Milwaukee World Festival, Inc. officials on Tuesday unveiled more detailed plans for the new Uline Warehouse stage that is currently under construction at Henry Maier Festival Park.
The new stage, located on the north end of the Summerfest grounds, will include a “reimagined stage” and larger seating area, expanded production capabilities, a new video screen, a permanent bar and a VIP area.
The new stage will also incorporate “natural materials,” including locally-sourced lannon stone and cedar, to match the area’s lakeside setting, according to a Summerfest announcement. It is expected to open for the 2019 festival.
“The new Uline Warehouse will significantly enhance the festival experience for our patrons” said Don Smiley, president and chief executive officer of Milwaukee World Festival, Inc. “We are grateful to Uline for their ongoing support to maintain Henry Maier Festival Park as a world-class facility. Milwaukee W
orld Festival, Inc. is only able to make these improvements with the assistance of our sponsors.”
Summerfest officials first announced plans for the new stage, sponsored by Pleasant Prairie-based Uline, in December 2017. Uline has been a Summerfest sponsor since 2011.
The current Uline Warehouse Stage was last upgraded in 2003.
The stage has hosted a variety of headliners including Hunter Hayes, Chris Issak, T-Pain, Michael McDonald, Joan Jett & The Blackhearts, OK Go, Brett Eldridge, “Weird Al” Yankovic and The Chainsmokers.
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“Uline is thrilled to introduce this new amenity to Henry Maier Festival Park for Milwaukee to enjoy,” said Brian Shenker, vice president of customer development for Uline. “As one of Wisconsin’s premiere employers, Uline knows the importance of giving back to our community and we love that our role at Summerfest allows the public access to affordable entertainment in a natural setting.”
Longtime Summerfest collaborator Eppstein Uhen Architects is leading the project. C.G. Schmidt is the general contractor.
The north end of the festival grounds has undergone extensive renovations in recent years. Several new projects were completed in time for the 2018 festival, including the north gate and community plaza, the U.S. Cellular Connection stage and Klement’s Sausage & Beer Garden.
Work is also underway on the $50 million American Family Insurance Amphitheater project. The first phase of that project — which includes raising a portion of the existing roof and improving back-of-stage support areas — is expected to be completed for Summerfest 2019.