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Our friendly staff is available from 9 AM to 5 PM Central Time to help answer your Milwaukee questions. 

VISIT Milwaukee Visitor Information Center

Toll Free: 1-800-554-1448
Local Phone Number: 414-273-7222

Email: info@milwaukee.org

Located inside the Wisconsin Center
Inside main rotunda on First Floor
400 W. Wisconsin Avenue
Milwaukee, WI 53203

 

PR Quarterly Updates

The VISIT Milwaukee PR team is wishing you a wonderful end of 2018 and a bright start to the new year. These past 12 months have been a whirlwind in Milwaukee as we welcomed a new NBA arena, the Fiserv Forum, gained a new mode of public transportation in the form of a streetcar called The Hop, and we raised our foamy mugs to Harley-Davidson, which celebrated 115 years of rumbling fun. The Milwaukee Brewers also went to the playoffs in the midst of the 10th anniversary of the Milwaukee Film Festival, and that made fall here even more special.

Here are the newsy items at the top of our list for 2019. As always, don’t hesitate to reach out with questions, suggestions, or just to say hello.

Hotel News

  • Potawatomi Hotel & Casino is bustling all year round with vacationers of all stripes. They’re so bustling in fact that they needed a bit more room. To accommodate this, they’ll open their gleaming new hotel tower this summer with an additional 119 rooms, 59 suites, and a spa.  
  • Milwaukee’s Intercontinental Hotel will soon bear a new name: the Saint Kate Hotel. It’s not just a name, though – it will be an arts hotel with performance space, a gallery, and an artist-in-residence program, like its sister hotel, the historic Pfister Hotel.
  • Milwaukee’s first Cambria hotel is slated to open in the summer of 2019.
  • Drury Plaza Hotel Milwaukee Downtown opens this coming summer as well on the always-bustling Water Street.

Attraction News

  • Milwaukee will soon have two more food halls, somewhat similar to the Milwaukee Public Market. Crossroads Collective, on the city’s east side, opens later this month with 8 restaurant stalls, a bar, and a hidden speakeasy. The second food hall will reside in the former Grand Avenue Mall in the heart of downtown. It will feature 20 local restaurant vendors, a beer hall, table games, and plenty of space for hanging out. This second hall, called 3rd Street Market Hall will open in the fall of 2019.
  • Did you know Milwaukee’s current Riverwalk is 6 miles long along the Milwaukee River? Did you also know that the Riverwalk is being expanded in two places, which could bring the total distance up to 12 miles? It’s true and we couldn’t be more excited. Read about the Harbor District Riverwalk expansion here, and the Menomonee River expansion here.
  • Milwaukee Ballet moves into its new school and rehearsal building in the Third Ward in the fall of 2019.
  • Fiserv Forum is busy booking major shows like Ariana Grande, Bob Seger, Cirque du Soleil’s Crystal, Elton John, Cher, Disney on Ice, and WWE wrestling.
  • Harley-Davidson unveils its electric motorcycle, dubbed the Livewire, in fall of 2019
  • A handful of Great Lakes cruise ships stop in Milwaukee each year, and if Port of Milwaukee officials get their way, that number could triple. Officials want to use the waterfront area in the Harbor District at the site of Komatsu Mining Corp.’s planned headquarters for docking cruise ships because it allows for convenient access to the city.  
  • The Sherman Phoenix is official open! We couldn’t be more thrilled to talk about this hub for entrepreneurs of all stripes in the heart of the Sherman Park neighborhood. Created by two women investors, this market-style hub in former bank building features 29 businesses, including 8 restaurants and/or food product companies. It is a must-visit on your next trip to Milwaukee.
  • America’s Black Holocaust Museum reopens in 2019 – exact date TBA – in a brand new building. It's an opening the city is tremendously excited for. ABHM originally opened in 1984 by Dr. James Cameron, who at the time was the only known lynching survivor. Dr. Cameron ran the museum until he died in 2006 and the museum was forced to close in 2008. Between 2008 and now, the museum has lived primarily online.
  • Sculpture Milwaukee will be back for year three! One work from the 2018 exhibition has already sold to a private collector and two more sales are pending. (Proceeds from these sales fund future years of the exhibition.)

Anniversaries

  • Milwaukee Ballet celebrates its 50th season this fall. Milwaukee Ballet is the home to an international company of dancers and is one of only a few companies in the nation to maintain its own orchestra.
  • 2019 is the 50th anniversary of “Easy Rider” and the world’s only Harley-Davidson Museum has big plans to celebrate it.
  • The Marcus Center for the Performing Arts, currently home to the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, Milwaukee Ballet, First Stage, and Black Arts MKE, celebrates its 50th anniversary this year.
  • The Florentine Opera, the sixth oldest opera company in the U.S. celebrates its 85th season with a very special anniversary concert at that Marcus Center that will feature audience-favorite opera stars, the studio artists, the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra. The fun happens May 17-19.
  • Villa Terrace Decorative Arts Museum is housed in an architecturally stunning mansion overlooking Lake Michigan, and that mansion celebrates its 95th year of existence in 2019. To celebrate, you should visit the museum (or stop in for yoga or listen to live music), which is comparatively youthful at just 17 years.
  • We’re raising a glass to Captain Pabst next year because 2019 is the 175th anniversary of Pabst Blue Ribbon! If the celebratory spirit moves you, please join us in Milwaukee for a glass, or a tour of the former corporate HQ, or Captain Pabst’s mansion. 

Exhibitions & Shows

  • The Milwaukee Art Museum hosts a solo show for Sara Cwynar, a Canadian born photographer and filmmaker living in Brooklyn, March 8- July 21. The Art Museum, as a major art institution, has hosted more solo shows of female artists than its counterparts across the nation.
  • Hamilton comes to Milwaukee’s Marcus Center for the Performing Arts! Dates TBA.
  • Discovery World recently unveiled its newest exhibit “Power On,” which has kids and adults alike learning about the different types of energy that make up civilization. Experiences include putting your hand inside a tornado, flying a drone, touching lighting, and more.
  • Discovery World will also host six Maker’s Markets in the coming year, the perfect way to shop Milwaukee’s artisans.
  • Milwaukee Public Museum’s big special exhibition for the year is “The Power of Poison” about, yes, the history and uses for poison of all kinds.  
  • Milwaukee Repertory Theater offers up a world premiere called Mark Twain’s River of Song, “an exploration of the music and culture of America’s first superhighway, the Mississippi River.” A hootenanny will follow three performances.
  • Broadway shows “Cinderella” and “Rock of Ages” come to the Miller High Life Theatre, and Mariah Carey will make her Milwaukee debut at the theater on March 15.
  • An exhibition of 38 Marc Chagall lithographs depicting circus scenes will be on display at the Jewish Museum Milwaukee this summer.
  • In January, the Grohmann Museum, the only museum dedicated to art about human labor, will unveil its spring show “Growing Place: A Visual Study of Urban Farming.” The show will rely heavily on stories from Growing Power, the biggest urban farm in Milwaukee that closed in 2017.

Events

  • Local restaurant group Lowlands Group, which owns Café Hollander (multiple locations), Café Benelux, and Café Centraal, is bringing igloo-like domes to the rooftop of Café Benelux for the winter. The point is to sip a cocktail on the roof with the holiday lights twinkling and the stars above – all while staying warm. Timeslots for using the domes sold out very quickly, but we’ve heard they’ll be extending the concept’s run into 2019.
  • A world-class, six-day race called Six Days in the Dome will take place August 23-August 31 at the Pettit National Ice Center. The Pettit Center has a state of the art 443+ meter indoor track that will host roughly 150 elite runners from around the world who are all competing to break world, national, and age-group records in 24-hour and 48-hour events.