By Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer Published Sep 22, 2023 at 9:01 AM

The Great Milwaukee Summer is HERE! Your guide to what you'll be doing, where you'll be drinking, who you'll be hearing and how you'll be getting a sweet tan this summer is on OnMilwaukee. The Great Milwaukee Summer guide is brought to you by Educators Credit Union and Harley-Davidson Museum

The sun is setting on beer garden season in Milwaukee, but there are still some up and running. Here's the dish, or should I say, the pour, including when they're open and what they're serving.

(Here's info on this year's Oktoberfest celebrations, too!)

414, let's have one more!

1840 Brewing Beer Garden Road Show
Multiple locations, (414) 236-4056


Bay View's 1840 Brewing – which is still working on getting its West Bend taproom built – is hosting literally dozens of beer garden events this season in the Milwaukee-area suburbs.

The events are at location in Bayside, Fox Point, Germantown, Mequon, West Allis, West Bend and Whitefish Bay and are too numerous to list here. But you can find dates, times and addresses for all of them here.

Buy one of 1840's new swanky stainless steel pint tumblers – made locally by Real Deal Steel – at any of the events or in the taproom and you'll get a buck off all of your full beer pours at any of the Road Show beer gardens during the 2023 season. More info at the link.

The Baaree at The Cheel
105 Buntrock Ave., Thiensville, (262) 292-8230

The Baaree, now open, is a beer garden unlike any other. The gorgeous outdoor space features edible plant-scaping, a water feature which creates a zen-like ambience and a branded fire feature created by Milwaukee Blacksmith.

A menu includes inventive sausages, shareable snacks and plenty of craft beer and cocktails.  There's also live music on Tuesdays, Fridays and Sundays. Find a schedule at the link above.

There is outdoor movie night every Monday and baaree Trivia Champion takes place Thursdays. 

Open Monday-Friday from 2 to 10 p.m. and Saturday-Sunday from noon to 10 p.m.

Estabrook Beer Garden
4600 Estabrook Pkwy., (414) 219-9065

Estabrook Park – serving daily from noon until 10 p.m., with last call at 9 p.m. – carries the honor of being the first public beer garden in the U.S. since Prohibition.

The beer garden, which offers up plenty of shaded seating and a river view, features imported beer from the Munich Hofbrauhaus, along with brats, hot dogs, freshly baked soft pretzels, a Friday fish fry and schnitzel on Saturdays and Sundays.

Hubbard Park Beer Garden
3565 N. Morris Blvd., Shorewood, (414) 332-4207

This Old World Beer Garden in Shorewood is located along the Oak Leaf Trail just south of Capitol Drive.

The garden features locally brewed beers, non-alcoholic drinks and a menu featuring sausages, hot dogs, German-style pretzels and Wisconsin cheese. There's also a great fish fry on Fridays.

The beer garden's availability is weather-dependent, but on days that are sunny and above around 60 degrees, Hubbard Park will serve starting at 3 p.m. on weekdays and noon on weekends.

Kegel’s Inn Beer Garden
5901 W. National Ave., West Allis (414)  257-9999

Kegel's Inn Beer Garden has extended Saturday hours this year. It’s an easy walk to the ballpark and there’s incredible food plus live music, 5-8 p.m. Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday, 6-9 Friday and noon-3 Saturday. Austrian/German classical music on Wednesdays, classical and jazz on Thursdays, authentic/traditional music on Fridays and singer-songwriters on Saturdays.

Open Tuesday-Thursday, 4-9 p.m., Friday-Saturday, 11 a.m.-9 p.m.

Lakeside Beer & Cocktail Garden
Henry Maier Festival Park

Enter at the Summerfest grounds Mid-Gate every Friday and Saturday through the rest of September from 3 until 8 p.m. to access this new venue along the shores of Lake Michigan. The menu includes beers like Miller Lite and High Life, Lakefront Oktoberfest, Terrapin options and others, alongside Vizzy seltzers, Topo Chico, draft cocktails and non-alcoholic options, too, in a picnic table setting. There are yard games and the Northwestern Mutual Community Park will also be open during the beer garden's hours. And since it's the Summerfest grounds, there will be live music, too, beginning at 7:30 p.m. Here's the schedule:

  • Friday, Sept. 29 – The Stangs
  • Saturday, Sept. 30 – TBA

The Landing at Hoyt Park
1800 N. Swan Blvd., Wauwatosa, (414) 302-9160

The Landing – with seating both outdoors and inside this amazing great hall – features a changing list of local craft and imported beer, along with red, white and sparkling wines and a food menu including Cranky Al’s pizza, giant pretzels, obatzda, beer brats, hot dogs, popcorn and fountain drinks.

A schedule of live music is also posted on its website.

There's a playground nearby and one of the best pools in the area is on the other side of the fence (though the latter is now closed for the season). Open through October.

South Shore Terrace2900 S. Shore Dr., (414) 617-1147

South Shore
(PHOTO: County Parks)

South Shore Terrace runs through October.

This beachside concessions area in South Shore Park features the Miller 1855 Bar, with its nearly 30-foot concrete and cedar counter complete with 20 tap handles. The gathering space, open spring through fall, also includes a cedar pergola, two stamped-concrete stages, gas fire pits to keep everyone cozy during cooler weather, seating and a glorious view of Lake Michigan and the Downtown skyline.

And to help soak in the sights and the suds, there's also a menu of farm-to-table snacks including pretzels, cheese boards, fries, sandwiches, Friday fish fry and more.

Lakefront seating returns thanks to the support of Molson Coors.

The Tap Yards
Fox Brook Park, Brookfield
Menomonee Park, Menomonee Falls
Schlitz Park, Milwaukee
Minooka Park, Waukesha
Ackerman's Grove, West Bend

The Tap Yard group of dog- and family-friendly beer gardens are now open.

Like the other sites, the new Menomonee Falls location will have a range of events, food trucks and more, along with craft beer, wine, hard seltzers and canned cocktails. Wednesdays will offer beer and craft events, Thursdays at 7 is America’s Pub Quiz, bingo is on Fridays at 6, Saturdays have trivia at 6 and Sundays offer extreme bar bingo at 4.

Third Ward Beer Garden
Catalano Square, Broadway and Menomonee Street

The garden, open through September, is centered around a two-level pop-up container bar that has a stage and green space on its roof. Arrayed around it are German-style picnic tables and high-top tables made from barrels.

Beer, wine and ready-to-drink cocktails will be available for purchase. According to the garden’s website, that menu includes brews from Milwaukee’s Third Space Brewing and Hinterland in Green Bay and imports from Weihenstephaner. There is also Cutwater canned margaritas and vodka mules, Bud Light black cherry seltzer, Michelob Ultra, Casa Cortelli Prosecco, red wine, water and packaged snacks.

Open 3-8 p.m. Wednesdays and Thursdays; 3-9 on Fridays; noon-9 p.m. Saturdays; and noon-5 on Sundays. Live, acoustic music on Thursdays and Saturdays.

War Memorial Beer Garden
750 N. Lincoln Memorial Dr.

Located right on the lakefront, in the shadow of the beautiful War Memorial building designed by Eeero Saarinen, the the War Memorial Beer Garden is right near Discovery World, the Art Museum, Summerfest grounds, Veterans Park, the Oak Leaf Trail and more. This year it gets an upgrade with a container bar.  There’s German beer, loaded brats and other snacks, and a free beer when you park in the adjacent lot. Proceeds benefit the War Memorial and its mission.

Open Tuesday-Sunday, 11 a.m.-8 p.m., with live music Friday-Sunday, 1-4 p.m. Though Oct. 1.

Whitnall Beer Garden
8831 N. Root River Pkwy, Franklin, (414) 514-9744

What started as merely a popular stop on the Traveling Beer Garden's summer sprint officially grew into a permanent, Milwaukee County Parks-operated craft beer garden in Whitnall Park. This year, it expands to seven days a week!

It boasts a lineup of 24 craft beer taps, complete with ciders, hard sodas, wines and other refreshments in tow – as well as a lineup of local musicians performing from 5 to 8 p.m. every Saturday and Sunday.

Whitnall's suds spot also comes with barbecue to help soak up the beer, with The Gift of Wings Grill serving up snacks and food throughout the summer.

This year, the parking lot and 2,100 feet of parkway have been rebuilt and extra parking added.  A reconfigured path aims to improve safety for pedestrians and cyclists. There are new tree plantings, improved lighting and more!

Open Thursday and Friday, 4-8 p.m., Saturday and Sunday, noon until 7 p.m. in September.

In October, hours are Saturday and Sunday only, noon-6.

Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer

Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he lived until he was 17, Bobby received his BA-Mass Communications from UWM in 1989 and has lived in Walker's Point, Bay View, Enderis Park, South Milwaukee and on the East Side.

He has published three non-fiction books in Italy – including one about an event in Milwaukee history, which was published in the U.S. in autumn 2010. Four more books, all about Milwaukee, have been published by The History Press.

With his most recent band, The Yell Leaders, Bobby released four LPs and had a songs featured in episodes of TV's "Party of Five" and "Dawson's Creek," and films in Japan, South America and the U.S. The Yell Leaders were named the best unsigned band in their region by VH-1 as part of its Rock Across America 1998 Tour. Most recently, the band contributed tracks to a UK vinyl/CD tribute to the Redskins and collaborated on a track with Italian novelist Enrico Remmert.

He's produced three installments of the "OMCD" series of local music compilations for and in 2007 produced a CD of Italian music and poetry.

In 2005, he was awarded the City of Asti's (Italy) Journalism Prize for his work focusing on that area. He has also won awards from the Milwaukee Press Club.

He can be heard weekly on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories.