For those of you who know me you know that I am a bit overly passionate about Milwaukee. To the point on my 21st birthday I got into a fight with my boyfriend, at the time, for saying he “just didn’t see why I liked it so much”…I cried.. a lot. I think my love for Milwaukee started when I was younger, my family had adopted four African-American children so my dad would take us down there a lot so that we could experience culture and diversity something we didn’t get a whole lot in Oshkosh. From a young age I loved the hustle and bustle of the city, the nightlife, and the diversity.
We spent a lot of time growing up there, many weekends and summers, visiting the festivals. My dad loved to take the family to Gospel concerts, I am talking praising the Lord, hands in the air, people passing out, God is good, gospel concerts. In middle school we had an amazing run in with Charlie Bell who played for the Milwaukee Bucks at the time. We grew a close friendship with him and his family and our time spent in Milwaukee grew even more. Going to Bucks games, concerts and late night dinner’s I got to see even more of this city and grow even fonder.
One of my favorite things about Milwaukee is that on the way down there is a Cracker Barrel. Cracker Barrel is one of my favorite breakfast spots and its only a southern thing so of course there are two times you make Cracker Barrel pit stops, trips to Milwaukee or road trips down south! Their biscuits and gravy are a must!
Milwaukee’s Historic Third Ward is a must visit, from coffee shops and high-end stores (that I can’t afford), to restaurants and of course home to the Milwaukee Public Market. This is always my very first stop when arriving in Milwaukee, just park your car and your are in a perfect central location to many shops and restaurants.
Milwaukee Public Market is such a great place to visit and one of my favorites. It is just filled with hustle and bustle and a ton of these small stands where you can get fresh fruit and fresh juice, there is a bakery, a wine bar, a coffee shop, sports bar, seafood, tacos, florist stand, t-shirt stand and so much more all out in the open and all in one giant building.
Don’t even get me started on the coffee surrounding Milwaukee, honestly they has some of the best coffee shops around. Two of my favorites are Kickapoo Coffee and Collectivo Coffee (formerly Alterra). Collectivo has a few great locations around Milwaukee especially their location on the lakefront in the old Milwaukee River Flushing Station. Just a walk across the street to Bradford Beach! Kickapoo Coffee has a timeless location in the Third-ward, filled with windows and fresh plants its just the perfect spot to sit by the window and look across the river to see the beautiful condos and day-dream about how I hope to one day live there.
I have so many friends and family that live in Milwaukee so it makes visiting there even sweeter. Let me tell you about my sweet friend Rania. She and I went to high school together and after high school her and another one of our close friends moved to Milwaukee and lived together! I would go and visit them often and we would go and enjoy the nightlife in Milwaukee! I still go down just to visit Rania because she is one of my favorite things about Milwaukee, and I cant forget about her boyfriend because I take FULL credit in their set up. It was my 21st birthday (the birthday my boyfriend said he didn’t like Milwaukee, can you tell I still hold a grudge) and we were all dancing at this bar and here is this goofy guy who apparently I said looked like prince charming (you all can be the judge) dancing near us, so I took Rania and I told her that we were not leaving until she gave him her number and the rest is history.
Whenever I go and visit in the summer we always make it our mission to go to Bradford Beach. It is my favorite summer activity. The beach is always filled with people blasting music, drinking and playing sand games. You feel like you are by the ocean and it is always exciting. There are tiki bars and volleyball nets. It’s always fun to spend the day on the beach and then go and get ready for a night on the town, because Milwaukee also has many amazing bars!
We come for the Cracker Barrel but stay for the Bel Air Cantina people. If you’ve never had the chance to eat at Bel Air your missing out in the biggest way. It is the best Mexican food I’ve ever had! Not only do they have 2 locations in Milwaukee but they are opening one in Waukesha and Madison just one step closer to Oshkosh!
There are so many things I wish I could share with you about Milwaukee, I’ve shared many experiences here, from break ups, and getting engaged, to nights out and days just spent with friends this city has seen the best and the worst of me and I have fallen in love with it. If you ever get a chance to visit some of these and many more places you must! Oh and don’t forget to invite me!