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Best of the Fests

Annual events in Milwaukee

Your Milwaukee festival hotel home base

When we say there’s always something happening here, that’s no exaggeration — there’s a good reason Milwaukee is nicknamed the City of Festivals. While the main season runs from June to September, there are events year-round catering to every interest. Treat yourself to a stay at the Kimpton Journeyman Hotel and a ticket to your fave fest!


Kimpton Journeyman Hotel Lobby

Special Offer

Keep a little extra cash to take to your festival of choice with a 5% off discounted rate at the Kimpton Journeyman Hotel for all festival-goers.

Kimpton Journeyman Hotel - The Outsider

Such Great Heights

The party doesn’t stop just because you’ve left the festival — drop by on-site rooftop restaurant and lounge The Outsider for small bites, creative cocktails, and frozen push-pops in flavors like sour cherry mascarpone and s’mores.

Kimpton Journeyman Hotel - Tre Rivali

Eat Well

Fuel up for your event with a breakfast of avocado toast and a goat cheese omelet at on-site Tre Rivali, or settle into the Mediterranean hot spot in the evening hours to unwind over a nice dinner of carbonara, grilled swordfish, or wood-fired pizza.

Our Favorites:

PrideFest Milwaukee

Dates: June 9–11
Location: Henry W. Maier Festival Park
Distance from hotel: 0.5 mile

The biggest LGBT festival in all of Wisconsin is considered the official start of festival season. Musical acts like 10,000 Maniacs, Betty Who, and Steve Grand will provide entertainment throughout the weekend, while restaurants will dish up tasty bites and vendors will have plenty of wares for sale. The parade on Sunday is a highlight.

Polish Fest

Dates: June 16-18
Location: Henry W. Maier Festival Park
Distance from hotel: 0.5 mile

As the largest Polish festival in America, this two-day event has no shortage of activities: cooking demonstrations, vodka tastings, children’s crafts, folk artists demonstrating wycinanki (paper cutting) and pisanki (decorated eggs), a youth piano competition, and more. Multiple stages host entertainment acts all day, including a stage that’s all polka all the time.

Strawberry Festival

Dates: June 24–25
Location: Historic Downtown Cedarburg
Distance from hotel: 23 miles

This free festival in cute Cedarburg celebrates the strawberry, that mighty summer fruit. See the works of more than 250 Midwest artists at Arts on the Avenue, enjoy live music, send the kids on a pony ride, participate in a bubblegum-blowing contest, or run the Berry Big 5K and get a tour of the local neighborhoods. And, of course, there are strawberries in an array of forms: shortcake, pancake, pie, chocolate covered, slushy, chicken wrap, and brat, to name just a few.

Summerfest

Dates: June 28–July 2 + July 4–9
Location: Henry W. Maier Festival Park
Distance from hotel: 0.5 mile

This year, Summerfest turns 50, and the world’s largest music festival promises to be as epic as ever, with about 800 acts taking the stage over an 11-day period. Headliners include the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Luke Bryan, Zac Brown Band, Paul Simon, Pink, The Chainsmokers, Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, Big Sean, Sheryl Crow, and a long list of even more impressive names.

German Fest

Dates: July 28–30
Location: Henry W. Maier Festival Park
Distance from hotel: 0.5 mile

Local dance groups, a dachshund derby, heritage walking tours, and wine tastings are just a few of the highlights at this fest dedicated to German culture and tradition. Don’t miss the Marktplatz, with its beer steins, nutcrackers, candies, table linens, and other crafts perfect to pack home with you and hand out as souvenirs.

Irish Fest

Dates: August 17–20
Location: Henry W. Maier Festival Park
Distance from hotel: 0.5 mile

With a mission to promote and celebrate all aspects of Irish, Irish-American and Celtic cultures, this family-friendly festival is the biggest of its kind anywhere in the world, attracting genres of musical acts ranging from fiddlers and harpists to pipers and folk singers to Celtic rockers and bluegrass bands. Additionally, there are even more ways to dive into all things Irish, with theater productions, author signings, currach races, chef talks, and all nine of the Irish dog breeds there to say hello.

Full List of 2017 Festivals

There are plenty more fests where these came from. Check out a more complete list here, and start making plans to visit!