Things to Do This Weekend: October 12-15

Autumn is in full swing and there are plenty of ways to make the most of the season in Milwaukee.


Milwaukee ChopHouse Niner Wine Dinner

Foodies and wine lovers alike will appreciate this five-course wine dinner featuring delicious fare whipped up by Milwaukee ChopHouse‘s (633 N. 5th St.) culinary team complimented by wine pairings from Niner Winery in Paso Robles, Calif. Highlights from the menu include butternut squash bisque, smoked brook trout and venison filet. To book the Thursday, October 12, dinner, which costs $75 plus tax and gratuity, call (414) 226-2467 or e-mail 


Whiskey Shivers

This Austin-based band serves up folksy, often funny bluegrass music with a side of punk rock. On Thursday, October 12, at The Back Room at Colectivo (2211 N. Prospect Ave.), the quintet will be joined by up-and-coming solo artist Billy Strings. The show goes on at 8 p.m. and doors open at 7 p.m.

Dark Star Orchestra

Two years after Grateful Dead frontman Jerry Garcia passed away, a couple of Chicago fans decided to re-create one of the band’s concerts, playing every song on the 1981 set list. When the show sold out, they took their act on the road. They’ve been playing packed houses ever since. On Saturday, October 14, DSO will play at the Riverside Theater (1166 W. Wisconsin Ave.). Doors open at 6:30 p.m. for the 8 p.m. show.


Blacksinthe Release: Friday the 13th Party

Great Lakes Distillery (616 W. Virginia St.) is celebrating Friday the 13th with an “extremely limited” release of their new Blacksinthe, which combines Absinthe with Black Catechu to turn the 66.6% ABV liquor black. The free tasting party, which starts at 7 p.m., includes free samples, Blacksinthe cocktails, photo booth pictures with the Blacksinthe fairy and a performance by Jude and 2 Dudes. 

Kwaktoberfest Bier Festival

Café Hollander (2608 N. Downer Ave.) hosts Kwaktoberfest from 4 to 10 p.m. on Friday, October 13, and features beers from Brouwerij Bosteels, tasty food and live music. Brouwerij Bosteels bier legend Jack Van Antwerp will be in attendance. 

Photo courtesy of Lowlands Group


Photo by Jerry Pinkney, courtesy of Michael Wiesman.

Sheboygan Children’s Book Festival

Young readers, writers and artists will find plenty of inspiration at this weekend gathering taking place from Friday, October 13, to Sunday, October 15. Author and illustrator presentations and hands-on activities for kids and teens promise plenty of interactive fun. Events will take place at four different venues, so be sure to check out the schedule

Photo by Front Room Photography

Kohl’s Art Generation Family Sundays: Día de los Muertos

Celebrate the traditional Mexican holiday Día de los Muertos on Sunday, October 15, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Milwaukee Art Museum (700 N. Art Museum Dr.) with hands-on art activities. Learn about the meaning of the holiday and enjoy live music and dance performances in traditional costume. Kohl’s Art Generation Family Sundays, which  are free with admission to the museum. 


Photo courtesy of Schlitz Audubon Nature Center

Schlitz Audubon Fall Festival

Schlitz Audubon Nature Center will hold its annual fall festival on Sunday, October 15. Fall nature hikes, horse-drawn wagon rides and scarecrow stuffing are all on the agenda, which includes plenty of other fun autumn-centric activities. Don’t forget to stop by the fall market for fresh apples, vegetables, tea and more. Non-members pay $10 for adults at $5 for kids.