If I've heard it once, I've heard it a thousand times, "people outside of Milwaukee love Milwaukee more than many of us who live here." I don't necessarily subscribe to this overused civic conversation point, but I do love to hear and read what others have to say about the city I love, Milwaukee.
The latest mainstream media example comes from the pages of latimes.com in a piece called "Hear Harley's vroom in Milwaukee."
"Milwaukee Beer. If that's your first thought after hearing the word ‘Milwaukee,' you haven't been here lately," wrote Los Angeles Times reporter Susan Carpenter on July 1. She opened, "In the last decade, the country's 25th largest city has gone through such a massive revitalization that "cosmopolitan" is a more apt description than "blue collar."
Carpenter, the Los Angeles Times' first motorcycle columnist, came to town to check out the new Harley-Davidson museum which she said was "one of the most engaging" museums she has experienced. Along the way she also discovered our greater Downtown neighborhoods and several destinations. Carpenter states "what I wasn't expecting was to be just as blown away by the city." She adds, "I'm still fantasizing about moving there."
Carpenter, by the way, is a 14-year motorcycle veteran and a former certified motorcycle instructor. She joined the Times in 1998 as a features writer and has written about rock music, alternative culture and the Los Angeles motorcycle scene.
One of the many things that surprised her was "how easy it was to get around." Carpenter stated that, "in Los Angeles, it takes at least 30 minutes to get anywhere" while "in Milwaukee, it's about five." Obviously, there's a huge population difference, but point taken.
She goes on to write about the "stylish twentysomethings" and says what I've (and many others) have believed for years that "Milwaukee seemed just as hip, progressive and clean as Seattle."
A UW-Madision graduate, Carpenter dined on Milwaukee Street and openingly wonders where the fat people were? She writes, "I found dinner just a few doors down (from Hotel Metro) at Cubanitas, another place jammed with chic young 'uns who prefer fried plantains to cheese curds and stiff mojitos to Schlitz. About then, I started to wonder where I really was. Blame it on the mojito, but I didn't feel as though I was in Milwaukee. Where were all the overweight women in appliqued sweaters with bad perms? They certainly weren't downtown."
She goes on to talk about the Milwaukee Art Museum, Old German Beer Hall and other destinations. She raves about Milwaukee throughout the entire piece.
In a second piece, Carpenter discusses just the Harley-Davidson Museum. A third piece will post soon, it will detail her ride around the region.
Wow, really nice article! Good press like that is important to the economic health of the city by helping to make a positive impression of Milwaukee that will draw visitors and conventions. Those of us who live here should take pride in the many great things about our town and overcome our long tendency to denigrate this city.
"Where were all the overweight women in appliqued sweaters with bad perms? They certainly weren't downtown."
Alas, they're in the suburbs pretending the downtown doesn't exist and fighting against regional policy.
But I'm happy this LA person likes Milwaukee!
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