RNC Milwaukee 2024; after-hours parties concern neighbors

Neighbors near Milwaukee's Lower East Side feel concerned and blindsided.

They say a host of Republican National Convention-themed after-parties are set to happen in a warehouse right in their backyard.

One of the major concerns is the sheer proximity, and neighbors say they don’t want the two mixing together.

After-party concern

It was a quiet Wednesday in this Brewers Hill Neighborhood. And that’s exactly how neighbors want it to stay. Just a few feet over in the warehouse on Buffum Street are preps for a five-night, after-hours RNC party.

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It is set to start Sunday, June 14, and neighbors like Cody Wyngaard just found out about it.

"It’s just not a situation anyone’s thrilled about, nobody’s excited," Wyngaard said. "They said it was going to go to like 3 or 4 a.m."

Records show events-based company Empirical Production Group was approved for an occupancy permit. Emails from the city show the group wanted the permit for events held nightly from July 14-18.

According to its website, another group, Declan Weir Productions, would deliver the invitation-only event, hosting top government and political leaders.

"A party of that magnitude, you don’t really know what that’s going to look like," Wyngaard said.

Neighbors have questions

Neighbors say about a month ago, the warehouse’s developer mentioned there would be something happening in July, but never specified.

"Last time I checked, individuals partying until 3 a.m., that’s not Mitch McConnell and Donald Trump," neighbor Maclovio Vega said. "Had we had some heads up, we could have just left the city for a bit."

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Vega is one of the neighbors with young children, who said many of their concerns are noise, late night, extra foot traffic and safety.

"Will there be security in the neighborhood, which then leads to will there be protesters, and counterprotesters, and counter-counter protesters?" Vega asked.

He said they were told the event would be contained, but he wishes other venues would have been considered.

Some of the conditions of the permit include limiting the top level to 100 people and not having occupancy exceed 500.