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The former home of St. Mary's Academy and Cardinal Stritch College will be deconstructed and replaced.
The former home of St. Mary's Academy and Cardinal Stritch College will be deconstructed and replaced.

Former St. Mary's Academy & Marian Center will be razed and replaced

This morning we received a press release from Jean L Merry, communications director of Sisters of St. Francis of Assisi, saying that the former St. Mary's Academy/Marian Center building at 3195 S. Superior St., in St. Francis, will be deconstructed and replaced.

The complex – near the southern end of Bay View – dates to 1904 and 1930 and, over the years, has been home to Cardinal Stritch College, St. Mary's Academy and the Marian Center for Nonprofits.

Here is the statement in full:

Preliminary plans for the new Sisters of St. Francis of Assisi (OSF) convent will be presented to the City of St. Francis Common Council on Wednesday evening, April 5, by Groth Design Group and VJS Construction Services on behalf of the sisters. The facility will be built on the site of the now closed Marian Center for Nonprofits, originally St. Mary’s Academy, at 3195 South Superior Street.

The new construction is being designed to provide suitable housing for 80 sisters who presently live at the Motherhouse and in a former seminary residence adjacent to the grounds. These aging sisters reside in small rooms, inadequate for elder care, in structures which no longer meet their basic health and safety needs.

The OSF congregation and its contractors are targeting the end of April for the first steps in the deconstruction of the Marian Center. The initial phase will be the salvage of artifacts of historical importance, the 1904 and 1930 cornerstones, and items that can be re-purposed in the new facility.

After more than five years of working with consultants and studying the options, it became clear that it is neither practical nor economically viable to maintain the century-old Marian Center structure and the 1800s Motherhouse.

The anticipated start time for construction is late summer.

To see inside the Marian Center, check out this Urban Spelunking article from last year. More on the sprawling Sisters of St. Francis of Assisi complex can be found in this Urban Spelunkin…

All aboard, next stop Tokyo!
All aboard, next stop Tokyo!

MCTS boards the early bus to April Fools' with round trip service to Japan

Today, March 27, the Milwaukee County Transit System has gotten an early start on April Fool's, posting an article on its web site with the headline, "Milwaukee County Transit Announces New Round Trip Service to Japan."

The article, which at press time was available here, was also tweeted out via the MCTS Twitter feed.

The article reads:

The Milwaukee County Transit System (MCTS) announced today new, non-stop daily service to Japan. The trips will begin running on Saturday, April 1st. Fares will mirror local bus fares, only $2.25 cash or $1.75 M•CARD.

"For far too long, Mitchell International Airport has cornered the market on flying, but that is all about to change," said Orville Wright, the head of the newly created MCTS Aeronautics Division. "Besides physics, nothing says we can’t fly a bus to the other side of the globe."

Each MCTS bus has seating for 40 people, meaning everyone will travel in first class.

If service to Japan meets expected demand, other flights will be added in the future to Australia, Brazil and the moon.

To learn more about this new service and to plan your trip visit

Way to get the creative juice flowing, MCTS! Maybe we here at OnMilwaukee should consider doing something for April 1, too.

One- and two-hour delivery are now available in Milwaukee via Amazon's Prime Now service.
One- and two-hour delivery are now available in Milwaukee via Amazon's Prime Now service.

Amazon brings one-hour delivery to Milwaukee

Today, Amazon announced that it's expanding its Prime Now one-hour delivery service to Milwaukee. No word yet on whether or not it will use drones or teleportation or cuddly Yetis to get you the goods so quickly, for $7.99.

Two-hour delivery will be free via the Prime Now service, details of which are here. Both options are available only to Amazon Prime members.

When it comes to books, I prefer to do my own less-than-one-hour run to Boswell Book Co., but I can see where Prime Now could come in handy when I need something quickly that Boswell or another local retailer doesn't have on hand.

In most cases, I rarely need something within an hour or two, but for folks who use Amazon for a wider variety of products, it could come in handy, since the super-fast delivery option is available for everything from milk to diapers to Kindles and beyond.

I think of this as an emergency service, but Amazon is branding it more as a time-saving convenience.

"Not only does Prime Now offer customers convenient delivery of tens of thousands of items, the service is really about giving time back to Prime members to do the things they really want," said Stephenie Landry, vice president of Prime Now worldwide, in a news release.

"Sometimes you don’t have time to make it to the store or maybe you just don’t want to. Prime Now is your one-stop shop for everything from cereal to pet food to an Amazon Echo all delivered right to your door with free two-hour delivery."

The $7.99, one-day delivery is available from 8 a.m. until 10 p.m., seven days a week, in Milwaukee, which is now one of more than 30 U.S. cities offering the service.

This is definitely a potentially handy option; just please remember your local retailer, too.

The Jerry Garcia Band's November 1991 Bradley Center gig is now available on CD.
The Jerry Garcia Band's November 1991 Bradley Center gig is now available on CD. (Photo: Bob Minkin)

Dave Matthews' label releases Jerry Garcia live CD recorded in Milwaukee

When Grateful Dead guitarist Jerry Garcia took the stage at the Bradley Center in Milwaukee on Nov. 23, 1991, there had recently been a bit of a stir among his fans.

The show has just been released in a double-CD set, called "GarciaLive Volume Eight: November 23rd, 1991 Bradley Center," from ATO Records, a label started by Dave Matthews.

According to Dean Budnick, editor of Relix magazine for Deadheads, "A Rolling Stone interview with Garcia published in October 1991 had provided consternation for Deadheads, as he expressed some qualms about the state of the Grateful Dead."

Wrote James Henke in that Rolling Stone piece, "Garcia admits that these solo jaunts are often more entertaining than his work with the Dead, and one gets the feeling that if he felt he could easily extricate himself from the Dead and his attendant responsibilities, he might just do it."

But the 49-year-old Garcia still appeared to be enjoying the ride, telling Henke, "It's still fun to do. I mean, even at its very worst, there's still something special about it."

And Garcia was also clearly enjoying himself with his eponymous band, too – then on its first proper tour since 1984, according to Budnick, who says in his liner notes that the positive vibe is clear in these 26-year-old recordings.

"(Garcia's) performance at the Bradley Center ... captures his joy and comfort within a musical environment that grants him the freedom to explore more spiritual expressions in his performance and repertoire," Budnick writes. "If at times the Grateful Dead could be something of a turgid Russian novel: convoluted and labyrinthine yet mostly rewarding, the Jerry Garcia Band during this era was more of an Elizabethan sonnet: breezy, emotive and luminous.

"The crowd at the Bradley Center clearly concurs, and one can hear their energy and enthusiasm through the board feed."

The discs capture 15 performances from that night. The eight-song first set – with a broad array of covers, ranging from Eric Cla…