"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 had a wonderful summer this year. We were having so much fun going to so many great events around Wisconsin we didn’t have time to write about it yet, let alone spring! Our South Dakota and Wyoming trip took us 4 months to write about we saw so much!
Meanwhile, enjoy our video of Summer 2017. More details coming later about what we did. We never run out of things to do in this great state!
The show began at 8, we arrived by 5 because we knew even then a lot of people come to this. We did get a good spot just off-center. The lawn and hill behind us looked like this just before the show.
Here is the program. click to enlarge.
The Madison Opera also provided a Guide on their website giving more details about the music and give you a chance to listen to the music they played. Before the show they were selling light sticks, and you will soon see why.
After intermission is has become quite dark outside. You can see people’s light sticks begin to dot the hillside with light. The moon is photobombing the scene too, contributing its own light.
And now the finale, “It’s a Grand Night for Singing” (State Fair) with full audience participation!
Wow! What an exciting evening with 16,000 other enthusiasts of Madison’s fine art scene. We hope to come back next year, it will be on July 23, 2016. This will be their big 15th Anniversary celebration.
The last time we took this tour was June 30, 2002 and it was time we did it again. This time we were armed with a better camera (mine) which also shot HD video. Al also had his own camera and he sat in the lower deck, giving another point a view. We arrived at the Lower Dells Dock parking area, the first Upper Dells ride was at 10:00, a shuttle bus took us to the dock stairs to catch it. These are the boat rides available in summer this year.
The view from the top of the stairs of the boats. Our boat is the Red Cloud, on the left back.
Before you board, you have the chance to get a souvenir picture taken, available upon return. It is $20, includes a 8 x 6″, 2 – 4 x 6″ and three wallet-sized prints, plus a photo key chain for the wallet picture. What a good deal, here is our picture. You can get the same done at the Lower Dells. Just like what H.H. Bennett used to do over 100 years ago.
Now we are on board and on our way! We were lucky to have such a beautiful day. We are visible from the bridge to passersby as we go around the bend to the left, heading to the Gateway up ahead.
We approach the “Gateway of the Dells”, Romance Rock and High Cliff.
The dignified Chief Black Hawk’s Profile.
The Giant’s Shield
This majestic rock is called “Signal Point”, the entrance to Witches Gulch.
It is time for our first stop at Witches Gulch. We disembark and walk the path between tall rock formations, you can see the forest above you. Very beautiful!
On our left is Witches Bathtub.
Spooky Lane, and then…
It opens up to a wide area and concessions/restrooms are available. We had 20 minutes before we had to get back on the boat.
There was also this plaque attached to the side of the rock on our right.
Back on board, we crossed the river to our next attraction, the dog jumping across Stand Rock to re-create Ashley Bennett’s jump that made the Dells famous. We assembled in the small amphitheater with this great view.
The picture on the sign showing the jump.
The dog jumping is a German Shepherd named Radar. Let’s watch!
How exciting that was! Radar is perfectly safe, there is a net below to catch him if he fell.
We continue along the trail, seeing other beautiful rock structures and scenic views of the river.
There is another concession building at the end of the trail. There is another sign explaining how this area came to be.
Scenic View of the river, on our way back to the boat, now docked on the other side opposite of where we dis-embarked.
It was regretfully time to go, so beautiful here.
On our way back to port, what a wonderful ride! A last look at The Palisades rock formation.
As we headed back to our home port, Brendan offered us copies of the Dells Boat Tour Official Guidebook for sale for $5, a great memento of our tour.
Incorporated as a village in 1931, Maple Bluff is a community with beautiful homes and where the home of our state Governor is located. Learn more about Maple Bluff’s early history here. Also about activities in the village in their newsletter. It is also a certified Tree AND Bird City too!
We discovered most big cities to the small towns we have visited have at least one public garden for the public to enjoy. Dubuque is no exception. The Dubuque Museum and Botanical Gardens is quite beautiful in mid-summer and was well worth the visit.
Be sure to stop in the Visitor Center for a map of the huge grounds. You could easily spend the day here. They also have apparel and souveniers.
There are gardens of different themes…
Even waterfalls are here.
Just some of the beautiful flowers here at the garden.
We had a wonderful visit here. Could not see it all this time but perhaps on a return visit we can see the rest.
Back in January we took a tour of the Nathaniel Dean house and now we are here for their summer concert. Quite a few people attended. They have 5 concerts each summer on Thursday evenings, this is the schedule for this year.
It’s time! Let’s enjoy the show!
They performed a great one-hour program for the audience and had us wanting more.
The Dean House has many exciting events throughout the year. The Capitol Chordsman do also, and learn more about them and their next performances here.
Warner Park in Madison is just one of many outdoor music venues for all to enjoy. It’s main sponsor is The North/Eastside Senior Coalition (NESCO). Concerts are free but donations are encouraged to keep funding the concerts. Either donate there at the concert through a food purchase or online. They present a large variety of music, spread over 6 concerts during June and July. We attended #2 of 2014 on this date. Tonight was a group I heard of but never saw perform,