The simple mention of Bronzeville in Milwaukee conjures up many images of Black excellence. It was a thriving, bustling neighborhood all throughout Milwaukee’s heyday until expansion of the I-94 tore through it. This Milwaukee neighborhood—bounded by Brown Street on the north, Juneau Avenue on the south, Third Street on the east and 12th Street on the west—is still in the heart of Milwaukee’s North side and the spirit remains intact.
“Milwaukee’s Bronezville was a place where African-Americans families worked hard to make a living and to make a community. The men worked heavy, physical jobs during the day at a factory and then came home and worked the evening hours in their restaurant or in cleaning up their new church building. The women worked long hours as domestics to earn precious savings to start a new business or to make extra money to help their church grow. The children who grew up there went on to live out the lessons of hard work and community, long after the neighborhood itself was gone.” – Reuben Harpole, Images of America, Milwaukee’s Bronzeville
True to that persevering spirit is Bronzeville Week, which has been going strong for years now. The 2021 Bronzeville Week festivities kicked off on August 4 with a speech by Alderwoman Milele A. Coggs, who hosted a news conference in front of Pete’s Fruit Market at N. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Drive. This year’s Bronzeville Week officially takes place August 7-14. The HaRUNbee 5K Walk/Run on August 7 started things off, and the week-long celebration of culture, commerce, and community will conclude with the Bronzeville Art Walk, which will take place from 12-5 p.m. on Saturday, August 14.
An official City Of Milwaukee event that’s now in its 10th full year, Bronzeville Week has become the premier celebration of Milwaukee’s rich African American legacy. The neighborhood is still celebrated, as it should be, with events taking place all throughout the week. Here are some of Bronzeville Week 2021’s remaining events:
Thursday, August 12
• Bronzeville Story Time (Virtual Event), 12 p.m.
• Reading: I Am A Triathlete, 12 p.m.
• Making Art With Adwoa (Virtual Event), 2 p.m.
• Artist Spotlight: Rosy Petri, 4 p.m.
• The Heartland Film Screening, 6 p.m.