Wisconsin weekend: Hot Air Balloons, Lumberjacks, Fests, and Flight!
Another amazing summer weekend is coming up, and it’s prime time to road trip around Wisconsin and explore. Ride the state highways and byways and enjoy some great sights, roadside attractions, events, vistas, and more. Here are some State Trunk Tour recommended Wisconsin Weekend highlights coming up!
This international competition draws from all over, as the best lumberjacks and lumberjills descend on Hayward. Over 20 events will offer competition for world records in everything from men’s and women’s logrolling to chopping, sawing, and the exciting pole climb. Over 100 plus lumberjacks and lumberjills vie for more than $50,000 in prize money, making this one of the largest paybacks for lumberjack competition in the world.
Check out the amazing Wisconsin Rapids Aqua Skiers all weekend at one of the largest water ski shows in the world. 25 water ski show teams will perform for 1 hour each to see who will capture 1st place in 3 divisions. You will see 28 girl ballet lines, barefoot pyramids, jumps that will thrill you and stage acts for pure entertainment. Concessions and vendors on site. It all takes place on South Wood County Park Lake at Wazeecha Red Sand Beach. Highways 13, 34, 54, 66, and 73 bring you to Wisconsin Rapids!
The EVP® National Pro Am Beach Volleyball Tour hits Two Rivers this weekend, with competition on Neshotah Beach. You can not only see elite athletes compete on the sand for top honors, but have a chance to interact with these pros by participating in contests and promotions. Local volleyball groups also participate. Teams who finish 1st and 2nd are awarded a bid to compete in the 2017 EVP® World Finals of Beach Volleyball Championship in Hampton, VA.
Ready for colorful dotted skies over this pretty southeastern Wisconsin town? The 7th annual Waterford Balloonfest features over a dozen balloonists from around the nation through this weekend. See the classic “evening balloon glows” Friday and Saturday evenings, plus balloonist flight competitions which will highlight their amazing flying skills… which is tricky in a balloon! (Trust us, we’ve been in one.) Other activities include a kids’ area with games, activities, and entertainment, a 5K run/walk, helicopter rides, and much more! Waterford is along Highways 20, 36, and 83.
Milwaukee: Festa Italiana
Festa Italiana is “your ticket to Italy” on Milwaukee’s lakefront this weekend, and this year they celebrate their 40th anniversary! Amazing Italian food, great entertainment, and the loudest fireworks around.
Check out Flag-Throwers of the Florentine, direct from Italy. For music, check out great acts across six stages, including the Children’s Stage. Headliners include the BoDeans, Gin Blossoms, Dog ‘N’ Butterfly, The Sicilian Tenors, and Sal “The Voice” Valentinetti. Magic tricks, food demonstrations, singers from the Florentine Opera, and more are all performing each day. The UW Marching Band will perform on Sunday, and the Children’s Stage will have all kinds of entertainment throughout the day.
You can also enjoy a romantic gondola ride on the cove, play bocce ball, watch the Copa Festa Italiana Futsal tournament, or compete in Italian Idol. Classic Italian fare and wine tastings, Kids Pizza Making Contest and annual Cannoli Eating Contest. There’s also a traditional Sunday Mass at 11am.
The fireworks go off every Festa evening around 10pm, and they’re a blast! (No pun intended. Okay, fine, pun intended.)
The Fox Valley’s paper making history gets its salute with the 29th annual Paperfest celebration! This year, Paperfest takes place in Kimberly’s Sunset Point Park, right along the Fox River. It’s a fun, family-oriented festival spanning three days offering up plenty of games, sports, music and food – and education about paper. Friday night features the Paper Chase, a 4 mile run/walk; Saturday is the Tour de Fest ’17, a biking competition with routes of 18, 40, 70, and 100 miles. Other fun things to check out include the toilet paper toss, carnival rides, yoga, comedy, magic, and karate demonstrations. On the music stages across three days The Bomb, Road Trip. Rob & The Rest, Eminence, Boogie & The Yo-Yo’z, Bad Habits, and RPM perform. There is also a papermaking demonstration, the Age of Reptiles show, a petting zoo, graffiti fence painting, a sawdust hunt, sidewalk chalk art, hula hoop games, face painting, and more. The Family Stage will feature children’s music and magic tricks. Sports events include a volleyball tournament and tug-of-war competition.
You can reach Kimberly and Paperfest by following I-41, U.S. 10, Highway 55, Highway 96, or Highway 441 to get close, then follow the streets to Sunset Park.
Get ready, EAA AirVenture starts Monday! The World’s Largest Fly-In runs all week into next weekend and turns Wittman Regional into the World’s Busiest Airport. EAA stands for Experimental Aircraft Association, and it’s a total blast. Whether you come to fly or just watch, you experience the world’s greatest aviation celebration. Warbirds. Vintage. Homebuilts. Ultralights, even the Blue Angels!
Enjoy all kinds of planes, aerobatics, hands-on workshops, and celebrations. AirVenture draws flight enthusiasts from across the globe. Features and attractions include air shows and aircraft neighborhoods where you can check out full assortments of plane types and styles. Plus, there’s KidVenture for the young ones, the Aviators Club, Aviation Gateway Park, the Pathways Pavilion, and more.
Other Wisconsin Weekend Events
You can also check out the Waukesha County Fair in Waukesha, the Dane County Fair in Madison, the Green County Fair in Monroe, the Fond du Lac County Fair in Fondy, Country Thunder in Twin Lakes or Country Jam in Eau Claire, or just run around and have FUN! In true State Trunk Tour fashion, Pick Some Roads and GO!!!