Wednesday, September 27
Location: Three Bridges Park, The Domes Bridge (behind Mitchell Park Conservatory/The Domes at 524 S Layton Blvd)
Campfire stories aren't just for kids anymore! While kids are welcome, this trio of fireside stories are geared more toward adults. Enjoy a sunset view of the Valley while listening to fireside stories from dynamic presenters whose own stories intersect with the story of the Valley.
This is a engaging story of the history of Milwaukee and the Menomonee Valley like you've never heard before. You'll get a glimpse of the history of the Valley from pre-settlement Milwaukee through Machine Shop of the World to present day by those whose heritage is tied with the Valley and Milwaukee.
- Forest County Potawatomi Attorney General Jeff Crawford will talk about the early days of Milwaukee, the Potawatomi story, and the role the Menomonee Valley played in this early history.
- Bill Davidson of Harley-Davidson will talk about the rise of the Valley as a center of entrepreneurship, invention, and manufacturing strength.
- Robin Olson of Rexnord, one of Milwaukee's oldest companies, will share her story of what it takes to rise in a male-dominated industry, how she helps other women rise, and how she engages and inspires the next generation of youth to pursue careers that will carry Milwaukee into the future.
Bring your own chair or blanket!
Schedule of Event:
Palermo's Food Truck serving delicious Italian Street Food and special S'mores Pizzettas.
Campfires are lit to enjoy hot chocolate and s’mores provided by The Sigma Group
Storytime! See info on storytellers below - get ready to be impressed with these stories!
Jeff Crawford, Forest County Potawatomi
The Forest County Potawatomi (FCP) have lived in Forest County, Wisconsin, since the late 1800s. They also lived in other areas of the state, including the Menomonee River Valley. Despite being the Attorney General for the Forest County Potawatomi, we think Jeff moonlights as a professional storyteller. As he weaves together details of the tribe's past with its present and future, you're sure to take away a new understanding of the Forest County Potawatomi, their fall and subsequent rise, and how the tribe has worked diligently to create a brighter future for themselves and the broader community.
Bill Davidson, Harley-Davidson Museum
A direct descendant of Harley-Davidson’s founders, William J. “Bill” Davidson joined the family business in 1984 and held various leadership positions before taking his current role as vice president of the Harley-Davidson Museum® in 2010. Bill's passion for Milwaukee and its history is palpable. His great grandfather, his brothers, and their friend Bill Harley did more than their fair share to put Milwaukee on the map. He believes a key ingredient to their success was their Milwaukee roots – a strong work ethic, friendly neighbors and, above all, a taste for fun — many elements of the city and surrounding area that continue to live on making Milwaukee a great place to live, work, and play. Bill will share the story of his family's legacy against the backdrop of Milwaukee's entrepreneurship, invention, and manufacturing strength.
More about Bill
Bill is proud to work with the talented team that manages one of the largest corporate archival collections of unrestored Harley-Davidson motorcycles and artifacts in the world. As the Museum’s top executive, Bill is responsible for overseeing its overall business including marketing communications, special event activities and daily operations.
Davidson, the great-grandson of founder William A. Davidson and the son of William G. “Willie G.” Davidson, Chief Styling Officer Emeritus, started riding motorcycles at the age of seven. Throughout his career with the company, Davidson has focused on strengthening the Harley-Davidson brand and relationships with riders around the world.
Robin Olson, Rexnord Industries
Robin is passionate about engineering and working for one of Milwaukee's oldest companies, but her passion doesn't stop there. She's all about helping women rise in a male-dominated field and about engaging the next generation of engineers and problem solvers.
She got her start in science when she earned her amateur radio license at the age of 11 and became interested in physics while in high school. Robin started college as a Marine Engineer at the US Coast Guard Academy and finished with a B.S. in Physics at UW–La Crosse. She continued to graduate school at the UW–Madison where she studied Plasma Physics and graduated with a M.S. degree.
Robin volunteers frequently with Menomonee Valley Partners to share her love of science with students from Milwaukee Public Schools. She puts a face to a career that few young women aspire to. She tells youth that if you have a passion for science, technology, or math, don’t limit yourself. Stay curious. Keep trying to figure out how things work. Engineering and science are about finding solutions. You will be successful if you seek to understand the problem and offer suggestions to solve it. It doesn’t matter what gender you are, what race you are, or where you come from so long as you continue to learn and contribute.
Robin represents the group of professionals going above and beyond their normal work day to invest in today's youth. She will share what she's learned from mentoring youth, what has engaged and inspired them, and her view on how to inspire and engage the next generation of scientists in the heart of the city.
- Behind Mitchell Park Conservatory/The Domes - see on map here (WARNING - Google does not navigate to this site. It's best to navigate to the Mitchell Park Horticultural Conservancy/The Domes. Turn left immediately upon entering and park in the lot behind The Domes.)