By Maureen Post Special to Published Jun 25, 2009 at 8:48 AM

A professional tour of cycling pedals through the Milwaukee area this weekend with two great urban street races.

"The Downer Classic" rides onto the East Side Saturday tailing a Belgian beer festival, live local music and plenty of boutique shopping. The party starts Friday night with a Belgian Beer Festival from 5-11 p.m. and music from Myles Hayes Jazz Quirtet.

Then, head back to Downer Avenue on Saturday for a Fat Tire tapping at noon followed by a full day of racing as riders stream around a .8 mile loop circling the Downer Avenue neighborhood.  Kids and amateur races are capped by the Downer Classic Pro Criterium at 6:30 p.m.

But, the racing doesn't end Saturday.

International competition continues at the Carl Zach Cycling Classic on Sunday in downtown Waukesha. The Carl Zach Cycling Classic lures racers from around the world to compete on downtown Waukesha's hairpin turns at more than 30 m.p.h.  Kid and women's races run all day starting at 11 a.m.; followed by a 90 minute pro men's race at 6 p.m.

Get there early to spend the day wandering the maze of small boutiques, local cafes and specialty art galleries. Local artist Luke Wein, designer of this year's Carl Zach race poster, will be on hand to sign copies at Taylor's People's Park.

Maureen Post Special to staff writer Maureen Post grew up in Wauwatosa. A lover of international and urban culture, Maureen received a bachelor’s degree in sociology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

After living on the east side of Madison for several years, Maureen returned to Milwaukee in 2006.

After a brief stint of travel, Maureen joined as the city’s oldest intern and has been hooked ever since. Combining her three key infatuations, Milwaukee’s great music, incredible food and inspiring art (and yes, in that order), Maureen’s job just about fits her perfectly.

Residing in Bay View, Maureen vehemently believes the city can become fresh and new with a simple move across town.