Quiet but vibrant, Bay View is also known as “Gay View” for the many LGBT folks who are raising families there.
Walking down Bay View’s main drag, Kinnickinnic Ave.
After 20 years in Milwaukee, I’ve heard all of the stereotypes: We subsist on cheese and beer. We talk like those Minnesotans in “Fargo.” We must be so fat from eating all that cheese and beer and riding around on our Harleys that you can see us from cruising altitude above Flyover Country, dotting the urban landscape like so many polar-fleeced Holsteins.
Like any gay-centric area full of people who have had a few drinks, it has been the site of occasional gay-bashings.
(My mom made me add that.) Even though we have a lot of queer bars in Milwaukee, we like to spread the love around, so here are a few other opportunities you shouldn’t miss: Guerrilla Grrrl Bar One Friday night each month When the Guerrilla Gay Bar scene got a little too boy-centric, the grrrls at Sapphic Adventures Milwaukee formed this straight-bar-takeover alternative with a focus on women having fun.
Milwaukeeans do love cheese and beer, and we have an unnatural fondness for bowling, and we are consistently rated one of the drinking-est, fattest cities in the country.
And if the sun happens to come out and it’s over 40 degrees Fahrenheit, the sound of Harleys breaks out across the city like the buzz of an angry bees’ nest. What these half-truths add up to is exactly what makes Milwaukee a great place to visit: We like to enjoy ourselves, make noise, get outside, soak up the sun, eat, drink, and party.
Plentiful independent coffee shops, art-house movie theaters, galleries, boutiques, bookstores, and parks make these areas fantastic places to while away a weekend.
Try all seven Oaxacan moles at gay-owned Cempazuchi (1205 E.
For the 40 set, a very happening get-together at Hot Water (818 S.
Water St.) featuring drinks and dancing that still gets everybody back home to bed by 11 p.m.
After enjoying some pool, darts, or local music, commemorate your visit by buying a t-shirt featuring the Pint’s slogan, “Lock up your daughters.” Licka DSplitz 4107 W. (Washington Park) A new place off the tourist’s beaten track, Licka DSplitz has an R&B and hip hop vibe, with DJs on Friday and Saturday nights. I’d say north of Greenfield Avenue is usually pretty good.
(Speaking of Greenfield Ave., the gay-owned Ca–averal at 2501 W. has some of the best Mexican food in the city.) Also, don’t wander around alone after closing time in the Walker’s Point gay bar district.
Brady St.), one of the few gay bars not located in the Walker’s Point bar district, is a nice way to start an afternoon stroll down Brady Street, an 8-block stretch of stores and restaurants in what used to be the city’s hippie hangout.