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Nothing beats summertime in Milwaukee!
From strolling the beautiful banks of Lake Michigan to enjoying free concerts, hilarious comedy, vibrant street festivals, and more—you just can’t beat Milwaukee in June.
The great thing about Milwaukee is that no matter where you are, everything is close by. From downtown, it’s a quick drive to the Lake, Miller Park, Potawatomi, the Harley-Davidson Museum, and so much more. In Milwaukee’s bustling Historic Third Ward, you’ll find fine dining, shops, and the can’t-miss Milwaukee Public Market, all of which is right next door to the Summerfest grounds, home to many of Milwaukee’s popular cultural festivals. Summerfest (the world’s largest music festival!) begins June 28th through July 9th.
Out-of-towners might not think of Milwaukee as a hot summer destination, but locals know (and visitors quickly discover) that this City of Festivals is jam-packed with a huge variety of entertainment options and unbeatable summer fun.
One of Milwaukee’s biggest draws is live music. If you want to spend June getting geared up for The Big Gig (that’s Summerfest, folks), check out these popular live music events.
Jazz in the Park
This June, throw down a blanket, grab an adult beverage, and relax to the sounds of everything from New Orleans style jazz to vintage rhythm and blues. 2017 Jazz in the Park headliners include: The Extra Crispy Brass band (June 1st), The Rhythm Rockets (June 15th), and Legends of Milwaukee Jazz (June 22nd). No dogs or pets allowed. Parking information is available here.
Where: Cathedral Square in Downtown Milwaukee
When: 5-9pm every Thursday in June
How much: Free to attend. Check out vendors for food and beverages—costs vary.
Free Shows at Potawatomi
Potawatomi hosts free live music shows in a variety of the Casino’s entertainment rooms including Bar 360, The Fire Pit’s side bar, and even the Bingo Hall. Catch a show or two in one night—all FREE. Enjoy live music, comedy, and sometimes even a magic show while you’re out enjoying your evening at Potawatomi Hotel & Casino.
Our favorite featured June shows:
When: Nearly every night in June
Where: Bar 360 & The Fire Pit’s side bar
How much: Free
Milwaukee’s comedy scene is booming. Comics from Los Angeles to Chicago to New York (and everywhere in between) love to put on a great show for the crowd. Look for local up-and-coming comedy talent as well—Milwaukee has plenty. It’s definitely the place to laugh!
Carlos Mencia Comedy Tour
Carlos Mencia is a Comedy Central alum who’s made waves across the comedy scene for years. From comedy tours across the country to stand-up specials and hit TV shows, Mencia is one comedian you don’t want to miss! Join fellow comedy lovers for a night of laughter and unwind at the Northern Lights Theater.
When: June 24th @ 7pm & 9:30pm
Where: Northern Lights Theater
How much: $45-$55 // 21+
Free Thursdays at Comedy Café
Catch local hosts and comedians as they open for national touring comedy acts. Guaranteed late-night laughs, drinks, and fun! Use the code “PASS” either online or by phone and get into the 7:30pm Thursday night show for free!
When: Free Thursdays through June 22nd // Fridays & Saturdays all month
Where: Comedy Café on Old World Third Street
How much: Free with code on Thursday; otherwise $10 (2 drink minimum)
Summer is festival season in Milwaukee. (We’re literally called The City of Festivals.) This June (and any other month this summer), it’s almost impossible to go anywhere in the city without running into a cultural festival or outdoor event.
Most popular, must-see Milwaukee festivals this June:
Polish music, dancing, food and fun at your fingertips. It’s America’s largest Polish festival…right here in Milwaukee. Featuring daily entertainment on five stages spread across the lively Summerfest grounds. Munch on delicious Polish food from 30+ vendors and be sure to take part in the popular vodka tastings.
Where: Henry W. Maier Festival Park (Summerfest grounds)
When: June 16th – June 18th
How much: $10 - $12 (see ticket deals here)
Lakefront Festival of Art
You don’t want to miss this beautiful festival featuring 170+ jury-selected artists from across the country displaying and selling/commissioning their work. Enjoy featured entertainment throughout the day as well as beer, wine and food from over 20 vendors. (Here’s the full list of must-do events including the popular Sculpture Garden, Fiber Arts Fashion Show, and Paint-and-Pour.) Fun!
Where: Milwaukee Lakefront, Milwaukee Art Museum (MAM)
When: June 24th – June 25th
How much: Adults $17; Seniors & Students $15; MAM Members $10; 3-Day Passes $25; FREE for kids under 12, vets, active military, and WI K-12 teachers w/ ID
This long-running pride festival is the nation’s largest LGBTQIA+ pride festival with permanent grounds. Plus, it’s been run entirely by volunteers since its inception in 1987! Experience 100+ entertainers, performers, and musicians over one fabulous weekend, across 8 of Summerfest’s stages and pavilions. This year, don’t miss 10,000 Maniacs on June 10th!
Where: Henry W. Maier Festival Park (Summerfest grounds)
When: June 9th – June 11th
How much: Single day admission $15; 3-day pass $35 (additional offers here)
With the Brewers playing at Miller Park just a short distance from downtown and nearby hotels, why not check out a baseball game? Nothing says summer quite like baseball.
Milwaukee Brewers Games at Miller Park
Watch the boys of summer hit it out of the park—enjoy a fun-filled baseball game with the Brew Crew. That’s right! It’s Major League Baseball right in the heart of Milwaukee. Enjoy newly remodeled local food and beverage areas (and peanuts & Cracker Jack, of course) while you cheer on the game. Also new in 2017: try a traditional Milwaukee brandy old fashion right on tap!
Where: Miller Park
When: Home series this June include games against the Dodgers, Giants, Padres, Pirates, and Marlins—check here for awesome gameday promotions
How much: Tickets range from $18 to $100+ depending on seat location
Milwaukee’s Biggest Fish Fry
Everyone in Milwaukee knows that Friday Fish Fry is where it’s at! Fish fries are certainly a cultural phenomenon of Milwaukee, so there’s no better way to check it out than at Milwaukee’s Biggest Fish Fry at The Buffet at Potawatomi Hotel & Casino! Join us for an all-you-can-eat fish fry, plus a huge selection of other seafood favorites to enjoy alongside the classics.
When: Every Friday in June, 4-9pm
Where: The Buffet
How much: $19.95 for Fire Keeper’s Club members (join here) / $21.95 for non-members
Ready to hit the town? Excellent! If you’re looking for fun things to do in Milwaukee this June, we’ve got you covered.