January 2003


Check out 24 pages of comics by 8 different local artists. It is edited by Tea Krulos, who describes them as having “adult content, but not pornographic.” Available for $2 at Fuel Cafe, Flying Fish Gallery, Riverwest Resale, and the Riverwest Co-op, or for $3 by mail — Tea Krulos, PO Box 511553, Milwaukee, WI 53203; email A second issue will be released in spring.

News from the 2900 N. Booth Block Club

Last August the group reported on the dramatic capture of a man who was burglarizing houses on the block. (See Riverwest Currents, September 2002) The man, Mark Tarran Smith, recently came to trial for the crimes. He demanded a jury trial and was found guilty in late December. He has a long record and “habitual criminal” multipliers were added to the charges. He will face sentencing on January 22, and will start another jury trial shortly after. If you are looking for information on criminal and civil cases, check out the state web site at

The City of Milwaukee is working with the Riverwest neighborhood and Milwaukee Urban Gardens (MUG) to apply for a State of Wisconsin brown field to green space grant. Garden Park is the site that needs remediation for soil pollution associated with the fill that was placed in the former Pulaski Building foundation after the building was demolished. New test wells outside the foundation parameters have been dug to monitor any pollutants escaping from the former basement area. The long-term plan is to have Garden Park and Gardeners’ Market continue as a green space for the foreseeable future under the management of neighborhood residents and owned by MUG. MUG is a non-profit land trust whose mission is to support urban gardening and green spaces. A remediation plan for Garden Park may include the removal of two feet of soil and replanting of the garden.

Tired of shopping the malls for mass produced goods? Need something warm to cuddle under? Mrs. Ella Brooks specializes in home made patchwork quilts. This American traditional craft was passed to her from her mother. You can reach her at 461-0588.


No. 23 David Kurtz, Commander at this American Legion Post, is collecting stories of frustrated veterans that have had trouble receiving medical care from the Veterans Administration. These stories will be included in books to be distributed to Washington lawmakers at the end of January. If you are a veteran who is waiting for an appointment at the Zablocki Medical Center, or know of a veteran who is, call David at 271-2323. They want your story to personalize the need. You are not just a statistic in an impersonal “backlog.”

Riverwest’s Gordon Park, on the corner of Humboldt and Locust, was ranked #6 in a listing of high quality parks by the Public Policy Forum. The study compared 52 Milwaukee County Parks on general features, recreation, green space, and paved area. The Gordon Park Pavilion has been one of the Parks Department’s hottest rentals since it opened in June, and the park splash pad was a huge hit last summer.

Riverwest residents were saddened to hear of the loss of one of our more colorful characters. Micky Shanahan, 37, was killed on Christmas Day when he was struck by a car while riding his trail bike in Jamaica. Micky was the proprietor of Shanahan’s, currently The Pub. The driver of the car is in custody. Riverwest Currents – VOlume 2 – Issue 1 – January 2003