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The home of the new arena district in Downtown Milwaukee.
The home of the new arena district in Downtown Milwaukee.

My letter to the Milwaukee Common Council

As "they" like to say, there’s a lot of "heavy lifting" left on the arena project.  As it moves forward and into the final stages of the City’s portion of the financial pie, designs, deals and estimates will come together to help make the project even better. 

We all need reminders of the importance of keeping the project on pace.  So, since it’s public record once I submitted it last week, I’m sharing the letter I sent to all members of Milwaukee’s Common Council.  

Today, there’s another public hearing at 4 p.m. at City Hall. Show up, listen, learn and communicate.  

The Common Council is expected to vote on Milwaukee's share of the arena on September 22.

Letter to Milwaukee Common Council
Sent Aug. 26, 2015

Good morning!

I was a part of the event that helped "kick off" the tear down of the Park East Freeway.  Several of you were too. Remember that 0.8-mile highway spur that was part of a loop that separated our Downtown from north-side neighborhoods?  Yep.  That was 2002.  

Today, 13 years later, when you walk the area you truly get a sense of what’s happened and what’s coming.  All thanks to great vision and leadership.

Parks, plazas, neighborhoods and a new entertainment district.  I walked the area last week and got goose bumps thinking about what’s next.  It’s been a process, of course, but one that is playing out the way that it’s meant to.  Big things are truly ahead of us!  

So, today I write you all as a Downtown property and business owner, board member of the Wisconsin Center District and Marcus Center, Play it Forward coalition member and - most importantly - a passionate Milwaukeean who has devoted most of my life - like you - to bettering our city.  

Thus, I ask for your support for prompt passage of the City of Milwaukee portion of the Downtown Milwaukee arena package.

It truly is a catalytic development that will trigger additional civic love and investment in an area of greater Downtown that needs it.

Thank you for …

Take a walk through the Park East land.
Take a walk through the Park East land.

What I'm enjoying right now, and how you can enjoy these things too

I like to ask people "what are you really enjoying these days?"  It’s a fun way to open a conversation, an easier way to encourage expression of gratitude and a fun entry into finding out about new things, events and even people.  

So, today, I ask myself the same question.  What am I enjoying right now? 

Other than, of course, my family, faith, friends and greater Milwaukee in general, the list could get long quickly so I’ll keep it to eight.  What’s on your list? As you think about it, enjoy these.  

Making a game out of saving money is fun, and while I think I do OK on the traditional side of saving and investing putting personalty and portability on it has really made saving a few extra bucks easy and fun.  Download Digit now.  It’s not bank, but savings account, that is backed by the FDIC.  It’s easy, connect to an account and every few days, the good people at Digit will transfer a few dollars — $2 to $18 seems to be the average - into a secure account. When you need some extra cash, your money back or need to just rationalize a fun purchase. you merely send a text message and Digit transfers the amount you tell it to back into your checking account.  It also sends you updates on balances and rewards you for certain levels of savings.  

Goody Gourmets, 4425 N. Oakland Ave.
I can thank my Dad for a lot of things in my life, and one of these things is my love of popcorn.  These days, and honestly for the past several years, I’m loving the triple mix at Goody Gourmets.  This place rocks. Wonderful people, amazing smells that drift onto Oakland Avenue and most importantly great popcorn.  Eat your heart out, garrett.  

Walking the Park East
I was a part of the event that helped "kick off" the tear down of the Park East Freeway,  a 0.8-mile highway spur that was part of a loop that separated Downtown from north-side neighborhoods.  That was 2002.  Today, 13 years later, when you walk the area you truly get a sense of what’s happened a…

How does Milwaukee rank in "uniform attractiveness?"
How does Milwaukee rank in "uniform attractiveness?"

Rating Milwaukee's "uniform attractiveness"

Paul Lukas’ "Uni Watch" has made a good name for itself.

It’s fun to analyze, pontificate and rank team uniforms and logos.  His latest work on ESPN ranks "uniform attractiveness."  Milwaukee falls into his group with two major pro sports teams (NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL).  He also does a ranking of the 20 cities with three or more teams.

So, what city ranked No. 1 in the "two major pro sports" category?  Not Milwaukee.  Sorry Brewers. Sorry Bucks.  Hail, Kansas City as the Chiefs and Royals take his top rank. 

Where did Milwaukee fall?  Tied for sixth with Seattle.  Here’s the blurb from Lukas:

The Bucks' new set, with its innovative use of cream tones, is a major upgrade. Maybe it'll inspire the Brewers to get a makeover -- and not a moment too soon.

UNI WATCH SCORE: Brewers: 3.5, Bucks: 7.5. UNI: 5.5

Makes you wonder if a logo and uniform over haul is in the works for the Brewers.  They kinda need it, right?

Read the full rankings here, and go buy a new Bucks, Brewers, Admirals or Wave jersey today.

A new #MUBB app is now available.
A new #MUBB app is now available.

Marquette basketball launches new app

I'm already excited and anxious for the upcoming basketball season. And, today, my alma mater - Marquette - helped fuel my fan fire by releasing a new app that is available for free download, thanks to a partnership with Bluechip Athletic Solutions, Inc.

The app is available for both iPhone and Android users and can be found by searching for "Marquette Basketball Official" in the app store.  As an incentive to download it, you'll get an exclusive look at the team’s special Jordan Brand "Mascot XX9" shoes, which will be worn on the team's trip to Italy, Aug. 10-20.

The app, now fairly basic, will grow and serve as the team’s social media hub during the foreign tour and will be a one-stop shop for the latest on the travel party via Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. 

More content will be added as the season approaches and the app will provide updated info as the year progresses, including exclusive content.

The team is also developing a basketball-specific microsite and its expected launch is scheduled for the fall.