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MPM Opens Brand New Streets of Old Milwaukee

It came as a big shock to many over the summer when the Milwaukee Public Museum announced it was closing and renovating the museum’s beloved Streets of Old Milwaukee exhibit. But the truth was the streets were indeed old. The new and improved exhibit still highlights local business, but new themes with new characters will give visitors a new perspective of Milwaukee.

"(Older adults) knew what this material was, they knew what these businesses were.  And over the last, oh, fifty years – we’ve lost a little of that kind of that thing as generations proceeded.  To a 12 year old now, this is an Antiques Roadshow vignette," says Streets of Old Milwaukee curator Al Muschka.

While there have been a handful of previews of the refreshed exhibit in the past couple of weeks, the new Streets of Old Milwaukee reopens to the public Friday. 

Lake Effect had a chance to visit the streets as workers were putting the finishing touches on the exhibit. Director of exhibits and design Julian Jackson and Al Muschka explain why this was the time for a facelift: