Tag Archive | chocolate

Olbrich Botanical Gardens Holiday Express 2015


 Olbrich Gardens Sign 12-2015

IMG_8535 crop

12-8-15

The last time I attended this event was in 2013, so it was time to see it again. This time Al joined me. Admission is $5 for adults, $3.00 for kids 3-12.  Since we joined during Olbrich Botanical Garden’s GLEAM event in the fall, we had free entry! The inside of the building was so festive, with many poinsettia plants, some of which are for sale. Memberships are also 50% off during this special event.

Poinsettias IMG_8551

Poinsettias at Olbrich IMG_8544

Memberships and concession IMG_8552

We headed down the walkway to the Christmas display, showing our membership card for admittance and hand-stamped.

IMG_8802 crop Holiday Express entry

Greeting us with a train whistle and an “All Aboard!”,  Olbrich volunteer Judy warmly greeted us and had information about upcoming events.

Volunteer IMG_8554

Models trains are by the Wisconsin Garden Railway Society.  The LEGO® displays by the Wisconsin LEGO® Users Group.  The room is beautiful,  this is the right side of the room with one train display, a modern diesel train.

Right side IMG_8641

Diesel Train at Olbrich

A different train is on the left side, and “Iron Horse” steam engine.

Steam Train IMG_8616 Best

Let’s see them in action!

Two members of the Railway Society were there, Dick Jellings and his wife Elaine.  For over 20 years he wore the Colonel Corn costume at the Sun Prairie Corn Fest. Now retired, he enjoys model trains and showing them to the public.  They will be part of the upcoming Mad City Model Railroad Show and Sale on Feb 20-21, 2016.  We plan on going to this fun event!

The LEGO™ displays were quite impressive.  Star Wars fever was rampant even here, with a rebel base display called “Home One”.

Home One Star Wars Display

Katina Cottage Lego

Winter Street Scene

Winter Street Scene IMG_8613

Winter Street Scene IMG_8614

Winter Castle Display

Miller Park Display

Elvenhorse display

In the Bolz Conservatory, the CHOCOLATE: THE BITTER AND THE SWEET exhibit had Cacao trees on display and signs describing the history of chocolate and uses over the millennia.

Chocolate Display sign IMG_8797

A small Cacao tree and pod.

Cacao Tree and pod

Purity of chocolate, white “chocolate” is not chocolate at all!

Chocolate types IMG_8743

Some of the displays.

American Chocolate Pots IMG_8706

Cacao used in Food and Health IMG_8701

Cacao and Chocolate display IMG_8677

We had a great visit to Olbrich and we look forward to returning to their other events in the next year.  We highly recommend  becoming a member. They get many special benefits, including a discount in their gift shop.

Olbrich gift shop IMG_8800

New Glarus – Wisconsin’s Little Switzerland


11-6-10 and other visits

Wisconsin is a state diverse with many cultures, many from parts of Europe. New Glarus was settled by immigrants from Switzerland in 1845 from the canton of Glarus.  People have continued to immigrate here since then and kept the Swiss culture forefront in the city’s atmosphere.  It’s a great place to visit when a trip to Switzerland is not possible.

New Glarus sign

One of  the first views upon entering town is two flags and a sign.

New Glarus sign

 

And the great view looking up the  street.

New Glarus downtown

 

New Glarus  is also the trail head of the Sugar River Trail.

Sugar River Trail sign

It used to be a railroad track.  The Trail  goes all the way to Brodhead. The restored depot is now a gathering center for visitors and residents alike.

New Glarus Depot

 

New Glarus also is known for the beautiful “Cows on Parade”.  Beautiful painted cows are all over town in front of businesses.

New Glarus Hotel Chef cow

 

This cow is in front of the New Glarus Hotel Restaurant, a huge Chalet-style building like many downtown. We enjoyed a great lunch there once.

New Glarus Hotel

 

 

Across from the New Glarus Hotel is The Maple Leaf Cheese and Chocolate Haus will make your mouth water upon entering.

Maple Leaf Cheese and Chocolate Haus

 

A bit further up the street is the famous New Glarus Bakery. Their Stollen pastry is in big demand.

New Glarus Bakery

 

Stollen

At the end of the street is the beautiful Swiss United Church of Christ. In front is a statue dedicated to the early settlers of New Glarus.

Swiss United Church of Christ and statue

 

What was formerly Robert’s European Imports and Gifts, is now Esther’s European Imports. Among their wares are Swiss Army knives and much more.

Esther's European Imports

 

The New Glarus Primrose Winery is also a great place for wine and gifts. Most made from Wisconsin grapes.

New Glarus Primrose Winery

 

Open during the summer is the Swiss Historical Village.

Swiss Historical Village sign

 

Swiss Historical Village building

 

For a great visit to the Old World without needing a passport, come to New Glarus!

 

 

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