The Milwaukee Lakefront
Summer or Winter
there's ALWAYS something to do!

The Milwaukee Lakefront is considered to be the area that runs along Lincoln Memorial Drive from the Summerfest grounds North, past Bradford Beach, to Lake Park.

This is where “it’s all at”!

Ok, maybe not ALL at, but the Milwaukee lakefront is definitely one of the highlights of the city.

This is where you’ll find the Summerfest grounds and all of the musical and cultural festivals that are held in that area including German Fest, Pridefest, Irish Fest, Polish Fest, African World Festival, Festa Italiana, Indian Summer Festival, Fiesta Mexicana and more...

East of the Summerfest grounds is Lakeshore State Park which is dog friendly and includes lovely biking trails that wind through the park, and North all the way down Lincoln Memorial Drive.

Lakeshore State Park

Just north of the Summerfest grounds is Discovery World, the Milwaukee Art Museum which hosts the Lakefront Festival of the Arts, and the War Memorial Art Museum.

Continue North and you’ll come upon Veterans Park and McKinley Marina, and eventually Bradford Beach and then Lake Park.

And I didn’t even mention the Oak Leaf Trail, the Villa Terrace Decorative Arts Museum, or Coast restaurant.

All of these attractions can be found along the couple mile stretch of Lincoln Memorial Drive. 

In addition to these standard attractions, you’ll find celebrations such as the 4th of July Fireworks (held every year on the 3rd of July along the lakefront – some folks literally camp out over night to stake their claim to a good seat – if you want to attend, plan on going early!), Veteran’s Day celebrations, regular sporting events and other “party” activities on Bradford Beach, the yearly Air Show, and others.

Gorgeous view of the Milwaukee Lakefront from Lakeshore Park

You’ll find people biking, walking, skating, sun bathing, playing Frisbee, flying kites, buying hot dogs from one of the many vendors, listening to music, hanging out and just generally enjoying this great city of ours!

You can also plan on catching the Oak Leaf Trail just across the Brady Street Bridge which runs right across from Veteran’s Park.

The Oak Leaf Bike Trail on the West side of Lincoln Memorial Drive

Oh, and even though I’m not much of an “outdoorsy” type of person during the winter, you’ve GOT to catch a glimpse of the ”Polar Bears” some January 1st.

These wacky wierdos (and I say that in the most loving way possible) jump into Lake Michigan on the first of every year. The jump is usually scheduled for around noon, but check to make sure you don’t miss the show. It’s really something!

People come in swim suits and costumes, in tents and blankets, and many are still partying from the night before.

Bring your warm clothes and some coffee, and make your way through the crowd. I’m dazzled every year by the sheer bravery of these cold-blooded souls to make their way into the icy waters of Lake Michigan in the dead of winter...brrrr!!


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