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Milwaukee's Daily Magazine for Tuesday, Sept. 2, 2014

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Park and county representatives accept a check for $500,000 from MillerCoors, dedicated to fixing South Shore Beach.
Park and county representatives accept a check for $500,000 from MillerCoors, dedicated to fixing South Shore Beach.

South Shore Park on tap for clean up

Late Wednesday afternoon, representatives from MillerCoors, Milwaukee County Parks, UWM's School of Freshwater Sciences and Milwaukee County held a press conference at South Shore Park, announcing new initiatives – and namely a new $500,000 contribution from MillerCoors – to clean up the park's beach. 

The Bay View park features several recreational areas and hosts several events, but its sandy beach has often been closed in recent years due to E. Coli contamination. As a result, the beach has earned a national reputation as one of the worst in the country. In fact, earlier this summer, the Natural Resources Defense Council named South Shore one of 17 repeat offenders, meaning that its water samples have been worse than the public health benchmarks since 2009.

"As you can imagine, this designation ... we're not proud of it," said John Dargle Jr., parks director for Milwaukee County Parks, "but to many of our partners, we are committed to change that – forever – and get off this list."

Dargle Jr. and the rest of the speakers mentioned Bradford Beach several times throughout the press conference, hopeful to recreate the successful work that the city has already seen in action at the now revitalized Milwaukee hotspot. 

"I remember being around in 2008 and an incredibly enthusiastic witness to the announcement then, again from Miller, of their commitment to clean up Bradford Beach," said County Executive Chris Abele.

"We expect huge crowds now, but at the time, we didn't have anything like that, and there hand't been for a long time. Anybody who isn't clear about how much of a transformation can be impacted by a partnership like this need only drive down – as we all have – on a hot summer day and just see thousands and thousands of your community enjoying an incredible asset and a clean beach. That's what we're going to get now."

The $500,000 donation and commitment from MillerCoors is a strong start in that direction, but obviously there is much wor…

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"This is Spinal Tap" comes to the Milwaukee Film Festival's Cinema Hooligante program.
"This is Spinal Tap" comes to the Milwaukee Film Festival's Cinema Hooligante program.

Milwaukee Film Festival's Cinema Hooligante lineup goes to 11

Late night is looking bright, as the Milwaukee Film Festival announced its 2014 selections for its Cinema Hooligante program, a midnight mix for fans of all things cult, crazed and – considering the after bedtime showings – caffeinated. 

This year's lineup is the most diverse since the program's initiation, featuring everything from classic comedies to a bloody brutal action film to a mind-boggling romance to Cinema Hooligante's first anime feature to a movie where a young girl eats unmentionable things (amongst other unpleasantries). 

Here are the eight picks:

  • "Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb": On its 50th anniversary, the Milwaukee Film Festival and John Axford – former Brewer closer, current Pittsburgh Pirate reliever and permanent cinephile – present Stanley Kubrick's brilliantly black satire in beautiful 35mm. 
  • "Mood Indigo": The latest film from legitimately visionary director Michel Gondry ("Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind") tells the story of a romance turned complicated after the woman (Audrey Tautou) is diagnosed with a water lily growing in her lungs. Typical.
  • "Patema Inverted": Cinema Hooligante's first anime feature focuses on a society split between people who've lost their gravitational pull and dig themselves underground to  prevent floating into the sky and those above ground who cannot look up out of fear of the underground dwellers.
  • "The Raid 2": In case you missed it when it briefly came out earlier this summer, "The Raid 2" is a martial arts/gangster epic in which a whole ton of people get brutally kicked, punched, stabbed, kicked again, shot and kicked one more time just to be safe. It's pretty glorious.
  • "This is Spinal Tap": Arguably the greatest rock 'n' roll movie of all time hits the Milwaukee Film Festival stage. Witness the might and majesty of "Stonehenge" in 35mm.
  • "Time Lapse": A bendy time-travel thriller in which three friends discover a machine that photographs events e…
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The Sharon Lynne Wilson Center for the Arts is hosting its second annual guitar competition and festival.
The Sharon Lynne Wilson Center for the Arts is hosting its second annual guitar competition and festival.
Stephen Hull, a semi-finalist, practices a little during the Wilson Center Guitar Competition and Festival.
Stephen Hull, a semi-finalist, practices a little during the Wilson Center Guitar Competition and Festival.

Guitar competition combines contest, classroom and concert

This weekend, if you happen to be driving through or around Brookfield, you might hear a faint roar coming from the Sharon Lynne Wilson Center for the Arts. That’s the sound of fierce competition, of furious fingers flying up and down fretboards, of fun and of friendships – spanning the nation and even the whole globe.

Oh, and of course, music. You’re probably hearing really good music, too.

The gorgeous Wilson Center for the Arts, tucked away inside Mitchell Park, is currently playing host to their second annual Wilson Center Guitar Competition and Festival. The contest is a multi-layered festival, featuring a four-division competition, several educational master classes taught by professional musicians and a duo of public concerts from Greg Koch and Jesse Cook. Koch’s performance is tonight at 7:30, while Cook takes the stage Saturday night.

"For the people competing, they’re looking at these more mature professionals who’ve ‘made it,’ so there’s something to be learned there," said Jonathan Winkle, executive director of the Sharon Lynne Wilson Center for the Arts and one of the lead creators of the festival. "But for the fan of music or an amateur guitarist, just to come out and hear a Greg Koch or Jesse Cook or whomever we’ve had perform at this festival, you’re being transported to another place."

The real centerpiece, however, is the one-of-a-kind contest itself, which spans across four separate categories: jazz, classical, fingerstyle and rock/blues.

"To our knowledge, there is nothing like this anywhere," Winkle said. "We thought what’s the most interesting thing we could do, and that’s to mash all of that up. You often have a classical competition or a blues festival, but you don’t necessarily have a competition that’s covering a lot of ground, musically speaking."

The festival's preliminary round involved a video submission call, with interested amateur guitarists recording some tunes on video (in order to best ensure th…

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If you think Roll MKE's brisket grilled cheese sounds delicious, that's because it's really delicious.
If you think Roll MKE's brisket grilled cheese sounds delicious, that's because it's really delicious.
The Roll MKE food truck team in action.
The Roll MKE food truck team in action.

Food Truck Week: Roll MKE

Wait up, summer's not over yet. You can tell because the streets are still lined with the ever-growing food truck culture in Milwaukee. It's Food Truck Week here at OnMilwaukee.com and all week long we're stopping at some of Brew City's best restaurants on wheels in search of the most interesting dishes on offer.

One of my fondest discoveries from my baseball trip to Texas earlier this summer was discovering my deep love and appreciation for brisket. I could eat it everyday. The only problem is that the brisket down in Dallas (or Houston or Austin or San Antonio ... ) is some of the best you're going to find anywhere, and while I've certainly had some tasty brisket back home, it just can't quite reach the meaty highs of Texas.

Well, I think I've found my favorite brisket in Milwaukee, brisket that could possibly compete with the scrumptious supply down in the South. And the best part? It comes surrounded by an equally delicious grilled cheese sandwich. Take that, Texas.

The dish is the brisket grilled cheese, and you can find it – plus a drink and fries – for $8 at the Roll MKE food truck prowling around downtown Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. until about 1:30 p.m.

"It's been on the menu since day one," said owner and chef Chad Rittgers. "I knew I wanted to do something with a grilled cheese. It actually started off with short ribs, but we just used that for another item on the menu, and brisket was something I always liked."

Oh, Rittgers definitely did something with a grilled cheese: He amplified it to upsettingly delicious heights. After sampling it earlier this week, my wallet and my waistline are both currently at risk.

Rittgers braises some beef brisket in Lakefront Brewery Eastside Dark beer (he doesn't drink wine, so he cooks mostly with beer). Last year they used Lakefront's IBA, but since that went seasonal, they moved over to the Eastside Dark.

He then puts some pieces between two slices of bread, along with some charred red onions, arugula…

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