This East Side building has been home to many bars and eateries, including Cans, Southport and School Yard.

School Yard Bar & Grill is closed

According to former employees, The School Yard Bar & Grill, 1815 E. Kenilworth Pl., is closed. The space was formerly Southport and, before that, it was Cans for eight years.

The School Yard is one of three bars to close in the neighborhood in the past couple of months. Yield Bar, which will soon become Yokohama 1910, shut down earlier this month, and Nick's House closed in early May.

Stay tuned to OnMilwaukee for more information when it becomes available.

Buzz into Dragonfly before the year's end.
Buzz into Dragonfly before the year's end. (Photo: Facebook/Dragonfly)

Dragonfly on Brady closing in early 2017

After 16 years, Annette French plans to close the doors to Dragonfly, 1117 E. Brady St., in early 2017.

Dragonfly, a funky hive of new and vintage goodies, was one of the East Side’s go-to shops for gifts, clothing, jewelry and unique household items.

"I have decided that Dragonfly has completed its flight," French wrote on Facebook. "I am ready to explore some new horizons."

Personally, I have many fond memories of shopping at Dragonfly. I purchased one of my favorite pairs of earrings – made from Shrinky Dinks – more than a decade ago. Also, my son still reminds me of stopping in years ago to visit French and her late pup, Peewee, whom she rescued from New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina.

Prior to owning Dragonfly in Milwaukee, French operated a shop of the same name in Boston. Both shops were named in honor of her father, who had a love for the elongated, winged insects.

French says she is not retiring and will move on to new adventures. At this point, her plan is to remain open through the holidays during which time she will have "an amazing sale."

"Then maybe I’ll take a nice vacation," she wrote. "This has been great, but I'm ready for something new and equally great. I don't know what yet, but stay tuned!"

No stamp required for this love letter, woo!
No stamp required for this love letter, woo!

A visit to Postman's Plot

There’s a new pop-up park on Wells and 2nd Streets called Postman’s Plot, a small park celebrating the founding of the National Association of Letter Carriers.

On May 24, more than 100 volunteers joined forces to help restructure the triangular park. The park came out of the Main Street Now Conference, a 35-year-old organization that helps communities revitalize their downtowns and commercial districts.

The centerpiece of the park is the Letter Carriers’ Monument, which was created in 1989 for the centennial of the National Association of Letter Carriers. However, before the renovation, the statue was rarely noticed or visited because of the stamp-sized greenspace on which it stood.  

A collaboration between Newaukee and the Greater Milwaukee Association of Realtors – along with the aforementioned volunteers – resulted in this friendlier, more useful space. Additions to the park include bright blue furniture designed by Ryan Tretow, a stage for community meetings, film showings, poetry and music events and a letterbox for people to leave love letters to Milwaukee (#LetterstoMilwaukee).

Yesterday, my sons and I wrote love letters to Milwaukee. They are 13-year-old boys, so they weren’t revved up by the idea initially, but they did it. Afterward, we walked over to the park to read our letters aloud (they were also lukewarm on this part) and then dropped our letters in the mailbox.

One of my sons (I won’t name names) wrote a surprisingly thoughtful letter; the other son wrote three sentences. Letters to Milwaukee, however, were still written, so this mom was satisfied. 

Here are four more photos from our visit.

1. Rain, snow, sleet, hail

2. From a distance

3. Love, Me

4. Doesn't he look thrilled?

More Mexican chow for Walker's Point.
More Mexican chow for Walker's Point.

Taco Bandito coming to Walker's Point

A new Mexican restaurant, Taco Bandito, will soon open at 605 S. 1st St. in the Walker’s Point Plaza between Cafe India and the gas station.

The eatery’s tagline (and hopefully not a premonition) is "in and out like a robbery," and according to the sign on the door, it will serve tacos, burritos, quesadillas, nachos and side items.

Stay tuned to OnMilwaukee for more information about Taco Bandito when it becomes available and follow its progress on Facebook.