34 Events to Add to Your Summer Bucket List

Pull out your calendar – the next three months are jam-packed with summer fun.


This story is part of our Summer Guide from the June Issue of Milwaukee Magazine. To read our full guide to summer fun, order your copy today!


June

1. Bay View Gallery Night

JUNE 3  | BAY VIEW 

This event is about connecting artists, local businesses and the community. Expect block party vibes, as many of the galleries offer refreshments and stay open late. 

2. Art64 Live

JUNE 3-4 | WAUWATOSA VILLAGE  

Sixty-four artists go head-to-head at this bracket-style performance painting tournament. Each round, attendees vote for who advances, ultimately choosing the winner – who gets the grand prize of $20,000. 

3. Revolution: The Music of the Beatles at MSO

 JUNE 3-5 | BRADLEY SYMPHONY CENTER

Listen to the orchestra play the best of the Beatles, accompanied by photos, videos and animations on the screen above in this one-weekend-only performance. 

4. Lager & Friends

JUNE 4 | OLD HEIDELBERG PARK, GLENDALE

With unlimited samples – including some not usually found in Wisconsin – this festival showcases a wide range of lager beers and the brewers who make them. Tickets come with a four-pack.

5. West Allis a la Carte

JUNE 5 | GREENFIELD AVENUE FROM 70TH TO 76TH STREETS  

There’s food, live entertainment, local vendors and fun for all ages – including Animal Avenue, a side street with rescue pets you can take home. 

6. Nabil Ayers Author Talk at Boswell Books

JUNE 14 | BOSWELL BOOK COMPANY

Nabil Ayers will sit down with Justin Barney, music director at 88.9 RadioMilwaukee, to discuss his new book My Life in the Sunshine: Searching for My Father and Discovering My Family. 

7. Milwaukee Night Market

JUNE 15 | WEST WISCONSIN AVENUE  

The main drag in Westown transforms into a market
filled with local businesses, food vendors, artists and performers for a few Wednesdays each summer. This year’s
other markets are on July 13, Aug. 17 and Sept. 21.

Photo courtesy of Westown Association

8. Touch a Truck

JUNE 18 | KONKEL PARK, GREENFIELD  

Explore, sit in and learn about excavators, big rigs, dump trucks and more. Plus, enjoy a bite to eat from local food vendors while you’re there. 

9. Juneteenth

JUNE 19 | ALONG DR. MARTIN LUTHER KING JR. DRIVE  

Milwaukee’s Juneteenth is one of the largest and longest-running in the Midwest. Start with the parade, then hit the all-day street festival and close out the celebration with an evening concert that kicks off a summer-long music series.

10. Father’s Day Pig Roast

JUNE 19 | OLD HEIDELBERG PARK, GLENDALE 

Celebrate dad at Bavarian Bierhaus with this roast in the park. There will be live music, and every father (with proof, so bring your kid) gets a free liter of beer. 

11. Wild Ones: Vintage Motorcycle Rally

JUNE 25 | HARLEY-DAVIDSON MUSEUM 

Riders on vintage 1940s Harley-Davidson motorcycles participate in field games like the plank ride, barrel race and weenie bite – an event where bikers bite a hot dog dangling from a string while riding.

Photo courtesy of the Harley-Davidson Museum

July

12. Family 4th Fest

JUNE 30-JULY 3 | NEAR GAZEBO ON BROAD ST., GREENDALE

Get the family together and go to the Greendale Lions Club’s Family 4th Fest with amusement rides, food, music and a beer tent! 

13. Milwaukee Lakefront Fireworks

JULY 3 | VETERANS PARK   

The Milwaukee Parks tradition returns this year with the booming display over the lake, preceded by the annual Fireworks Kite Festival and a pop-up beer garden.

Photo by Eddee Daniel

14. Fourth of July Parades

JULY 1 (WEST ALLIS), JULY 4  | MULTIPLE LOCATIONS

Grab the kids, throw on some red, white and blue, pop open a lawn chair and watch a parade in West Allis, Greendale, Wauwatosa, Whitefish Bay or Greenfield. Milwaukee plans to have its annual celebration in parks across the city as well.

15. $4 on the Fourth at the Zoo

JULY 4 | MILWAUKEE COUNTY ZOO

Head to the zoo for Independence Day and receive $4 admission! 

16. Potted Potter

JUNE 7-12 | VOGEL HALL

Potted Potter: The Unauthorized Harry Experience, a parody play that crams all seven Harry Potter books into a 70-minute performance, will charm audiences at the Wilson Theater. 

17. Bastille Days

JULY 14-17 | CATHEDRAL SQUARE PARK  

It’s hard to miss the 43-foot replica of the Eiffel Tower when you’re walking through Milwaukee’s French cultural festival. And you won’t want to miss the wine and chef demonstrations – or the French and Cajun cuisine.

18. Gallery Night MKE

JULY 15-16 | HISTORIC THIRD WARD   

Peruse the galleries, dine in the restaurants and shop the boutiques of the Third Ward – and download the free app as a guide.

19. Red Bull Flugtag

JULY 16 | VETERANS PARK  

Watch daredevils fly over, and ultimately into, Lake Michigan in their weird and wild flying machines that will be judged by Wisconsin celebrities.

Photo by Philip Platzer / Red Bull

20. Bark After Dark

JULY 22 | KONKEL PARK, GREENFIELD  

Listen to music from local band Doghouse Charlie, grab a beer from the “pup-up” beer garden and make sure to get a “Puptini” (dog-friendly cocktail) or two. There’s also a Midnight Trail Walk for $25. 

21. Jersey Boys

JULY 22-23 | UIHLEIN HALL

This 2006 Tony and Grammy award-winning show is back in Milwaukee for two days with its hit songs “Sherry,” “Big Girls Don’t Cry,” “Can’t Take My Eyes Off of You” and more. 

22. Milwaukee Air & Water Show

JULY 23-24 | VETERANS PARK

See air performances including the Blue Angels, helicopters, parachuters, jet skiing, a fire-boat, antique wooden boats and more. On the ground, check out the new “fun zone” for kids and grab a bite to eat along the shores of Lake Michigan.

23. World’s Largest Coffee Break

JULY 26 | CATALANO SQUARE  

As part of Downtown Employee Appreciation Week, Third Ward businesses will offer free coffee, doughnuts and live music from 9:30-10:30 a.m. 

24. Ru Paul’s Drag Race Werq the World Tour

JULY 26 | THE RIVERSIDE THEATER

Drag stars from Ru Paul’s Drag Race will take the stage at Turner Hall in this time-travel themed show. 


August

25. Wisconsin State Fair

AUG. 4-14 | STATE FAIR PARK, WEST ALLIS

Eat cream puffs, take a ride on the Giant Slide, listen to local bands and visit farm animals at the 171st annual (!!!) State Fair. Watch for spork signs to find the best new foods and catch big names like Toby Keith, Jeff Dunham and Nelly at the Main Stage.

Photo courtesy of the Wisconsin State Fair

26. Black Arts Fest

AUG. 6 | HENRY MAIER FESTIVAL PARK 

This 12-hour festival cele-brates the roots of African heritage and the excellence of Black cultural arts. Expect music, poetry, dance, fashion, literature, health and wellness, cuisine and more. 

27. Bronzeville Week

AUG. 6-13 | BRONZEVILLE  

Support the Bronzeville Cultural and Entertainment District and celebrate our city’s African American culture, history, art and commerce during this week full of events.

28. Brewtown Rumble

AUG. 7 | DEER DISTRICT 

Cruise right on into the Deer District for this motorcycle show and see vintage bikes of all kinds, along with live music, vendors and food. 

29. Greendale Village Days

AUG. 11-14 | GAZEBO PARK, GREENDALE

A weekend full of live music and local beer is what you can expect at this community festival. 

30. Field of Sweet Dreams

AUG. 13 | AMERICAN FAMILY FIELD 

Watch an away game on the big screen at this slumber party in the middle of American Family Field – and don’t forget your tent and sleeping bag.

31. Milwaukee a la Carte

AUG. 18-21 | MILWAUKEE COUNTY ZOO

Grab a bite to eat from one of the local food vendors, stroll around and look at the animals or relax and listen to live music at the Milwaukee County Zoo. 

32. Indulge Milwaukee

AUG. 20-21 | AMERICAN FAMILY FIELD  

Sample bites from more than 30 of Milwaukee’s top restaurants and chefs, then try our state’s finest cheeses paired with wine or spirits. And learn something new at the many culinary and mixology demonstrations throughout the event.

33. Superhero/Princess Night at Milwaukee Milkmen

AUG. 27 | FRANKLIN FIELD, FRANKLIN

Get dressed up in your finest princess or superhero attire (or both, if you’re feeling it) to watch the American Association’s Milkmen play the Kane County Cougars. Oh, and there’ll be fireworks! 

34. ARCA Sprecher 150

AUG. 28 | MILWAUKEE MILE, WEST ALLIS

The ARCA Menards Series features white-knuckle stock car racing at the Milwaukee Mile.


 

This story is part of Milwaukee Magazine‘s June Summer Guide issue.

Find it on newsstands or buy a copy at milwaukeemag.com/shop

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Brianna Schubert is the Associate Digital Editor at Milwaukee Magazine.