French, of course, for French Alliance of Milwaukee, Alliance Française de Milwaukee transplants the culture and language of the French-speaking world to the city's Lake Michigan shores. Several teachers help students learn the smooth, mellifluous language even if they weren't born with a Frenchman's velvet tongue, and a variety of events commemorate French history, from the joyous summer hours of Bastille Day to the annual release of the beaujolais nouveau wine each fall.
Inspired by the German Turnverein associations of the early 19th century, the Milwaukee Turners first came together in the mid 1800s, gaining their charter from the Wisconsin State Legislature in 1855. In 1882, the group constructed Turner Hall, and the building has housed the organization and its stockpiles of sweatbands ever since. Over the decades, the hall has welcomed in visitors with a mission to help them create sound bodies and minds.
Though they derive their name from “Turnen,” the German word for gymnastics, the Milwaukee Turners teach visitors much more than just how to lasso a pommel horse. In addition to the gymnastic school, the organization schedules classes for yoga. Their rock-climbing wall's top ropes take climbers up 26 feet where they practice climbing or belaying techniques. To strengthen minds, the Turners lead meetings such as the 4th Street Forum, which discusses issues crucial to the community, and host concerts within the Turner Hall Ballroom.
Now a national landmark, Turner Hall echoes the organization's rich history. Sprung from the mind of famed architect Henry H. Koch, the building's design includes an Italianate façade crafted with Cream City brick and panoramic paintings that make visitors think they're trapped inside a cartoon. The venue boasts a beer hall and two-story ballroom, making it an ideal locale for special occasions.
Marquette University's Department of Performing Arts beguiles audiences with uplifting main-stage performances. Extracted from the mind of Sally Nemeth, Holy Days sheds light on a tale of a close-knit, grief-stricken family from Kansas. Haunted by the aftermath of the Great Depression, Nemeth's characters hold fast to their ruptured farm while neighbors and friends flee for more prosperous lives as traveling game-show contestants. An all-student design team infuses Holy Days with a heavy dose of creativity, infusing the intimate 226-seat Evan P. and Marion Helfaer Theatre with an engaging sense of time and place.
Skin Alive and its aesthetician school, Mequon Thiensville School of Esthetics, are devoted to the study and practice of skincare. Clients can choose to visit the hands-on student-learning center for aesthetic services performed by students under instructor supervision, or head to the Skin Alive spa for services performed by a licensed professional. Both offer basic beauty services, such as facials, peels, and waxing, but the licensed aestheticians at Skin Alive can also slough off dead skin cells with diamond-tip microdermabrasion, rejuvenate skin with lasers, and vanquish unwelcome hair with laser hair-removal treatments that leave skin smoother than a cue ball smothered in olive oil.
More than three decades ago, educator Larry Martinek set out on a mission to develop a curriculum that would radically change the traditional approach to teaching math. Noting a "disconnect between students' basic skills training and the curriculum they [must] master in the years to come," Larry created an original teaching method designed to turn students into miniature mathematicians capable of thinking critically to solve problems. His approach, which he describes as the cultivation of number sense, strives to sharpen students’ math instincts, rather than drill them with repetitive, memory-based exercises or force them to blackmail accountants to crunch the numbers. Soon after students began using Larry's method, their test scores began to rise. In the spring of 2002, Larry's dream came true. Peter Markovitz and David Ullendorff, leaders in the education industry, made Larry and his curriculum the driving force of Mathnasium. Larry introduced his curriculum as the Mathnasium Method.
Today, Mathnasium centers can be found throughout the world. Informed by Larry's visionary innovations, the program's tutors give personalized coaching that focuses on bolstering critical thinking through written materials and mental math, forsaking many of the teaching tools found in a traditional classroom. In addition, the tutors also focus on boosting students' enthusiasm for the subject, helping them overcome a lack of confidence in the classroom or their innate fear of prime numbers.