"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 :)
We also enjoyed lunch at the Paoli Brat and Bread Haus. We had the Chicken Pot Pie, very delicious! We enjoyed the music at The Hop Garden while we ate. The Cherry Pie A la Mode was wonderful too. Owner Cherri Bell makes everyone feel like an old friend upon meeting. Thanks for the great lunch in such a festive atmosphere!
Quite an enjoyable afternoon was had by all, we took a stroll up the street to check out other fall scenes. The Paoli House Inn had many pumpkin sculptures out front.
Due to a warm September, the colors peaked a week or so later than usual. Our first trip was to Holy Hill Basilica on Monday, October 12. We have not been there during fall’s peak before. It was Columbus Day so it was quite crowded when we arrived around noon. Holy Hill offers a great view anytime you go. Be sure you pick a good weather day, since they close the tower if there are high winds or other inclement weather.
We climbed up the 128 stairs to the top of the right steeple to take in the countryside colors. They were brilliant!
It was just as beautiful from the bottom looking up. We found an especially good view with a horse in someone’s yard.
And the view from Erin, we got both points of view here!
A stand of beautiful trees to the right of this view on the road below.
We saw the historic Messer/Mayer Mill. They are raising funds for restoration of the mill.
Other views in the park.
We were in Jefferson for a wedding photo shoot but came early to get some fall color pictures. They have some beautiful trees and views here. This is the river from the bridge.
The view on the right side of the bridge, Rotary Park.
Downtown the tree by the clock was looking especially pretty, it was barely leafing out when we visited in May.
There are many beautiful houses in Jefferson, many of them with beautiful trees setting them off in a blaze of yellow and orange. Some had ivy too, adding a special touch.
Finished up the month with color at my workplace grounds and near our home.
Our neighborhood looked especially pretty this year. Our red maple was really showing off (the one on the left)! A couple leaves were not so happy about the end of summer.
My favorite view was at the train track that goes by our condo community. The colors were peaking the day I got a picture of the Canada Pacific train that runs from Portage to Madison. Here is some video of that train in Portage.
Quite a beautiful and long autumn this year. One for the books!
The fall colors were all over Wisconsin and it was time for the Mid-Continent Railway Museum’s Fall Color Train rides. The working train with restored antique cars and museum are located in North Freedom. We were excited, as it was our first train ride together.
It was time to board the train, lots of people were there to enjoy the ride. The duration is about an hour. I got a Railroad Engineer hat on this visit that I wore on our 2nd visit in 2011.
It was time to go! The Conductor came by and collected the tickets and told us about the railroad’s history.
The train went through groves of trees that were brilliant with color, the passengers were plastered to the windows, gasping in delight at the beauty.
The trip went out 7 miles from the depot. The engine car then had to detach from the train and then the back became the front on the return journey.
The return trip was just as pretty, we saw the other side of the tracks better.
As we made our way back, we could see other cars still being restored. Upon disembarking we further explored the museum.
Here is a large steam engine from the 1800’s, beautiful!
There is also a museum building where you can see various railroad car displays.
There is also a picnic area outside with some concessions in the summer.
We had a great two visits here, with another one planned for the August 24-25 weekend this year, when they uncover their newly restored Copper Range #25 car.
After our ride we ate at a delightful restaurant that continues the train theme, the Railroad Inn Cafe. It’s just a short distance down the street from the museum.
Make a day of exploring Wisconsin railroad history!
It was time for our annual Fall Color Tour, and go to Governor Dodge State Park for the first time together. It’s close to Dodgeville, where we went after visiting here. The colors were near peak and quite beautiful. we also were there to see two attractions that are there, Stephen’s Falls and the Rock Spring House . We had a drought last summer so the falls were greatly diminished 😦
We returned spring 2014, what a difference in the falls. Plenty of water was flowing this time. The waterfall was nice enough to pose for a selfie with us 🙂
The Spring House was impressive. Here is a view inside also.
This time, we went up the hill above the Spring House and discovered more that we didn’t see before. The falls were named after a farm family that once lived here, the Stephens.
We had a great visit here, This is a very pretty park, especially in fall. Plenty of hiking trails to explore too.