Catalano Square emerged through a streetscapes project completed in 1992. The triangular park is bound by three streets: E. Menomonee Street, E. Erie Street, and N. Young Street.

The name chosen for the space comes from Mariano Catalano, an Italian immigrant who arrived in the city in 1884 and who by 1910, together with his brothers, had become one of the largest wholesale distributors on Broadway.

The park boasts many artistic and historic amenities, including a refurbished donated by the Friends of Hank Aaron State Trail, “Stratisformis” sculpture by artist Jin Soo Kim, and “New Pink Planet” sculpture by artist Richard Edelman.

It offers and urban amphitheater with the infamous Dragotta Fountain: which MIAD students may have had a bit of fun over the years by experimenting with laundry soap!



A social gathering space enjoyed by the Third Ward community and visitors, Catalano Square has evolved into a lovely social gathering green space.

During the summer, a free concert series, Ayre in the Square, is held on Saturday afternoons. Guests enjoy the music of local touring artists, sun, wine, and beer. The park has also become a wonderful backdrop for small, intimate weddings.

In the spring and fall, Street Eats, Milwaukee’s Mobile Food Fest, encompasses the park with food trucks and carts, and live music sponsored by Shepherd Express.

In the winter, Christmas in The Ward boasts the lighting of the Christmas Tree, Santa, and live reindeer. Hot cocoa for the kids (and the adult version) keep it festive along with cookie sales by the Historic Third Ward Association.


The Friends of Catalano Square look to make 2018 a year of change, with the format of the flagship event, Ayre in the Square. The 2018 series will move from Thursdays to Saturdays, and feature four regional acts at each event, as opposed to two acts per show previously. Bring your friends to enjoy the summertime in Milwaukee at Ayre in the Square!