Kristin · Married on 03/06/2010
I was so pleased with the personal service I recieved throughout the entire process. Milwaukee County has amazing staff! They were courteous and easy to reach on the phone and by e-mail. Follow up was timely and professional. We held our ceremony and reception here and it was wonderful! Very beautiful view of the marina and Lake Michigan! One drawback is that the building is not exclusively private ... the general public may still access the public restrooms during your event. It was not a major issue for us becuase our wedding was in March and the park wasn't busy... but might be of concern during warmer/busier months.Sent on 03/23/2010
Valerie · Married on 09/01/2018
Loved our wedding here
We loved having our wedding at South Shore Pavilion! Our wedding was on Saturday, September 1st, 2018. We invited 180 guests and had 145, which fit nice. At first, we were thinking about having the ceremony outside by the lake and then the reception inside but we ultimately chose to do both inside. We did not want to deal with the hassle of renting chairs for outside and worrying about rain. Plus we love the pavilion, the view from the windows, the wood ceiling, and the brick. The park staff were easy to work with and called me a couple of weeks beforehand to ask how I wanted the room set up as they set up for you once. We set up the ceremony in a semi circle which we loved. The room allows for you to set up the tables for the reception in many different ways. We chose to do long tables to maximize the space and not have to move any tables for dancing. Including one long head table so our wedding party can sit with their significant others, which was important to us. The second smaller room was perfect for our our cocktail hour buffet and buffet dinner to be set up. Our bartenders used the kitchen/bar area. The separate vendor entry in the kitchen to outside was really nice for them to set up/take down quietly. We hired a day of coordinator which was a lifesaver in setting up other decorations, meeting all of our vendors upon arrival, solving any issues, and helping take down. We rented the space from noon to midnight. We had our first look at 1:30pm, did all of our pictures beforehand(except extended family pics), ceremony 4-4:25pm, cocktail hour + apps for an hour or so (while the room was flipped by our day of coordinator), dinner at 6 and then dancing until 10:30pm. We did first look outside by the lake which was fun because our wedding party and immediately family watched from the pavilion. A lot of our pictures were done by the lake and we went 5 minutes down the road to St. Francis Seminary to have the rest done there. During cocktail hour, many guests just hung outside the pavilion, by the lake, and some went to the bWe got beautiful sunset pics by the lake too. I enjoyed coming to South Shore a few times in summer to check out the space and actually got to see how other weddings were setting up their space. We received many compliments from guests about how beautiful it was inside and being right on the lake.Sent on 12/13/2018
The only thing that was a bummer, which I knew could happen with it not having air, is that it was a bit warm in the pavilion. The morning of the wedding, it rained but cleared up by 1pm. The windows were open and my DOC had the two fans in the venue on starting at noon but it still was warmer than I would have liked for dinner and dancing. The price for the venue is very reasonable but I do think is a bit pricey for just renting the space alone. Only thing that really comes with is the tables and chairs. I hope the park purchases more fans or will invest and get air conditioning since this place has so many weddings/events.
User5631352 · 2+ years ago
Location was beautiful. Staff was helpful. We had the ability to work with any vendor we wanted, which was extremely helpful. Great location on the lake!Sent on 11/20/2015
User4166024 · 2+ years ago
My husband and I choose this venue because when we were dating we would always walk around the area in South Shore Pavilion and have long conversations and picnics. We liked walking around that area because the lake is so beautiful and you can see the downtown skyline from that area. It is also a very affordable venue especially when you consider that the location. The building is a historical landmark and has nice brick inside with these rounded large windows that show the lake in the background. Everything was beautiful in the building. The only problem with having your wedding there is the bathrooms. They are unfortunately public restrooms. One of the toilets in the men's restroom ended up backing up and it took a little while for someone to come and fix it. One other negative is that you aren't allowed to decorate the hall the day before unless you rent out the entire pavilion for the day before. So, we only had one hour in the morning of the wedding to decorate... which is difficult because that is when everyone is getting their hair done and such. However, It was a perfect day with perfect weather and several people came up to me and told me that the reception was perfect, except for the bathrooms. Another positive thing about this venue is that there are mo restrictions like at other halls. You can bring your own alcohol or food and choose any vendors that you want. It is a smaller hall, so if your wedding is over 130 people it may be a little too crowded.Sent on 06/28/2014
Oh, I also have to say that the man who is in charge of the hall. (I'm sorry but I forgot his name) He was awesome. He was very helpful with all of my questions. You can tell he's helped with many wedding there before.
Jennifer · Married on 08/30/2014
South Shore Park was a great place for our reception. While it ended up being very hot with no breeze the day of our wedding, the venue was as we expected. There isn't air conditioning, but they provide large fans to help with circulation. Leading up to the event, they were easy to get ahold of and quickly made any changes to times or setup we needed. The bathrooms still have room for improvement, but the main room is beautiful.Sent on 09/23/2014
Laura · Married on 05/20/2011
We loved the South Shore Pavilion!Sent on 01/16/2012
This was a really great space that has a lot of potential! Everything that you need in a space other than the tables and chairs need to be brought in. Which can be a lot of work but then you have a lot of freedom to do pretty much whatever you want. All of the park workers were wonderful in meeting us at the pavilion and really helping us set up the room the way we envisioned it!
The bathrooms, bar and kitchen could use some updating but worked well! (the bathroom/entrance area is public all day/night but we didn't have any problems!)
The main room is so pretty with the large windows looking out onto Lake Michigan with tall ceilings with gorgeous wood work, great brick walls and lots of space!
Most pictures I've seen the dance floor was on one end... we had ours in the middle... its possible!
We really could have the wedding we wanted because of South Shore... we could bring in what food we wanted... saved a ton of money by providing alcohol... unbelievable how much venues charge for drinks! I had a vision of what the decor was and was able to get it all!
We also rented the hall for a few hours the day before so we could set up and not have to worry about the set up the day of.
Latoya · Married on 07/30/2011
This is a rented pavilion behind the Milwaukee Domes, with a lagoon attached to it. This hall fits up to 125 people and can be decorated by the renter. This fit our vision for our reception and our budget, i was bit nervous at first. But in the end everything turned out perfect.Sent on 08/16/2011
Casey · Married on 11/06/2015
Beautiful venue with large windows looking out over the park to the west or the lake to the east. Cream city brick, kitchen, large restrooms, 2 ceremony/reception rooms.Sent on 11/15/2015
Pros: Price - its a County Park building so the rental fee is CHEAP; Flexibility - you can use whatever vendors you'd like, no preferred vendors list; Exclusivity - your event is the only event in the building that day.
Cons: Setting up hours can be tricky (but you can split hours and do nonconsecutive hours for set up), you do need to call the park supervisor to arrange tables which can often be confusing so you may end up rearranging them all when you arrive, the building is still open to the public so during the summer you may have more people wandering in.
Overall, the location was great! We used the space to the best of our abilities. There is an old alcove which used to be a phone booth, we converted it to a DIY Photobooth. There is also a beer garden now open on the east side of the building which has some great fire pits and beautiful sightlines to the lake.
User6037640 · 2+ years ago
This venue was stunning and fit almost everything we had dreamed. It had beautiful windows overlooking the lake and a cozy atmosphere that required little decoration. The only downside was the lack of communication with the staff. We were planning an outdoor ceremony and they failed to tell us they were building a beer garden right next to the site. There was another occasion we had set up an appointment to view the facility with our WeddingSent on 12/09/2015
Coordinator (who lived 45 minutes away) and they had an event going on they forgot about, so we had to wait for it to be finished to enter.
All in all the venue and wedding turned out beautifully, but getting to that day was a little stressful.
Muriel · Married on 07/06/2014
The ceremony at Lincoln Park was challenging because they hadn't done what they were supposed to do.Sent on 07/14/2014
The reception at Cooper Park Pavillion was very nice.
User7489706 · 2+ years ago
I reserved South Shore for my August 2016 wedding over a year in advance because it is such a beautiful location that lets you bring in food and liquor, and it's a blank slate to decorate how you want (no weird carpet or drapes, instead gorgeous brick and pretty windows that overlook the lake). My experience started out great, but they failed to tell me that a beer garden was being built right by where my ceremony was to be held outdoors. We went there to check out the space and take measurements and saw they were building it; they never notified me. I had to contact about 4 different people to make sure that the music at the beer garden wouldn't interfere with or ceremony and that a food truck wouldn't be parked on the grass directly where our ceremony was to take place like it waswhen we visited the beer garden over the summer. it was an added stress and an inconvenience. Then, I was contacted about needing a amplified sound permit in addition to the permit needed to use the grassy area... $$$$$Sent on 12/14/2016
THEN my day of coordinator left some items behind by accident and when I contacted them they said it was probably all thrown away by the night parks workers. Worst of all, my florist was there 15 min past midnight and I was charged me an addition hour ($400). When I contacted them they were unwilling to work with me at all, and our florist didn't offer to pay even though he knew the curfew. Our wedding was beautiful and I'm so happy I was able to transform the already beautiful space into my dream wedding venue, but there were a lot of bumps along the way. I'm happy we picked South Shore as our venue, but I wish they would've been more upfront and helpful. If you choose South Shore make sure your vendors understand the strict midnight curfew, and just know that it's a parks building so there won't be anyone onsite to help when issues arise on the day of your wedding (like goose poop everywhere and a giant puddle where you paid to have your outdoor ceremony). :/ blah.
Susan · Married on 07/05/2019
Aesthetically pleasing with great views, but...
While this is a beautiful venue with very aesthetic appeal and great views of the lake, it is way too hot in the summer, the staff was not available to help on the day of the event, there was very little parking near the building and other things...Sent on 07/10/2019
#1 - We were told the restrooms were going to be cleaned the morning of the wedding - they clearly were not. Fortunately, my sister went in the late morning to check and found what I would like to think was chocolate, but more likely was feces on the doors in the women's room. The counter tops were not clean, there was sand in the sinks and the toilets were filthy. She stayed to clean it all up and ended up being late for the ceremony.
#2 - On the topic of the restrooms, we were forewarned that they would be open to the public. For some strange reason, we thought the public would be respectful. We were mistaken. We had set up the restrooms with battery operated fans because it was 90+ degrees, battery operated oil infusers to offset the urine smell and baskets of toiletries and incidentals. Sadly, before the ceremony even started, the fans were stolen. By the end of the night the diffusers and most of the toiletries were gone. One patron was heard saying "Oh wow, this is really nice!" and was stopped by a wedding guest before helping herself to the stuff. Another emptied out a cup that was holding dental floss picks and proceeded to use the cup to wash the sand off of her feet in the sink. Again, I would think that coming in and seeing a formal party going on it would be clear that the items were for guests, not the general public. I would also think that for $2,500 to rent the venue, we could have exclusive use of the restrooms - there are additional facilities on the lower level.
#3 - Knowing that the venue has no AC, we had inquired about the use of commercial AC units, but were denied. We were reassured that industrial sized fans would be provided by the park system for our use. Yeah, that didn't happen. There was no one from the park system available. We tried to reach someone via the beer garden, but they received no replies to their calls. We took it upon ourselves to relocate one fan that was being used on the lower level, and found another one hidden in a closet. (btw - they really didn't do much, anyway, so if you are planning a wedding in mid summer, I would advise against it.)
#4 - Parking. There was none, at least none within 2 blocks of the venue.
On a positive note, having the kitchen area and separate room to set up a buffet and bar was nice, but aside from that and the aesthetics and view, I don't think it was worth the money and I would not recommend it.