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.
Like mobile Knights of the Round Table, bikers sit in a circle on Science and Fun’s seven-person conference bikes. One rider steers while all passengers pedal, powering bikes as they cruise through the city or serve as low-key parade floats. Groups with sufficient manpower for two bikes can turn open, paved spaces or Bucketworks’ indoor arena into bicycle basketball courts. Each bike constitutes a team, and both teams launch a barrage of foam balls at their opponent’s bike-mounted hoop during four-minute rounds in a game adaptable to all ages and pending NBA contracts. While advance bike reservations ensure a circular steed, Science and Fun happily reschedules or cancels reservations that coincide with inclement weather.
Sure, riding a seven-seat conference bike with six other folks is a lot less work than pedaling one by yourself, but that's not the only benefit to traveling in a group. Milwaukee Seven Seat Bike Tours educates guests about local history via the conference bike. Led by raconteur Shlomo Levin, passengers all pedal the circular bike together while passing parks that contain mysterious human remains and shadowy street corners where countless cans of beer were left... only half-drunk. Guests can enjoy water and soft drinks on the tour, which are served free of charge.
The 74-foot tower of North Point Lighthouse stretches to meet the neighboring trees of Lake Park. Attached to it are two-and-a-half stories of wood-frame keeper's quarters that once housed historic figures such as Georgia Stebbins, keeper for thirty years.
Renovated in 2007, the bright, airy building now acts as home to artifacts and lighthouse-related curios, including an original 1928 Fresnel lens that helped guide seafaring vessels. Additionally, a Chadburn telegraph, recovered from a sunken ship, pays homage to the orders that went to and from the ship's bridge and engine rooms.
Guests can browse both the quarters and the lighthouse, and explore the site's more than 120 years of history by perusing the artwork and photographs displayed throughout the galleries. Dedicated volunteers are also on hand to dispense fascinating information and history, and to give limited guided tours that lead visitors to the top of the tower, where they can catch views of the surrounding park and lakefront.
Floor-to-ceiling wood panels frame School Yard Bar & Grill, an East Side hangout that doles out beer and burgers in equal measure. The menu features half-pound Wisconsin beef sandwiches named after prototypical high-school characters such as the Bully—cheddar, bacon, roasted-garlic mayo, and a fried egg—and the Principal, which is accompanied by swiss cheese, sautéed mushrooms, grilled onions, and a stern letter to your parents. Patrons can dig into these and other pub dishes, including wings, mozzarella sticks, and tacos, while drinking in views of overhead TVs and domestic drafts at the bar.