The Best Things to Do This Week, According to Our Editors: April 17

This week, we recommend Milwaukee Makers Market, Milwaukee Film Fest, a pride party and more.

1. Participate in Milwaukee Riverkeeper’s Annual Spring Cleanup


Do it for the planet, sure – the watershed’s big green event falls directly on Earth Day this year – but do it for yourself, too. In my three years taking part in this event, I’ve found it to be almost an almost meditative activity. I think about the journey of this scrap of bag or that bottle to its (not final!) resting place in the mud of the KK River, or the thick brush along its banks. I think about where the water comes from, where it goes and our place in keeping stuff like this out of it. And it’s quite a workout, too, climbing over downed trees and pushing through thickets. It’s all worth it if you love your mother (Earth). 

2. Shop at Milwaukee Makers Market


After nearly a week of summer-like weather, gray clouds rolled in, the newly budding trees battled the gusting wind and the temperature dropped to “spring” as we know it. All in all, a good day to hit the Milwaukee Makers Market – the first in 2023 – at Discovery World, Sunday April 16. I hadn’t been to Discovery World since well before COVID, and I’d never been to a Makers Market. Over 40 vendors were set up inside the pavilion – selling jewelry to candles, artisan chocolate to various types of art. My haul was rather meager – a greeting card from the very rad Bay View Printing Co., and a big-bottom bar (you read that right) from Matilda Bakehouse. This piece of decadence has a thick cookie base, plus caramel and chocolate, and I am rationing it out because I don’t want it to disappear too quickly – and there’s that issue of the big bottom… It’ll be another month before the next market (at Ivy House on May 14) but Matilda pastries are for sale (limited quantities) at Andiamo (the cafe adjacent to Lupi & Iris) and the new Discourse Coffee on the MSOE campus, among other places. Run, don’t walk.

Big-bottom bar from Matilda Bakehouse; Photo by Ann Christenson


Nominations are open for the 2024 Unity Awards! 

Know an individual or group committed to bridging divides in our community? Nominate them for a Unity Award by Oct. 31.

3. Go to the Milwaukee Film Festival


It’s a funky film festival freakout, folks. This Thursday marks the opening night of the 2023 Milwaukee Film Festival, with a screening of Mom and Dad’s Nipple Factory, which is a heartwarming Wisconsin documentary and not a horrifically disturbing erotic film as the title suggests. You can buy a pass, or individual tickets here. The festival has a super exciting lineup of movies this year, screening through May 4.

“Do you really think so, Archer?” You ask, skeptical as always. “How can we know that you are genuinely excited by these films? Are you perhaps writing some sort of agenda each Monday, to be published on, highlighting your favorite films from that week’s selection of screenings?”

Why yes, dear reader, you are correct. I am, in fact, writing a new series called “Archer’s Agenda,” which will publish every Monday starting today. Each agenda will highlight the screenings I think are must-sees that week – so if you’re looking for what movies a small, aging weirdo who smells like balogna wants to see, be sure to read it.

Oriental Theatre; Photo courtesy of the Milwaukee Film Festival

4. Drink a Lagunitas Waldos’ Special Ale


I recommend a lot of beers in this space, and this is the first one that isn’t a local product. But there’s nothing else quite like this here-and-gone seasonal triple IPA from California’s (and Chicago’s) Lagunitas Brewing. The Waldos’ mythology is innately tied to its maker’s quest for cannabis and hops’ familial ties to the cannabis family. And the hops here are dank, dripping pine resin all over the usual citrusy West Coast hop profile. But the malt is equal to the task, providing a rich sweetness that carries the ABV to 11.7%. Yes, your mind will be altered. Visit a better bottle shop (Ray’s, Discount, Otto’s, etc.) in the next week-plus to score your own stash (at an extremely affordable $12-ish per six-pack). 

Photo by Chris Drosner

5. Milwaukee Rep’s Pride Party


For a fun pre-show party, sip, nosh and mingle with lively drag hosts BJ Daniels, Dear Ruthie and Karen Valentine at Milwaukee Rep’s third and final PRIDE Night of the season on Wednesday. There’s a hosted bar and appetizers in the Quadracci Powerhouse Lobby before your choice of show: God of Carnage or The Greatest Love for Whitney