Carnival Milwaukee 2024 was a resounding success! In February, people from all around the world participate in cultural celebrations including Carnival Brazil, Mardi Gras in New Orleans, Carnival Mazatlan, and Fasching in Germany. Since 2009, we have modeled our annual fundraiser after these celebrations.

On Friday, March 8, over 285 guests were treated to a vibrant display of live performances, delicious food and beverages, and fellowship. they enjoyed food from diverse vendors all over the city, live music by De La Buena, dancing by Salsabrositas, drumming from Samba da Vida, a raffle, interactive photo booth, and great company in celebration of the work we do to support thriving urban communities. Special thanks to our Presenting Sponsor, Associated Bank, and all of our event sponsors who helped support this year’s event — we appreciate you!

View the album of 2024 Carnival Milwaukee photos here>>>

2024 Event Synopsis – scroll down for links and more information!

  • 3 local & live performance groups
  • 23 diverse food vendors
  • Over $40,000 raised for UEDA
  • Recognized Menomonee Valley Partners as our 2024 Bill Johnson Bridge Builder

We appreciate all who came out and supported UEDA at this year’s Carnival Milwaukee, which brings together people from a diverse array of backgrounds, neighborhoods and ages to celebrate the “mosaic” that is Milwaukee. Save the date for Friday, March 7, 2025 for next year’s Carnival Milwaukee!

Check out our local, live entertainment partners!

Logos for De La Buena, Salsabrositas, Samba Da Vida

www.delabuena.com

Facebook.com/wisconsinsalsa

Facebook.com/SambadaVidaMKE

Thank you to our 2024 Carnival Milwaukee Food Tasting Participants!

Aggie’s Bakery & Cake Shop | Aladdin’s Taste of the East | Antigua Latin Restaurant | Cafe India | China Gourmet | Fusion and Spice Catering | Gray Jett Cafe | Green Baked Goods | Immy’s African Cuisine | Junior’s Smoked BBQ and Veggie Soul | Kellie Katering | Kilwin’s – Milwaukee Bayshore | La Merenda | Mister Bar-B-Que/Turning Tables MKE | Northern Chocolates | Pound 4 Pound Cakes | Pupuseria Los Angeles | SQ Chocolates | Sweet Joy Brazilian Cafe | The Ladle Lady | Tres Hermanos | Xankia

Check out this flier of all Carnival Milwaukee Food Tasting Participants since 2009.

Keep it handy and explore all they have to offer throughout the year!


2024 Bill Johnson Bridge Builder Award

Congratulations Menomonee Valley Partners!

Menomonee Valley Partners logo 25th anniversary

Every year we present a Bridge Builder Award to recognize a community member or partner for their efforts to honor diversity and connect people and places through the expression of culture in food, art, music, and space. We are proud to present this year’s award to Menomonee Valley Partners for their commitment to connecting people and place through projects that feature the cultural identity, natural heritage, vibrant local businesses, and unique spaces in Milwaukee’s Menomonee River Valley.

Learn more about Menomonee Valley Partners and the great work they do – their website showcases the food, local businesses, natural spaces, and art located in the Valley. Each September Valley Week celebrates these many elements and draws new visitors to different spaces. Follow them on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram for the latest updates.

Carnival Milwaukee is a fundraiser for the Urban Economic Development Association of Wisconsin (UEDA) and celebrates Milwaukee’s diversity through food, music, and dance while supporting the local businesses, individuals and organizations that contribute to the economic and cultural vitality of our city.

THANK YOU TO OUR EVENT SPONSORS!

Carnival Milwaukee 2024 Event Sponsors

Not able to join us this year? Consider making a contribution to support UEDA!

Your support will not only provide direct investment into local businesses, but will also help fund UEDA’s work in sustainable homeownership and affordable housing, financial empowerment, small business growth, workforce mobility, and community investment.

Donate Now button

Carnival Milwaukee 2023 photo collage

This 15th annual Carnival Milwaukee fundraiser was truly special! On Friday, March 3rd, 270+ guests and friends joined us at the Historic Pritzlaff as we gathered in-person for the first time since 2020.

We celebrated Milwaukee’s diversity through food, music, culture, and fellowship. De La Buena, Salsabrositas, and Samba Da Vida brought the music, dance and vibrant beats, 20 local restaurants and caterers wowed our guests with a diverse menu for our food tasting, and guests enjoyed an interactive photo booth and top-notch raffle. And, this year we invested $6,000+ in local, diverse-owned businesses through this event!

View the 2023 Carnival Milwaukee photo album Read the full recap email here


A Tribute to Bill JohnsonBill Johnson at Carnival Milwaukee 2015

At this year’s event we celebrated the life of Bill Johnson, our Executive Director from 2006-2015, who created this seminal event. He dreamed of creating a space for people from different walks of life to come together and enjoy all the beauty and diversity our community has to offer – in short, a party with a purpose.

We honored him with a a Second Line tribute and other special touches like a “Bill’s Favorites” basket in our raffle, including the creation of a special tribute video featuring live footage and reflections on Bill’s impact. His vision continues to inspire us all!

Special thanks to Vogue Dreams Pro for partnering with us on this video project!

YouTube player

Thank you to our local, live entertainment partners!

Logos for De La Buena, Salsabrositas, Samba Da Vida

www.delabuena.com

Facebook.com/wisconsinsalsa

Facebook.com/SambadaVidaMKE

Thank you to our 2023 Carnival Milwaukee Food Tasting participants!

Aladdin’s Taste of the East Antigua Latin Restaurant Blue Star Cafe
C. Adams Bakery Casablanca China Gourmet
Funky Fresh Spring Rolls Gray Jett Cafe Immy’s African Cuisine
Kilwin’s – Milwaukee Bayshore Lisa Kaye Catering LLC Lola’s Empanadas
Orenda Cafe Pound 4 Pound Cakes Speed Queen BBQ
Sweet Joy Brazilian Cafe Thai Barbq The Ladle Lady
Tres Hermanos Turning Tables Tavern & Eatery

 

Check out this flier of all Carnival Milwaukee Food Tasting Participants
Keep it handy and explore all they have to offer throughout the year!

Carnival Milwaukee is a fundraiser for the Urban Economic Development Association of Wisconsin (UEDA) and celebrates Milwaukee’s diversity through food, music, and dance while supporting the local businesses, individuals and organizations that contribute to the economic and cultural vitality of our city.

Not able to join us this year? Consider making a contribution to support UEDA!

Your support will not only provide direct investment into local businesses, but will also help fund UEDA’s work in sustainable homeownership and affordable housing, financial empowerment, small business growth, workforce mobility, and community investment.

Donate Now button

Congratulations to our 2023 Awardee!

Bill Johnson Bridge Builder Award image, Riverworks Development Corporation logo

Every year we present a Bridge Builder Award to recognize a community member or partner for their efforts to honor diversity and connect people and places through the expression of culture in food, art, music, and space.

On Tuesday, February 21st during our virtual Fat Tuesday event we recognized Riverworks Development Corporation for their commitment to connecting neighborhoods and residents through creative place-making, economic activity with small, diverse businesses, and cultural community events in Harambee and Riverwest.

Their key projects and activities include the development and management of the Beerline Trail, 53212 Marketplace, creative corridor activity, and an array of community events utilizing these newly created spaces. Learn more about them at www.riverworksmke.org.

We also announced that this award will now be known as the Bill Johnson Bridge Builder Award, in honor of UEDA’s former Executive Director, who created the Carnival Milwaukee event in 2009. Bill was one of the most well-known “bridge builders” in our community and we could think of no better way to celebrate his life.

THANK YOU TO OUR 2023 SPONSORS!

2023 Carnival Milwaukee Sponsors list