The 14,000-year-old Hebior mammoth stands sentinel past the entrance to the Milwaukee Public Museum, serving as a massive reminder to all who enter that they are traveling back in time. Originally founded in 1882, the museum has spent more than a century collecting artifacts and fossils from around the world to portray the vast reaches of natural and human history throughout 150,000 square feet of exhibit space spread over three and a half floors.
Representing the recent past, The Streets of Old Milwaukee's turn-of-the-century gas-lit lanes and the European Village place visitors up close to replicas of more than 58 structures, including an old-fashioned barbershop and a fully furnished Scottish dwelling. Traveling further back to the Cretaceous period in the Third Planet exhibit, a life-size replica of a tyrannosaurus greets visitors with its tiny arms and impeccable manners. Visitors can also explore treasures from Africa, Asia, and the Arctic, or stroll through the butterfly wing to witness free-flying exotic and native species.
Adjacent to the museum, the Daniel M. Soref Planetarium and IMAX theater display astronomical wonders with a Digistar 3 computer-projection system. The Skies Over Milwaukee show lights up the ceiling with the current night sky for a tour of the planets and constellations. In the same theater, IMAX films transport audience members to the top of Everest or to the bottom of the ocean with a six-story screen, wraparound digital sound, and the distilled imaginations of 5-year-olds.
Inspired by the popular television show and designed by the creators of The Great Milwaukee Race, The Amazing Milwaukee Race on Bikes sends teams of two pedaling across the city to complete activities, solve puzzles, and pass checkpoints. Along 20- and 40-mile courses crisscrossed through streets, bike lanes, and trails, competitors blur past businesses and landmarks on a sequential scavenger hunt that tests physical endurance, mental foresight, and each team's ability to communicate via bicycle horn. Clues scattered throughout the route offer guidance, but can only be earned after participants unscramble words or unravel answers to challenges. When certain clues prove to be particularly troubling, race organizers encourage teams to use surrounding resources—local passersby, telephones, or the internet—to their advantage. Although the race prohibits certain forms of transit, including private cars and quantum jumping, teams can consistently keep moving on bike, foot, or public transportation.
Fashion Week MKE zooms in on the Milwaukee fashion scene by exalting all facets of beauty, style, and runway trends. From 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday, March 3, local fashionistas will descend on MOCT, a bar and innovative gallery space. Here, visitors can intermingle with 20 local boutique vendors and keep up to date on the latest trends and labels while indulging in make-up demonstrations. Closet Essentials’ LeAnn Conway will also be on the scene, dressing models in looks for spring and summer and lending style tips. All the while, guest can feel free to grab a specialty cocktail and eats from local food trucks on hand.
The first 100 guests will receive a swag bag, and all guests have a chance to win prizes such as Pilates lessons, a photo shoot, a makeup party, or a sexy stare from a runway model. Event organizers will also hold a drive for prom-style dresses to be donated to prom-bound teenagers in need.
Though its staffed by a crew of student volunteers from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, the Sailing Club at UWM has spent decades helping both the student body and community enjoy all aspects of sailing. Every year, from the end of April through late October, the group navigates Lake Michigan's waters aboard a fleet of sailboats that all either meet or surpass Coast Guard safety regulations. There are cruise boats designed for mild meandering, as well as sturdy Ynglings and Solings equipped with heavy fixed keels reinforced to maintain stability in turbulent weather or emotional break-ups. In addition to simple trips on the lake, members of the club can learn hands-on techniques from experienced sailors and participate in activities such as races, bonfires, and weekend cookouts.
Visiting Airsoft Jungle Club is like being swallowed whole by an arcade game. Scenario-driven bouts start in the staging area, where teams or lone players gear up and plan strategies. At the referee's command, players move into the indoor field, which hosts CQBs, or close-quarters battles. Airsoft BBs zoom across different rooms, down hallways, through windows, and over open spaces.
The competition stays fast and intense, but thanks to a strict set of rules, it also remains safe. The refs check that every airsoft gun—whether rented or brought from home—fires at a safe speed. They also enforce a "Bang Rule," which calls for players within a certain distance to simply say "Bang!" instead of firing the BBs. This concern for Airsoft Jungle Club's players also extends to the community at large. Once a year, the club donates its surplus funds to charity.
Equal parts running, pedaling, and paddling, The Tribal Challenge sends teams of two or more huffing and puffing across a 15-mile gauntlet rife with mental and physical challenges. Designed to replicate the tribulations of pre-industrial tribesmen, the route intersects three 5-mile legs with hunting and gathering missions. The fibers of endurance and camaraderie stretch to their limits as partners demonstrate specific survival skills that were essential before humans could simply buy meat from a butcher or trade dusty VHS tapes with monkeys in exchange for fruit. After completing the course, tribes can bask in the euphoria of accomplishment at a post-challenge powwow, where complimentary beers squelch thirst and live music from the Fire Water Festival helps cast a celebratory tone across the finish line.