Summerfest in Milwaukee has been drawing Chicagoan’s from their hometown to Brew Town since 1968–12 years before the first Taste of Chicago. When Taste arrived on the scene in 1980 a head-to-head competition developed between the two cities with most giving Summerfest high marks for its music fest while Taste got the nod for its food. Former Mayor Daley summed it up succinctly saying there was no contest between the two as Taste of Chicago was a food fest, not a music fest.
Summerfest kicks off at noon tomorrow and stays open until midnight providing a full day of fun, food and activities. Violent Femmes & The Avett Brother with special guest Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros -and-Ivan & Alyoshaplus will headline in the evening on the Marcus stage while a variety of other musical groups perform throughout the day on stages inside the park.
The Big Bang Fireworks Show lights up the Summerfest sky and surrounding areas at 9:30 pm. on opening night.
Highlights for the rest of Summerfest include:
- If you missed out getting tickets for FUN. appearing July 10th at Taste (they sold out in eight minutes) as of today, tickets are still available for FUN. in Milwaukee at the Marcus Amphitheater on Thursday, June 27.
- Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers will headline the Marcus Amphitheater on Friday, June 28.
- Jason Aldean will headline the Marcus Amphitheater on Saturday, June 29 with special guests Jake Owen and Thomas Rhett.
- Pitbull will headline the Marcus Amphitheater on Sunday, June 30 with special guests Nikki Williams -and- Far East Movement
- New Kids on the Block will headline the Marcus Amphitheater on Tuesday, July 2 with special guests, 98 Degrees and Boyz II Men.
- Luke Bryan will headline the Marcus Amphitheater on Wednesday, July 3 with special guests Thompson Square -and- Florida Georgia Line.
- Rush will headline the Marcus Amphitheater on Thursday, July 4.
- Tim McGraw will headline the Marcus Amphitheater on Friday, July 5 with special guests Brantley Gilbert and Love and Theft.
- Grammy Award-winning artist John Mayer will launch his first major tour in three years when he headlines the Marcus Amphitheater on Saturday, July 6.
- The Eagles will headline the Marcus Amphitheater on Sunday, July 7, closing out Summerfest 2013.
A Little Extra
Paddleboats come to Summerfest from noon – 7 p.m. each day, visitors can paddle around part of the lagoon for 30 minutes in boats that hold up to four people for $8 per person. Located at the boat dock on the north end of the grounds.
Skydive Milwaukee will present Summerfest Skydive Shows June 26 – 28 and July 2 and July 5 at 2:30 p.m. They will perform five jumps over Lake Michigan during Summerfest, landing on Lakeshore State Park. The show can be viewed anywhere on the grounds.
Ziplining along the waterfront, new to Summerfest this year, lets participants zipline 40-feet above the Summerfest grounds getting a bird’s view of the happenings below.
Food and Beverages
With nearly 50 food vendors plus a variety of beverages available at Summerfest, visitors can fill up on Wisconsin brats, Wiener Schnitzel, hot dogs, burgers, pizza and all the typical fest offerings. Fest-goers can also enjoy a sit-down dining experience at Saz’s Dockside Barbecue next to the BMO Harris Pavilion with a great view of Lake Michigan. Call (414) 453-4023 for reservations. Other interesting choices include:
- Mader’s, a German restaurant who has called Milwaukee home since 1902. They will be serving their popular German cuisine including a German Sampler Platter (Bratwurst, Knackwurst, Potato Salad and Sauerkraut).
- Usinger’s Wurst Garden, will feature a variety of sausages from the Usinger deli that has been part of Milwaukee for 125 years. Usinger’s Sausage Sampler Platter with a little taste of everything may be the way to go
- Water Street Brewery, Milwaukee’s Oldest Brew Pub has an interesting menu with Bavarian Weiss, Pork Belly Choucrute, Jambalaya, Warm Muffeletta Pasta Salad, Philly Sandwich, Southwestern Chicken Wrap, Hot Pretzel Basket with Cheese.
- Not a fan of German fare then Louise’s Trattoria may be just your ticket. Their menu features: Goat Salad, Tuscan Chicken Panini, Lemon Basil Turkey Sandwich, Asparagus Risotto, Cheese Ravioli, Seafood Bruschetta, Meatball Skewers, Yellow Tail Wines.
Summerfest 2013 will take place June 26 – 30 and July 2 – 7, from noon until midnight and will be closed Monday, July 1. The Summerfest grounds are located at 200 N. Harbor Drive in Milwaukee.
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