Your Ultimate Guide to a day in the Historic Third Ward District

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Is there really anything better than meandering around the city on a Summer day on your day off? I don’t think so. The only thing I don’t love is going to a city district and not knowing what to do! That’s where we come in – I always take my Milwaukee guests to the Historic Third Ward and will share my favorite go-to spots in the area. Summer is halfway over, so take advantage of the warm weather by spending a day in the beautiful Third Ward District.

Morning

To get in the mood to explore the area, flip on my favorite local station, 88.9 Radio Milwaukee, to catch up on Milwaukee music and events as you drive into the Third Ward District. If starting your day in the morning, you have to stop in Holey Moley Donuts to enjoy freshly made, classic donuts. My favorite is the cinnamon and sugar donut paired with freshly brewed coffee. Now you are ready for the rest of the day to explore.

Known for arts and fashion, the Third Ward is a key destination for shopping when you are in Milwaukee. Spend your morning walking along Broadway Street while you are here! I love Shoo Inc. and Lela’s for some unique digs. Before we were located in the Marshall Building, 3WJ shared a store space with Shoo for many years. Let me tell you, they have the best shoes in town! Gentlemen, we didn’t forget about you. NL Suits is a custom clothier that will create a one of a kind, made to measure suit just for you. Don’t be surprised as you find yourself immersed in one of Milwaukee’s best areas for shopping as you walk along Broadway Street.

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Lunchtime

Next, be sure to pay a visit the Milwaukee Public Market! The Milwaukee Public Market is a collage of great eats and local treats. This space has it all – food, drinks, and gifts. You will see locally printed t-shirts and, if you feel so inclined, fresh cheese curds to indulge in. If you enjoy fresh seafood, you will not go wrong with St. Paul Fish Company. Side note – I grew up on the East Coast with fresh seafood at arm’s length and this seafood passes the test. The Milwaukee Public Market also has yummy hummus and falafel from Aladdin,  tacos from Margarita Paradise, or delicious almond biscotti from the C. Adams Bakery.  Before you head out, be sure to try some fresh juice from The Green Kitchen. The Green Kitchen serves fresh smoothies and juices, salads, and sandwiches.

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Afternoon

I always like to get moving right away after lunch when spending a day in the city. There is a beautiful riverwalk located just across the street from the Milwaukee Public Market that takes walkers along the Milwaukee River. If you are feeling adventurous, there is also the option to sightsee along the river by kayak! Clearwater, a local outdoor goods retailer, rents out kayaks to give the adventuresome folks out there the unique experience of seeing the city by river. Following the walk around the Milwaukee River, stop by Colectivo to relax a little bit before dinnertime.

Dinner / Evening

For dinner, I recommend Cafe Benelux or the Wicked Hop. Cafe Benelux has some of my favorite appetizers and drinks in the Third Ward District. Some of the perks of the Wicked Hop would be their amazing Daily Specials and a beer list that will not disappoint. Both places offer patio seating so you can take in all the glory of the Third Ward with a tasty plate of food and beverage in hand.

Next, I would personally like to invite you to Gallery Night (and Day)! This evening takes place every so often in the Historic Third Ward. Galleries and store owners keep their doors open for customers to enjoy a glamorous evening on the town, appreciating artwork. This month, Gallery Night is on Friday, July 21st and Saturday, July 22nd. Yes, 3WJ will be open! If you plan your trip to the 3rd Ward District on a day that Gallery Night takes place, you are in for a treat. Here at 3WJ, our favorite way to top off an evening of gallery-going is to head up to the top floor of the Journeyman Hotel to relax with a handcrafted cocktail. This is a beautiful space worth checking out. Be sure to wear your favorite bowtie or cocktail ring.

The Historic Third Ward District has a lot to offer. It has food, shopping, art, and unique scenery. I can’t tell you how much I love spending time in the Third Ward either with friends or on my own during the Summertime! Be sure to visit us at 3WJ when you are visiting the area!


Events and Places:

Gallery Night and Day information

Milwaukee Public Market information

Hotels to Stay At:

The Iron Horse Hotel

The Pfister Hotel

Journeyman Hotel

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