"Wisconsin-Happy Festival State", by Eve Phillips. My husband and I love to travel in the state of Wisconsin where we live and get great pictures on the way. My name is Laurie Kutil and photography has become a great passion of mine since 2010. One thing I have learned in researching each town before visiting it is that, "Every town has it's story". When I do uncover those stories by connecting with local residents, our experience becomes so much richer. In turn, sharing the stories with you brings me joy :)
Sturtevant is a village of 6,970 and is a suburb of Racine, which we visited in 2015. This community is right on the Amtrak train route which makes it easy to get to if traveling here that way. The traffic is frequent as well, this video shows two trains within 5 minutes of each other.
Before we arrived in Sturtevant, we went to the community of Caledonia first. The reason for that was the original depot was moved there to Linwood Park, a historical building complex. Find it at 7430 5 Mile Road, Franksville, WI 53126. They are maintained by the Caledonia Historical Society. Hopefully we can visit sometime when they are open.
The new Sturtevant Station is beautiful and incorporates some elements of this design, just larger. It was dedicated on August 1, 2006.
The pedestrian overpass makes it easy to cross to the other side of the track to catch a train on the opposite side. We were in town to see the Canada Pacific Holiday Train which was a lot of fun!
Other points of interest in Sturtevant, the historic Klinkert Hotel building, now privately owned. A video about it was produced by Thom Peterson.
Across the street from the Klinkert is the Caboose Railroad Museum. On the site is a sign explaining the railroad’s role in more detail.
We enjoyed dinner at the Castlewood Restaurant next to this display, great food there! Open since July 2o, 1989, it is a mainstay here for a satisfying meal.
Even though our visit here was short, it was quite enjoyable with the holiday train’s visit as the centerpiece.
Enjoy the ride to Shawano, plenty to see on the way!
Shawano is located in Shawano County, Barn Quilt Capitol of Wisconsin. The city has a population of 9,305 and has plenty to offer.
Stop by the Chamber of Commerce on Hwy. 22, close to the barn sign above. Read the visitor guide here and/or have them send you one before you come to visit! We got a lot of great info here. The goldfish in the tank at the Chamber has a story of his own. It was originally put into the tank as food but it decided it wasn’t going to be food. Cute fish, also quite large at about 3 inches long!
Since it is hard to see all the barn quilts in one trip, we picked up the book “The Barn Quilts of Shawano County Wisconsin”. It costs $15 and a great memento of our visit. Buy the book here. Learn more about the Barn Quilt Project.
We also noticed that fudge is popular here, just like on Mackinac island. We got some at Old Glory Candy just off Main St. Lots of old-fashioned favorites here, friendly staff too!
Visit the Veteran’s Memorial on the Courthouse grounds.
Shawano has some beautiful parks to visit as well. Launch your boat or fish at Huckleberry Harbor, on the banks of the Wolf River. See this and other parks on this map you can print. There is a windmill there too. It was repainted in 2015, great job!
Spirit of Shawano Park at the intersection of Main and Green Bay Street greet people with metal sculptures representing various industry in the area.
Another great place is Sturgeon Park. This is the epicenter of Sturgeon spawing in Shawano. They usually spawn in May.
Record-size Sturgeon have been caught here. This Stella, caught in 2012.
The water pouring over the dam, intensified by frequent rains.
On Sundays there is also a great Farmers Market here, we stopped by and found a great variety of items for sale. It’s at Franklin Park.
The market’s first year was 2007 and has been a great success in the community. Learn more about it below.
We took a stroll through the market too, take a look!
Pay a visit to Heritage Park and Sunset Island too. It was not open since the season had ended, but you could still walk the grounds. The Shawano County Historical Society produced a video of the historical village. Hopefully we can make it back in 2017 and be here when it’s open!
We may have been too late to explore this place in further detail, but we were right on time for the Shawano Octoberfest. Lots of music and fall crafts to be had here!
Shawano is also home to Sundrop™ soft drink, we also enjoyed a self-guided tour at Sundrop University™, the factory in town. This vending machine is downtown if you need your Sundrop fix!
This was our first Coffee Break Festival in Stoughton in Mandt Park. This community believes themselves to be the originator of the coffee break, and they celebrate that every year in August.
The show also has a car and motorcycle show, also some tractors. Despite to cool, rainy weather, 80 cars were still entered.
Enjoy some highlights of the festival!
This year coffee from 6 roasters were available for tasting. Purchase a mug to sample your coffee, $6 for this blue mug sponsored by Conant Automotive. Or $15 for a fancy hand-painted mug with a rosemaling design.
We of course have enjoyed Berres Brothers and Door County Coffee and Tea, but have not had the other ones until today.