Beulah Brinton House mortgage campaign

November 30, 2013

The Bay View Historical Society (BVHS) is in the midst of a matching-gift campaign to reduce its Beulah Brinton House mortgage and is asking you to consider contributing by December 31. The historic house is the home of the historical society.

Built in 1872, the Beulah Brinton House, 2590 S. Superior St., was the residence of Beulah and Warren Brinton, who were among the early settlers in Bay View. Warren Brinton worked in management at the Milwaukee Iron Company and Beulah Brinton opened their home to immigrant families, who settled in Bay View, where many of men in the immigrant families were employed by the iron mill.

Beulah Brinton lent books from her personal library to the immigrants (eventually she donated her library to what became the village’s first public library), taught them to read, cook, and sew, and provided other support to help them assimilate. Her work is often compared to that of Chicago’s Hull House founder Jane Addams.

In 2005 the members of the BVHS approved the purchase of the historic Beulah Brinton House for $450,000. Through fundraising projects and campaigns, BVHS has raised sufficient funds to pay the monthly mortgage for the past eight years. Their goal is to retire the remaining debt.

In November 2012, an anonymous donor gave the society $150,000 to be applied to the mortgage. With that generous gift, the remaining mortgage balance was reduced to less than $150,000.

This year the same donor offered BVNA further financial assistance by pledging to match donations made to the society’s mortgage campaign by December 31, 2013. If a $100 gift is given, the anonymous donor will match it with $100.

The society currently owes $134,000 on its mortgage and to date has raised $18,000 in its current fundraising campaign. With the donor’s matching gift, the total raised to date is $36,000, which reduces the mortgage to less than $100,000, and brings BVHS much closer to retiring the Brinton House mortgage.

If you wish to contribute by December 31, your check should be made payable to Bay View Historical Society and mailed to Bay View Historical Society; 2590 S. Superior St.; Milwaukee, WI  53207


Timothy Westbrook Wisconsin Handweavers’ guest speaker

November 30, 2013

Known for his creative merging of sustainability, art, performance, and storytelling with fiber, Timothy Westbrook recently presented the imaginative fashion event “Paleontology of a Woman” at the Milwaukee Public Museum. He will speak at the December 14 Wisconsin Handweaver’s meeting, at 10am at Gaenslen School, 1250 E. Burleigh St. Guests and visitors are welcome to attend. More info:


New beginning January 24: For residents with no alley, garbage carts must be taken to curb January – April

November 29, 2013

City of Milwaukee Announces Winter Garbage and Recycling Schedules 

Winter schedule in effect from December 2, 2013 through April 4, 2014 

The City of Milwaukee Department of Public Works (DPW) will start its winter schedule for collecting garbage and recycling materials on Monday, December 2, 2013. Collection routes and days will change for many City residents. The winter schedule will remain in effect through April 4, 2014. Residents can look up their next scheduled collection dates online here.

NEW FOR 2014: Beginning Monday, January 27, 2014, residents without alley collection must take their garbage carts to the curb for pick-up, just as they do in spring, summer and fall. (This process is for garbage collection only – see below for recycling information). However, DPW crews will retrieve carts from residents’ from December 2 to January 24. Garbage cart tags with the winter garbage set-out schedules and instructions will be issued prior to the January 27th start date. 

RECYCLING COLLECTION: During the winter months there is no guaranteed collection day on most recycling routes, as snow and ice events require concentrating available workers on plowing and salting streets and collecting garbage. A few routes involve year-round set-out of recycling carts; these routes will continue according to previously issued schedules. Again, residents can look up their next scheduled collection day online at

DPW encourages all residents to shovel a path to and around all carts to help ensure that there are no disruptions with garbage and recycling pick-up service delivery.

There will be no collections made on the following City holidays:

  •  Christmas: December 24 & 25
  •  New Years: December 31 & January
  •  Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day: January 20


For more information, please call 414.286.CITY (2489) or visit

Milwaukee Common Council new legislation enacted

November 26, 2013


New Legislation

The following legislation was enacted by the Milwaukee Common Council at its most recent meeting of November 26, 2013:

File 130903 increases the number of taxicab permits by 100 to 420 and also creates other vehicle standards and legislation relating to dispatch services.

File 131016  will permit Milwaukee police officers to provide security at local businesses with certain stipulations.

Files 130906 increases from 24 hours to 72 hours the amount of time that the city has to notify an owner by mail  that his or her vehicle has been towed.

File 130900 creates a pilot program to have private real estate brokers list and market city properties.

File 130901 approves the sale of the former Malcolm X school at 2760 N. 1st St.

File 131026 moves the July 10th, 2014 Public Safety meeting to July 7th at 1:30 P.M.

Other files introduced today were assigned to committee and will be a part of the regular committee cycle beginning with the Licenses Committee meeting on Tuesday, December 3, 2013.


Holiday bake sale to benefit pediatric cancer research, Dec. 7 in Third Ward

November 26, 2013

Stock up on homemade goodies while helping support pediatric cancer research.

MKEfoodies — a group of Milwaukeeans who enjoy food, drink and socializing — will sponsor its third annual holiday bake sale to raise money for Cookies for Kids’ Cancer from 1 to 4 p.m. on Dec. 7 at a new location —  the Hudson Business Lounge, 310 N. Broadway, in Milwaukee’s Third Ward.

The bake sale will feature cookies, candies and treats made by local bakers, food bloggers and baking enthusiasts. Santa will also be present to greet kids of all ages and bestow gifts upon lucky supporters. All proceeds from the sale will be donated to Cookies for Kids’ Cancer, a not-for-profit organization committed to raising funds to support research for new and improved therapies for pediatric cancers.

“Everyone loves homemade treats around the holidays,” says Lori Fredrich, co-founder of MKEfoodies. “We also have a wealth of talented chefs, home bakers, and food bloggers here in the Milwaukee area. So why not bring them together for a good cause?  Last year, through the generosity of those who attended the bake sale, we raised over $2,000 for pediatric cancer research. This year we hope to raise even more.”

The group will receive assistance from OXO, which has pledged to match bake sale proceeds dollar for dollar, up to $100,000. In addition, the Glad Corp. will match all donations made during the month of December, up to $25,000. Local sponsors include 88Nine Radio Milwaukee, Hudson Business Lounge, andFirst Priority Printing.

Childhood cancers are the No. 1 disease killer of children, more than asthma, muscular dystrophy, multiple sclerosis and pediatric AIDS combined. Nearly 13,000 children are diagnosed with cancer each year. Survivors of childhood cancer face a broad range of physical and psychological challenges imposed by the disease, and some will suffer its long-term effects for the rest of their lives.

Despite all these statistics, there has not been a new drug developed specifically for pediatric cancer in 20 years. Cookies for Kids’ Cancer is committed to raising the funds to support research for new and improved therapies for pediatric cancer. It is not about one child or one type of pediatric cancer. It is about changing the facts of pediatric cancer for the better, forever.

“It always feels good to support a good cause,” Fredrich comments, “But, during the holidays, it’s even more gratifying. You can give a gift to someone special today and truly make a difference for our children and grandchildren tomorrow.”

For more information visit and

To donate online, visit:

South Milwaukee Christmas Market is Saturday, Nov. 30; includes live music

November 20, 2013

Source: Press Release—City of South Milwaukee

 70+Vendors, Special Christmas Concert Coming to South Milwaukee High School

The sounds, smells, smiles and tastes of Christmas return to South Milwaukee High School with the South Milwaukee Christmas Market on Saturday, Nov. 30. Hours are 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The market will feature dozens of regular market vendors – and some new faces – selling arts, crafts, organics, baked goods and other specialty items.

Live Christmas music from local acts and students is also planned throughout the market, with the South Milwaukee Performing Arts Center presenting Horns A Plenty Christmas, a Fox Valley-based group of more than 50 horn players that will play a free concert inside the PAC at 12:30pm.

“This Christmas Market will be the best one yet,” said South Milwaukee Alderman and market co-founder Erik Brooks. “The indoor version of our successful summer market is quickly becoming a South Milwaukee Christmas tradition.”

“We can’t thank the South Milwaukee School District for its partnership,” said South Milwaukee City Clerk and market co-founder Jim Shelenske. “The high school and the South Milwaukee PAC are terrific locations to hold this.”

Admission is free. The high school is located at 801 15th Ave.



DPW warns public about scam artists posing as utility employees — two incidents on south side today

November 13, 2013

 Source: Milwaukee Dept. Public Works press release

Milwaukee area residents should be mindful of persons who try to gain access to their homes by posing as utility employees. 

Two incidents were reported Wednesday on Milwaukee’s south side. A man claiming to be a water utility employee talked his way into a woman’s home on South 14th Street, saying he needed to check the water meter. He said he had worked for the utility for so long he didn’t have a utility identification badge. While he was in her basement, a second man rang her doorbell and entered the home. He also claimed he was a water utility employee who was there to give her a $50.00 rebate for being a senior citizen. He said he would give her the cash if she could give him change for a $100.00 bill. The woman told him she had no money in the house, and both men walked out. The woman called the Milwaukee Water Works where a supervisor confirmed all utility employees carry a photo ID, and the utility does not offer rebates. She also was advised to immediately call the Milwaukee Police Department.

A second woman, who lives on South 34th Street, was approached by two men but she did not allow them into her house. She asked for identification and they told her they had left their ID badges in the truck. They also offered to replace her water meter for a $50 fee. The utility replaces water meters at no charge to customers.

Protect yourself and your family from scam artists who pose as utility employees: 

• Do not open your door to someone you do not recognize. Do not allow anyone to enter your home if you are not sure of any person’s identity.

• Ask to see photo identification (I.D.) through a window. Milwaukee Water Works and other utility employees and contractors carry photo identification. Legitimate employees will be happy to show you their I.D. if you ask, or call the utility to verify identification.

• Call the Milwaukee Water Works Customer Service Center, (414) 286-2830, if you are unsure about a person’s identification or to verify work to be done at your home. Call the police if you believe the person is an imposter.

• Do not allow anyone to enter your home claiming to collect a past-due bill, inspect plumbing fixtures, or to sell utility products such as a meter or other equipment. Milwaukee Water Works employees do not engage in door-to-door sales, do not collect a past-due bill in person, and do not deliver rebates or refunds.

• The Milwaukee Water Works does not solicit water testing from customers.

• Advise your elderly loved ones, friends, and children about what to do if strangers approach their home and ask to come in.

• Milwaukee Water Works employees on duty drive marked City of Milwaukee vehicles.

If a property owner calls the Milwaukee Water Works Customer Service Center and asks for an investigation into high water use or other water service-related issue, the Milwaukee Water Works may send an employee to a residence or business. The utility also may send an employee to investigate high water use or a possible meter issue, or to replace a meter, without a customer-initiated service request. Again, these employees will readily show identification. You may contact the utility to confirm we are cold-calling in your service area.

Residents invited to give input about MPS’ Request For Proposals to develop Dover Street School building as housing for teachers

November 13, 2013

Source: MPS press release

Milwaukee Public Schools is inviting neighbors and educators to a Tuesday, Nov. 19 meeting to share input on the district’s Request for Proposals to redevelop the former Dover Street School in the city’s Bay View neighborhood into an innovative, first-in-the-region teacher housing facility.

In February, Teachtown MKE, a collaboration created to support and retain Milwaukee educators, began discussing bringing the innovative teacher housing concept seen in cities including Baltimore and Philadelphia to Milwaukee. The goal: to foster mentoring and collaboration among educators.

MPS identified the former Dover site as the best choice for the facility, in part because of what Bay View offers: a vibrant, safe neighborhood with a walkable business district and access to public transportation.

Earlier this month, MPS and the Milwaukee Department of City Development issued the Request for Proposals to developers, who would be required to create a project that will be fully taxable and increase the city’s tax base.

At the meeting hosted by Milwaukee Public Schools and  Milwaukee’s District 14 Alderman Tony Zielinski, community members will have the opportunity to weigh in on potential elements of the development. Those include: green space, the tot lot, a community garden, bike storage, parking, car sharing, sustainable building features, the resident application process, retail space, a fitness center and a coffee shop.

The meeting is set for Tuesday, Nov. 19 at 6:30 p.m. at the Humboldt Park Pavilion, 3000 S. Howell Avenue, Milwaukee 53207. The pavilion can be accessed from the park road at E. Oklahoma Avenue and S. Pine Avenue.

Advantages of the Bay View teacher housing proposal including converting unused space into vibrant housing with professional neighbors; on-site parking for residents; an agreement on sharing parking with St. Lucas Church; adding to the city’s tax rolls; and continued use of the playground by St. Lucas and the community.

Other cities with similar developments found, among other things, that the teacher housing facilities spurred economic development and neighborhood revitalization; and provided teachers with a peer-support community. Teachers reported that living in the housing facilities made their job easier.

More information can be found at Community members who are unable to attend can share thoughts by email to

Click on the images below to enlarge them to a legible size.

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Four Milwaukee Fire Department companies to be decommissioned, effective Dec. 22 — includes Engine 11 firehouse in Bay View

November 8, 2013

Dave Seager, president of the Milwaukee Fire Fighters Association confirmed today that four of the Milwaukee Fire Department’s companies will be decommissioned December 22.

The decommissions — the removal of four trucks (rigs) from four firehouses — are a consequence of Milwaukee Fire Department funding cuts  in Mayor Tom Barrett’s 2014 budget, Seager said.

The companies (rigs at a firehouse) that will be closed are:
Ladder 14, 21st Street and Oklahoma Avenue;
Engine 5, 13th Street and Reservoir Avenue;
Engine 35, 64th Street and Fairview Avenue,
and Engine 11, Kinnickinnic Avenue and Otjen Street.

Four firefighters ride each rig.

Seager said that personnel attrition (retirement, resignations) will circumvent layoffs of MFD firefighters.

The Compass is working on a more comprehensive report about these changes to MFD.

Read the 2014 city of Milwaukee budget here.

New legislation enacted today by Milwaukee Common Council

November 5, 2013

New Legislation

The following legislation was enacted by the Milwaukee Common Council at its most recent meeting of November 5, 2013:

File 130710 suspended the Class “B” Tavern and Public Entertainment Premises licenses of “Club 618 Live on Water” (Lady Bug Club) at 622 N. Water Street for 90 days, effective tomorrow .

File 130472  relates to amending the U.S. Constitution to permit the U.S. Congress and state and local legislatures to limit corporate influence and expenditures in public elections, and urging the Wisconsin Legislature and Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors to submit the question to voters. .

Files 130882 relates to the city’s position relative to prescription drugs and controlled substances.

File 130632 approves hotel development at South Howell and West College avenues.

File 130881 directs the Dept. of City Development to release the city funds budgeted for infrastructure work (of particular concern is sidewalks) at the former Pabst Brewery complex (now known as “The Brewery”).


Other files introduced today were assigned to committee and will be a part of the regular committee cycle beginning with the Licenses Committee meeting on Monday, November 11, 2013.


MPS seeks proposals for innovative teacher housing concept at Dover site

November 5, 2013

Source: MPS press release

Formal Request for Proposals for a first-in-the-region facility issued Tuesday

Milwaukee Public Schools and the City of Milwaukee Department of City Development are seeking proposals to redevelop the former Dover Street School into an innovative, first-in-the-region facility providing affordable quality housing to teachers.

The concept, which is aimed at fostering an environment of collaboration and mentoring among educators, was first discussed in February by the Greater Milwaukee Committee’s Teachtown MKE initiative.

Leaders at Teachtown MKE, which was created to support teachers in the community, said similar developments in other cities have become support systems and communities for young teachers.  Cities that have developed sites similar to the one proposed by MPS include Baltimore and Philadelphia and development is now underway in New Orleans.

The proposed redevelopment must, among other things, be fully taxable and increase the city’s tax base, according to the formal Request for Proposals (RFP) issued Tuesday.

“This is an exciting opportunity to continue to strategically use our facilities – in this case to strengthen the support system for the men and women having a daily impact on the lives of our students,” MPS Superintendent Gregory Thornton said.

The Dover site, located at 619 E. Dover Street in the city’s Bay View neighborhood, is appealing to Millennial-generation educators, a majority of whom want to live in walkable neighborhoods with public transportation, a mix of housing types and mixed-use developments including shops and offices, according to a Urban Land Institute survey.

In addition to requiring the redevelopment to increase the city’s tax base, the Request for Proposals (RFP) also requires:

– Centralize parking to minimize adverse neighborhood impacts
– Provide attractive landscaping and add green space through the removal of excess paving; retention of the tot lot for public use is encouraged
– Improve exterior appearance by replacing chain link fencing with decorative metal fencing
– Include, if possible, additional housing units that are compatible with the neighborhood along Dover Street and Potter Avenue
– Maintain a legacy partnership allowing St. Lucas Church to continue to utilize the Dover site’s playground and develop a working agreement for shared use of parking areas on the Dover site

MPS has been strategic in using its facilities, primarily to house in-demand, successful MPS schools. In recent years, the district has reused 10 facilities for MPS schools, leased 11 sites to charter/partnership schools and sold four schools including three to high-performing charter operators. Just this year, MPS’ strategic use of facilities has allowed the district to add seats at successful schools such as Golda Meir, I.D.E.A.L. and Reagan.

This news is available online at

Read Jay Bullock’s take on this proposal here.

PAREN(T)HESIS — Bedtime already?

November 1, 2013

By Jill Rothenbueler Maher

HeadshotCMost nights, we start to get our daughter ready for bed around 8pm. She doesn’t notice clocks and often seems surprised that the dreaded hour has arrived. Like generations of children, our energetic kindergartner sometimes responds, “Bedtime already?”

It’s challenging to stick to a bedtime for a variety of reasons. Even on weeknights, we sometimes have activities that run late. And we haven’t even gotten to the heart of the extracurricular phase where sports play into the after school schedule.

The whole evening routine doesn’t start for our family until 5:30pm, when my husband and I leave work to pick our daughter up. Then we make dinner and she watches TV and does a chore or two, leaving only 30 minutes or so for other activities like reading or drawing something for a relative.

We no longer head out to the suburbs for dinner with my parents on a weeknight. It’s just too rushed to drive there, eat, and return at a reasonable hour.

We do try to stick with a routine, partially because I hear from experts how important it is. Plus, the principal of our daughter’s school often reminds parents that getting to school on time is the best way to start the day. And being punctual at a school that begins at 7:35am is a lot easier to pull off when everybody is well rested.

Sometimes it’s tough to get myself to bed on time, but I have noticed that the whole morning goes better when I have slept about nine hours.

I get a “warm and fuzzy” feeling when I overhear our daughter playing around a little before she falls asleep. Snatches of her chatter with stuffed animals reach me as I read or put away laundry. It’s amusing when she falls asleep so suddenly that she’s still grasping a crayon or lying near a propped-up hardcover book.

Some of you have older children and deal with curfew enforcement. I’m betting you hear, “Curfew already?” instead of, “Bedtime already?”

The author is a freelance writer and mother of one. Reach her with comments or suggestions at


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