The Ultimate Guide to Music in Milwaukee Parks Summer 2023

Cass Polzin
7 min readMay 1, 2023

Summer in Milwaukee is short-lived, so we have to make the most of the nice weather we get. We’re so lucky here in Milwaukee to have such an extensive parks system, tons of incredible artists, and a surplus of delicious food and beverage vendors.

The various music in Milwaukee parks series around town are fantastic opportunities to take advantage of all of these!

What to Know About Music in the Parks

There are various Music in the Parks series held throughout the city during the week. Most concerts begin at 6 or 6:30 pm and feature local emerging and established artists. Check out the website for each series to find out when food service and music will begin, along with any specific rules for the park.

Remember, even during the summer months, the weather in Milwaukee can be unpredictable. Parks do their best to announce cancellations in advance, but in the event of inclement weather, be sure to check out their website or social media to confirm if the evening’s music is canceled or postponed.

What to Bring for Music in the Parks

Most venues allow carry-ins but remember that food and beverage sales make these events possible. If you have specific dietary restrictions, feel free to bring drinks and snacks, but do your best to donate to the program or make a small purchase as you can.

When visiting Chill on the Hill or Jazz at the Vine, remember to bring your Humboldt Park Beer Garden pint glass to refill! No worries if you don’t have one yet, you can get one with the purchase of any beer.

It’s a good idea to bring a towel, blanket, or lawn chair to sit on. Most venues will not allow you to bring your tent, so be sure to bring sunscreen and bug spray as well.

Most parks are animal-friendly, but be sure to check the venue’s specific rules for bringing your furry friend along. Remember that animals can be unpredictable and often don’t enjoy loud noise, so it may be best to leave them at home.

Musical Mondays: Lake Park

This year, Music in Lake Park is celebrating its 25th anniversary! Their Musical Monday series runs from July 10th through August 28th, with shows from 6:30–8 pm every week.

July 10 — Black Cow

July 17 — Feufollet

July 24 — Jamie Breiwick Quintet (featuring Abigail Riccards)

July 31 — Toty Ramos Sextet

August 7 — R&B Cadets

August 14 — JigJam

August 21 — Bon Bon Vivant

August 28 — Robbie Fulks

Chill on the Hill: Humboldt Park

Chill on the Hill is a music series at Bay View’s Humboldt Park, beginning June 6th and running until August 29th. While carry-ins are welcome, food vendors start serving at 5:00, and the park fills up quickly. Plan on arriving early to grab food, beverages, and get your spot set up. Music begins at 6:30.

June 6 — Shamewave and Collections of Colonies of Bees

June 13 — Pulpa de Guayaba and Joe Huber

June 20 — American Legion Band

June 27 — Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra

July 4–4th of July Celebration produced by the Humboldt Park 4th of July Association

July 11 — Bella Brutto and Barb Stephan

July 18 — Lost Orange Cat and Elephonic

July 25 — Ben Harold and The Rising and Dope Music Crew

August 1 — Scam Likely and The Grovelers

August 8 — NilexNile and Cozy Danger

August 15 — Smoke n Mirrors and Cosmic Endeavors

August 22 — Ben Mulwana and Whiskeybelles

August 29 — Dick Satan Trio and Shonn Hinton

Learn more about Bay View’s Chill on the Hill.

Heart(beats) of the City: Red Arrow Park

Every Wednesday afternoon, June 7th — August 30th, take your lunch break at Red Arrow Park. Food will be available from 11:30 am — 1 pm, with music beginning at noon.

June 7 — Amileigha & Jeremy of Rebel Grace

June 14 — MetroFern

June 21 — Betsy Ade & the Well Known Strangers

June 28 — Zach Pietrini Band

July 12 — Alyssia Dominguez

July 19 — Jenny Thiel Group, with a special pre-show performance from the Navy Band Grand Lakes from 11:30 am — 12 pm

July 26 — Kuf Knotz & Christine Elise

August 2 — Brewtown Beat

August 9 — Extra Crispy Brass Band

August 14 — Rob Knapp & the Soul Patrol (special Monday show, with free lunch to kick off Downtown Employee Appreciation Week)

August 23 — Failure to Launch

August 30 — Donna Woodall Group

Learn more and explore the weekly food vendor line-up.

Wonderful Wednesdays: Lake Park

Shows run from 6:30–7:30 pm on Wednesday evenings, starting July 12th and running until August 16th. These shorter shows are designed with young listeners in mind and feature family-friendly performances.

July 12 — Main Street Song & Dance Troupe

July 19 — Duke Otherwise

July 26 — Little Miss Ann

August 2 — Fox and Branch

August 9 — Susan Salidor

August 16 — Ms. Jen and the Jellyfish

Tosa Tonight: Hart Park

Tosa Tonight has been a mainstay of Wauwatosa for over two decades. Since 2000, concerts have been held throughout Wauwatosa parks, Hoyt Park, Wisconsin Avenue Park, Hart Park, & Jacobus Park.

This year, Tosa Tonight is back at Hart Park, starting on June 21st and running through August 16th. Music begins at 6 pm Wednesday evenings and runs until approximately 9:30 pm, plus a bonus 4th of July show.

While attendees are permitted to bring in food and beverages, local vendors will offer food, beer, wine, soda, and water on-site.

June 21 — Miles Nielsen & the Rusted Hearts with guests Wire & Nail

June 28 — The People Brothers Band with guests Genevieve Heyward Band

July 4 — Britishmania with guests Jackson Park Orchestra

July 12 — Willy Porter Band with guest Hayward Williams

July 19 — Platinum with guest Respect! A Tribute to the Queen of Soul

July 26 — The Astronomers with guests Tigera

August 2 — Welshly Arms with guests Me Like Bees

August 9 — De La Buena with guest Juan Carlo Munguia

August 16 — Doolin’ with guests Cassie and Maggie

Can’t wait for June 21st? You can start listening to original music from scheduled performers right away.

Learn more about the Tosa Tonight Summer music series at Hart Park.

Washington Park Wednesdays

Washington Park Wednesdays features two months of themed music on Wednesday evenings, starting July 12th and running until August 30th. Each week features established and emerging artists within the evening’s theme.

Happy hour begins at 5 pm, and bands begin at 6 pm, with family activities and giveaways running throughout the evening. Enjoy food and beverages from local food trucks all evening long.

July 12 — Venus Rising: You Win !!!, Dora Diamond, and bdwthr

July 19 — Viva! Washington Park: Latin Sound System and Septeto Charambo

July 26 — Old School: Concord Orchestra and Wisconsin Conservatory Suzuki

August 2 — Live! Art: V Funk and B.Wyzdom

August 9 — Ride On: Cullah and The Florentine Opera

August 16 — Carnival: Paradise Jazz Band, Shuga Blu, and Prof Pinkerton’s Circus

August 23 — Farm to Park: Midnight Purchase and Peter Thomas and Friends

August 30 — Back to School: DuPont Brass and Scam Likely

Discover the full Washington Park Wednesdays series schedule.

Jazz in the Park: Cathedral Square Park

Jazz in the Park happens on Thursdays, June 1 — July 6, and July 27 — August 31. Happy hour starts at 5 pm, with music running from 6–9 pm. Enjoy $1 off beverages purchased during happy hour.

The official Jazz in the Park schedule and vendor line-up has not yet been announced. Watch their website for more information on this summer’s events.

Jazz at the Vine: Humboldt Park

Enjoy Jazz at Humboldt Park on the last Thursday of the month May-August, plus a few bonus dates.

May 25 — Andrew Spadafora’s Fountain of Youth

June 2 — Bay View Jazz Fest

June 29 — Sam Steffke Trio

July 13 — CNJ Latin Jazz

July 27 — Lesser Lakes Trio

August 10 — Milwaukee Jazz Institute Night — Youth Combos

August 31 — The Erotic Adventures of the Static Chicken

Bonus: Café Sopra Mare at Villa Terrace

This summer, Sunday mornings are the perfect opportunity to enjoy classical music at the gorgeous Villa Terrace. Each week, enjoy free music, pastries, coffee, and tea in the Mercury Courtyard from 10:30 am — 12:30 pm.

June 4 — Don Linke

June 11 — Cole Heinrich

June 18 — Ben Dameron

June 25 — Corey Klunk

July 2 — Jorge Vallentine

July 9 — Neal Bardele

July 16 — Brett Lipshutz

July 23 — Heinzel Kunsmann

July 30 — Marina Slawinski

August 6 — Ellie Jackson

August 13 — Karen Delvecchio

August 20 — Vicki Beck

August 27 — Barbod Mehrbod

September 3 — Eric Wruck

September 10 — Anthony Deutsch

September 17 — Irina Yanovskaya

September 24 — Linda Binder

Enjoy Music in Milwaukee Parks this Summer

Take advantage of our short but beautiful summer in Milwaukee and explore area parks. Music in the parks is an excellent opportunity to hear from local emerging and established artists while enjoying local brews and food.

Save this mini passport to check off all the music series you check out this summer!