There’s nothing quite like summer in Milwaukee. The festivals! The outdoor activity! The tasty treats and refreshing drinks! The multi-month break from the bitter, soul-crushing cold! There are countless things that help make the summertime in the city so great, but only one of them can be the best part of Milwaukee’s summer.

From June 1 through July 6, readers are encouraged to cast their votes in a six-round Milwaukee summer throwdown. We’ve rounded up a total of 64 Milwaukee summer standbys, doing our best to find things that symbolize the season. Did we leave out something you think is deserving of a spot? Probably!

The competitors have been separated into the following regions: Festivals, Food & Drink, Parks & Beaches, and Other. Round 1 of this tournament—which is graciously sponsored by Gruber Law Offices—started June 1 and runs through June 7. Subsequent rounds will take place June 8-14, June 15-21, June 22-28, June 29-July 5, and the winner will be determined at 11:59 p.m. on July 6. Round 1 of our Milwaukee Summer Bracket (and a JPG of the bracket itself) can be found below!



FESTIVALS

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Summerfest vs. German Fest

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Polish Fest vs. Summer Soulstice Music Festival

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PrideFest vs. Bay View Bash

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Chill On The Hill vs. Jazz In The Park

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Brady Street Festival vs. Washington Park Wednesdays

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Locust Street Festival vs. Black Arts MKE

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Milwaukee Irish Fest vs. Bastille Days

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Wisconsin State Fair vs. Mexican Fiesta

OTHER

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Beer Gardens vs. Milwaukee Air & Water Show

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Sculpture Milwaukee vs. Kayaking On The Milwaukee River

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Trails vs. RiverWalk

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Brewers Games vs. Goth Rocks

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Farmers Markets vs. Boat Cruises

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Riverwest 24 vs. Milorganite Smell

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Juneteenth vs. Random Fireworks

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Uecker On The Radio vs. Motorcycles

FOOD & DRINK

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Custard vs. Church Burgers

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Corn On The Cob vs. Taco Trucks

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Cream Puffs vs. Food In A Plastic Helmet

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Food On A Stick vs. Local Cold Brew Coffee

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Patio Drinking vs. Roasted Nuts/Almonds

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Brats vs. Milk House Flavored Milk

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Saz's Sampler Platter vs. Picnic At A Music Series

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Beer In A Plastic Cup vs. Taped Music

PARKS & BEACHES

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Bradford Beach vs. Kaszube's Park

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Mitchell Park vs. Kilbourn Reservoir Park

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Humboldt Park vs. Pere Marquette Park

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Veterans Park vs. Gordon Park

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Lake Park vs. Estabrook Park

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Washington Park vs. Riverside Park

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Dretzka Park vs. Cathedral Square Park

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South Shore Park vs. Lakeshore State Park

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Milwaukee Record’s 2022 guide to summer festivals, fairs, music series, more

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