MKE It Back

MKE It Back

We can't wait to see you again--even if it’s six feet apart. We are all in as we move toward reopening our economy. As more restaurants, shops and attractions begin to reopen, the safety and comfortability of our guests is a top priority. The City of Milwaukee has enacted Moving Milwaukee Forward (Order #6). This order uses a measured, phased approach that applies data-driven gating criteria that aligns with federal and state guidance. Public health officials are using this data to work with local businesses on the implementation of safety protocols that minimize the spread of COVID-19 and maximize feelings of safety for visitors.

Milwaukee has made steady progress in reducing the impact of COVID-19, but there’s still work to be done. Let’s continue to be responsible neighbors to one another and support Downtown Milwaukee’s beloved destinations.

Let’s MKE It Back together.

Open Businesses

Downtown Milwaukee’s restaurants and shops await your safe reacquaintance. Our establishments have implemented sanitizing protocols, capacity limits and use of PPE to welcome staff and guests back safely. Check out the directories below to see what’s open and how you can patronize them. We recommend checking ahead with the business before making a visit.

MKE It Back – Downtown Milwaukee Restaurant Guide
MKE It Back – Downtown Milwaukee Retail Guide

Things To Do

From open waters to open skies and open doors, Downtown Milwaukee has all the right ingredients for a memorable staycation. Browse our MKE It Downtown blogs for news, events and itineraries or check out our most popular summer requests:

COVID-19 Resources

As Downtown Milwaukee begins to reopen we must stay safe and continue to protect ourselves and others in our community from COVID-19. By following public health guidelines and taking protective measures, you can keep yourself, your loved ones and our community safe. You can find more information at

If you’re a Downtown Milwaukee business in need of additional information and resources, please check our “Back to Business” page. 

MKE Cares – 8.5" x 11" Mask Up Business Sign (pdf)
MKE Cares – 11" x 17" Mask Up Business Sign (pdf)

Download a sign to post in your business window to inform patrons of the city-wide mandate.


The Campaign

The “MKE It Back” campaign is a Milwaukee Downtown, BID #21 initiative to highlight the responsible steps businesses have taken to welcome guests back safely and offer suggestions for socially-distanced activities throughout Downtown Milwaukee’s scenic landscapes. Check out our campaign creative below and MKE plans to see us again soon!

Campaign Creative (pdf)

“Milwaukee Strong” Song
The City of Milwaukee declared Friday, July 24 “Milwaukee Strong Day” in honor of our essential workers and frontline heroes' response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Mayoral Proclamation aligned with the release of the “Milwaukee Strong” song, written by Shonn Hinton, with lyrics by Shonn Hinton and Ray Nitti, and assistant produced by B~Free, and music video which features over 30 Milwaukee musicians. The song’s overarching message is one of hope and togetherness in the face of uncertainty. The words encourage the city to remain strong and united as we face the ongoing challenges of the pandemic risking lives and livelihoods. The project required the collaboration of several arts organizations, including Imagine MKE, 88Nine Radio Milwaukee and the Milwaukee Arts Board.

Over 30 artists – “The Milwaukee All-Stars” – were brought together to contribute to the song, resulting in a rich piece that highlights the diverse talent of Milwaukee’s musical community. Contributions include a string quartet of Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra musicians, a trio of student musicians that participated in 88Nine’s Grace Weber’s Music Lab, a vocal quartet of harmonies from band Ruth B8r Ginsburg members, favorite Milwaukee duos SistaStrings and REYNA, and much more.  

Complete artists featured are: Dena Aronson, Alex Ayers, B~Free, Alyssa Caroline, Roxi Copland, Olen Franklin, Ava Gessner, Trinity Grace, Paul Hauser, Shonn Hinton, Kyndal J., Terry Jeanes Jr., Jonathan Jones, Alex Julien, Timothy Klabunde, Greg Koch, Evan Lane, Alesia Miller, Ousia Moon, Ray Nitti, Danielle Renee, Elle Renee, REYNA, Johanna Rose, SistaStrings, Jesse Weinberg, Warren Wiegratz, Dee Yancey and Adrien Zitoun.

The “Milwaukee Strong” music video can be viewed here