Spotlight

John Flannery / Flickr

If you walk near the lake at night, there’s a good chance you’ll see bats swooping through the air to feast on insects. What you might not see - or hear - is the aerial warfare at play dividing the weak and the strong in a battle for survival that has spanned 50 million years.

Tiger moths - also known as Arctiinae - are a diverse subfamily of moths with around 11,000 species, including more than two dozen species which make their home in Wisconsin. For millennia, their survival has been dependent on their ability to avoid and evade bats. 

angela n. / Flickr

The Supreme Court of the United States will soon hear oral arguments on Gill v. Whitford, also known as the Wisconsin gerrymandering case.

There is a lot of uncertainty as to how the court will rule, with most of the conservative and liberal justices coming down on opposite sides of the issue. As is often the case, Justice Kennedy will likely be the deciding vote.

Jennifer Johnson

The 2017 Milwaukee Film Festival kicks off this week. Its centerpiece film takes us into a story familiar to many Milwaukeeans. In 2014 Dontre Hamilton was killed by a police officer in downtown Milwaukee.

 

The Blood is at the Doorstep, from director Erik Ljung, follows Hamilton’s family as they grieve, heal, and fight for change in their city.

 

mariordo59 / Flickr

There are many things brewing in downtown Milwaukee. Perhaps the most notable project this summer has been the laying of the tracks for the new Milwaukee Streetcar, which has torn up roads throughout downtown and the Third Ward.

Residents have many lingering questions about the new streetcar, but the most persistent one seems to be: Why? Like many cities, Milwaukee once had a streetcar system that was removed in the 1950s. 

Photo courtesy of Sam Moore/MV Times

An exhibit at the Museum of Wisconsin Art showcases the clothes of six generations of an upper-middle class, Marshfield family -- The Roddis family.

WTMJ-TV, Wisconsin Historical Society, and UW-Milwaukee Libraries

It was 50 years ago that the open housing marches began in Milwaukee. For 200 nights civil rights activists marched from the mostly black northside over the 16th Street Bridge to city’s predominately white southside. They demanded a law to end discriminatory housing practices that prevented African Americans from living in white areas of the city.

 

A teenager named Prentice McKinney was at the center of those marches, leading the NAACP Youth Commandos.

Ethan Miller / Getty Images Entertainment

While the characters, plots, and actors of movies may be most memorable to audiences, what is even more quintessential to a memorable film is the score. One of the most iconic scores for a series of films is, of course, John Williams' compositions for Star Wars.

Williams has scored all seven Star Wars films, and is on task for the two to come, making the music as much of a character as Lando Callarisian or, you know, Darth Vader.

Maayan Silver

Sociologist and urban ethnographer Elijah Anderson calls places where cultures converge “cosmopolitan canopies.” Lake Effect’s Maayan Silver spent some time in one place that might fit the definition here in Milwaukee - the lakefront - and spoke with a variety of people about what the space means to them:

John Sturdy / Milwaukee Magazine

Milwaukee is known as the most segregated city in America. But often, that designation raises more questions than it answers. 

Growing up in Milwaukee, Reggie Jackson saw the signs of segregation all around him, even when he didn't recognize them. Going to public schools in the city, Jackson says he didn't have class with any white students until he started commuting to high school, a subject-specific school on the south side of town.

Daniel Berehulak/Getty Images

There was a lot promised to the residents of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania in 2013. China-based tech company Foxconn "sent a jolt through the state capital" when it's CEO announced that a $30 million facility would be built to bring tech jobs to the area. The plans never materialized.

So what does this have to do with southeastern Wisconsin? 

This month, in a visit to Waukesha County Technical College, President Donald Trump alluded to potential negotiations that could lead to a tech plant in Wisconsin run by the very same company.

Mitch Teich

For people who are dealing with trauma, mental illness, or other challenging life circumstances, sometimes traditional talk therapy isn't the best - or only - way to start the process of healing.

Art therapy and other creative therapies are on the rise as primary methods of care for people with mental illnesses. Five Milwaukee art therapists work out of a recently renovated space on South Kinnickinnic Avenue in Bay View.

NateBeal via Wiki Commons

There are two Amtrak routes that run through Wisconsin - the Hiawatha, which carries passengers between Milwaukee and Chicago; and the Empire Builder, which transects the state as it makes its way from Chicago to the Pacific Northwest.  President Trump's proposed budget would eliminate the Empire Builder, and that - say rail advocates - would put the Hiawatha at risk, as well.

Courtesy of Milwaukee Public Library

Like most major metropolitan areas, there was a time when most of southeastern Wisconsin was farmland.  And while the area that surrounds the city of Milwaukee is today home to suburbs and exurbs, there is still much evidence of our agricultural heritage - in many cases, a living heritage.

This summer, Lake Effect is exploring what agriculture means to our region in a series called Full Plate. Help us shape this series, what questions do you have about food and its production?

Office of the President of the United States / Wikimedia

It’s hard to overstate how irregular the news cycle is at the moment. With new allegations about the Trump Administration’s Russian ties coming out seemingly on the hour - it can be difficult to make sense of what’s really going on, even for journalists.

Audrey Nowakowski

What sets a great hotel apart?  A comfortable mattress?  A clean room?  Maybe a spiffy bathrobe or a fine restaurant? But above all - memorable service.

The Milwaukee Hilton City Center hotel has a new staff member that will make even the fussiest guest… paws.

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