The Best Things to Do This Week, According to Our Editors: June 13

Milwaukee’s Night Market, a Bay View cafe and more make our list this week.

1. Go to the Milwaukee Night Market on Wednesday


Hey you! Yeah, you! Do you like, “free, outdoor events showcasing a variety of local vendors, performers and artists.” Yeah? Well, great because I copy and pasted that description straight from the Milwaukee Night Market website. This Wednesday, June 15, is the first Night Market of the summer (the other two are July 13 and Aug. 17). It’ll run from 5-10 p.m. on West Wisconsin Avenue between Second Street and Vel R. Phillips Avenue. The market is a vibrant, cool addition to Westown that’s always packed with vendors of all kinds. I’m definitely going to be there, so if you see a small bespectacled man wandering the street looking frightened and sad, do not approach me. I’m like a possum and will hiss and run away.

NEWaukee Night Market
Photo courtesy of NEWaukee

2. Enjoy a Pete’s Pops Popsicle


I know summer is here when I see Pete’s Pops out and about. It’s always the highlight of my trips to local farmer’s markets or the Milwaukee Night Market. This year, however, on one of the hot days last week, I took a walk to their permanent popsicle “shed” over in Bay View (916 E Russell Ave.). There were so many fun options to choose from, and they all sounded incredible. Since I was parched from walking in 80-degree weather, I opted for a strawberry lemonade pop. It was refreshing, sweet, a little tart and reminiscent of my childhood summers, when I’d sit down with a frozen treat after hours of swimming or running through the sprinkler on a sunny afternoon with my sister. I went back for another pop just a day later (Coffee ‘n’ Donuts… delicious!), and I plan to go back many times throughout the summer. 

Pete’s Pops strawberry lemonade popsicle; Photo by Brianna Schubert




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3. Watch “Stranger Things” 


Let’s be honest, seasons 2 and 3 of “Stranger Things” kinda sucked, right? Some of this was attributable to the classic problems of a beloved universe expanding (the necessary new characters diluting the core cast) and some were unique to this show (the need to raise the stakes from an already world-threatening boogeyman, the unsettling aging of our gang of kids). Those issues remain in play for the new season of “Stranger Things,” but somehow it all just works better. The annoying characters are less annoying, the new characters are fun and compatible, the plot (mostly) convincingly brings back characters we thought were gone, and by the last episode, there are satisfying answers to how Hawkins became the center of the Upside-Down in the first place. And man, there are some good scares this season. And a lot of Kate Bush. If you enjoyed the first run of “Stranger Things” but grew tired of it, it’s worth giving it a couple more episodes. The second half of Season 4 drops July 1, with a fifth and reportedly final season in the works.

4. Get Pancakes at Riverwest Coop


I think pancakes are one of nature’s most perfect foods. I’ve never understood why people buy pancake mix when they’re so easy and fast to mix up from scratch. When I go out for brunch, I tend to order one pancake as a side – because I like a sweet carb to go with my savory eggs. But let me tell you, not all pancakes are created equal – some taste like they’re made from a mix. I recently went back to an old pancake favorite of mine – Riverwest Coop (733 E. Clarke St.) – to get the cake described on the menu as “giant.” It’s thick and fluffy and as big as your head. One cake is plenty to eat. I like to load mine up with blueberries and raspberries and pour on enough maple syrup to coat but not saturate the cake. You never want too much syrup. Pancakes are only available during weekend brunch.

5. Get Coffee and a Breakfast Sandwich at Hi-Fi Cafe and Catch a Concert


Over the weekend, I stopped by this Bay View mainstay for the first time. I ordered a coffee – served to me in a pint glass wrapped in a cardboard sleeve – and the breakfast sandwich on an everything bagel, subbing ham for bacon. I cracked open a book while I waited for my order and took in the scene around me. The place is just plain cool. The decor is weird in a way that is so good, and it’s mixed with some quality mid-century modern pieces and diner artifacts. My coffee arrived first, and while the glass choice was surprising, it was the best cup of joe I’ve had in a very long time. And I’ll be coming back for that sandwich again. Before I left, the friendly barista told me to check out her band’s concert on Saturday at The Cooperage. I can’t make it, but here are the details for The Quilz show in case you can. If the ability to brew a delicious cup of coffee translates to musical talent, it promises to be an excellent show.

Hi-Fi Cafe; Photo by Alli Watters