200 North Harbor Drive, Milwaukee, WI 53202, United States
Emblematic of the city of Milwaukee, Summerfest is considered the largest music festival in the world. During 11 days of festivities, a thousand of performances, shows and concerts take place on 12 musical stages spread over 30 hectares. A total of 800 musical groups including international headliners, young talent and local artists perform before a crowd of 900,000 participants. Covering a wide variety of musical genres, Summerfest enjoys a privileged setting on the shores of Lake Michigan.
Did you know that?
- Summerfest was created in 1968 at the instigation of the mayor of the largest city in the state of Wisconsin, Henry Maier, who wanted a festival for everyone. It was on his way to Munich’s Oktoberfest that the former Milwaukee City Councilor came up with the idea of creating a similarly large festival on the theme of music.
- The title of “the world’s largest music festival” was awarded to Summerfest by the Guinness Book of Records in 1999.
- The festival has enjoyed a central location since 1970, on the grounds of Henry Maier Festival Park, a site where the former Maitland Airport (opened in 1927) was developed and which served as a site for the installation of Nike missiles during the Cold War (in the 1950s). The property is located near downtown and Milwaukee’s central business district.
- The event is organized by the Milwaukee World Festival, a non-profit organization run by volunteers.
- Renovated in 2019, the New American Family Insurance Amphitheater (formerly known as the Marcus Amphitheater) has a capacity of 23,000 seats.
- In 2021, the festival will not take place over two weeks as in the past, but over three weekends from Thursday to Saturday (24-26 June, 1-3 July and 8-10 July).
- Wristbands allowing you to leave and return within the perimeter of the festival are distributed free of charge at the entrance gates (from 12 o’clock to 6.30 pm). Only one re-admission is tolerated per day (after 7pm, no re-admission possible).
- Only small backpacks and handbags are allowed (less than 22 x 25 x 30 cm) within the festival perimeter.
- It is forbidden to camp on the site and its surroundings. A parking space can be reserved in advance near the Henry Maier Festival Park site.
- If you have not booked your tickets in advance, be careful. Buy your tickets only at authorized sales points such as the Summerfest box office, the official website of the festival and Ticketmaster (counterfeit tickets are sold at the festival entrances).
- There are theatres, animations and playgrounds for children (remember to bring water and sunscreen).
- Private areas exist for family reunions, birthday parties or personal events (costs optional).
- Allow a sufficient margin of safety when travelling within the City of Milwaukee to reach the festival site on time.
- The purchase of an admission ticket gives access to all the Summerfest stages (from noon to midnight) except for the American Family Insurance Amphitheater (Marcus Amphitheater) which requires a special ticket (the latter includes admission to the festival).