Bradford Beach on Lake Michigan

Heavenor Williams takes her fourth Polar Bear Plunge on January 1, 2017 in one of Milwaukee's most celebrated traditions!

Margaret Noodin shares Ojibwe language water words at Milwaukee Water Commons' 2016 We Are Water gathering.

State Senator Chris Larson discusses how everyone from Socialists to Republicans have changed the nature of the lakefront.

Cream City Farms Landing Page

Bradford Beach, 2400 N. Lincoln Memorial Dr., is a popular summer spot that earned Blue Wave designation after 21st-century parties came together to build six rain gardens that intercept stormwater that used to contaminate the beach, which was constructed along Lake Michigan in the early 20th century.

Take a sneak peek at some Bradford Beach Water Stories in the videos on this page. Then explore more with the Water Story MKE app, a citywide scavenger hunt where you discover Milwaukee's water stories hidden in plain sight.


Visit the beach. Be a beachcomber. There is a lot to explore. The more you explore, the more points you earn and the better prepared you'll be for trivia. Explore at least six points (6 Rain Gardens, 12 Water Stories, and 6 Beach Stops) to unlock Beachcomber Trivia. Complete Beachcomber Trivia to earn the Bradford Beach badge.

Ga-za-gen means “I love you.” But think about it. Maybe it kind of means “I lake you.” ... This is a place where the world opens up and gives us water.
— Margaret Noodin, Electa Quinney Institute

Bonus Trivia

In what year did Milwaukee County partner with City of Milwaukee, UW-Milwaukee, and MillerCoors to install the rain gardens that protect Bradford Beach from stormwater?