The Best Things to Do This Week, According to Our Editors: Aug. 30

There’s Summerfest, fantasy football and more this week in Milwaukee.

1. Use MyFantasyLeague for Your Football League


I endured/enjoyed two fantasy football drafts last weekend, nearly nine hours of my life that I will never get back but have set me up for untold riches come December – Dalvin Cook and CeeDee Lamb willing. And, of course, it was great to spend time with friends I don’t often see more than once a year. Both of these keeper leagues are so intricate that they’re pointless to try to explain to an outsider. The league rules read like incorporation documents, and they’d be utterly impossible to administrate if not for MyFantasyLeague, a fantasy league site (football only!) created nearly 30 years ago by a Wisconsin-based software company. It offers such a wide range of scoring and league options that it can accommodate even our stupidly complex leagues. The site doesn’t look like much – it’s a low-fi far cry from the slick interfaces of ESPN, Yahoo and CBS – and some of MFL’s best features are buried in a maze of drop-down menus. But you don’t pay for that gloss, either, making it a great, relatively affordable solution for the nerdiest of fantasy nerds who demand features and functionality over eye candy.

2. Go to Summerfest


Summerfest is finally here! The preview night starts Wednesday and the main festival will kick off Thursday. Personally, I can’t wait!. I love to go for the live music, food and, of course people watching. My favorite thing to do is to walk along the lakefront and get a clip of each band playing at the different stages. This year’s festival spans three weekends, so check out the lineup at

Photo courtesy of Summerfest

3. Go to Chill on the Hill


I continue to implore you, dear readers, not to squander your late-summer evenings. Pack a picnic, bring a lawn chair and meet some friends at Chill on the Hill before it wraps its season mid-September. I don’t know who’s playing this week, but honestly, I never go for the music. I’m there for the casual summer hang, drinking wine in the park and people watching tradition of summer. Soon enough we will all be huddled in our respective homes, warming our hands by the fire and knitting our mitten koozies (stay tuned to a future edition of this column) in preparation for the next Mittenfest.

Chill on the Hill in Humboldt Park in Milwaukee’s Bay View area, photographed 8/3/2010. Photo by Adam Ryan Morris

4. Watch the Entire Rocky Series


This past weekend, I discovered that HBO Max has all the Rocky movies (not counting Creed I and II). I decided to watch one every night for six straight days. What’s really fascinating is seeing cinema history unfold over the course of the series. The ’70s were a golden age of dark, character-driven, gritty drama, a la Martin Scorsese and Sidney Lumet. Rocky, released in 1978, had that same spirit. Then in the ’80s, the big studios tightened their grip on directors, and every movie had to appeal to families, bring in money and play it safe. With that, we get the broad, goofy Rocky movies, (III and IV), overflowing with cheese. Then the ’90s saw the series trying to recapture the grit, in the same way movies were turning darker once again with the rise of directors like Quentin Tarantino and David Fincher. Unfortunately, Rocky V‘s attempted grittiness doesn’t land at all, and the series feels lost and over the hill. Fortunately, Rocky came back in 2006 for Rocky Balboa, which closed the series on a positive note, before Creed brought the character into a new era of modern filmmaking. The whole thing is a fascinating microcosm of decades worth of popular film.

5. Start a Knitting Project


Knitting is like meditation to me. When my fingers are busy, it’s hard to get caught up in the cacophony of life worries. Plus, I create something beautiful. Right now, it’s a shawl-to-be using some gorgeous, colorful hand-dyed wool. If you’re looking for me on a Sunday afternoon, I may be in my sunroom, with my knitting on my lap and a sleeping cat at my feet.