Day 20: Milwaukee Marathon

Another glorious weather day.  Only a few times in the afternoon that the clouds were playing games with me.  Making me wait a couple of minutes for the sun to emerge.  Perfect conditions for a major photo shoot.  Biggest number of stops in Wisconsin so I was barreling all over town.  Poor Sparkle took a pounding from me today and the heat.  I’d buy her a beer if I could.  The dogs were pretty zonked from the past couple days — only two majorly illegal swims:  one in a church fountain and another on private property I’m sure in Fox Point.  But we didn’t get caught either place and it was SO worth the risk.

Tons of photos for you.  Don’t forget to check out all the other photos at Flickr if you’re new to my blog thing.  Those photos are different from the ones here:

I always post the Flickr photos first then start working on the  blog.  Lately, I’ve run out of steam and have had to finish up in the morning.   Tonight, it’s 1 am but I’ve had a Starbucks coffee and have artificial energy.  Tomorrow, I’ll be feeling the pain though.

Starting out here in Port Washington:

There were other cities — but let’s move right on to Milwaukee.  Very sad to find this adapted gas station turned coffee shop closed up:

A modern sign but certainly inspired by all those neon saw signs of old — and much appreciated in this era of unimaginative plastic signs:

A contemporary building — with 1960s styling.  Very Bertrand Goldberg:
Like an overgrown Prentice Women’s Hospital which might be demolished:’s-hospital-by-bertrand-goldberg-listed-as-illinois-ten-most-endangered-buildings/

Huge sign, fallen on hard times:

A neat sculpture next to a bridge — too wiped out to google for more info.  I’m counting on you Milwaukee-ites to fill us in on what it all means:

A couple close-ups:


Sometimes my stops don’t yield the results I want but are interesting adventures nonetheless.  I went to the Lakefront Brewery to shoot the giant beer mug.  But it seems the mug is only brought out on Fridays or something, then it’s put in storage on the brewery floor.  So I couldn’t go see it because of insurance reasons (all kinds of toxic chemicals on the floor I was told).  But I got to see it, sort of, from above.  Not useful for my website but I’m sure you are guys are interested:

Another gigantic sign — an interesting mix of porcelain enamel, neon and corrugated plastic:

Another nice sign that’s down on its luck.  The pizza place has been closed for years but the sign remains.

And I know you want a close-up of the delicate crown:

First ice cream of the day — yes, FIRST.  I’m not ashamed.  And technically frozen custard.  The sign is wonderful but I sure wish Kitt’s would do something with the front of their place.  That plastic is just so uninviting:

Their other sign (and Sparkle’s cameo):

Inside the plastic – way more exciting:

Decisions, decisions:

I went with one of the flavors of the day — cherry amaretto — why not.  Superb.  The cherries seemed real — hard (frozen) and chewy.

Fantastic basket weave style sun screen (brise soleil, if you prefer):

Wowza — I’ve never seen a Speed Queen clock before.  I don’t think that was the right time — not sure though:

Surely a chain — but I’ve never heard of them before:

And moving on to the 2nd frozen custard stop of the day:  Leon’s.  It was in the 90s today — a big change from the past few days.  And I was plowing through the stops, in and out of the van like a jackrabbit.  So I used these two frozen custard places as my motivation — saving Leon’s for the last stop — arriving at dusk:

The custard pumper — or whatever it’s called — in action:

A bit of sexism here at Leon’s.  The men (boys) handle the windows in their white shirts, black bowties, and crisp paper hats.  The women are pretty much behind the scenes in ugly blue uniforms.   I’m not sure how I feel about this — but all I wanted was my custard!

I went with Raspberry — one of the flavors of the day — with my new fave topping, Spanish peanuts.  It was pretty much half peanuts which was fine with me:

Tomorrow, moving on to Milwaukee suburbs south and west and a little dabbling in Illinois just over the border (no Chicago this time round).  Ideally, but unlikely, start ever so slightly northward.  Must get to Minnesota eventually.  Must.


UPDATE / ERRATA:  Turns out the “contemporary” building I described above actually was designed by Bertrand Goldberg — built in 1976.  But I guess the base must have been an update — don’t know.  Very interesting!  I’ll have to check it out more closely on a future trip.

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