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POLL: What Does Summerfest Need Most?

Milwaukee's massive music festival is both highly popular and heavily scrutinized. What does the festival most need?

Milwaukee’s “Big Gig” — Summerfest — is in the midst of its 45th season of music, food and beer. It started with wooden stages raised on concrete blocks, and now attracts almost 1 million people over its 11-day run on the lakefront.

But its role as a Milwaukee icon opens it up to intense scrutiny. Fans nitpick the music lineup, the beer costs and sizes, transportation in and out of the facility, security and more.

Milwaukee World Festivals has responded with a variety of improvements over the years. This year, the BMO Harris Pavilion opened with covered seating for 10,000, providing a clear secondary venue to the Marcus Amphitheater. While the headlining lineup will never make everyone happy, organizers this year snagged one of only two U.S. summer dates for Foo Fighters, the 50th-anniversary Beach Boys tour and top country acts Rascal Flatts and Zac Brown Band among others. And Summerfest has been fortunate to avoid the “flash mob” attacks that took place at the Wisconsin State Fair last year.

But in this what-have-you-done-for-me-lately world, festival organizers will need to continue refining, improving and supersizing the World’s Largest Music Festival. What do you think Summerfest needs most? Vote in our poll and tell us more in the comments.

Jill Lane July 02, 2012 at 07:13 PM
Who keeps hiring the TBA band to play year after year, stage after stage?
Buddy Musko July 03, 2012 at 02:38 PM
Isnt generation Y a larger segment? And I am super glad summerfest has stopped pulling the majority of their acts from the state and county fair circuit.
Bob McBride July 03, 2012 at 02:50 PM
I've never met anyone who has actually seen them there either....curious...
Buddy Musko July 03, 2012 at 02:51 PM
The orginizers book a wide variety of bands and continue to make improvements to the grounds. The vast majority of these complaints have more to do with demographics than with the festival itself. What 'summerfest needs most' is for the state of WI to embrace the culture and artistry of its beer heritage, to create a type of pride around it that goes beyond beer bongs and flip cup.
Mike July 08, 2012 at 02:59 AM
I would like to thank all of the security at Summerfest. Many of them are simply college kids who are trying their best. Instead they get harrassed by drunks ( many of whom are underage). Also, thank you to MPD for their constant presence. Job well done!!

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