• MKE DNC 2020

We asked, you answered: Seven things locals love about Milwaukee

One month before the Democratic National Convention kicks off in Milwaukee, here’s what locals want everyone to know about our hometown.

Photo Credit: VISIT Milwaukee

It’s been 494 days since Milwaukee was selected as the home for the 2020 Democratic National Convention; 494 days since we learned our one-of-a-kind city would be hosting a first-of-its-kind event.

And although the world around us has changed over the last 494 days, the idea that we’ll write history here in Wisconsin later this summer has remained constant.

In just 31 days, all eyes will turn to Milwaukee when we kick off our state’s first-ever national party convention. So before the programming starts, we emailed thousands of Wisconsinites to ask what they love about our city and what they want the rest of the world to know, too.

Here’s what we heard back:

7. Arts & Culture

From renowned cultural institutions to a thriving local arts scene, Milwaukee continues to grow as a hub for arts and culture. When it’s safe to gather again, Chris L. from the Southwest Side of the city recommends checking out local musicians at venues like the Jazz Estate and Shank Hall. Another key recommendation from locals is America's Black Holocaust Museum on the North Side, which shares stories and builds public awareness of the harmful legacies of slavery in America. Take look at the museum’s online galleries here.

6. Diversity

What makes Milwaukee's arts and culture scene so great? Its diversity. And that diversity is evident throughout our city’s neighborhoods, restaurants and businesses, cultural events, and more.

Nicknamed the “City of Festivals,” one of the ways Milwaukeeans celebrate their diverse culture is through ethnic festivals, which is Susan N.’s favorite thing about her hometown. Check out the full list of festivals here, compiled by our friends at VISIT Milwaukee.

5. Accessibility

Critical to Milwaukee’s diversity is a desire to advocate for the inclusion of all. Christopher H. from the city’s Martin Drive neighborhood is proud of the accessibility efforts taking place locally, such as the work to ensure additions to the RiverWalk and the new “Harborwalk” are as accessible as possible. Learn more about Milwaukee’s top accessible attractions here.

Photo Credit: VISIT Milwaukee

4. Education

You can’t talk about what makes Milwaukee so special without talking about its future -- its students. And one local educator told us she thinks our city stands out due to its bilingual, dual-language, foreign language, and international education schools. These language-related educational opportunities span from Milwaukee’s elementary schools to our city’s world-class universities.

3. Parks, Trails, & Green Space

As we continue to navigate the coronavirus pandemic, Wisconsinites are finding new ways to enjoy the outdoors. From their home in suburban West Allis, Robyn F. and her husband have been utilizing the incredible trails located throughout the area to get all the way to the Zoo, the Domes, the downtown area, and the lakefront!

2. The Lake

And speaking of Lake Michigan, Milwaukeeans love to remind their friends on the coasts that our city is located right on America's Third Coast -- or “Fresh Coast,” as Mayor Tom Barrett has dubbed it. As Debbie S. from Sheboygan told us, “most people who have never seen it [Lake Michigan] are shocked that they can't see all the way across it.” The ability to go fishing or enjoy the lake on a paddle board or kayak is Debbie’s favorite thing about living near MKE.

Photo Credit: VISIT Milwaukee

1. The People

But overwhelmingly, Milwaukeeans agree on the one feature that sets our city apart: the people. If you’re a Milwaukeean reading this, you know what we mean -- our neighbors are warm, welcoming, hospitable, and hardworking. And the tough times we’re currently experiencing have only further revealed the one-of-a-kind character of our community.

Ruth N. from Wauwatosa told us that people in Milwaukee and Wisconsin have shown incredible grit, determination, compassion, and love during the pandemic.

“Here in Milwaukee, we help our neighbors,” she said.

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