Last week, before trips to northern Wisconsin and Toronto (about which more later), I took an afternoon bike ride with my new friend Tanya, a recent Milwaukee transplant. She was really patient with me while I forced-marched her around the city, from the Riverwest Co-op (where I’d never been before – that was her suggestion) to new condo developments and a cool new pedestrian bridge over urban prairie; to the old Pabst Brewery (currently partially redeveloped); to the gentrified historic Third Ward, the city’s old produce market area, where we combed through a very dusty antique store and the Public Market, a “catalytic project” in the 2001 city master plan (it has a great cheese shop, a wine store, a spice shop, and an enormous candy counter…its heaven). After that we noodled north along Terrace Street (past my favorite grand old home in the city) and around the East Side a little. We also stopped downtown at the Renaissance Book Store (pictured toward the bottom), which is a place that can really only be experienced. It is three stories of books stacked all over the place – on shelves, on chairs, on the floor – and apparently the owner has whole warehouses full of books elsewhere. Tanya bought a book, but I just carried one around for a while before leaving empty-handed.
There were fires in the Boundary Waters, in Minnesota, which made the air hazy, but it was a beautiful day and we covered a lot of territory. I was particularly pleased to visit the Brewery, which I wrote a paper on but had never visited, and the North Avenue Bridge, a particularly cool staircase that I’ve been admiring on the internet for a while now.
For more pictures of the day, visit my Flickr page – you can also see photos from Madison (with more to come).
PS I added a new header image to the blog. Its a photo taken by Erin Molnar of Llandudno, Wales, and I think its totally beautiful. Thanks to Erin for letting me use it, and to Lizzie Woods, who shared the image with me.
Now I totally want to go to Milwaukee. Look at all that adaptive reuse of industrial infrastructure and architecture!
The picture looks beautiful, btw. Happy to have helped in its inclusion on the site.