Frequently Asked Questions
Cathedral Square Park, Downtown Milwaukee
What is Bastille Days Festival?
Bastille Days is Milwaukee’s premier street festival and widely regarded as the largest French-themed festival in the United States. 2016 will be the 35th consecutive year of Bastille Days showcasing exciting live musical and theatrical performances, the finest cuisine and wines in the area, and creating a party atmosphere in the historical streets of downtown Milwaukee- attracting an average of 200,000 people per year!
Where does the name “Bastille Days” originate? Why is the race called “Storm the Bastille?”
The Bastille (French pronunciation: [bastij]) was a fortress in Paris, known formally as the Bastille Saint-Antoine. It played an important role in the internal conflicts of France and for most of its history was used as a state prison by the kings of France. It was stormed by a crowd on July 14, 1789 in the French Revolution, becoming an important symbol for the French Republican movement, and was later demolished and replaced by the Place de la Bastille. July 14 is celebrated as Bastille Day in France, much like Independence Day is celebrated in the United States.
Where do the proceeds from Bastille Days go?
This event serves as the main fundraiser for East Town Association and helps to promote the eastern portion of downtown Milwaukee and highlight the many businesses in the area. East Town Association is a non-profit organization.
When are the Mardi Gras Parades?
Friday night at 8:30.
When and where is the Waiter Waitress Race?
Sunday at 3:00pm in the center of Cathedral Square Park
Where can I find Beignets and/or Berets?
Beignets and Berets are available at the Alliance Francaise “Beignets Francaise” tent on Jackson St.
I need more information about the ticketed Wine Tasting event:
Saturday night, 6pm & 8:30pm, Northeast tent in Cathedral Square
I need more information about the FREE wine tastings, “Winemasters”:
Every day at 2:30pm, Madison Medical Beaux Arts Stage on Jefferson & Kilbourn Ave
I need more information about the FREE beer tastings, “Beer Masters”:
Every day at 3pm, Madison Medical Beaux Arts Stage on Jefferson & Kilbourn Ave
Where can I find an ATM?
There is an ATM at EVERY major bar, along with two on the north end of Cathedral Square park near the Jefferson St. sidewalk.
Where are the restrooms:
1) Southwest corner of Cathedral Square Park
2) Jackson St. north of Kilbourn Ave
3) Van Buren St. north of Kilbourn Ave