Since 2009, the young professional group NEWaukee has become an ever-present player in Milwaukee’s social and cultural scenes. What began as a simple social networking group started by a handful of friends looking to meet their peers and explore their city has become a social architecture firm looking to change the way Milwaukeeans young and old live, work, and play in their city and beyond. The NEWaukee Night Market, an arts and crafts fair that takes over a chunk of W. Wisconsin Ave. for four nights every summer, has become a huge success. The NEWaukee-organized Young Professional Week, a statewide program featuring hundreds of free events, workshops, and panels, kicks off April 23. On top of that (and dozens of other events), NEWaukee has been working with the new ownership group of The Shops of Grand Avenue, offering input and shaping the redevelopment of the long-struggling downtown mall.

For this episode of On The Record, Matt Wild dropped by the NEWaukee offices (which, coincidentally, are in the basement of the Grand Ave.) and spoke to NEWaukee president Angela Damiani about the future of the mall, the history of her group, and what, exactly, social architecture means. As always, all the fun and laughs and heartbreak are brought to you by our friends at Ale Asylum. Music in this episode comes courtesy of Piles (“Blue Glue”) and Myles Coyne (“The Cure”). Subscribe to On The Record via iTunes or Stitcher (for free!).