will be held, with many Native American musicians preforming beautiful and diverse music from hip hop to traditional Native American drums. The Indian Summer Festival is the perfect chance to have a great time, learn something new and immerse yourself in a new culture. 
 
Holiday Folk Fair International
Explore the world of music, food, dance and arts from all around the world at the Holiday Folk Fair International. From November 18 to the 20, more than 50 ethnic groups are represented from Egyptian to Danish. Come on an empty stomach, because this festival has a world café with so many options you may have a hard time choosing. Crepes from France? Schnitzel Sandwich from Germany? But what about a gyro from Greece? Try them all! After your stomach is full, head over to the International Bazaar to shop through hundreds of items made by skilled artisans from distant lands. Discover different cultures’ unique customs by directly interacting with them through exhibits at Heritage Lane. Get your cardio in at the Around the World 5K Run/Walk, which benefits the Salvation Army of Milwaukee County. 
 

 

 
Where to catch Pokemon in Milwaukee

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By Jennifer Posh
Content & Copywriting Specialist
VISIT Milwaukee

 

Vulpix at North Point Lighthouse
 
It’s official – the whole world is ready to catch ‘em all! Milwaukee’s easily walkable downtown makes it a haven for Pokémon trainers, and with Lake Michigan, three rivers and tons of urban green space, there’s a huge variety of Pokémon types to be caught even if you stay right downtown. Tracking down PokéStops and Pokémon in PokémonGo is a great way to explore a new city or get a new perspective on your hometown – here are a few spots we recommend for Pokémon trainers in Milwaukee!
 
Wisconsin Avenue East: This main downtown drag is a great starting spot. There are many PokéStops and 3 gyms within 2 blocks, and it’s an easy walk to most of the other prime Pokémon -catching spots downtown. 
Notable Pokémon: Growlithe, Onix, Tentacool
Tip: Start inside the Milwaukee Art Museum for several PokéStops, 2 gyms, a photo op and a coffee. Then walk east and you’ll find another gym at US Bank with many PokéStops along the way. Continue east to find the RiverWalk.
 
RiverWalk: Milwaukee’s 3-mile RiverWalk is studded with public art – which means lots of PokéStops! The famous “Bronze Fonz” statue is a must-visit selfie spot…and a PokéStop!
Notable Pokémon: Magikarp, Staryu, Squirtle
Tip: Find Gertie the Duck and you’ll find 4 hotspots within a few yards of each other.
 
Cathedral Square Park: This popular downtown park is always full of lures. It’s surrounded by several bars and restaurants, so make a stop to fuel up.
Notable Pokémon: Jynx, Jigglypuff, Hypno 
Tip: Visit during Jazz in the Park every Thursday during summer to enjoy free music while you hunt.
 
East Side: You’ll find many stops between Brady Street, one of the city’s most popular destinations for nightlife, food and shopping, and the UW-Milwaukee campus. Keep heading east to enjoy great views of the lakefront while you’re out.
Notable Pokémon: Machop, Clefairy, Ponyta
Tip: Lake Park makes for a great social gathering. Colectivo on the Lake is the perfect rest stop while hunting along the lakefront.
 
Riverwest: There are many PokéStops and gyms in close proximity in this neighborhood on the north side of the city known for its funky style and cool venues.
Notable Pokémon: Scyther, Tauros, Dratini
Tip: N. Holton St. holds 3 gyms within a city block, and many PokéStops heading east toward the Milwaukee River.
 
BONUS! Milwaukee County Zoo: Where else can you catch some virtual critters while admiring over 2,500 live animals? The Zoo’s 200 acres are home to over 30 PokéStops and 4 gyms, so plan on spending a full day making the rounds here.
 
Where are your favorite places in the city to catch Pokémon?

 

 
A Beginner’s Guide to Frozen Custard

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By Jennifer Posh
Content & Copywriting Specialist
VISIT Milwaukee
Leon's frozen custard
 
Along with cheese curds, frozen custard is one of the foods that are classically Milwaukee. Milwaukee is home to the world’s largest concentration of frozen custard shops, earning us the title of “unofficial frozen custard capitol of the world!” You won’t want to miss out on this sweet treat on your next visit – use this handy guide to turn yourself into a frozen custard pro!
 
What’s the difference between ice cream and frozen custard?
Ice cream and frozen custard are both made with milk, cream and sugar, but custard is also made with egg yolks. This gives it its richer, creamier texture!
 
What flavors will I find?
At most frozen custard shops, you can expect to find chocolate, vanilla and a special flavor of the day. The Flavor of the Day might be a classic like strawberry, butter pecan or mint chip, or a creative treat like tiramisu, peach melba or “Sugar Plum Fairy”! Local favorite Kopp’s has so many devotees of their specialty flavors that you can sign up for “Flavor Alerts” to get a notification when your favorite flavor is coming up!
 
How should I order my frozen custard?
There’s no wrong way to order it, my friend! Enjoy it in a cone or a dish, as part of a sundae, in a float – anywhere you’d like your ice cream, try it with frozen custard instead!
 
Wait, I think I’ve heard of this…is this what they have at Culver’s?
That’s right! Though they now have locations in 24 states, Culver’s was founded right here in Wisconsin and is still a great spot to get fresh frozen custard, especially when you’re on the road.
 
Awesome – where should I go for frozen custard in Milwaukee?
The “Big 3” of frozen custard in Milwaukee are Kopp’s, Leon’s and Gilles. Each of these restaurants have been in business for decades (Gilles is the oldest, opened in 1938!) and have earned a place as landmarks in Milwaukee culinary history. Every local has an opinion about which is the best, so the only way to really know for sure is to try them all yourself! A relative newcomer to the frozen custard scene but with plenty of old-fashioned charm is Northpoint Custard. This classic custard stand is located right on Lake Michigan, just off of Bradford Beach, making it the perfect stop on a summer afternoon.
 

 

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