Milwaukee Magazine publishes its yearly City Guide every summer as a way to help Milwaukeeans reacquaint themselves with the city we call home. It’s also an in-depth guide to the summer for people who have never experienced Milwaukee in June, July and August.
And for that reason, it’ll come in especially handy for the magazine’s new editor-in-chief, Carole Nicksin, who has been on the job for around 10 weeks.
Aside from her own interests, Nicksin really wanted this year's City Guide to stand out. "I really wanted to make it new and fresh because it is something we do every year...so we played around with the presentation and we tried to cover different things than we typically do," she says.
This year's issue covers new topics and suggestions - such as scenic running routes and water activities ranging from kayaking to sailing lessons. One highlight of summer in Milwaukee is its food trucks, and Nicksin says "one (truck) sells a mac and cheese sandwich that I am dying to try! It's on my personal list for the summer." Also in the issue is the "Under $20 Challenge" for happy hours, outdoor activities and exploring sections such as the Mitchell Street neighborhood.
One unique aspect in this year's issue is essays about people's summer jobs. Nicksin herself tells her experience as a student actress in New York: "One summer, the best thing that came my way was appearing as a Care Bear, and I was so good in the try-out that they put me immediately on tour...You're sweating (in the character suits) and yet when the children would come and get so excited, even though I knew they couldn't see my face I'd just be inside this big character head smiling ear to ear," she says.
Though Nicksin started off studying to be an actress in New York City, she gave up acting as a career and went back to school for journalism. Always interested in city and regional magazines, Nicksin notes that "they play a special role where a lot of magazines have to kind of prove their reason for being. A city magazine has just a built-in service within the community."
Other than the job offer, Nicksin says Milwaukee's "unique individual personality," regional cultures and history immediately drew her in to the city.
As editor-in-cheif, she knows there will be challenges ahead. "The challenge is every month to make each issue indispensable and to really find a way to communicate with the community, but also get the community involved so it's a two-way dialog instead of just a magazine preaching and not being in touch with it's readership. It has to be a true relationship," says Nicksin.