8 p.m. to 10 p.m.
On Aug. 25th, Milwaukee Astronomical Society’s public viewing at its New Berlin observatory starts with a presentation in the Quonset Hut, followed by peeks through the telescopes. “You’ll see a fingernail moon – not quite a half moon,” says the society’s Paul Borchardt, plus Jupiter and Saturn. BYO bug repellant!
10:45 p.m. to 11:55 p.m.
Cruise into Jazz Estate – cocktail king John Dye’s authentic dip back into the 1920s – to hear the second set. Kick back with a refreshing “Heart Leaf” (banana, walnut and pineapple with mezcal).
Midnight to 2 a.m.
It’s Cosmic Bowling (with disco and laser lights) at Landmark Lanes – two blocks from Jazz Estate – until 1 a.m. Check out live music (also until 1 a.m.) before tapping into your inner teen with foosball in the old-school arcade. The bar stays open until 2 a.m.
2:15 a.m. to 4 a.m.
Dine on eggs and bacon at Ma Fischer’s, an East Side staple since the late ’40s, before cruising down to the beach, via Lincoln Memorial Drive, for the sunrise.
4:30 a.m. to 6:30 a.m.
Lake Michigan’s shoreline – at Bradford Beach or McKinley Marina – on Milwaukee’s East Side is the perfect spot to take in the sunrise, which will happen shortly after 6 a.m. Arrive early, as the beauty “starts an hour and a half before the sunrise,” says Christopher Stockdale, associate professor of physics at Marquette University. That’s thanks to three gradated stages of twilight – civil, nautical and astronomical – before sunrise. Hope for overnight showers, because “rain usually washes the sky out,” Stockdale says. “If there’s dust in the air, it will mute the colors.”
5 More Things to Do in the Middle of the Night
2 Work out at a 24-hour gym, such as Planet Fitness’ location Downtown, on Wisconsin Avenue. (Day passes available)
3 Sip a latte at Mitchell International Airport’s Starbucks, the area’s only 24-hour location.
4 Play a game of Texas Hold ’em, seven-card stud or Omaha at the 24-hour Poker Room inside Potawatomi Bingo & Casino.
5 Dine on pizza at Ian’s Pizza by the Slice – both the East Side and Downtown locations are open until 3 a.m.