From music in a park to team trivia to bird watching, use this guide to recurring events, and keep yourself busy all summer long.
May 29-Sept. 4
Estabrook Beer Garden
Sip beer outside and munch on oversized pretzels as you and your team compete for prizes.
Enjoy a wide range of instrumental ensembles, including a brass quartet (7/3), a gypsy guitarist (7/24), and a New Orleans-style jazz band (8/28). Feel free to bring your own blankets or chairs (as well as your favorite beverage – alcohol is allowed), but when the music starts, be ready to get up out of your seat and dance.
Les Paul Performing Arts Center, Waukesha
Bring the kids to these family-friendly flicks, including classics like Mary Poppins (6/26) and newer hits like Finding Dory (7/10) and Moana (8/14).
Urban Ecology Center, Menomonee River Valley
Trad lightly as you traipse around Three Bridges Park with a group of fellow birders. Binoculars are available for borrowing, but be sure to bring your own bug spray!
Kadish Park, Riverwest
Craft workshops and kids shows keep children busy during intermission, while people of all ages enjoy Skyline’s eclectic lineup, which includes Afro-Cuban and Latin jazz band De La Buena (7/11) and reggae band King Solomon (8/15).
June 8-Aug. 29
Humboldt Park, Bay View
The lineup of rock bands is rounded out by a performance of the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra (6/20) and the American Legion Band (7/27). A stellar lineup of food trucks, such as Streetza Pizza and the Gouda Girls, will be on hand.
July 12-Aug. 30
Rotary Amphitheatre, Discovery World
Enjoy the surroundings while listening to groovy local bands play at this gorgeous venue.
July 5-Aug. 23
This concert series has themed events, such as “Farm to Park,” featuring hip-hop collective New Age Narcissism and vendors offering farm-grown food.
June 14-Aug. 30
Pere Marquette Park, Westown
This summer concert series hosts everything from salsa bands to country to reggae.
May 31-Aug. 30
State Fair Park grounds
Experience the fair grounds sans funnel cakes, and hear local favorites such as Chasin’ Mason (6/14) and The Love Monkeys (7/19).
June 1-Aug. 31
Despite its name, salsa and reggae can be heard as often as jazz at this muchloved series. See Legends of Milwaukee Jazz (6/22) and Salsa Manzana (8/10).
July 13-Aug. 31
Bring family, friends and pets to the Third Ward for local musicians – primarily folk and Americana.
June 29-Aug. 31
Boerner Botanical Gardens
This series features everything from the MSO to oldies to bluegrass and country. While you’re there, explore the gardens for free.
June 8-Aug. 17
Latin rhythms alternate with operatic arias, depending on the week.
June 2-Sept. 1
Estabrook Beer Garden
Soak up the ambiance in this recreated early 20th century beer garden on the bank of the Milwaukee River while enjoying your meal. Come early, as this fry closes down when it runs out of fish.
June 16-Aug. 18
Cedar Creek Park, Cedarburg
Prominent local bands and nationally known artists perform in a large park in this quaint Milwaukee suburb, with high-profile vendors, like the Falafel Guys and Blue Cow Creperie.
June 30-July 28
Sharon Lynne Wilson Center for the Arts
Relax at the end of a long week at this concert series featuring classical ensembles such as the Wisconsin Philharmonic (6/30) and singer/songwriters such as Robbie Fulks (7/21). BelAir Cantina is on hand to fulfill all your taco needs. ◆