Posts in Tourism
Photos courtesy of Dawna Covert - 2014
It truly has been a spectacular summer for outdoor activities and events. This first Saturday of August is no exception. Among the events for this day is a relative newcomer that has quickly been adopted as a favorite.
Grab your bike and head for the Twilight by 11:00 AM and join in on the second annual “Steve Pulec Pedal Power” ride on the beautiful St. Germain Bike and Hike Trail. This year’s ride will be raining funds for the BoBoen Snowmobile Club and the American Legion in Eagle River.
The ride is also held to commemorate Steve Pulec, the much loved St. Germain businessman who passed away in 2013 from cancer. Steve was a passionate bicyclist and Sheila, his wife, and daughter Tara organized the ride in his memory and donate the funds raised to local organizations.
The cost to participate is $25 and includes a shirt, special prices for drinks at Twilight, Timbers Bar, the Tiki Bar, the Thunderbird and Sisters Saloon and a brat and burger cookout back at Twilight at 6:00 PM plus raffles and more! The ride leaves the Twilight at 11:00 AM and ends at 5:00 PM (so do the special drink prices).
Want to join in but don’t have a bike? St Germain Rentals is generously offering the free use of a bike for the event! Call 715-479-8007 to arrange for a bike.
Even if you don’t want to bike you are welcome to walk, run or drive! Sheila and Tara welcome everyone to take part in the fun.
Registration is being held open until the day of the event, however shirts cannot be guaranteed.
Have a great day in the sun and help two worthy community organizations!
Tara(left) and Sheila (right) at last year's kickoff at Twilight
Hold on to your hats — this year’s St. Germain “Pig in the Pines Ribfest” will blow your socks off! To prove it, we are going to include their posters and line up information for this week’s blog. Penny Wiseman, St Germain Chamber of Commerce Director, urges anyone planning on getting their VIP tickets for “Molly Hatchet” for Saturday, August 1 at 8:30 PM, to do it NOW. Tickets are going very fast. They are only $30 and the price, “includes entrance into the Park Grounds, VIP seating in front of the Main Stage for the evening bands (One Ping Only Band and Molly Hatchet), VIP only restrooms and beverage stands, chance drawing for a meet and greet with Molly Hatchet.”
This is only one of several bands scheduled over the three days featured in too many events to list here. Take the time to check out this information for a truly unforgettable weekend Friday, July 30 through Saturday, Aug. 1 at the Community Park.
Marc O'Brien (left) and Bill Summers (right) welcoming everyone to enjoy their craft brews and more!
For three years, Eagle River has enjoyed being home to a local brewery - Tribute Taphouse. The owners, Bill Summers and Marc O’Brien, offer several unique craft beers, some of which are available at different times of the year.
The seed for opening the local brewery began in 2005 at the first Great Northern Beer Festival that Bill, his wife and others, began. It was at the Festival that several men decided to start a home brew club that was launched in 2007. Among the club members was Marc O’Brien, Bill’s future business partner.
A couple of years later, Bill approached Marc and asked if he would like to join him in starting a brewery. Soon, they began to accumulate brewing necessities starting with equipment from a Plover brewery, O’so and then items found Craigslist. Tribute Taphouse opened for business in June 2012. They didn’t have their brewing license yet, but featured craft brews from around Wisconsin.
In October the license was approved and Marc began brewing their first beer in November. On December 8, Old Eagle Chocolate Porter was first served, marking their annual anniversary date.
Summers said there are five beers that are served year ‘round and each beer’s name is steeped in Eagle River and Northwoods lore. There is the Old Eagle Chocolate Porter that was named for the steamboat that initially was used as transportation for the loggers, then as transportation from the railroad to the resorts and finally as an excursion boats before its demise.
There is also the 28 Lake Lager, a German dortmunder beer, named in honor of the 28 lakes that comprise the Eagle River Chain.
Next is the Blueberry Train Wheat Ale that was named after the train that transported blueberries from Conover to Chicago.
The weather is beautiful and the perfect background for the 2015 July 4 Independence Day celebrations throughout the Northwoods. To help with setting schedules, view the list of many of the parades, celebrations and fireworks that will occur across the area.
Land O Lakes - Tonight, July 3. is the night that LOL will be celebrate Independence Day with their well-known fireworks. Enjoy food, drink, music by popular Girl Band at the Gateway Lodge and there will be fun for the whole family. Bring a lawn chair and watch the fireworks from the best seat in town. For more information call (715) 547-3321.
Lac du Flambeau — Kids Parade and float parade beginning at Noon - trophies will be awarded. Visit the Native American craft and food displays all day long and attend the Pow Wow at 7:00 .PM. Fireworks will be at dusk.
Eagle River — The annual parade begins at 11:00 AM downtown Eagle River with lineup starting at 10:00 AM. Fireworks will be held at the Hi-Pines Campground( Highway 45 North) at dusk.
Sayner - As always this town goes all out for the 4th! The community park is the location for the delicious BBQ Chicken and Corn roast begins at noon plus other events. The parade begins at 3:00 PM. Make sure to see the Plum Lake Ski-ters at their ski show at 7:00 PM and fireworks behind the library at dusk.
Minocqua - the 4th starts off with the 8th Annual Muggy Buggy 5K and Xtreme Mud Run at 9:00 AM. Check out this event’s details at http://www.minocqua.org/view/550776/date/2015-07-04/128.html?return_to=L2ZsYXQvZGF0ZS8yMDE1LTctMy5odG1s.
The Kiddie parade begins at 3:45 PM with the main parade starting at 4:00 PM.
The Lakeland Community Concert Band performance will be held at the Torpy Park Pavillion at 5:30 PM. Then, beginning 6:15 PM, there is the Boat Parade at Aqua Bowl.
It seems as if Mother Nature is apologizing for last year’s weather for the fishing season opener by giving us a spectacular weekend this year. The ice-out is almost a distant memory as we are anticipating temperatures in the 70s this weekend. Perfect!
Also, welcome to the non-fishing new and returning visitors that use this weekend to ready their seasonal accommodations for the upcoming summer season. Take time out from your tasks and enjoy the fresh air and perhaps a barbecue or two!
Here are a few links to help you get ready for the opener as well as some places to visit for gear, guides and government outlets to get you on the water and fish on your line.
For locations on where to buy your fishing licenses or get your boat registered, here is the link that will take you to the Wisconsin DNR site with the right information:
With more than 2,000 lakes in the Vilas and Oneida counties area, the choices of where to fish can be overwhelming. What is a good lake for Walleye, Muskies, pan fish, etc? Click on this site to find a wealth of area maps that will help you decide on where to fish:
Perhaps its time to leave the hit or miss strategy behind and spend your time fishing and not searching for that hot spot. Ask your local neighbor — who may or may not be telling the truth - or opt to hire a local fishing guide and maximize your time on the water actually catching fish.
The following is a website chock full of information that will lead you to many local guides. It also has links to the chambers of commerce for both Oneida and Vilas counties:
Okay, you have your license, the boat is registered, fishing plans are set; however, your gear is a mess.
With only a few chunks of snow around and some wonderful weather this week, spring has made a grand entrance. Most of the lakes are clear thanks to the temperatures, rain and some pretty brisk winds.
There is plenty of evidence the natives have responded to the change. If you are itching to hop on your bicycle, the fences are down on the bike trail. The weather is perfect for a nice long ride — well maybe not very long — but start to get those muscles back in shape!
Remember, the bike trail is also a hiking trail. It winds through beautiful scenery and chances are you will see a lot of the Northwoods splendid wildlife. Throw on a backpack and plan an early spring picnic. Those winter chills are really behind you!
The opening of fishing is in two weeks so it’s a great time to go pick up your fishing license and take a good look at your fishing tackle. New fishing line? Pick us a few new lures or a spiffy new bait bucket and stringer for your bountiful catches.
Get the boat ready for the big day! Check spark plugs, add fresh gas and check your owner’s manual for season start up advice.
This is also the perfect time to put the snowmobiles away for the season. Fog the engine and add Stabil to the gas tank. Put the sled up on a jack to get the weight off the track and give it a good wash before covering. Those with four-stoke motors will want to take their sleds to the dealer for an oil change.
Saturday, April 18, Lakeland Union High School will be hosting Minocqua’s Home, Lifestyle and Recreation Show from 9 AM until 4 PM at this one-day event. There is a lineup of demonstrations, short seminars in addition to the dozens of vendors on hand with their products.
Set your sites on trying something new this weekend! Head over to the Conover Community Park this Saturday, February 15, and take part in a great time at the “Northwoods Blizzard Blast”. The town really goes out of its way to make sure there is something for everyone to like.
Kicking off all the fun on Friday, there is a three-day snow sculpting competition and entry fees are $25 per team.
On Saturday, from 10:00 AM until 5:00 PM, there are scenic sleigh rides, an artisan bazaar, ice golf, ice bowling, a youth archery demo and fun for kids.
Then at 11:00 AM there is an X-Country Fun Run (register by 10:30 AM). Beginning at 11:00 AM until 2:00 PM, a Northwoods original – Snowshoe Baseball! From 12:00 PM – 3:00 PM there is a Kids Dogsled Dash. At 2:00 PM join in on the Snow Shovel Races, 3:00 PM the Recliner Races and at 4:00 PM, it’s the Snowshoe Shuffle.
Also at 4:00 PM it’s the Snowflake Scrabble Drawing. It all comes to a head at the Trophy Presentation at 5:00 PM. Finally, around 6 PM, the day ends with a fireworks display. Some events do have a nominal charge. What a great way to get outdoors and shake off those cabin-bound blues! For more details, visit www.blizzard-blast.com.
Land O’ Lakes
Thanks to all the hard work of area groomer drivers, snowmobile trails are in good shape despite the snow drought of the last few weeks. The few inches in the last 24 hours has helped a little. So there is no excuse to head for the border and join in the Frosty Snowmobile Club’s “Radar Run,” based at Bent’s Camp on Mamie Lake on the Cisco Chain this Saturday, February 14.
There will be a Bikini Run (that’s three weeks in a row – Northwoods women are gutsy!), food, an Ice Bar, raffles and lots of fun!
Volunteers setting up the Cruiser Tent for this weekend - picture from Cross Country Cruisers Facebook page
Another weekend of speed and spectacular beauties is on the horizon as the Cross Country Cruisers present Cruiserfest in its 16th year on the ice in Minocqua. This year the site will be at Torpy Park to ensure there is plenty of safe ice for everyone who wants to participate. February 6 and 7 are the dates for the action-packed agenda.
Beginning Friday night, on the ice in front of Torpy Park, there will be a huge heated tent, a fantastic bonfire, food, refreshments and music.
A start time of 6:00 PM is slated for the kickoff Snowmobile Parade from Stacks Bay to the Aqua Bowl. Then at 7:00 PM the sky explodes with an awesome fireworks display.
Saturday, the Cruiser Tent opens at 8:00 AM and will be serving breakfast until 11:00 AM. Beginning at 11:00 AM burgers, brats and chili along with beverages are available until 3:00 PM.
Racing activities start at 9:30 AM with registration for the radar runs and races take off at 10:30 AM. The timing of all the runs will be recorded by the St. Germain Racing Club for the 30 classes held that day. The fastest time will be awarded the $750 purse.
Then at 2:00 PM, Slo’s Pub presents the 5th Annual Bikini Races. Funds raised by these brave snowmobile racers will go to the Pink Ribbon Riders and the trail fund. Divas SnowGear is the presenting sponsor.
There is more! In addition to thrilling race heats, there is also an all-day-long swap meet, vendors and a Vintage Snowmobile Display for participants to enjoy. Ever wonder what it’s like to ride in the cab of a groomer? This is the perfect opportunity to see what the trail looks like from a new perspective.
The highlight of the snowmobile season in St. Germain is fast approaching as the 2015 St. Germain Radar Run hits the starting lines beginning this Friday, Jan. 30 and Saturday, Jan. 31. This thrilling event is presented by Discover Wisconsin and the St. Germain Radar Racers, featuring Diva SnowGear, First Place Parts and Fly Racing. This is the 13th year for this charity fundraising event.
Held on West Bay of Little St. Germain Lake, this event has come a long way from the beginning when the races consisted of snowmobiles and a radar gun. Now this two-day event sports a seven-class line up beginning with stock sleds all the way up to the Super Mod class which is a specialty class allowing for unlimited cc’s, full body, custom body and propelled by gas, nitro or turbo.
Friday afternoon, the Fly Racing Speed Runs will be held on the Thunderbird 1000’ of shaved ice or on the Twilight 600’ of groomed snow. Races start at 1:00 PM until 4:00 PM.
That evening, is Timber’s Bar and Grill, “Friday Night Under the Lights”. Weber’s Wildlife Gas Pump will sponsor a Shoot Out snowmobile ride leaving at 3:00 PM. All snowmobilers are invited to take part in Weber’s Wildlife Shoot Out drag races scheduled from 5:00-8:00 PM for $5 a run.
There will also be Radar Fun Runs open to the snowmobiling public at 5:00-8:00 PM sponsored by Straight Line Racing. A special feature at 6:00 PM will pit the 10 fastest snowmobiles in the Midwest against each other at the Snow Outlaw Drag Races.
Music will fill the air as snowmobilers shop the snowmobile vendors and warm themselves in the heated tent with food served by the Bo-Boen Snowmobile Club from 12:00 – 8:00 PM.
On Saturday, Straight Line Racing Trophy Runs will be held from 10:00 AM until 4:00 PM as well as Fun Runs. There will also be the 2015 Yamaha Demo Rides offered.
Picture from Eagle River World Championship Derby Facebook page
For 52 years Eagle River has lived up to its title as “Snowmobile Capital of the World™”, when it launched the 2015 AMSOIL Eagle River World Championship Derby Races. This past weekend the snowmobiles that lit the racing fever were celebrated as the 2015 Woody's Traction Eagle River World Championship Derby Vintage Races were held Jan. 9-11. The winner of the 2015 World Vintage Champion is Matt Goede, from New Germany, Minn. racing on a Polaris Starfire.
Starting Thursday, Jan. 15, snocross and oval racing practice begins at 8:00 AM and racing begins at 2:00 PM with the first snocross and oval racing rounds at the Derby track.
An exciting Friday begins at 9:00 AM with round two of the races. Several of the classes will have finals later at Friday Night Thunder.
Saturday, the Snocross finals will be held and at 2 PM during the AMSOIL World Championship Top 10 qualifying race. After these races, the track will have a “knock down” in preparation for Sunday’s oval finals and the Championship race that begins at 3:00 PM.
Of course, there is much more at the Derby track for spectators to enjoy. There is the fantastic indoor Derby Expo Hall where vendors show off the latest and greatest in snowmobiles, accessories and gear. It is also home to the newest addition to the Derby Expo Hall, the Derby Loft. This is an inside dining and drinking arena providing Derby attendees with a much needed accommodation that opened in time for the 50th Championship Derby.
There are also the very popular Hotseats that are enclosed, heated seating, elevated for a premier view of the racing action. They also feature in-box refreshments for the spectators.
If you are unable to attend in person, there is also a live feed of the races that is available online and presented by Woody’s.
When it comes to winter, the word is “OUTDOORS”! January 3 was the epitome for the hardiness that exemplifies typical Northwoods residents and visitors. There were two charitable fundraising events that took on the battle against cancer head on.
A new charity was the beneficiary of the plunge at Fibbers Restaurant and Resort on St. Germain Lake. The first-ever, “Tundra Plunge”, took place as 66 brave souls splashed into Big St. Germain Lake to raise money for the Vince Lombardi Cancer Foundation.
The Foundation has been raising money for research as well as providing care at the Vince Lombardi Cancer Clinics. Since its inception 45 years ago, $16 million dollars has been raised to fight this demon disease.
In true Fibbers fashion, Rob and Kay Manthei sponsored the event that was deemed at “huge success” by the Lombardi foundation.
That same day, Bonnie’s Lakeside in Three Lakes, was the new location for the, "15th Annual Polar Plunge," that had a record breaking year. A stunning $50,500 in pledges was raised for the “Angel on My Shoulder” fund.
Angel on My Shoulder provides emotional and financial support locally for families affected by cancer. Each summer, children who have had to face the wreckage of cancer in their lives find support, understanding and fun with other children at camps held to help them deal with this disease.
Discover Wisconsin and Bonnie’s Lakeside joined WRJO in sponsoring, promoting and participating in the event that has raised more than $383,000 in the past 15 years. This year 101 plungers braved temperatures in the 20s and took the icy leap into Spirit Lake in front of approximately 1,200 spectators.
What can top these icy winter events? How about the kickoff to the 52nd AMSOIL World Championship Snowmobile Derby week? Starting Jan.9 through Jan. 11 vintage snowmobile racing featuring classic sleds from the 60s and 70s will compete in the Vintage World Championship.