Every Friday, Off The Record looks to other Milwaukee publications for bits of news we missed throughout the week.
• As much as we love Summerfest (and as much as we love continuing the tradition of gently mocking Summerfest), there’s a sense of relief when it finally ends. The once-oppressive smell of roasted nuts and sweat finally disappears, and the plaintive cries of Santana’s “Smooth” and that “Hey Momma Rock Me” song as performed by dozens of cover bands fade into the distance. Milwaukee takes things down a notch—at least until everyone goes bananas for Bastille Days this weekend.
So how did the Big Gig fare this year? According to a factoid-filled Summerfest press release, attendance was up 1.4% in 2014, with 851,879 fest-goers passing through the gates, and 181,758 subsequently waiting in line for 10 minutes at the Sil’s Mini Donuts stand. The press release also notes that the slight uptick in attendance is a relief when considering the wonky weather, fog, and highway and road construction that plagued most of the fest’s 11 days. Until next year, Summerfest Dancing Guy.
• ABC’s Shark Tank will be holding an open casting call in Milwaukee July 21 at the Milwaukee Art Museum. The reality-esque show features entrepreneurs pitching their ideas to a panel of investors, and avoiding being thrown into a tank of man-eating sharks. (Or so we’ve heard.) The Milwaukee Business Journal has more.
• In news that should surprise exactly no one, the Avalon Theater will not re-open this summer. The Milwaukee Business Journal informs us that the owner and others close to the long-in-the-works renovation project are promising that the Bay View movie house will still open before the end of the year.
• Milwaukee’s very own exploitation-film provocateur Frankie Latina talked to, well, The Talkhouse about shooting in Milwaukee; shooting in Tokyo; his upcoming film, Snapshot; and working with Danny Trejo for eight hours on 2009’s Modus Operandi.
• A few weeks ago, we visited the US Bank Center’s Lake View Market for a roundup of downtown cafeterias. Now, the Journal Sentinel reports that the food court is in the process of being renovated, and will re-open later this summer as Downtown Kitchen. The updated space will be part of the Bartolotta Restaurant Group.
• University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee astronomer David Kaplan and colleagues have discovered a white dwarf, reports the Journal Sentinel.
• Though not white-dwarf-related, OnMilwaukee has info on the return of UWM’s LGBT Film/Video Festival, which is scheduled for October 16-26 at the Union Theatre.
• The Shepherd Express talked to the sleazy garage-punks of Ramma Lamma about their new album, Ice Cream.
• According to the Milwaukee Business Journal, Riverwest’s Cafe Vocar has closed after less than a year in business.
• Sylvan Esso—featuring former Milwaukeean Nick Sanborn—made its network television debut this week on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. (A previous appearance on Last Call With Carson Daly doesn’t count, apparently.) It was great.