Roll call

By - Sep 18th, 2008 02:52 pm
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Next American City, a national magazine dedicated to making cities better, docked in Milwaukee this week as part of a four-day spree through our fair city and what’s ticking these days. The centerpiece of their visit? A rad, adrenaline-fueled no-holds-barred 24-hour tour of the city. All of it!

The docket of guides is incredible. Alex Runner of City Hall, Jeramey Jannene of Urban Milwaukee, Juli Kaufmann of green building co Pragmatic Construction, Next American City’s own Dave Steele and … here’s the clincher …

me! Along with VITAL Editor-in-chief Jon Anne Willow and my favorite person alive, Matthew John Wild. We’re the party bus, for sure.

I always wanted this in Detroit, and in fact have been known to offer to take anyone and everyone I meet with the slightest interest back home to the Motor City with me for a romp through the decayed colossus of a city I love: the stately abandoned structures, the bridge to Canada, the dirty bar rooms, the dance parties, late night bike rides by the riverfront, my dad’s corned beef plant.

And now I have the opportunity to show you exactly what it is about Milwaukee that has stolen my heart and kept it close for two years. It’s a dream come true.

Meet Jon Anne, Matt and me at Chimney Park in the Menomonee Valley at 6:00 pm (sharp!) for an outdoor performance by Wild Space Dance Company, preceded by a lecture from the one-and-only John Gurda. Afterward the sky’s the limit. I can’t tell you what’s on the docket because that’s up to whomever shows up (read: you) — we’re diplomatic like that — but I guarantee a good old-fashioned good time. Likely destinations: Art’s Concertina Bar, Koz’s Mini Bowl, Polish Falcons, Landmark Lanes, Barnacle Buds, At Random and the Press Club’s Newsroom Pub. Our shift ends at 2 am at Wolski’s, but the fun continues straight through until 10 am on Sunday morning with a third shift factory tour at P&H Mining, frisbee by the lakefront and late-night eats.

How will I know how to find you, you ask? Dial the Next American City hotline at 414-305-5242 for the 411 on our approximate location. Or you could check in on our Twitter page where we’ll be posting up-to-the-minute updates about all of our antics.

Still not sure what all of this means for you? Neither am I, but you can read up on previous 24:HRS excursions in New Orleans and Philadelphia for a better sense of what goes on when you send a bunch of magazine staffers to a strange and lonesome place.

Jon Anne says she thinks it will be like SubVersions: On Assignment, only hip and new-urban, not desolate and desperate. Speaking of which, have you watched the Des Moines videos yet? They are wonderful, and feature both Lunchables and Sarah Palin’s disembodied head:

More updates on the 24-hour tour as they develop. Until then, stay sane, and get your party shoes polished. You’ve got a long weekend ahead of you. And it might be the best weekend ever.

Categories: VITAL

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