Neighborhood Profile: Sherman Park

The Sherman Park Neighborhood is situated between North Avenue and Capitol Drive from 30th to 60th Streets. Once a rural area far outside the city of Milwaukee, Sherman Park was purchased in 1889 by the city park commission. This area was the farthest west point in the city at the time and shrubs were planted around the edges to separate it from the neighboring farms. The Sherman Park area was once home to many of Milwaukee’s first business owners and these pioneers built their beautiful homes in the 1920s and 1930s.

Sherman Park was also once the heart of Milwaukee’s Jewish population and retained a small, close-knit group of Hasidic Orthodox Jews.  Herb Kohl, U.S. Senator from Wisconsin and his college roommate Bud Selig, former MLB commissioner, grew up in the Sherman Park in the 1940s and both attended Washington High School, located in the neighborhood. NBA star Latrell Sprewell and actor Gene Wilder are also Washington High graduates.

Today, the majority of Sherman Park residents are of African American and Asian descent. The PNC Milwaukee Running Festival route will take runners up and down historic Sherman Boulevard and feature it’s stately Bungalow, Craftsman, and Tudor-style homes.


 Course Highlights:
Washington High School
Historic Sherman Boulevard


Thursday Night Social Runs!

Want to meet up with other runners training for our event? The PNC Milwaukee Running Festival is hosting a series of social runs leading up to race weekend. From weeknight fun runs to Saturday morning marathon build up runs, there’s gathering for everyone between now and November 1st. Sometimes running with a group of friends can give you that extra push you need. (As well as some tasty post-run “recovery” snacks.) Check out a map of the course here!

Our weeknight Social Runs will take place every Thursday evening at 6pm starting on May 7th and run through October 22nd. Thats 25 weeks of fun! Each run will be 3-5 miles in length and take place in various locations all over the city. We’re kicking off the series with a Donut Run at Holey Moley Donuts on Thursday, May 7th. We hope to see you there!

Check out our calendar for more information on where to meet each week! And stay tuned for our Saturday Build Up series…



Milwaukee History: The Bridge War

Every city experiences growing pains, and Milwaukee is no different. When the first residents settled in our fair city in the early 1800s, the areas we now call East Town and West Town were named Juneautown and Kilbourntown after their respective founders. Juneautown (just east of the Milwaukee River) was named after fur trader and future Milwaukee mayor Solomon Juneau, while Kilbourntown on the west side, took it’s name from railroad executive and politician, Byron Kilbourn.

By the 1840s, there had become a great rivalry between Juneautown and Kilbourntown, mostly due to the actions of Byron Kilbourn, who had been trying to isolate Juneautown to make it more dependent on Kilbourntown.  Kilbourn saw to it that the streets running toward the river did not match up with those on the east side. This accounts for the large number of angled bridges that still exist in Milwaukee today!

In 1845 there was a dispute over funding for the bridge connecting the two towns. Tensions boiled over and the dispute ended with riots and the bridge being burned down in protest. It was in the aftermath of the Bridge War that Juneautown and Kilbourntown finally began making greater attempts at cooperation, ultimately resulting in their unification as the City of Milwaukee on January 31, 1846,

The PNC Milwaukee Running Festival route will make it’s way Kilbourntown/West Town, taking runners down 4th street and Wisconsin Avenue. Our host hotel, the Hyatt Regency is also located in what is now known as West Town.


Bridge War of 1845 by Clarence Boyce Monegar



West Town Landmarks:
Old World Third Street
Grand Avenue Mall
Wisconsin Centerlocation of the PNC Milwaukee Running Festival Health & Fitness Expo

Interested in more Milwaukee History? City Running Tours offers group and personalized runs that explore Brew City history, downtown, campus life, and the shores of Lake Michigan. Check them out and book a run today!

Neighborhood Profile: Brady Street

The Milwaukee Running Festival is the first marathon to take place exclusively within the city of Milwaukee. The 26.2 mile route will highlight many Milwaukee landmarks and the city’s diverse neighborhoods. 

One of the high points of the Milwaukee Running Festival Marathon is bound to be when the route takes a turn down Historic Brady Street. Stretching nine blocks east to west between Lake Michigan and the Milwaukee River, Brady Street was once considered to be Milwaukee’s own “Haight-Ashbury.”

Between 1860 and 1930, Brady Street was home to early Polish, German and Irish immigrants. By 1930s the neighborhood became more predominantly Italian and earned the nickname “Milwaukee’s Little Italy.” Today Brady Street is known for it’s mix of retail shops, ethnic cuisine, coffee shops and salons. It has a vibrant nightlife and in the summer is home to the infamous Brady Street Days.


St. Hedwig’s Roman Catholic Church
Regano’s Roman Coin
Peter Sciortino’s Bakery