Madeline Pieschel

Denim Park hosts a new summer music series for Milwaukee artists

The new venue, outside The North End apartments, will be visited by artists including I'm Not A Pilot, Vitrolum Republic and tonight's lead-off band, the Fatty Acids.

By - Jul 31st, 2013 04:00 am

Denim Park poster designed by Milwaukee artist Reginald Baylor.

Summertime in Milwaukee engenders a certain kind of spontaneity and liveliness that shows just how active the supporters of arts are in this city. A steady stream of festivals, concerts, theater performances and art shows gives Milwaukee residents a reason to leave the house and witness something pleasurable, inspiring, and worthwhile — all without having to spend a single penny.

Local Wisconsin musicians particularly get a chance to shine during the summer months, with over 20 “concert in the park” locations, including Jazz in the Park at Cathedral Square, Kadish Park’s Skyline Music Series, and Humboldt Park’s “Chill on the Hill,” just to name a few. As if we weren’t already lucky enough, another promising music series has recently sprouted. Denim Park Summer Music Series, located at the newly built Denim Park, at the corner of Water and Pleasant Streets, makes its debut this Wednesday, July 31.

Denim Park is part of The North End apartment homes, which are owned by local real estate developer Mandel Group, Inc., the sponsor of the music series. The 5,500 square foot park was conceived by Mandel Group to serve as amenity space for retailers (specifically restaurants), and recreational space for residents of the North End apartments. However, the large area includes a built-­in ipe wood-planked stage with wiring to accommodate electronic equipment — perfect for outdoor concerts.


A look at Denim Park under construction

The Denim Park Summer Music Series is a weekly series of concerts ranging over a seven-week span from July 31 through September 11, and it will feature eight diverse local bands. The festival was dreamt up by Barry Mandel of Mandel Group, who wanted to encourage a positive sense of community by bringing people together through local talent and great music. But Mandel Group has had little experience with coordinating a music series, so their director of marketing Tracy Bredow-Santilli reached out to friends at 88.9 Radio Milwaukee to help curate the band line up, as well as assisting with sound quality at the park. Radio Milwaukee arranged an excellent line up of bands, including the Fatty Acids, Kiings, I’m Not A Pilot, Bright Kind, Greatest Lakes, Vitrolum Republic, Kane Place Record Club, and Todd Day Wait’s Pigpen.

Aside from a great local line up of talented musicians, patrons can also expect to find some tasty local food. Milwaukee food trucks Simmer, which serves soup and salad, and JeppaJoes, which serves Southeast Asian cuisine, will be stationed near Denim Park during each concert, ready to serve.

Although this is the very first year the series will take place, Bredow-Santilli said the hope is that it could become a regular, anticipated affair – once they’ve proven this year’s lineup is a success.

The weekly concerts will take place every Wednesday from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Denim Park. The Fatty Acids are scheduled to kick off the series tonight, July 31. Patrons are advised to bring their own blankets and chairs as seating is limited.

Categories: Music, Rock

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