We’re getting later in the summer, and Wisconsin is buzzing with Packers pre-season football, plenty of baseball and outdoor fun, the skies will feature the Perseid Meteor Shower, and events are happening all over the state you can enjoy! The Wisconsin State Fair continues through Sunday, county fairs and other festivals are everywhere, and both land and water sports are there for watching or participating. The landscapes look gorgeous, and the options are many as you road trip. Explore some great roads, towns, parks, and more – and take it a few fun activities while you’re at it. There’s always a LOT to do during your Wisconsin weekend. Here are some State Trunk Tour event picks as you explore… Pick Some Roads and GO!!:
Seymour is “Home of the Hamburger,” laying claim to being the place the hamburger was invented in 1885. The town even made the “World’s Largest Hamburger” back in 2001 and celebrates with Burgerfest every year. Check out the big Balloon Rally Friday night, the World’s Largest Hamburger Parade, a 190-pound hamburger they grill up right there, the burger-eating contest, and are you ready for a plunge on the ketchup slide?? Of course you are! Highways 54 and 55 bring you to Seymour, where the Outagamie County Fair is also held each year.
It’s one of the best state fairs in the nation, and the Wisconsin State Fair is underway now through Sunday! Everything from the animals to rides, concerts, exhibits, and tasty food and beverages (like flavored milks, only 50 cents each with more new flavors this year) are yours for the taking. As always, the State Fair will feature a huge variety of animals from farms all across the state, letting you learn more about and even interact with some – from cows to chickens and rabbits to llamas, ostrich, goats, and more! Favorite foods at the Fair include the roasted corn, corn dogs, flavored milks, all kinds of creative deep-fried foods, sausages, as much as you can imagine on a stick, and the legendary Wisconsin cream puffs that become a “must have” for attendees needing their true dairy (and carb) fix! Main Stage music acts include Foreigner with opener Living Colour Saturday night and Reba McEntire Sunday night (that show sold out quick, but you never know, more tickets could be released on Sunday!) The Wisconsin State Fair is flanked by I-94 and Highways 59 (Greenfield Avenue) and 181 (84th Street). The ramp off eastbound I-94 to Highway 181 for the Fair is brand new and about half a mile earlier than it used to be, so be prepared as you exit! Traffic coming off I-41/894/US 45 has new ramps for State Fair traffic too.
The city that loves to tell lies and swap stories hosts the Tall Tales Music Festival tonight through Sunday, celebrating storytelling through music on three stages. National and local acts, workshops, and a lot more. Highways 11, 36, 83, and 142 bring you to Chocolate City USA for this unique and fun experience.
La Crosse celebrates its Irish heritage and parties down at “the only Irishfest under a roof,” although there’s indoor and outdoor fun to be had. Load up on great Irish food and a variety of beverages, enjoy great music on multiple stages from performers like We Banjo 3, Gaelic Storm, JigJam, Doolin, Cuig, Talisk, Kim Robinson, Patrick Ball, Kennedy’s Kitchen, and Tallymore. Watch or particpate in activities like the Highland Games, the 3rd Annual Fiddle Competition or Road Bowling, or explore your ancestry in the Genealogy Tent. You could even win a trip to Ireland or Scotland. It’s happening all weekend on Southside Oktoberfest Grounds; U.S. 53 brings you right there, and U.S. 14/61, I-90, and Highways 16, 33, and 35 all bring you to La Crosse.
Ashley For The Arts celebrates music, art, and supporting nearby communities with a spectacular three-day event now through Saturday in Ashley Furniture’s hometown of Arcadia. This non-profit event is stacked with a star-studded lineup of musical entertainment as well as numerous family-friendly activities and some new additions to the venue. The Main Stage will host headline entertainment, including Rascal Flatts, Daughtry, Rick Springfield, Chris Janson, Andy Grammer, Dan + Shay, Carly Pearce, and ZZ Ward. The Amphitheater, the Pavilion, and the brand-new Soldier’s Walk stage will create a unique ambiance for local bands, school students, and other performers as well. It’s all in Arcadia’s 54-acre Memorial Park, well-known for its Soldier’s Walk, one of the premier war memorials in the U.S. outside of Washington, D.C. Highways 93 and 95 bring you there!
Check out chainsaw artists from around the world turn simple logs into stunning works of wildlife themed art on Barkers Island in Superior this weekend! Master and guest carvers compete daily in challenging “quick carve” events. The four-day event, running today through Sunday, ends with an official judging of the chainsaw sculptures created by master carvers over the course of the Lake Superior Chainsaw Sculpture Championship. Stay for the daily, live-auctions and take home a master’s work of art. Those works also will be available to the highest bidder at Sunday’s auction following the award presentations.
Gorgeous Chippewa Falls celebrates its clean, bountiful water and the community in general with the 42nd Annual Pure Water Days Parade and Riverfest celebration Saturday afternoon, with over 70 parade entries and a vintage car parade. Then, head down the street to Allen Park for RiverFest, which begins at 2pm. This family-friendly event features giant inflatables, games for both kids and adults, tons of prizes, a balloon artist, live music by Irie Sol, a Veterans tribute, food trucks, a beer tent, arts and crafts vendors, and fireworks. Throughout the day, city-wide events also include YMCA races and other sporting events, plus the classic Cruise-In Car Show. Today’s U.S. 53 freeway, Highway 29 freeway, Highway 124, and Highway 178 all bring you to Chippewa Falls. Have a Leinie’s while you’re there!
Plymouth celebrates its 15th annual live music extravaganza and fundraiser the afternoon and evening of Friday, August 10th. The Plymouth Arts Center will host 10 fantastic bands in the courtyard and greatroom and at several downtown clubs and restaurants. The opening reception for their new exhibition, The Light of Thy Favor, features watercolors by Cedarburg artists, Tom Kubala and Colette Odya Smith. It opens in Gallery 110 North Friday. The trolley will take visitors to the venues from 7:00 to 11pm. Maps, flyers and wristbands are available at all venues. Join them for this exciting evening of the blended arts! Highways 23, 57, and 67 bring you to Plymouth.
Brodhead showcases its town with Covered Bridge Days all weekend, with a ton of events. Check out the Wildflower Art Festival, featuring native plant tours and educational programs as well as a juried, high-quality art festival in downtown Veterans Park; explore the historic Mill Race by pontoon boat at the new “Embrace the Race” event; or check out the kids’ fun run, garden displays, tractor show with a thresheree and tractor pull, horse show with pony rides, toy tractor pull, flea market, vendors on the Square, Model A antique car display and classic car show, historical tours, volleyball and softball tournaments, a street dance, a parade, food stands and beer gardens. The Jimmys, a contemporary blues band from nearby Monticello, will also perform Saturday night. Highway 11 brings you there!
More for your Wisconsin Weekend
There are MANY more events to check out. Run around during your Wisconsin weekend, including the Bristol Renaissance Faire in Pleasant Prairie on the Illinois border, Abbottsford’s First City Days, the La Crosse Speedway Street Drags, the Door County Festival of Fine Arts in Sturgeon Bay, Riverfest in Watertown, and county fairs in Adams, Clark, Pierce, Bayfield, Vilas, and more. Explore history, enjoy parks, experience shops, bars, and restaurants, and have FUN! In true State Trunk Tour fashion, Pick Some Roads and GO!!!