10 Things to Do in Milwaukee for Under $10

  • 01 of 11

    Art, Beer and Comedy: All for Under $10

    ••• Villa Terrace. Villa Terrace

    You'd be surprised how much fun and culture you can pack into a $10 budget when in Milwaukee. By taking advantage of lower-priced museums--such as Villa Terrace and the MIlwaukee County Historical Society Museum--and not compromising on learning about Milwaukee's famed beverage (beer!) by touring and tasting at Lakefront Brewery, you'll have gotten more than your money's worth.

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  • 02 of 11

    Tour and Taste at Lakefront Brewery

    ••• Lakefront Brewery. Visit Milwaukee

    What: Lakefront Brewery Tour

    Cost: $9

    Where: 1872 N. Commerce St., Milwaukee, 414-372-8800

    Milwaukee is home to a dozen or so craft breweries, of which eight have opened in the last year, but Lakefront Brewery is a pioneer in that it was founded in 1987. From IPA to Fixed Gear, Lakefront’s beers are locally famous and have received national attention in the press, too, although their production is limited (even more reason to snag a six-pack while in Milwaukee). Their Brewers Hill brewery is open for hour-long tours on weekdays (Monday through Thursday). Note that because this is during production hours, some areas are off limits; pay an extra buck for weekend tour if you want to see the entire brewery. Tours are bookable through its website, with an additional $1 online-ticketing fee. Each tour includes a tasting of four beers, and either a free souvenir pint glass or $2 off gift-shop merchandise.

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  • 03 of 11

    Laugh at ComedySportz

    ••• ComedySportz Milwaukee. ComedySportz

    What: ComedySportz shows

    Cost: $10

    Where: 420 S. 1st St., Milwaukee, 414-272-8888 (Walker’s Point)

    Matches—basically, comedy sketches in which two teams compete against each other in improv—are held Friday and Saturday nights. There are two shows, at 7:30 p.m. and 10 p.m., lasting 90 minutes each; the 10 p.m. show costs $10 while the 7:30 p.m. performance is a bit pricier at $12. Designed to be family-friendly, seating begins a half hour before the show begins, and the bar and restaurant starts serving at 6 p.m., in case you want to make a night of it. Tickets can be bought online via this link.

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  • 04 of 11

    Tour North Point Lighthouse

    ••• North Point Lighthouse. Visit Milwaukee

    What: North Point Lighthouse

    Cost: $8

    Where: 2650 N. Wahl Ave., Milwaukee (East Side), 414-332-6754

    Located within Lake Park, the lighthouse is open limited hours for a self-guided tour after it reopens on February 25, 2017. Check the website for further details after that date. To climb the lighthouse’s tower—which is a real highlight—one must be five years old or 38 inches tall. In 1984 the lighthouse was added to the National Register of Historic Places, proof it’s a true treasure. A lens dating back to 1868 is still in use.

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  • 05 of 11

    Milwaukee County Historical Society Museum

    ••• Milwaukee County Historical Society Museum. Milwaukee County Historical Society

    What: Milwaukee County Historical Society Museum

    Cost: $7

    Where: 910 N. Old World Third St., Milwaukee (downtown), 414-273-8288

    One of Milwaukee’s most architecturally significant building—perched on the corner of West Kilbourn and Old World Third Street, with its cobblestone streets—the museum is under the same roof as the Milwaukee County Historical Society. Exhibits cover Milwaukee’s history through various lens, tapping into cultural significance. The current exhibit—“Melodies and Memories: 200 Years of Milwaukee Music”—runs through April 29, 2017.

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  • 06 of 11

    Villa Terrace Decorative Arts Museum

    ••• Villa Terrace Decorative Arts Museum. Villa Terrace Decorative Arts Museum

    What: Villa Terrace Decorative Arts Museum

    Cost: $7

    Where: 2220 N. Terrace Ave., Milwaukee (East Side), 414-271-3656

    This gorgeous villa museum—built in 1924 by celebrated architect David Adler as an example of Renaissance architecture—on the East Side overlooks Lake Michigan’s shoreline, thanks to its hillside perch. A visit is akin to taking a trip to Italy, and so it’s no surprise that much of the design was inspired by Villa Cicogna Mozzoni in Lombardy, Italy, including the stairs. Rotating art exhibits are shown year-round and the gardens are a treat to stroll in during warmer weather, with Lake Michigan as the breathtaking backdrop.

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  • 07 of 11

    Rent a Bublr Bicycle

    ••• Bublr station at Milwaukee Intermodal Station. Visit Milwaukee

    What: Bublr

    Cost: $6/hour

    Where: various stations around Milwaukee; see this link for a complete list

    Bicycle-share programs are popping up all across the U.S. and Milwaukee is no exception. The sky-blue bicycles are at various stations around Milwaukee. All you have to do is pick one up at one location and return at another that is along your route. This is a great way to explore Milwaukee’s neighborhoods and “live like a local.” You’d be remiss not to take your bicycle along Lincoln Memorial Drive, which hugs Lake Michigan from downtown Milwaukee to the Upper East Side, near UW-Milwaukee, with beaches between to sink your toes into. Note that the Bublr bikes operate year-round; even in winter there can be quite a few days without snow or ice.

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  • 08 of 11

    Chudnow Museum of Yesteryear

    ••• Chudnow Museum of Yesteryear. Chudnow Museum of Yesteryear

    What: Chudnow Museum of Yesteryear

    Cost: $6

    Where: 839 N. 11th St., Milwaukee (downtown)

    This relatively obscure and lesser-known museum in the north part of downtown, near Marquette University, is an ode to the classic Americana collections (1910s-1940s) of the late Avrum Chudnow, who died in 2005. There’s a keen focus on the 1920s and 1930s, and the number of items in the collection numbers around 25,000, although not all are on exhibit at once.

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  • 09 of 11

    UW-Milwaukee Union Cinema

    ••• Loving film. University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

    What: UW-Milwaukee Union Cinema

    Cost: $5

    Where: 2200 E. Kenwood Blvd., Milwaukee (East Side)

    Even a lot of locals don’t know about the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee’s cinema, which hosts film festivals and series year-round, plus documentaries and prior-run independent films. The “Experimental Tuesdays” series features films every Tuesday, such as “Black Radical Imagination” and films produced by the university’s film department. In 2017, the African-American Film Festival is in early February (its films include “Loving,” a 2017 Academy Awards nominee for Best Actress). Other festivals include the Annual Festival of Films in French and Annual LGBT Film/Video Festival. Check the cinema’s website for show times—and bring cash for popcorn with butter. 

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  • 10 of 11

    Roller-skating at Rollaero

    ••• Rollaero. Rollaero

    What: Roller-skating at Rollaero

    Cost: $5

    Where: 5200 S.  Pennsylvania Ave., Cudahy, 414-747-1414

    Whether you’re training for roller-derby tryouts or simply want to have fun like a kid again, roller skating is currently trending. One of the Milwaukee area’s best rinks is Rollaero in Cudahy, 20 minutes south of downtown Milwaukee and near Lake Michigan. Admission is a low cost of $5 (payable in cash only; no credit cards accepted). In addition to the rink, there’s a snack bar and theme nights (such as “Retro Saturdays,” the second Saturday of the month, with songs from the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s).

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  • 11 of 11

    $5 Movies at Marcus Theatres

    ••• a Marcus Theatres location. Marcus Theatres

    What: $5 Movies at Marcus Theatres

    Cost: $5

    Where: throughout Milwaukee and its suburbs

    Like most cities, a movie theater’s going rate for a show is around $10. If you can get to any of the Marcus Theatres locations in Wisconsin (see a list here) on a Tuesday, then you pay just $5, which is a 50% discount off $10.50 evening shows (matinees on weekdays cost $8.50). This is referred to as $5 Tuesdays—and the theatres even throw in one free 46-ounce popcorn with each paid admission, plus $2 hot dogs and $2 candy.