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Big, Colorful Birds & Events Bring Learning & Music To Milwaukee's Lakeshore State Park

Life-sized, colorful, plastic birds swarm Lakeshore State Park.
Courtesy of the Black Box Fund
Big, colorful, plastic birds swarm Lakeshore State Park.

Milwaukee's Lakeshore State Park is currently filled with five-foot tall, colorful, plastic birds, but they won't be around for much longer. Up until August 1, you'll see kids and adults interacting with the large public art installation created to draw attention to the need to protect Milwaukee’s natural inhabitants.

The Black Box Fund helped bring the art sculptures by Cracking Art to the city. The organization is focused on connecting communities through public art, music and performances.

The birds are a part of Black Box Fund's "Out of the Box" series along Milwaukee's lakeshore. Marilu Knode is the executive director of the fund and says, "It's pretty fantastic to see the birds just being swarmed by children. But we're also in a location where there are real swallows and all kinds of other animals."

Their next event is July 28 to recognize World Conservation Day, where Pangaea Steel Drum Band and poets will be joined by members from the Schlitz Audubon Nature Center and Urban Ecology Center to celebrate and educate on the natural environment surrounding Lakeshore State Park.

"We really try to create this really broad connective tissue between these different disciplines to show that we're all in it together. Art always exists in the same continuum as science. We all are part of the same world," Knode says.

Their final event of the series, Pup Day, celebrates National Mutt Day, where you can treat your favorite four-legged pal with some homemade treats. And if you don't have a pup, there will be dogs available for on-site adoption.

Mallory Cheng was a Lake Effect producer from 2021 to 2023.
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