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Milwaukee 101: The best of Brew City living

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Starting college is complicated enough without having to learn all the ins and outs of living in a new city.

While the following guide is not exhaustive, it includes some of Milwaukee's finer offerings, including key retail locales, dining hot spots and other need-to-know information about residing in the Brew City.

Mall rats

Students with shopping addictions can feed their retail fix by perusing any of the four malls in the immediate area.

For students not ready to venture far from campus, the Shops of Grand Avenue mall, 275 W. Wisconsin Ave., is the most easily accessible of the four. The mall was recently renovated and new stores Old Navy, TJ Maxx and Linens 'n Things moved in.

Hours are 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturdays and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sundays. Students can take any Milwaukee County Transit System Bus headed east on Wisconsin Avenue or get some exercise by walking the half mile to the mall.

The Bayshore Mall, 5900 N. Port Washington Road, is celebrating its 50th anniversary. The mall is home to over 60 stores, including Barnes & Noble, Sears and The Chocolate Factory. Catch the Route 10 bus going East/north to get there.

Also accessible on the Route 10 bus going west/south is Brookfield Square, 95 N. Moorland Road in Brookfield. The mall boasts 113 stores, including Champs Sports, Victoria's Secret and Mrs. Field's Cookies. Hours are 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. weekdays, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturdays and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sundays.

In addition to housing over 180 stores, Mayfair Mall, 2500 N. Mayfair Road in Wauwatosa, also has an 18-screen AMC movie theater and many dining options. Highlights include Build-A-Bear, Maggiano's Little Italy and The Cheesecake Factory, which is scheduled to open this year.

Mayfair Mall is open weekdays 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturdays and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sundays. Shoppers can take the Route 31 bus heading west to get there. Riders beware: only every other Route 31 bus goes to Mayfair. Check online at www.ridemcts.com to make sure you catch the right one.

Dining on a dime

Students running low on their meal plan or who just can't stand in line for another slice of pizza can try some of the Milwaukee eateries within minutes of campus.

For food close to campus, head to West Wells Street for George Webb, Jimmy John's or Subway.

Students can also take an off-campus excursion for a nice sit-down meal at a number of restaurants. Rock Bottom Brewery, 740 N. Plankinton Ave., offers large portions at a decent price, providing leftovers for the next day. Take any bus east on West Wisconsin Avenue to North Plankinton Avenue and walk a block north.

La Perla Restaurant, 734 S. 5th St., mixes Mexican food with a fun atmosphere. Ride the Route 18 bus to West National Avenue and to South Fifth Street. Don't forget to ride the mechanical chili pepper once you arrive.

To experience some of Milwaukee's trendier areas, try Milwaukee Ale House, 233 N. Water St., in the city's Historic Third Ward neighborhood. There's a big screen TV in the bar area for sports fans and an outdoor patio right on the Milwaukee River.

If you want to break from Chinese takeout, head to Mayfair Mall and check out P.F. Chang's. The restaurant offers Chinese food, no boxes required.

Buffalo Wild Wings, 1123 N. Water St., is an ideal hot spot for sports and spicy food fans. Hours are 11 a.m. to 2:30 a.m. Monday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 3 a.m. Saturdays and 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Sundays.

The bare necessities

Students seeking further refuge from dining hall cuisine can stock their mini-fridges by grocery shopping at either downtown Pick 'n Save location.

The store's newest location, Pick 'n Save Metro Market, 1123 N. Van Buren St., is open 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily. The Pick 'n Save located at 605 E. Lyon St. is open 6 a.m. to midnight daily.

Both stores are accessible by the Route 30 bus. To reach the Metro Market, take the Route 30 east on Wisconsin Avenue and get off at West Juneau Avenue, after the bus turns onto North Van Buren Street. The second location can be reached by riding the 30 bus to Lyon Street, a few blocks north of Juneau Avenue.

For that elusive item that can't be found at the grocery store, Target and Wal-Mart are near South 27th Street.

Your best bet for reaching Target, 4777 S. 27th St. in Greenfield, located about a mile and a half south of Wal-Mart, is by car since the Route 27 bus doesn't travel that far.

For Wal-Mart, 3355 S. 27th St., take the Route 30 bus west on Wisconsin Avenue and get off on South 27th Street. Hop on the Route 27 bus headed south and ride it until you reach the stop at Wal-Mart. The one-way trip takes about 45 minutes.

Students who need to refill their staplers or printers can check out Office Max, 3555 S. 27th St., right next to Wal-Mart.

Park it here

If you're one of the few freshmen storing wheels on campus, you'll face a few challenges, including trying to find parking in the midst of major interstate reconstruction without a residential address.

To obtain a daily, weekly, monthly or semester permit in any Marquette parking lot or structure, you can go to the Parking Services office, 1240 W. Wells St., in Structure II, call 288-6911 or visit www.marquette.edu/pages/home/parking for more information.

Overnight street parking through Milwaukee's Department of Public Works is also an option. Students living in dorms are ineligible for a daytime parking permit since they don't have a residential address. They can, however, get an overnight parking permit. A three-month overnight permit is $12, and a year-long permit is $44.

Be cautious when using a night parking permit because drivers must park on alternate sides of the street every other night (odd numbered days of the month park on the side of the street with odd numbered addresses, and on even numbered days park on the side with even numbered addresses).

Permits can be purchased at any police station in Milwaukee. Call 933-4444 for the station nearest you. Students in need of a quick and temporary parking solution can register their car for overnight parking for no more than three consecutive nights by calling 286-8300. Students will need to provide where their car is parked and their license plate number.

For more information on parking services available through the City of Milwaukee, visit www.mpw.net/Pages.parkingops.html.

To find out more about living in Milwaukee, check out www.milwaukeecollegelife.com.

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The student news site of Marquette University
Milwaukee 101: The best of Brew City living