Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Milwaukee – It’s Miller Time

(Milwaukee, WI) Hi 64 Lo 42 – Today was cool, but bright and sunny. A much better day than yesterday to take a drive to Milwaukee. We made our way east on I-94, found a parking spot on the street,  and took a walk along the Lake Michigan lakefront and onto a pier that gave us a nice view of the city.

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Nearby is the Milwaukee Art Museum, housed in one of the most beautiful and unique looking buildings we’ve seen. It’s designed to look like a sailboat.
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We didn’t go inside, but we sure enjoyed walking around it.
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We occasionally go inside an art museum, but not very often. Most of the time we just don’t agree with what some consider art. Such as this…

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I don’t know what it’s called, but I guess “Car Wrapped Around a Telephone Pole” would be an appropriate name.

Milwaukee has what I’d call a “modest” skyline. The city population is around 600,000, and the metropolitan area is around 1.3 million. The tallest building is the U.S. Bank Center, at 42 stories and 601 ft.

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We liked this pink fountain. It’s probably tied into the Susan G. Komen Race For the Cure being held this Sunday in Milwaukee.

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After we enjoyed our downtown stroll we drove around the north side of town and stopped for lunch at Culver’s. Culver’s started in Wisconsin so there seems to be one on every other corner in this state. We then made our way to the MillerCoors Brewery to take a tour.

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We’ve toured other breweries, both large and small. MillerCoors is a large brewery, but not as big as Anheuser-Busch in St. Louis. The tour took about an hour and included the bottling line, brew house, packaging warehouse, and “The Cave”, where beer was stored 60 ft. underground under the original brewery building. A film explained that tons of ice were brought in to pack around the outside walls of the cave year round to keep the beer cool. Here are a few photos.

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This is the original brewery building built in the mid-1800’s.

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Our tour guide shared one interesting stat. Of the millions of barrels of beer produced at the Milwaukee Miller plant, 40% of it goes to the city of Chicago. Chicago consumes as much beer as four other entire states. Wow!

Of course the tour ended at the tasting room, where we got to taste Miller Lite and Miller High Life. Ho hum. (At Anheuser-Busch they let you sample their premium brews, some that weren’t even on the market yet.)

It was an enjoyable tour, and a nice way to spend part of an afternoon. (And it’s free.) We headed back home and managed to beat the rush hour. Just down the street from our RV park is the U.S. Olympic Training Facility for the U.S. Speed Skating team.

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On a whim we stopped and checked to see if we were allowed inside to take a look. Turns out it’s an open facility. It was very impressive to see an Olympic-size speed skating oval in person. Using auto racing terms, this is the home stretch, looking toward turn 4…

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… and this is looking toward turn 1.
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Awesome! The only action going on was a couple of ladies practicing their figure skating moves in an area inside the oval.

Right next door to us they’re setting up for a circus that’s starting tomorrow.

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That looks like it’ll get real crowded around here starting tomorrow, so I’m glad we’re leaving in the morning. We’re headed to Elkhart, IN to get some work done on Tumbleweed. We’ll be in that area for about a week. We always enjoy ourselves in the Elkhart area. It’s close to Dee’s home territory, so we’re looking forward to seeing family and friends while we’re there.

See you in two days.


Mac and Netters said...

Are you guys going to the RV-Dreams Rally in Goshen while you are there? I noticed on their Journal that they will be having one in a couple of days...


Tumbleweed Dee said...

Yes, we're stopping in and if we're ok with the RV repairs we're going to the potluck dinner Thursday night.

Kevin and Evelyn said...

I think it is twice a day that the museum opens and closes its wings. We went and watched it once. Very cool. I've lived in the Milwaukee area my entire life, and have never been to the Miller tour. We've toured breweries in lots of other places. I think its about time we did the Miller one. Hope you enjoyed your stay in Wisconsin. We're headed south in a few weeks. Getting too cold in October.

Laurel Owen said...

I was going to ask the same thing about seeing H&L. That will be cool to go to the potluck!

Bob and Jo said...

Looks like a great day in Milwaukee. Good luck with your repairs.