Local and Small Businesses need love too. Try them for the Holidays besides the “well knowns”.

Posted: November 24, 2012 in African American Stories and Viewpoints, Holidays, Local, News and politics, Organizations, Reflections
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If those haven’t noticed, it’s Small Business Saturday  A day in part of the Thanksgiving Weekend/Black Friday Shopping Stuff in order to gear up on the Christmas Shopping Season. Now for the crazed “Zombies” err…..Shoppers who went shopping late Thanksgiving Night/Early Friday Morning just to stand in line, I assume that they are somewhat happy of what they got. But like every year, I say that that the Retail stores have all these “deals” but they aren’t really deals! They’re not. Like many others, I was looking at the Youtube Videos of Black Friday, and I cannot believe the attitude of these SHOPPERS who have to trample over folks all because of a Cell Phone, a cookware appliance  I mean REALLY?! All because of that. Well some of these shoppers have made the video cut on Huffington Post, Yahoo, the national news and also the Local News. Shameful! I mean the holidays are here but jeez! There are those who would trample over some’s life over a “Black Friday deal?” Now I know I posted this on my Facebook page just today as a “open challenge”:

Saturday AM. Here’s a challenge: If folks can jam pack the malls or national chain stores, why jam pack (and support) the small businesses? It’s Small Business Saturday.

Yeah, what about that, Black Friday Shoppers? I’m just saying. If you can jam pack Walmart, Victoria’s Secret (suprised),  KMart, ToysRUs, Best Buy, HHGregg,  or any well known national chain store in the nation, why not some of these small businesses that pop up near our corners or shopping strip malls? Those stores that locally get no play as much. No matter if they are a local restaurants, stores, bakeries,  pizza shops, or hangouts. We know what they are. For those outside of Milwaukee, the next time you stop through, I highly recommend some stops that might be worth checking out. And they are to me “multicultural”. Plus, in my estimation: “Stephen’s Spot Approved.”

Mykonos Restaurant- A greek restaurant but they have good food for dine ins and carry outs.

Growing Power – talk about “Homegrown”. This is the organization has been in the public eye from farming, organic, aquaponics, greenhousing, and many other things that make those “Going Green”. Founded by Will Allen.

LaPerla Restaurant – A well known Mexican Restaurant on Milwaukee’s Southside since 1995. Known for the Margaritas and good food on 5th & National.

Loc Wise  – They do hair. Natural hair. Dreads, Locs, Braids and Twists. Black owned.

The BMO-Bradley Center/Miller Park/Wisconsin Center District/Pabst Theater-Riverside Theater-Turner Hall – You know these places right? All known for games and events.

Maier Festival Park – You know this. We call it Summerfest, and we do concerts in all genres. Plus it does hosts ethnic festivals like African World Festival, Irish Fest, Mexican Fiesta, etc. Plus the Marcus Amphitheater.

African World Festival, Ltd. – This has been operating since 1982, and is Milwaukee’s gathering spot to celebrate the black culture.

The Iron Horse Hotel – For you out of town bikers, this is the spot where you can stay, park your Motorcycle and visit Downtown Milwaukee. Plus it’s near the Harley-Davidson Museum. It’s has been operating since the mid 2000’s, around 2006. Plus check out the restaurants, Smyth, The Yard, Branded, and The Library (not your usual library).

Juneteenth Day – Yes. Like everywhere else in the United States, Milwaukee has been celebrating Juneteenth Day since 1971. And here, it has been a “State Holiday” for Wisconsin since 2010.

A.J. Bombers – For you burger fans, the spot is located downtown in the city. Plus Madison also. Good burgers though.

The Hyatt Regency Hotel – Alot of you should know where this is. It has the revolving restaurant up top downtown. Only hotel has it in Milwaukee. Plus it does have a historical site area in which President Teddy Roosevelt was shot.

Spectator’s Restaurant  – A new restaurant/bar spot opened up in Milwaukee that is sports related, but also hosts special events. Black owned.

Nostalgia I and Nostalgia II – Good spots for food, entertainment, events and spit poetry. They got them!

Gene’s Lane’s and Lounge/Gene’s Supper Club – Known for food, drinks, entertainment, and bowling. Black owned.

Blackthorn Pub and Grill – A downtown spot in Milwaukee known for events, food, drinks. Late night stuff.

Y Not III Club – a local bar and club on Milwaukee’s east side. Good spot.

Asha Family Services – This is an organization that assists those in need in concern of Domestic Violence. And by the way, the CEO of Asha Family Services is a relative of mine. Check it out.  And also “Sistah’s Cafe & Deli” on Center Street.

Northwest Side Community Development Corporation– This organization has been operating since 1983 in assisting to revitalizing Milwaukee’s neighborhoods in the areas near the Villard Avenue areas, and mostly in the low income areas of the city.

Wisconsin Black Historical Society  – An organization that showcases Black Milwaukee/Wisconsin historical artifacts. Yes, Wisconsin does have a resident history of black people!

Bungalow’s Restaurant – A soul food restaurant. Black family owned. Plus they do take outs! And in addition,  they have two locations in Milwaukee.

Speed Queen Barbecue – A well known black owned restaurant that cooks good barbecue. Legendary.

Kitts Frozen Custard Drive In- Another spot for custards, and good burgers.  It’s set up like a drive in. Still operates.

Bouchards/Silver Star/Gold Star/Ed’s Men’s Wear/Playmakers- Best spots to get some gear and shoes in Milwaukee. Mostly urban and sporty.

Leon’s Frozen Custard – A well known drive in spot in Milwaukee for the custards.

Gee’s Clippers – This has been operating since 1995, the same year I got of high school and they cut some good hair! It’s a barber shop, though. Black owned.

Name of the Game – It’s a sports store in Mayfair Mall that sells jerseys and many other Wisconsin related sports stuff. Yes, they have Wisconsin Badgers stuff. Also known as Bucky’s Locker Room.

Sports Plus – A sports store that sells mostly Wisconsin related sports stuff, but also non-related. Plus they have some Chicago Bears/Cubs stuff related located in Mayfair Mall.

Brew City Beer Gear – Located in Grand Avenue & the third ward,  that has mostly nostalgic related stuff that relates to Milwaukee. It’s also a family owned business since it’s inception of 1986.

Milwaukeehome – First, shout out to them for their grand opening. And expect this business to add some locally connections not only for Milwaukee, but also for Historical Third Ward. Check out their “Milwaukee Home” Shirts. Or anything Milwaukee Home Related.

Major Goolsby’s – This is the spot. Especially around the Summer. Check out the Mozzerella Sticks.

Harley-Davidson – You also SHOULD know. Harley-Davidson is well known here since 1903. Check out the Museum and the restaurants of Motor and Cafe Racer. Or the factories around the Milwaukee Area have facilities tours to see how the bikes are made.

Onyx Nightclub/Dee’s Elegance/618 Live on Water– All  known dance clubs around Milwaukee for events and special gatherings.

Miller Brewery Company – or it’s new name MillerCoors – one of the last standing breweries in Milwaukee that continues more production of the product throughout the world. If those are asking why Milwaukee’s nickname is Brew-City, mostly of the historical references of beer breweries. Others like Pabst Brewery(PBR ME ASAP!), Schlitz, Old Milwaukee, etc. It also used to be called the “Beer Capitol of the World.”

Marcus Theaters – There are currently 5 in the Greater Milwaukee, unfortunately not on Milwaukee’s Northside. But it’s home grown and locally known.

Rosebud Cinema Drafthouse – A locally theater in Milwaukee’s Suburb of Wauwatosa that shows the up to date also classic movies. Look up Larry Widen, an alum of my High School .

Hup’s Pizza – Check them out if possible. They have good pizza.

Shepherd Express – This “progressive” news company has been in effect since 1982, and yes they do endorse non-republican stuff locally in Milwaukee.

Educators Credit Union – A Wisconsin grown Credit Union has been in business for 75 Years and counting. Still one of the best Credit Unions.

On the Radio just a supplement:

WNOV 860AM – for you out of towners it’s online at http://www.wnov860.com. Plus you can download the Tune-In app on your Tablet, CPU, or Smartphone to listen to the station. Best segment: “The Forum” with Sherwin Hughes.

1290 WMCS – A Black AM station that features the Warren Balentine Show, Al Sharpton’s Keeping it Real segment, and locally, the Blues After Dark with Phil Anderson, The Morning Magazine with Eric Von, and the “Evening Rush with Earl Ingram.”  Also you can listen to the station on http://www.1290wmcs.com

414 Radio – An online radio station that Milwaukee Community Activist Tory Lowe hosts. Not just news, but also local Milwaukee Urban Music.

Blowradio.com: This is the local station to pay attention to Monday through Friday featuring Homer Blow. Also on Tuesdays, there is a womens segment called The Women’s Panel. And mostly during the week, there is a Men’s Panel on Thursdays remotely at a venue, and a “Your Choice” Friday segment. All uncensored and uncut. Again: Black owned!

Jammin 98.3 – They play the old school and new school music. And in between they do play The Michael Baisden Show weekdays. Best segments: I recommend listening to the segments featuring Andrea Williams, Earl Stokes, Mike Hightower, and for you Gospel Music fans, Bishop Darrell Hines.

V100 WKKV – Even though they are under the Clear Channel Banner, but started up as playing new material around 1991. Still good to listen. – Best segments: Reggie “Smooth as Butta” Brown, Bailey Coleman, T-Roy, Doc B, and for the Gospel fans: Minister Melvin Hood.

Just to clarify, this is not to take away from the national well known folks. It’s just to make the other stores and companies that are locally known or soon to be locally known in or around Milwaukee to support and check out. Don’t just check them out during the start of the Christmas Holiday Season, but also follow them all year long. The more you follow, the more the stores can benefit the respect. All I’m say is just check them out. Not only for those out of town, but also those live in the city locally. Even though it’s a small sample of my knowledge, but it’s a small start to recognize these organizations and businesses just as the national chain organizations.


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