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Martin Luther King, Jr. visited Milwaukee at least two times.
Martin Luther King, Jr. visited Milwaukee at least two times.

King's visits to Milwaukee left permanent mark

This post first appeared at OnMilwaukee.com a number of years ago. We run it again today in honor of the anniversary of Dr. King's appearance at the Milwaukee Auditorium.

In his lifetime, Dr. Martin Luther King was known for his splendid oratorical abilities and, especially, his remarkable landmark speeches about racism, segregation, equality and other issues key issues of the civil rights movement. His words have become etched into the American psyche.

Dr. King spoke in Milwaukee on a couple occasions. His first speech here was delivered on Aug. 14, 1956.

He returned on Jan. 27, 1964 –51 years ago today – for a standing-room-only event at the Milwaukee Auditorium (now the Milwaukee Theatre). According to newspaper reports, at the Auditorium Dr. King spoke to 6,300 Milwaukeeans for about 40 minutes after holding a press conference upon his arrival at Mitchell Field.

Here are some of the highlights:

  • He encouraged people to erase two myths: "Only time can solve the problems of racial integration" and "Civil rights legislation is not important."

  • "It may be true that you cannot legislate morality but behavior can be regulated."

  • "Law cannot change the heart, but it can restrain the heartless. ... Law cannot make a man love me but it can keep him from lynching me."

  • "Time is neutral. It can be used either constructively or destructively ... We must help time and we must realize that the time is always right to do right."

  • "We have argued and discussed civil rights enough." He cautioned against getting "bogged down in the paralysis of analysis. ... This problem will not work itself out. Somebody must be dedicated. Somebody must be willing to stand up. There is a need for a sort of divine discontent."

  • "It takes a strong person to be nonviolent. It has a way of disarming the opposition. He doesn't know what to do. He doesn't know how to handle it."

  • "We will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair the stone of hope."

It is a…

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MPS hosts its annual enrollment fair this weekend at Milwaukee High School of the Arts.
MPS hosts its annual enrollment fair this weekend at Milwaukee High School of the Arts.

MPS enrollment fair highlights programs ... but don't neglect the school visit

OK, maybe it’s just because I love visiting schools, but I always tell prospective parents to go to a school that interests them as a potential option for their children. Sure, read Great Schools’ ratings, talk to other parents, Google the school, but if you’re going to do one thing only: go to the school.

Go unannounced. Talk to the principal. Watch some classrooms in action. What’s the school sound like? What does it look like? Is it quietly buzzing along? Are kids and teachers engaged in work or are they staring out the window? Or, are they fighting? Is there art hanging on the wall? Is it a pleasant place?

You can – and should – look at test scores and data about suspensions, etc., but there is absolutely no other way to get a feel for a school. You have to go. And go more than once, if you can. Bring your child.

But, not sure which school or schools to check out? Then, perhaps, the first step is to visit the MPS All-School Enrollment Fair on Saturday, Jan. 31 at Milwaukee High School of the Arts, 2300 W. Highland Blvd.

"The All-School Enrollment Fair is an incredible opportunity for families to meet the people who are leading the charge for improvement throughout our schools, find the school that fits their child and get set for the coming school year," said MPS Superintendent Dr. Darienne Driver in a statement.

Leaders from more than 100 elementary, middle and high schools will be on hand to pitch their programs to parents, who can enroll on the spot. (If you’re looking to enroll on the spot, visit some of the schools in advance.)

You’ll hear information about bilingual schools, arts programs, Advanced Placement classes, International Baccalaureate college prep programs, language immersion schools, Montessori schools, Career and Tech Ed programs, Gifted and Talented education, STEM and more at the fair, which takes place from 9 a.m. until noon.

Childcare and Spanish and Hmong translation assistants will be on hand and you can even hop fr…

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Faust closed after its owner Bill Regalado died in October 2013.
Faust closed after its owner Bill Regalado died in October 2013.

Meeting set to discuss plan to develop Faust Drum Center site in Bay View

When Bill Regalado – better known to Bay Viewers and Milwaukee musicians as Bill Faust – died in October 2013, the city lost a pretty legendary character, and Bay View lost a long-lived institution – Faust Drum Center, 2204 S. Kinnickinnic Ave.

In the year or so since, talk has turned to the future of the building and site Faust occupied until Regalado's passing. It didn't take long for developers to take notice of the property.

What's on the table now, according to a Facebook post by district Ald. Tony Zielinski, is a five-story, 100,000-square foot building with 72 apartments, about 2,500 square feet of retail and about 75 enclosed parking spaces.

The nearly $10 million project includes, according to Zielinski's post, "four stories of Type VA construction over one story of Type IA construction above grade, and one story of Type IA cast in place concrete construction below grade."

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The apartments range in size from micro (about 400 square feet) to studio to one-bedroom and two-bedroom units. The developer – Dermond Property Investments LLC – is also seeking to acquire a municipal parking lot adjacent to the Faust building.

The saddest part for me is the loss of the two 19th century storefronts – one dated 1892 – that are part of a block-long stretch of KK that retains its old world feel on both sides of the street. In a perfect world, I'd love to see them cleaned up and repurposed rather than replaced.

While I don't oppose modern development in the neighborhood, I'm disappointed it has to happen on a site occupied by structures like these. At the same time, the buildings already looked to be in rough shape when I first bought drums from Regalado in the mid-'80s, so who knows what the intervening 30 years have wrought.

If you want to hear more about Dermond Property Investments’ plan and weigh in on it, Zielinski hosts a town hall meeting on the proposed development on Tuesday, Feb. 17 at 6:30 p.m.…

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Paulie's wings ... as good as promised.
Paulie's wings ... as good as promised.

Combining a pair of Milwaukee traditions at Paulie's

Driving down Greenfield Avenue last week I spied the sign outside Paulie's Pub and Eatery, 8031 W. Greenfield Ave., in West Allis, and was reminded that trying the wings there was on my Milwaukee to-do list.

Despite that salad in the fridge back at the office, I called an audible and pulled into the parking lot. Only when I sat down did I realize that it was Friday, which, of course, means fish fry.

What to do?

Well, improvise!

I ordered wings and house-made potato pancakes, because great potato pancakes are really the highlight of a fish fry, if you ask me.

For $2, I got two pancakes made with shredded potatoes and not much else but a dash of salt and pepper. I chose apple sauce over syrup. And the results again proved the old adage that less is more.

Nicely browned and with the tiniest hint of crunch, Paulie's makes some of the latkes in town (though I might've liked a bit more crispness around the edges, but now I'm picking nits).

For $9.49, Paulie's plates 10 wings with the sauce (or no sauce) of your choice and a range of options (grilled, etc.). There are nearly a dozen sauces ranging in heat quotient and I aimed to try a couple, only to learn you can only choose one sauce per order, unless you want to pay extra for a side of sauce.

Though that was a disappointment – variety being the spice of life, and all – the Legend Larry bacon BBQ slathered wings were anything but.

While a couple were on the lean side, most of the drummies and paddles were super meaty and tender and the sauce – which approaches medium on the Paulie's scale – had just the right amount of heat for me – a hint, but not too much.

Blue cheese and celery were on the side.

Maybe the one-sauce-per-order plan at Paulie's is clever, because now I have to keep going back to try more.

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