TIP: Since cooking is not my forte, my best entertaining advice is to order food from your favorite local restaurant. Create a signature cocktail and a self-service bar featuring local spirits and your favorite beers. Have it all set up before your guests arrive so that you are able to enjoy the gathering, vs. spending all your time cooking and bartending. The best gift you can give your guests, is the gift of spending time with you.
NAME: Adam Pawlak
ORGANIZATION: Egg & Flour Pasta Bar
TITLE: Chef &Owner
TIP: Give a food kit as a gift this year so friends and family can make a meal at home. Fresh pasta, sauces, and garnish to cook at home! Have them take pics and show off the final product!
NAME: Kevin Sucher
ORGANIZATION: 88Nine Radio Milwaukee
TITLE: Executive Director
TIP: Our musical family always looks forward to our tradition of “karaoke-before-you-open-your-gift” time. It’s fun for the singers in the family and even more fun watching the ones that hate participating. Everyone is a winner!
NAME: Nancy Hernandez
ORGANIZATION: ABRAZO Multicultural Marketing & Communication
TIP: I love a good holiday party or dinner! Of course, all will be small (and maybe outdoors) this year, but my favorite entertaining rule will still apply! Just when they think they couldn’t have had a better time; you wow them with the perfect party favor as they go out the door. Among my favorites: homemade Tiramisu in a mason jar; a mini box will all the fixings for a bourbon Old Fashion from scratch; or homemade chocolate covered sea salt caramels.
NAME: Beth Weirick
ORGANIZATION: MKE Downtown
TIP: A joyful way I like to spend time with loved ones in a safe and “snowcially-distanced” way is to get out and enjoy the fresh air, the holiday lights and some delicious locally made cookies while strolling through our festively decorated downtown parks. Go to Milwaukeeholidaylights.com. Download the jingle bus tour map, pre-order your Jingle Joy Box and then download the MKE Jingle Bus virtual tour at iHeartRadio. Meet your guests at Zeidler Union Square, pick up your treats and start the walking or driving tour from there all while enjoying fresh air, grabbing great selfies and getting into the Milwaukee holiday spirit!
NAME: Derek Mosley
TITLE: Municipal Court Judge
TIP: In addition to regular freezer ice cubes, I like to keep "Singular Ice" cubes on hand as well. These large crystal-clear ice cubes are the perfect accompaniment to your favorite scotch, bourbon, or cognac. The large cubes, made here in Milwaukee, melt slower and reduce the dilution of your favorite spirit.
NAME: Jason Rae
ORGANIZATION: Wisconsin LGBT Chamber of Commerce
TITLE: President & CEO
TIP: Every year, my friends and I gather for what we call ‘Cookie Summit’ to taste new cookies. This year, since we can’t physically gather, we’re swapping recipes virtually, making small batches to try out and gathering on Zoom to share holiday cheer. Even if you can’t be together in person, you can still try out a bunch of new cookies!
NAME: Shary Tran
TITLE: Principal Diversity Partner
TIP: I love all the great restaurants in Milwaukee, so when putting my Christmas gift list together, I always remember my favorite service industry folks. They work hard to bring us joy and deserve some good cheer in return. Each Christmas, I become the Egg Roll Elf and make homemade egg rolls to deliver to the staff at my favorite Milwaukee restaurants.
NAME: Elizabeth Kay
ORGANIZATION: 99.1 The Mix
TITLE: Morning Radio Host
TIP: Every year we get a real tree and I love clipping off a few of the sprigs and using them throughout the house. I'll put the sprigs in napkin rings when I'm setting the table, I'll slip a few between the bottles on our bar shelves and place some on the mantles and next to framed photos. I will also slip a sprig into the ribbons before I tie the bow on the presents.
NAME: The Daniels Crew - John II, Joy, John IV
TIP: Ask each family member/household to pen a stanza of their own “’Twas the Night Before Christmas” based on a family memory. In the end, you’ll have created a treasured family storybook to share every holiday season.
NAME: Dear Ruthie
ORGANIZATION: Shepherd Express
TIP: For a no-fuss appetizer, simply drizzle a little honey over a wedge of blue cheese. Top with a few chopped pecans, and garnish with a sprig of rosemary and a few fresh cranberries. Serve with crackers or toasted baguette rounds. Bing, bam, boom. Done!