It's rare for museums to have cozy dining rooms, but the Charles Allis Art Museum wasn't always a museum. Earlier in the 20th century, it was businessman and arts patron Charles Allis's Tudor-style mansion. Allis bequeathed it to the public along with his massive art collection, though, and nowadays, visitors can stop by to see pieces that span 2,000 years. Some highlights? Works by Winslow Homer, Classic antiquities, a large collection of Asian ceramics, plus rotating exhibits by local Wisconsin artists.
The Villa Terrace Decorative Arts Museum nestles in a historic mansion, too, albeit a different one. This one was built in the likeness of an Italian Renaissance villa in 1923, by architect David Adler. Its art spans a smaller period, from the 15th century through to the 18th. Visitors can browse wrought-iron work by Cyril Colnik, and explore a formal, outdoor Renaissance garden.
In 1977, a group of Milwaukee’s sailors responded to its city’s lack of a public sailing institution by banding together with county officials to create a not-for-profit organization accessible to everyone. The Milwaukee Community Sailing Center has continued to uphold this original vision of granting everyone—regardless of age, physical ability, or financial means—a chance to develop sailing skills while exploring Lake Michigan’s aqueous expanses. Since its founding, it has imparted its knowledge upon upwards of 100,000 student via hands-on classes and private lessons.
Throughout the summer’s balmy months, Milwaukee Community Sailing Center’s experienced and certified staff can be found reviewing boat safety with students during on-shore lessons or calling out instructions to their trainees from within a sailboat cruising around the lake. As winter’s frigid winds rage across the city, a host of off-season winter sessions enables skippers to keep their sea legs toned until spring returns. Bobbing cheerfully in the onsite marina, the center’s seaworthy fleet is comprised of more than 80 meticulously maintained vessels, including sturdy dinghies, cruisers, and saddled-up krakens. The center’s dedication to bringing the community together on the water is further evidenced in its outreach programs, including one designed to help Milwaukee’s at-risk youth turn a new leaf by helping them uncover hidden talents, develop leadership skills, and conquer their fears.
Reservations/Appointments: Not offered
Staff Size: 2?10 people
Parking: Parking lot
Handicap Accessible: Yes
Recommended Age Group: All Ages
Pro Tip: If you call in advance, we can get a docent for your tour.
Most Popular Attraction/Offering: Exhibits on Golda Meir and Jews Who Rock
What is the one feature of your business that you're most proud of?
Jewish Museum Milwaukee has beautiful engaging displays, including the only Marc Chagall tapestry in Milwaukee. This is an epic piece?it's 14'x19') and provides perspective on Jewish history. In addition, our changing exhibits enliven the understanding of the Jewish experience. Every three months, JMM has a totally new display to explore.
Have you ever been a patron of your own business? If so, what was the most enjoyable part?
I love touring the Museum. There are so many interesting and unique stories that show the development of the city of Milwaukee. There is a lot of information, but the museum's size makes it easy to get through in an hour or two.
Is there anything else you want to add that we didn't cover?
Right now our changing exhibit is Stitching History from the Holocaust (through February 28)? the museum's largest exhibit to date. The exhibit details the experience of Paul and Hedy Strnad, a woman who sent eight designs to Milwaukee in the hopes of immigrating.