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The Miller Park roof was framed by nothing but blue sky and sunbeams.
The Miller Park roof was framed by nothing but blue sky and sunbeams.

Can you believe this sh*t? Miller Park roof edition

Yesterday was one of those glorious Milwaukee spring days. The sun was shining, barely a cloud in the blue sky and the delicious smell of grills wafted through Miller Valley. 

Why, oh why, was the retractable roof for Miller Park closed? 

Let's be realistic. Milwaukee has a finite amount of these spring days. The ones where people just can't wait to get outside, the ones where people walk outside in the morning and say "holy shit, it is amazing outside," the ones where you just really can't ask for more from the weather gods. 

Yet, there we were. Waiting to go inside our great ballpark on one of these picturesque beautiful days, and the roof was closed.  I don't want to head in from that rare gorgeous spring day to a closed roof game. I'm sure I'm not alone, in fact, I know I am not. My co-worker Bobby even wrote about it a few years back – so this is not a new question for the Miller Park crew.

The Milwaukee Brewers website even has a question on such matters of the much hyped retractable roof and gives the following for this query:

So, there is the official answer. Why is this worthy of a "can you believe this sh*t"? Because it is just that, bullshit. If fan surveys do overwhelmingly show that if it is not 60 degrees they would like the roof closed then we, dear Milwaukee, need to buck the hell up.

The days we get to feel the warm spring sun on our faces and rid ourselves of winter's wrath should be embraced. Lived the fullest. We should be able to do that at our own Miller Park. 

Belly up to a different kind of bar.
Belly up to a different kind of bar. (Photo: The Barre Code Facebook )
One of the best workouts available awaits you at The Barre Code.
One of the best workouts available awaits you at The Barre Code. (Photo: The Barre Code Facebook )

Belly up to the Barre

I wish I could say that I was one of those people that can just head outside for a great run. I'm not! For me, working out is best in a class environment that pushes me for the best workout I can do. And lately, that class has been at Barre Code in the Historic Third Ward

Barre Code was brought to Milwaukee by franchisee owner Betsy Wong in December of last year, who originally attended a class in Chicago where Barre Bee Fit originated. Thankfully for us, the former lawyer also loved the workout and brought the Barre Code experience to Milwaukee. 

Barre workouts have been around for a while, but studios focusing on the method have only recently started opening in Milwaukee. What does a barre workout entail? Most barre-based classes use a combination of postures inspired by ballet and other disciplines like yoga and Pilates.

The barre is used to balance while doing exercises that focus on isometric strength training (holding your body still while you contract a specific set of muscles) combined with high reps of small range-of-motion movements. Most of the classes also incorporate light handheld weights, balls or even stretchy bands to bring the burn during all those reps.

The music is pumping, and this is an invigorating tough workout from start to finish. You'll start with a warm up and sequence of upper-body exercises, which include free weights, push-ups, planks and other moves to target the biceps, triceps, chest and back muscles.

Then you'll use the ballet barre and your own body weight for resistance to focus on the thigh and seat muscles. Ouchy. Your core will be engaged the entire class and then targeted at the end -- if  you aren't shaking by the end something may be wrong with you! For the cool down, you'll go through a series of stretches to increase flexibility and allow your muscles to recover. 

The full 50 minute workout is now one of my favorite parts of my day. Barre Code offers more than just the typical barre workout. You could …

You could be coming down this slide in July!
You could be coming down this slide in July! (Photo: Slide the City Facebook )

Giant water slide event coming to Milwaukee

Thanks to a collaboration between the City of Milwaukee, The Salvation Army Milwaukee County and NEWaukee you can add another "must attend" event to your great Milwaukee summer calendar. 

Slide the City is a family friendly 1,000-foot-long slip-and-slide water party event. The exact location of the slide and event in Downtown (hopefully) is still under discussion. But, we do know there will be live music, food, drinks and of course the biggest slip and slide ever to hit Milwaukee's asphalt.

This is one hell of a slip and slide. Will it be comfortable? They assure us via their website "Don’t worry, it's well padded and event organizers have assured us this slide has more cushion than your grandpa’s orthopedic sneakers." 

The tentative date is July 18, but it is still being finalized. Early bird pricing is available and runs one ride for $15, $35 for three rides, or go VIP to get access early to buy an all day pass for $50.  

You can learn more on the event -- as well as as sign up for email updates -- here. Plus, RSVP for the event on Facebook, too! 

Make sure to gather your water buckets, floaties and water guns (non-realistic of course), to squirt, spray, splash and get all attending soaked.

I'll be sure to update you more on the specific location as soon as we find out.

Slide on, Milwaukee! 

If you haven't been shopping at Maker Market's past events you have been missing out.
If you haven't been shopping at Maker Market's past events you have been missing out. (Photo: Maker Market Facebook)

7 things you should have bought at Maker Market

Craft, art and design all come together for Milwaukee's Maker Market, which opened for the season this weekend at Discovery World. Maker Market is one of the best opportunities to buy locally made products and one event I am always sorry to miss. Mark you calendar for the next on May 3rd!

Unfortunately, I had to miss this season opener and maybe you did too. Of course, for me that means spending some time on the interwebs checking out products I may have purchased – and instead buying them from their Etsy pages.

Here are seven awesome Milwaukee made products you could have bought – and still should! 

Big White Yeti

Bay View's Big White Yeti specializes in soy candles, hand poured in the South Side neighborhood. Their beautiful soy candles are made from all natural soy, essential oils and cotton wicks. That's it. Clean, pure, long lasting candles that smell delicious. I love this blue mason jar one, and their "Bloomin' Lilac" scent will make my house smell like spring since I can't open my windows just yet. 

HANmade Milwaukee

HANmade Milwaukee started out their venture with making these adorable Milwaukee bandanas. They've branched out into a few other products such as a Milwaukee jigsaw puzzle – but my current love is this Note Sketch Scrap Book. The 80-page book is perfect for interviews and such that I do for work, but is also a great Milwaukee themed gift for someone. 

Bill Scherrer Forgeworks

Bill specializes in handmade iron forged products. So, go figure that I would fall in love with one of his wood products. This cutting board is made from black walnut, red oak, white oak, maple, and the center piece is black walnut and has cork feet included. 

Tactile Craftworks

If you haven't noticed by my previous product picks, I love a good ole' mason jar. This travel mug from Tactile Craftworks is a simple and clever way to carry your hot or cold beverage. The hand tooled leather sleeve insulates and protects the mason jar, plus you can…