Enjoying Summer Fun in Milwaukee

MILWAUKEE, Wis. – Even though the weather may not feel like it, summer is right around the corner. So now is the time to explore the endless opportunities for summer fun that you and your children can participate in around Milwaukee.

According to Samantha Stern, training and development director for Ebenezer Child Care Centers, “Milwaukee is such a great city, because it has an abundance of fun activities, many of which are free or very affordable for families. This summer, be sure to take full advantage of all that Milwaukee has to offer.”

Get Reading at the Milwaukee Public Library

The Milwaukee Public Library is encouraging children of all ages to keep reading this summer by hosting a “Super Readers” program for children up to 12 and a “Get Graphic@YourLibrary” program for teens. Participants can earn lots of great prizes simply by signing up and enjoying a few good books over the summer.

The library also has a variety of free special events and activities for babies, preschoolers, grade-schoolers, teens and families tied to their summer-long reading program. For more information, visit their website at http://www.mpl.org and click on summer reading.

Explore Nature and Cool Off in Milwaukee County Parks

If you are looking to get out and explore nature, be sure to check the Milwaukee County Parks system. Boerner Botanical Gardens and the Wehr Nature Center provide lots of fun opportunities to get up close to nature. The Mitchell Park Domes are a great way to experience a desert oasis, tropical jungle, and special floral gardens indoors when the weather is not cooperating.

Two Milwaukee County Parks also have waterparks your family might want to check out on hot days. Cool Waters is located in Greenfield Park at 2028 S. 124th Street in West Allis and Pelican Cove is located in Kosciuszko Park at 2201 S. 7th St. in Milwaukee. For more information on the Milwaukee County Parks, visit their website at http://www.county.milwaukee.gov/ and click on parks.


Explore Other Cultures at Area Festivals and Special Events

Did you know that Henry Maier Festival Park, located along the beautiful Lake Michigan Shoreline, is actually home to more than a dozen colorful ethnic celebrations every summer that invite families to learn about various cultures’ art, cuisine, history and entertainment?

Some of the more popular events include Polish Fest (http://www.polishfest.org) June 20-22; the world’s largest music festival, Summerfest (http://www.summerfest.com/) June 26 – July 6: Bastille Days (http://www.easttown.com), a celebration of the French culture which occurs in Cathedral Square in downtown Milwaukee July 10-13; Festa Italiana (http://www.festaitaliana.com) July 17-20; German Fest (http://www.germanfest.com), the largest three-day festival of German culture and heritage in North America, July 25-27; African World Festival August 1-3; Arab World Fest August 8-10; the world’s largest Irish cultural festival, Irish Fest (http://www.irishfest.com) August 14 -17; Mexican Fiesta (http://www.mexicanfiesta.org) August 22-24; and Indian Summer Festival, (http://www.indiansummer.org) North America’s largest American Indian festival, September 5-7.

Wisconsin State Fair (http://www.wistatefair.com) also offers families a great opportunity to explore and enjoy Wisconsin’s agricultural heritage complete with a Midway full of carnival rides. It runs July 31-August 10 at Wisconsin State Fair Park in West Allis.

Museums, the Zoo, and More

In addition to Milwaukee’s fun festivals and special events, the city is home more than two dozen museums that your family should consider visiting. They include: the Milwaukee Art Museum (http://www.mam.org), which houses more than 20,000 permanent works of art including one of the largest Georgia O’Keefe (a Milwaukee native) collections in the world: the extremely popular Milwaukee Public Museum (http://www.mpm.edu), adjacent Humphrey IMAX Dome Theater, and the Daniel M. Soref Planetarium; and Discovery World at Pier Wisconsin (http://www.discoveryworld.org) which features experiential learning through interactive exhibits, fresh and salt water aquariums, touch tanks, digital theaters, and labs. The city also has a children’s museum located downtown (http://www.bbcmkids.org).

Opening July 12, 2008, the Harley-Davidson Museum (http://www.h-dmuseum.com) will showcase the legendary motorcycles, passionate riders, and the unforgettable stories that have made Harley-Davidson world-famous. It’s a must-see for any little person who enjoys motorcycles.

Plus, don’t forget the nationally-acclaimed Milwaukee County Zoo which features a spectacular world of wild mammals, birds, fish, and reptiles. The zoo has free days throughout the summer. Check out their website at http://www.milwaukeezoo.org for more information.

Ebenezer Child Care Centers is a not-for-profit, locally based agency committed to providing early childhood programs from the heart.

The agency prides itself on being different from other child care providers in that it offers a home-like atmosphere, individualized, nurturing care, and a curriculum that is virtues-based for every child’s developmental stage.

Every Ebenezer Child Care Center focuses on all aspects of a child’s development: cognitive, physical, emotional, and social. In addition to providing quality care, the agency also offers other educational programming aimed at helping parents.

The agency has a variety of locations throughout Greater Milwaukee. The agency’s main office is located at 1496 S. 29th Street, Milwaukee. For more information, please call 414-643-5070 or visit the agency’s Web site at https://www.ebenezerchildcare.com/.