Milwaukee Family Vacation

Things for Dad:
* Family Hike or Picnic ( – Schlitz Audubon Nature Center’s mission is to promote an appreciation, understanding and stewardship of our natural heritage through environmental education and preservation of our sanctuary.
* Sprecher Brewery Tours ( –
o Start your tour in our Rathskellar Museum where you can view brewing memorabilia from long gone Wisconsin breweries while waiting for your tour to begin. Next, visit the brew house and discover how Sprecher is reviving the Old World brewing traditions that once made Milwaukee famous. Travel through the lager cellar to see the Bavarian murals on display on our bottling room wall. After the brewery tour, the next best thing to Munich is Sprecher's indoor beer garden, with oom-pah music and samples from any of up to ten beers and seven sodas on draught. Prosit!  
o They sell more soda than beer, so there are always a lot of families and children on their tour. You have to make reservations for their tours, you get a sample sized glass to keep, and I think you get like 4 or 5 samples at the end. They are all excellent. They sell cheese and sausage and pretzels in their tasting room and have a great gift shop. Sprecher also sells their beers and soda out of their gift shop.
* Usinger's Sausage Factory Tour  -  All our questions were answered recently with an exclusive, behind-the-scenes tour of the home of the Usinger "wurstmachers," which is still located on Milwaukee's Old World Third Street (1030 N. Old World Third St.), the site of the original store that opened in 1880.
* Miller Park - Miller Park also does tours on off game days, and the Park IS open year-round, regardless of whether there are games or not. There is a TGI Friday's restaurant in the ballpark, and the gift shop is usually open. In addition, in the parking lot is Helfaer Field, which often has little league games going on and cheap brats and hotdogs for sale.

Things for Mom:
* Shopping: Mayfair mall is much larger than Brookfield Square (another Milwaukee area mall). Each level is designated for a specific age group. The upper is aimed at children and teens (Build a Bear, Libby Lu, Music Stores, food court, and the AMC Movie theatre among other stores). The lower has been designed for the mature (Victoria's Secret, Furniture Stores, Barnes N Noble, etc).
* The area neighborhoods, Brady Street, North Avenue, Third Ward, Milwaukee Street, Old World Third Street, are filled with fun shops, art galleries, antiques, and restaurants.
* Residence Inn Milwaukee – Consistently the one of the highest rated hotels in Milwaukee on the website.  Housed in the century-old historic GImbel's Building in downtown Milwaukee and adjacent to the Shops of Grand Avenue.  Residence Inn offers complimentary breakfast and an evening hospitality hour. Guest Suites include separate living and sleeping areas, a fully equipped kitchen, and work space.  The rooms are large and spacious and many overlook the river.
* “ I need a Safe House” - The Safe House-a spy themed restaurant that is always a good time.  The gimmick is that you have to know the password to get in or the door man will make you do some silly act.  What they don’t tell you is that there is a camera in the entry way connected to a TV over the bar.

Things for the Kids:
* Milwaukee County Zoo ( -  The Milwaukee County Zoo is a serene home to more than 2,000 mammals, birds, fish, amphibians and reptiles with more than 350 species represented. However, the Zoo has become more than that to visitors. It is a site for workshops, holiday celebrations, summer concerts and food festivals. Here are just some of the animals you can see at the Milwaukee County Zoo:
o         Leopard Shark
o         Pacific Giant Octopus
o         Chinese Alligator
o         King Penguin
o         Rhinoceros Hornbill
o         Ring-tailed Lemur
o         Western Lowland Gorilla
o         Two-toed Sloth
o         Red Panda
o         North American River Otter
o         Snow Leopard
o         Bactrian Camel
o         Thomson's Gazelle
o         Dall's Sheep
o         African Elephant
o         Calfornia Sea Lion
o         Vampire Bat
o         Orangutan
* Betty Brinn Children's Museum ( - The Betty Brinn Children's Museum is dedicated to providing interactive exhibits and educational resources that promote the healthy development of children in their formative years—from birth through age ten.  Exhibits include:  
o Let's Play Railway (Imagination will guide children down the right track as they play in Let's Play Railway!, a larger-than-life size replica of BRIO's® famous wooden toy engine, cattle wagon and caboose.),
o My Body Works (This is where children can learn about human anatomy and how to create a safe and healthy lifestyle. They can pretend they are a red blood cell and slide through a giant heart, enter a digestion tunnel to hear what the body sounds like when it processes food, and visit the lung and heart rate stations.),
o A Trading Place (In this make-believe, child-sized community, children go to work and exchange money for goods and services. Kids can pick apples from the orchard and then pretend they are selling apples at the farmer's market, shipping apples all over the world from the shipping dock or serving apple pie (and other goodies) at "Café Eat.")
o Raceways & On A Roll (Jump, loop and zoom golf balls around tracks to experiment with gravity, acceleration, and momentum in Raceways. Enjoy Loop the Loop, Motion in a Dish, Roller Coaster, and more!)
o Betty’s Busy Backyard (This soft, enclosed play area holds age-appropriate musical and plush toys, mirrors, peek-a-boo holes, a special nook for bonding and the latest videos and materials for new parents. Includes a special nook for bonding and provides the latest videos and materials for new parents on early childhood development.)
o Sound All Around (Sound All Around, children can explore the mechanics of sound. They'll measure their voice in decibels, learn how to use sign language to communicate, and discover different musicals instruments from around the world. Kids can also use bells, horns and other sound effects to create a show in Puppet Place.)
* Discovery World at Pier Wisconsin ( - Inside the magnificent round and rectangular buildings, experience interactive exhibits and aquariums where you can do things, make things and learn things.
o Aquarium Exhibits - The aquarium exhibits at Discovery World explore life underwater by following the journey of the S/V Denis Sullivan from Milwaukee, Wisconsin to the Caribbean.  These exhibits provide a context to understand, compare, contrast and observe the changes in conditions and life in different ways.
o Rockwell Automation's Dream Machine - Learn how automation plays a part in the world around you. Explore how Milwaukee landmarks use the automation and control principles, and visit our production area featuring specialized machines, such as laser cutters and sample makers, that help produce your own 3-D object.
o TechnoJungle - Join the hunt for the next great idea; new and old technologies collide as you uncover the mysteries of the TechnoJungle. This exhibit doubles as a set for TechnoJungle TV where your adventure in technology can be filmed.
o Great Lakes Future - Visit our scale representation of the Great Lakes Watershed featuring live aquatic animals. Discover how waves, weather, animal life, and marshland play a role in our region’s greatest natural resource. Engage in experiences that discuss the future of the Great Lakes Watershed.
o Health Satellite - Explore modern medicine and its tools by diagnosing and treating a virtual astronaut on a mission to Mars. In the Genetics Lab, learn about the building blocks of life through DNA. See the world in a whole new way thanks to microscope technology, and learn how nanotechnology is changing the world we live in.
o Energy & Ingenuity - Explore energy and its sources, storage, transmission and uses. Understand how much power you can generate, compare alternative energy sources and discover the principles of Newton and Einstein.
o Sea of Sustainability - Focus on water’s behavior to show the natural systems in place to sustain a balanced environment. Get a better understanding of water’s environmental stability and its role in our lives by looking at its unique properties, chemistry, biology, and weather/atmospheric science.
o City of Freshwater - Learn how humans manipulate and measure water. Explore the Liquid House, where you will study the water system within your own home, and learn about water purification, the versatility of water, and waste management.  Other features include pumps, circuits, paper production, ink properties, and using water as a tool.
* First Stage Children’s Theater ( - Since 1987, their mission has been to provide exceptional, professional theater experiences for young people and their families, plus we serve as an arts-in-education resource for area educators. This has earned First Stage a renowned reputation for artistic excellence and a tremendous audience following.
* Milwaukee Public Museum ( - The Museum interprets the world's cultural and natural heritage through the integration of exhibits, education, collections and research. Visitors can stroll through a live butterfly garden and bug zoo, a life-size recreation of the Streets of Old Milwaukee, a journey through the depths of the ocean, amazing dioramas of African wildlife, an Eskimo igloo, and much more.  Additionally, they have an IMAX theater and a planetarium.  
* Mitchell Park Domes: When you drive through the city, you will be sure to notice three massive glass golf-ball halves east of the stadium. They are botanical gardens, one is a "tropical" theme, one is "arrid", and one is their seasonal dome designated for the every changing seasons in Wisconsin. These domes are beautiful, but they won't take much time to walk through.
* Lakefront: Veteran's Park is the place to be! Bring kites and let them fly! Rent paddle boats on the lagoon, or even rent the six-person carriage-bikes.  Or, boat rides via the Brew City Queen, the Edelweiss, or the Iriquois.
* Kopp's Frozen Custard - They have awesome burgers and great ice cream.  They have a new flavor every day of the week.