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!
1. Tosa Greek Fest Opa
JUNE 10-12 | SAINTS CONSTANTINE & HELEN GREEK ORTHODOX CHURCH
This festival’s greeting is the mouth-watering scent of charcoal-roasted chickens – get one before they’re gone.
2. Armenian Fest
JULY 17 | ST. JOHN THE BAPTIST ARMENIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH
What started as a casual summer picnic for sharing family recipes is now a full-fledged fest with traditional music and dancing.
VOTE FOR MILWAUKEE’S BEST BEER!
What’s Brew City’s best? We’ve picked 16 of our favorite Milwaukee craft beers for a March Madness-style tournament, but it’s up to you to pick the winner! Will it be bright and hoppy? Dark and malty? A zippy lager? Every one is worthy of the title; who will claim the sudsy crown?
3. Mexican Fiesta
AUG. 26-28 | HENRY MAIER FESTIVAL PARK
This is the one with the tacos … and the burritos, pastelillos and raspados (shaved ice), making it arguably the tastiest of the Summerfest grounds’ ethnic festivals.
4. Summer Soulstice Music Festival
JUNE 18 | 1531 N. FARWELL AVE.
A musical block party to mark the summer solstice on Milwaukee’s East Side. Expect local bands, tons of dancing and good eats.
5. Sad Summer Festival
AUG. 5 | THE RAVE/EAGLES BALLROOM
Not to be confused with Summerfest. This one’s for the ’90s kids – or anyone who loves pop-punk music and emo vibes.
6. Fresh Coast Jazz Festival
AUG. 26-27 | THE PABST THEATER
This fest brings world-class talent to Milwaukee for a jazz showcase. Hitmaker Adam Hawley is headlining alongside hometown all-star Marcus Adams.
Food & Drink Festivals
7. Cedarburg Strawberry Festival
JUNE 25-26 | DOWNTOWN CEDARBURG
Start your visit with a slice of shortcake (topped with a mountain of whipped cream), then make your way to the strawberry shandy and wine. Yum!
8. Milwaukee Brewfest
July 30 | MCKINLEY PARK
A hot summer day, a welcomed lake breeze and a cold beer. Tickets get you unlimited pours from the 100+ breweries repped at the event.
9. The Bloody Mary Festival
Aug. 20 | FISERV FORUM PLAZA
Take your civic duty seriously and get your tastings in because by the festival’s end, you’ll be casting a vote for the title of “Best Bloody Mary in Wisconsin.”
10. Locust Street Festival of Music and Art Alternatives
JUNE 12 | RIVERWEST
We originally included Locust Street Festival in our Summer Guide (you will see it in the June issue), but it was unfortunately, canceled after our issue went to press. But that won’t stop the Riverwest community from celebrating this summer! Read our guide to alternatives, here.
11. Brady Street Festival
JULY 30 | BRADY STREET
This one’s been running since
the ’70s. Stretching across nine blocks of Brady, the spotlight’s on new bars and restaurants, area shops and Milwaukee bands.
12. Center Street Daze Festival
AUG. 13 | CENTER STREET
A Riverwest favorite for its community-oriented events. The pushcart race and classic car show are just a couple of the beloved traditions.
13. Water Lantern Festival
JUNE 11 | VETERANS PARK
Personalize your lantern then release it with hundreds of others to light the lake. They’re made with rice paper, wood and reusable LED candles – all of which is cleaned up, along with other litter.
14. Milwaukee Dragon Boat Festival
AUG. 13 | LAKESHORE STATE PARK
Come for the dragon boat races, stay for the celebration of Chinese culture and tradition, including traditional dance, folk music and martial arts.
15. Art & Chalk Fest
AUG. 20-21 | MUSEUM OF WISCONSIN ART
Glass blowing, plein air painting, ceramics and, of course, chalk art are display at this celebration of live art. Your memento will be a festival t-shirt, screen printed right in front of you.