Summerfest announces 2018 activities and special events

Posted at 6:18 AM, May 10, 2018
and last updated 2018-05-10 13:45:30-04

The fun continues off-stage at Summerfest 2018. The festival is featuring new attractions and events this year as well as bringing back some favorites.

Summerfest is embracing the lakeshore this year with the addition of three new water experiences for festival-goers.

L.L. Bean is sponsoring a kayak and stand-up paddleboard course. Guests will be guided through the 60-minute course by Outdoor Discovery School experts. If you already consider yourself an expert, gear will be available for rent and you can head out on your own. 

If paddleboarding isn't your thing, paddleboats will be available each day of the festival from 12 p.m. until 7 p.m. The boats fit four people and can be taken out for up to 30 minutes. They will be located at the boat dock on the north end of the grounds.

Mercury Marine engines will also be on display for guests to check out and ask professionals about. If you stop by it's possible you'll get a ride on a Mercury-powered boat.

Another event by the water is the Hole-in-One contest with 540 ESPN Milwaukee. Contestants will tee up three balls for $8 for the chance to hit a hole-in-one.

Kids are invited to join in the water fun too at the "Splash Pad." Kids of all ages can cool off in the water every day of the festival. 

New in food this year is Klement's $1 Brat Day. On June 28, brats will be available at the Mid-Gate for $1 from 12 p.m. until 2 p.m. The limit is one brat per person. Sale proceeds benefit the Milwaukee Rescue Mission.

The Summerfest Big Bang Fireworks Show is on June 27 at 9:30 p.m. WISN will broadcast the show at 10:30 p.m. for people who aren't able to see it in person.

Parades will make their way through Henry W. Maier Festival Park at 3 p.m. on June 27-29 and July 5 and 6. 

And of course, there is no shortage of music at Summerfest. Over 70 bands of talented kids with School of Rock will be performing on six different stages on July 7 and 8.

Latin Music Day is also on July 8 with performances at the Harley-Davidson Roadhouse from Latin artists such as Clave y Afinque, Victor Manuelle, The Explosion and Caribe Project. Latin tropical music and salsa music begin at 4 p.m. 

The Emerging Artist series is back at the Johnson Controls World Sound Stage with 88Nine Radio Milwaukee and Shepherd Express. Every evening from 3 p.m. until 7:30 p.m. emerging artists will perform and crowd members will have the opportunity to vote for their favorites on Twitter. 

The FM 102/1 Series will feature alternative music from Imagine Dragons, The Neighborhood, BØRNS, Foster the People and more.

The popular skygliders and Ferris wheel attractions will also up-and-going for guests to ride.

Kids can check out the Theater and Playzone every day from 12 p.m. until 8 p.m., as well as the activity tent from 12 p.m. until 5 p.m. 

The activity tent will feature play-band equipment and miniature robots. 

On July 5, patrons arriving between 12 p.m.-3 p.m. will be admitted for free. This special deal is part of Sentry Food and Dean's Milk & Ice Cream Children's Fest Day with Today's TMJ4. Guests will be given a Map of Fun to fill with stickers from festival locations. Completed maps can be redeemed at the South Redemption Area across from Chubby's Cheesesteaks to enter the chance to win a Family Ticket Package Giveaway. Children will receive prizes for participating while supplies last. Samples from Sentry and Dean's Milk & Ice Cream will be available with a donation to a local charity. 

That's not the only contest this year.

The Big Gig Giveaway with Cousin's Subs offers the chance to win two tickets to an American Family Insurance Amphitheater concert, grounds VIP deck access, Ticketmaster Terrace passes, Summerfest store gift card, dinner on Cousin's and parking. To enter go to Cousin's website from May 14 through June 20. The webpage will only be active beginning on May 14. 

Lastly, Pepsi Photo Contests awards winners prizes from the company.