When I lived in Bay View, I didn’t truly understand why people made a big fuss about Wauwatosa. Sure, the quaint yards and small businesses are nice but I didn’t understand how people loved Tosa with such wide-eyed passion. Since moving to East Tosa in 2013, I’ve developed a crush on the community but still long for Bay View’s lake breeze, Humboldt Park and grittiness. Our city is great because it’s reasonable to drive across town for an errand or 9-5 commute.
If you’re looking for ways to explore communities around the Milwaukee area, here are a few ideas of how to spend two(ish) hours in Wauwatosa with the kids:
Grab doughnuts and coffee at Cranky Al’s and take a walk to Enderis Park: Cranky’s is family friendly and has a wide variety of doughnuts, muffins and breakfast options. The coffee is strong and the service is top-notch. Fuel up at Cranky’s or take your goodies to-go and head north to Enderis Park (just over a mile walk) to enjoy the playground (and splashpad in the summer months).
Take a break by the fire at Colectivo Coffee: One of my fondest memories during maternity leave was a 30 minute visit to Colectivo followed by a walk to Jacobus Park. My two month-old son was napping in 15 minutes increments and my mental to-d0 list wasn’t happening. I piled the kids in the car and drove to the Colectivo on 68th Street. I spent less than ten dollar on bakery and a cappuccino and magically, my son fell asleep by the cracking sounds of the fire. We pressed out luck and took at walk around the neighborhood and then to Jacobus Park. Although I have yet to recreate this event, the caffeine, carbs and relative calm was lovely. My daughter’s at an age where coffee shops are a treat. She packs a legal pad or coloring book and likes to “work” alongside me.
Visit the small but mighty Tosa Farmer’s Market: I’m slightly concerned that all suggestions involve food but the Tosa Farmer’s Market is worth the trip. They have a great mix of seasonal local produce, meats and breakfast options. Coffee from Valentine’s is worth the wait and the waffles from Press are worth every dollar! Visit the information table to pick up produce tokens. For kids five years old and older, they can pick up a token worth $1-2 and purchase seasonal produce. It’s a great way for kids to understand the power of a dollar and we encourage our daughter to ask questions about how vegetables and fruits are grown and how long it takes to harvest the crop.
If you need to get out of the house and need a break from your neighborhood spots and parks, drive on over to East Tosa! I’d love to hear about your favorite kid-friendly spots and activities in your neighborhood!