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New airport shop features Bronzeville neighborhood's rich cultural history

Posted at 12:09 PM, Aug 11, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-11 13:35:04-04

MILWAUKEE — A new retail shop inside Milwaukee's Mitchell International Airport (MKE) is set to showcase the rich history of Milwaukee's Bronzeville Neighborhood.

Airport, County, and City leaders all participated in a ribbon-cutting ceremony at Bronzeville Crossing on Tuesday morning.

The new shop, located past security in Concourse C, is a travel shop that will soon feature the work of local black-owned businesses. Art, crafts, and gift items are the types of products that will be sold there, according to leaders with Paradies Lagardere, the retail partner working to help the airport refresh its retail and dining experiences for travelers.

In addition to the products sold, the music playing and the graphics and maps on the wall aim to help travelers dive into the experience of Bronzeville while visiting.

Milwaukee Alderwoman Milele A. Coggs, who represents thevBronzeville district described the neighborhood as "Milwaukee's African-American arts, cultural and entertainment district," which city leaders have been working to rebuild since 2005.

The neighborhood is historically known as a place where African-American artists and performers took to the stage in Milwaukee.

"It may just be one little store to some people but it actually, on so many levels, is doing so much," said Alderwoman Coggs.

"We are telling our rich history within Milwaukee," said Milwaukee County Executive David Crowley "When you think about everything that has happened in that particular neighborhood, we want to make sure that we bring that back."

Alderwoman Coggs said she hopes residents who live and work in Bronzeville feel proud.

"On so many levels, this is a great opportunity for Milwaukee to demonstrate it's diversity, to be able to put it on display as something that we are proud of."

The ribbon-cutting ceremony also featured remarks from Milwaukee County Board Chairwoman Marcelia Nicholson and several other guests from the Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors.

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