1. Beer Gardens. There is a beer garden in nearly every park in Milwaukee these days. The beer gardens allow adults to drink and socialize while their kids can play. Genius!
2. Milwaukee parks. I love Milwaukee’s parks dearly too, not just the beer gardens. Especially Grant Park and Lake Park. While walking on the Seven Bridges Trail in Grant Park, you feel as if you have been transported to an enchanted forest. Meanwhile, Lake Park offers the public tennis courts, lawn bowling, a light house and even a gourmet French restaurant. Where else in Milwaukee can you find all these things in one place?
3. Free, live music everywhere all summer! Milwaukee may be home to the world’s largest music festival, but during the span of the summer, there is no shortage of incredible free live music options. There are weeknight music series each week like Jazz in the Park and Chill on the Hill as well as countless street festivals in every neighborhood, every other weekend. There is so much good local music in Milwaukee for all music-lovers.
4. Music institutions. Speaking of music, two institutions, Radio Milwaukee and the Pabst/Turner/Riverside have made such a big impact on my obsession with music. I’ve learned about and even met so many great artists, and then seen so many amazing shows (at such an affordable price) at the beautiful and intimate trio of venues.
5. Bavette the Butcher – I’ll admit it, I have a foodie crush on Karen Bell, owner of Bavette La Boucherie. She lived in Spain and she butchers meat and cooks the most interesting and intensely flavored meals. Of all the restaurants in Milwaukee, this is my favorite as it is totally casual and consistently delicious.
6. Milwaukee Public Market – Located in the Historic Third Ward, the Milwaukee Public Market is a favorite building to explore. The market has the best local products (Anodyne coffee) and such a great selection of tasty prepared food (Green Market, St. Paul’s Fish Market, Margarita Paradise). I love the mix of vendors and when I lived in the Third Ward, I basically used the Milwaukee Public Market as my grocery store.