The Finest Snowmobile Trails in Wisconsin

Walworth County has 2800 miles of the finest trails that Southern Wisconsin has to offer. Virtually all trails are on private property and use is granted by the respective local owner. Maintenance, marking and grooming are performed by local snowmobile clubs.

Conditions – For Walworth County trail conditions, call 262-742-2664, Walworth County Snowmobile Alliance. The Snowmobile Alliance is in charge of  installing, maintaining & grooming snowmobile trails throughout the county.

Snowmobile Trail Pass – Wisconsin law requires those who use Wisconsin snowmobile trails to display either a Wisconsin registration or a Non-Resident Trail Pass (Annual). If the snowmobile is kept in Wisconsin, it must be registered in the State of Wisconsin. Non-resident Trail Passes may be purchased over the counter at authorized sales locations or by calling the Wisconsin DNR at 888-396-7436. Trail passes may also be purchased at the Walmart in Delavan.

Operators – Any person who has reached the age of 12 may operate a snowmobile. Any person born on or after January 1, 1985 is required to complete a Snowmobile Safety Certification course to operate a snowmobile on Wisconsin public trails and areas. DNR recreational safety specialists recommend that all snowmobile operators complete the safety course.

2016-17 Snowmobile Trail map
Trail Map
– To receive a Walworth County Snowmobile Map, contact the Walworth County Snowmobile Alliance at 262-742-2664 or visit walworthcountysnow.com. Printed maps are also available at the Walworth County Visitors Bureau at 800-395-8687.

More Information – For more information go to http://dnr.wi.gov.

 

Check trail status here.

 

Sledding

boy-child-cold-1620934The snow keeps coming, so that means more time to enjoy the sleds! Sitting at the top of the hill, that rush fills you excitement.

Walworth County has such a unique geological history, that has textured the landscape creating great opportunities for winter fun with moraines and hills for lots of sledding! Grab the kids or that kid inside of you, pull out your sled and check out one of these hills:

Burlington

Beverly-Jo Park | 367 Dunford Dr.

Fox River Park | 9521 304th Ave.

Steinhoff Park | 833 Cedar Dr.

Darien

Wildwood Park | Sweet Rd. & Wildwood Dr.

Delavan

Robert H. Miller Park | High St. & N. 7th St.

Rudy Lange Sledding Hill | Washington St. & Terrace St.

Swan Creek Trail | West Side

East Troy

North of Mitchell Park | 3090 Graydon Rd.

Pulliam Nature Area | 1824 Thomas Dr.

West Kettle Nature Area | 1825 Thomas Dr.

Lake Geneva

City of Lake Geneva Sledding Hill | Sage St. & Mill St.

Grand Geneva Resort & Spa | 7036 Grand Geneva Way

Whitewater

Trippe Lake Park | 407 S. Wisconsin St.

Nordic Trail, Kettle Moraine State Forest | N9084 County Hwy. H

Sledding_2019a

Have you found a special sledding hill to add to this list?  Let us know!  Comment below with the hill name & location.

Check out a full list of great winter fun and events in Walworth County at, VisitWalworthCounty.com!

New Member Monday: Nippersink Golf Club & Banquets

Whether you’re looking for a lovely venue to host your upcoming wedding or looking to play a few relaxing rounds of golf, Nippersink Golf Club and Banquets is Walworth County’s “best kept secret” when it comes to resorts in the area. Since the beginning of 2018, Nippersink has experienced a lot of changes and are working on improving this beautiful getaway just over the Illinois border. It’s about time that we share all the exciting things we have learned in our interview about them.

Nippersink_profile

Please tell us a little bit about Nippersink Golf Club and Banquets:

Where are you located?
We are located at N1055 Tombeau Rd. in Genoa City, Wisconsin which is just a few miles over the border from Illinois and less than 10 minutes from Lake Geneva off of Highway 12. We like to say we’re “hidden in the farmlands”.

What is the history of the property?
Nippersink was built in 1922 by a meat packer from Chicago who bought the land to develop his dream resort. It’s had an interesting history as a hangout for guests including Frank Sinatra and Tony Bennett. It was even rumored that Nippersink was where some of the very wealthy organized crime figures from Chicago would gather in the 1930’s and 1940’s.

What are the new changes/updates guests can look forward to?
I like to say, “If you haven’t been to Nippersink lately, you haven’t been!”
Under the new ownership of Chris & Dennis Holian, there have been some amazing changes and updates and we’re not finished yet! The Clubhouse looks incredible and an Outdoor Pavilion is being constructed just outside of it as we speak to be ready in time for this year’s golf season. The banquet halls have been updated and the hotel has had huge improvements from what it used to be.

Tell us about the Hotel:

What has changed about the hotel?
Everything! Our crew has done a fantastic job with the refresh of the hotel including new carpet and paint throughout the whole building as well as brand new mattresses, bathroom vanities and sinks, and updated lighting. We are going with a very modern rustic theme throughout the whole property.

How many rooms do you have? Nippersink_rooms.jpg
The Nippersink Hotel has 32 Rooms.

How many guests comfortably fit in one room?
In a room with 1 King bed, 2 guests are ideal, and 4 guests can fit comfortably in a room with 2 Queen beds.

What amenities do the rooms include?
We have complimentary toasters and coffee makers available as well as mini fridges. We have two Bridal Suites that are reserved at no charge for the Newlyweds who book Nippersink as their wedding venue. These rooms are located on a separate wing from the guest rooms and have a microwave and mini fridge and feature an upgraded bathroom. Two of our rooms on the first floor are handicap accessible.

Do any of the rooms have a view?
We have rooms available that have wooded views or views of our Private Lake Tombeau.

Do you have a swimming pool or hot tub?
Back in the day, Nippersink featured a swimming pool at the main building but it had to be removed years ago. Maybe brining that back will have to be one of our future projects!

Tell us about the Golf Course:

Nippersink_golf2.jpgWho designed the golf course?
The golf course was designed by 1896 U.S. Open tournament winner James Foulis, Jr.

What are your rates?
Our rates range from $37-$45 for 18 holes with a cart, depending on the time of year. We do offer 9 holes or walking golfers at lower rates. We also have membership options available for men, women, families, and seniors.

What kind of player is this course ideal for?
Nippersink Golf Course is ideal for the average golfer but gives a serious challenge for the professional from our championship tees.

Do you have a Pro Shop?
We do have a Pro Shop located inside The Clubhouse where you can purchase merchandise and equipment or rent clubs.

Nippersink_golf4.jpgDo you book golf outings?
We love booking golf outings! We are so lucky to have been able to host some really fun outings. It doesn’t matter if its 10 guests or 150, it’s always a great time!

What is the best part about your golf course?
I think the best part about Nippersink’s golf course is that it has been restored to pristine playing condition that people will remember from decades ago. Our grounds crew is awesome, and they have put a lot of work into the course. What I also like about Nippersink is the privacy of our country location and the scenic views of the landscape. It really is very relaxing and peaceful here.

Tell us about hosting Banquets & Events:

Nippersink_wedding1.jpg

What services do you offer for Banquets/Events?
We are happy to host events of all kinds including weddings, parties, corporate events, reunions, fundraisers – you name it! We provide everything from the set-up to food and beverage services.

Lakeview Room 2.jpeg

How many banquets rooms do you have? What is their occupancy?
We have two spacious banquet rooms that can accommodate up to 150 guests in the Lakeview Room & 350 guests in the Nippersink Room.

What are the features of the banquet rooms?
The Lakeview Room features a vaulted cathedral ceiling with new lighting fixtures and a grand fireplace while the Nippersink Room has been repainted and updated with LED lighting accents, and both a brand-new dance floor and expansive bar.

What services do you offer for Weddings? Gazebo Ceremony 2.JPG
Hosting a wedding at Nippersink is a really special thing for us because it is such an intimate event and we feel honored to be able to be part of it. We do everything we can to give each couple their perfect wedding! We have an outdoor gazebo overlooking our private lake that is absolutely breathtaking. We also offer things such as a bride’s room and groom’s room for their use the day of the wedding and of course the Bridal Suite for the newlyweds at the Nippersink Hotel for the night all at no charge.

Nippersink_wedding4Do you have event planners on staff to help plan events and weddings?
Our staff is very involved in the planning of every wedding and special event at Nippersink to ensure that it is a success! We pride ourselves on providing exceptional service to all of our guests and we really do treat you like family. It’s not just another wedding or event booking for us – we get just as excited for each event as our guests do!

 

What do you like about being in business in Walworth County/Wisconsin?
Being in business in Walworth County is something really special because of the people. When I say the people, this includes our loyal local residents and companies that support us with their business, the staff that we are lucky to have work for us every year, and the new guests that we get to meet every season or for each new event. Nippersink is looking forward to having its best year yet because of the wonderful changes that have been made, the people who have made it possible, and the ones we can’t wait to meet!

This special place not only has so much to offer, but their facilities and staff are excited to have you join them. Make your memories at Nippersink Golf Club & Banquets.

For more details on go to, VisitWalworthCounty.com!

Or check them out through their social media:

     Facebook_icon     Instagram_icon

Member Monday: Ice Castles WI

IceCastles_Mary Siversten2The marvels of winter are about to be taken to the next level here in Walworth County. There has been a lot of excitement since the news broke that Ice Castles would be coming to Lake Geneva, Wisconsin in 2018.  Along with excitement, there have been a lot of questions from anxious winter enthusiasts about Ice Castles – Wisconsin and when we get to enjoy the newest winter attraction! I am thrilled to have had an opportunity to interview and learn more about Ice Castles and cannot wait to share the much desired information about this awe-inspiring, must-see winter phenomenon!

Q: Please tell us a little bit about the Ice Castles. 
A: Ice Castles is an awe-inspiring, must-see winter phenomenon that brings fairy tales to life. The frozen attraction is located in six cities across North America. The experience is built using hundreds of thousands of icicles hand-placed by professional ice artists. The castles include breathtaking LED-lit sculptures, frozen thrones, ice-carved tunnels, slides, and fountains.

Q: How and where did Ice Castles get started?
A: Ice Castle began in 2008 when Brent Christensen built an elaborate slide in the front yard of his home in Alpine, Utah, for the entertainment of his kids. He formed his company a year later and built his first large-scale Ice Castle at Midway, Utah’s Zermatt Resort. Since then he has created ice castles all over the United States and Canada.

Q: Who makes the Ice Castles?
A: Each location has a team of builders that are trained to build the Ice Castle. The process is overseen by a site manager, who has worked closely with Brent Christensen to design the castle.

Q: How do you make an Ice Castle? How long does it take?
IceCastles_DanSchykulskiFBA: The Ice Castles are made by hand. Our crews grow roughly 10,000 icicles every day and place them throughout the Ice Castle to provide something for the water to freeze to. Over time the icicles just get absorbed into the ice structure. It is roughly a three month process to build the castle.

Q: How many locations do you have Ice Castle displays?
A: We have six locations across the US & Canada.

Q: Where can the Lake Geneva Ice Castles be found, and what are the hours?
A: The Ice Castle will be located on Riviera Beach, 812 Wrigley Drive, Lake Geneva. The hours will be announced soon.

Q: How should visitors dress to visit Ice Castles? What is appropriate attire?
A: Dress for winter! Warm clothes and winter boots are best. Shoes and boots with flat soles (like dress shoes or cowboy boots) are slippery and not recommended.
Everything inside the Ice Castles is made of ice and snow, including the walking paths. On sunny, warm days, the ice and snow will melt and the surface can become slippery.
Most people don’t have any difficulty walking through the Ice Castles with or without ski poles. However, if you are concerned about your safety inside the Ice Castles, please make your concern known to one of our staff before entering the Ice Castle. When you enter the Ice Castles, you agree to obey the Ice Castle rules and you accept our Waiver of Liability.

Q: How long does it take to go through the Ice Castles?
A: Typically people spend about an hour in the Ice Castles.

Q: Are there any tips & tricks about Ice Castles that visitors should know or keep an eye out for?
A: Here is a link to a blog post on 5 ways to enhance your Ice Castles experience: 5 Tips to Enhance your Ice Castle Experience

Q: What age range is suitable to visit Ice Castles?
A: Ice Castles is an amazing experience for all ages.

Q: How much does it cost? Where can you buy tickets?
A: Online| Mon. – Thurs. |General Admission (12+): $15.95     Child (4-11): $10.95
Online| Fri. – Sun. | General Admission (12+): $18.95     Child (4-11): $14.95

Walkup (Standby) | Mon. – Thurs. |General Admission (12+): $20     Child (4-11): $15
Walkup (Standby)| Fri. – Sun. |General Admission (12+): $25     Child (4-11): $20

Tickets will go on sale late November/early December. We recommend signing up for updates on our website to be notified when tickets go on sale!

Q: Are there group discounts?
A: Yes we offer 15% discount when you spend $150 or more in checkout.

IceCastles_LakeGenevaFBQ: What made you choose to create an Ice Castle in Lake Geneva, WI?
A: We believe the weather in Lake Geneva is ideal for building and sustaining the Ice Castles experience. Additionally, Lake Geneva’s proximity to Chicago, Illinois; and Milwaukee and Madison, Wisconsin makes it the perfect weekend getaway for those looking to escape the city. Riviera Beach, where Ice Castles will be built, offers a stunning backdrop that will compliment the beauty of the attraction.

Q: How long will Ice Castles be in Lake Geneva?
A: Typically we open late December and stay open until early March- weather permitting. We hope to return again after this season!

Q: Are there special events planned?
A: Yes, we will have Ice Princesses and fire performers. Details will be on our website within the next few weeks.

Q: Can pictures be taken in and of the Ice Castles?
A: Yes, and we want to see them (#icecastles)! Keep in mind that we do not allow tripods, blocking off of any part of the castle, or any props.

Q: Where can people share their experience? (Facebook, Instagram, etc.)
A: We love to see guest photos! Tag us on social media:
Instagram     @icecastles_
Facebook        https://www.facebook.com/IceCastlesWI/

For more information about Ice Castles WI and their upcoming announcements, check out the Ice Castles website and sign up for their newsletter updates, or follow them on their Facebook page.

Also visit the Walworth County Visitors Bureau events calendar
for up-to-date information on Ice Castles, Winterfest 2019
and other great winter fun!

The Kid-Friendly Ice Cream Social Cruise with the Lake Geneva Cruise Line

Just about every kid loves ice cream, and the Lake Geneva Cruise Line has a way to make ice cream even better: have it on the Grand Belle while touring Geneva Lake.

Boats are as fascinating to kids as ice cream, especially big boats. There’s no denying the stature of the Grand Belle in Lake Geneva Cruise Line’s fleet and it always impresses its passengers, big and small. As I’ve mentioned in previous blog posts, my niece, Love Bug, and I like to plan special outings together. One afternoon she started rattling off of the things she needs to do in her life (she’s seven, mind you). The list had a great deal to do with transportation. She wanted to fly in an airplane, ride a train, ride the subway, float in a hot air balloon, and go on a big boat. We checked the train off of her list earlier this year, and I thought the Lake Geneva Cruise Line would be the perfect way for her to experience a “big boat”. I wasn’t sure which cruise to take her on, but with the helpful staff at the Cruise Line, it was decided that the Ice Cream Social Cruise would be just right for my Love Bug.

Lake Geneva Cruise Line Ice Cream Social, Lake Geneva, Walworth County, WI

When we arrived at the Riviera Docks, downtown Lake Geneva, she was immediately enamored by the fleet of boats. Once I pointed out the boat that we would be going on, her mouth dropped open. She was tickled pink that we were going on a boat that big. We arrived a little early, and the wait was killing her. She kept walking closer and closer to the boats to check them out. I heard the question, “Is it time yet, Auntie?” entirely too many times inside of ten minutes. When it was finally time to start the line to the Grand Belle, she raced down the pier so she would be one of the first in line.

Lake Geneva Cruise Line Ice Cream Social, Lake Geneva, Walworth County, WI

Upon stepping onto the Grand Belle, she had to make the decision of where to sit, upstairs or down. She quickly scanned the bottom floor and decided that we needed to go upstairs. Once up top, she couldn’t decide where the best place was to be. She liked the tables inside, because that’s where the ice cream sundaes would be delivered, of course. But the view of the lake from the stern intrigued her, too. In time she settled on sitting at the stern of the boat…but not until after we had our ice cream.

Lake Geneva Cruise Line Ice Cream Social, Lake Geneva, Walworth County, WI

Out on the lake, Love Bug thought as much of the mansions as the adults did. When she saw one that really sparked her interest, everyone around was following her arm to shore as she pointed out her “favorite” one (she had quite a few favorites as we toured the lake).

As kids do, Love Bug got a bit antsy and decided we needed to further explore the Grand Belle. Half way through the cruise she decided it was time to go see the bow of the boat. She checked things out, was surprised by the amount of wind at the front of the boat, and then said a quick hello to the captain, who gave her a chance at the helm. That kid couldn’t have beamed brighter.

Lake Geneva Cruise Line Ice Cream Social, Lake Geneva, Walworth County, WI

Once the tour wrapped up, she excitedly scooted down the stairs, and out, thanked the staff for the tour, and was ready to have her picture taken by the Grand Belle. I do believe that all those smiles translate into this: a Geneva Lake cruise and an ice cream social is fun no matter how old you are.

To learn more about the cruises the Lake Geneva Cruise Line offers, please visit their website or follow them on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.

Lake Geneva Cruise Line Ice Cream Social, Lake Geneva, Walworth County, WI

48 Hours in the Lake Geneva Area

48 Hours in the Lake Geneva Area, Walworth County WI. Getaway Plans and Itinerary.

Looking for a short getaway in an affordable area with delectable dining, fantastic attractions, and a little adventure? Visit the Lake Geneva area to enjoy beautiful lakes, rich history, and small town charm.

48 hours of fun and adventure in the Lake Geneva area. Walworth County, WI.

To  learn more about these area attractions and restaurants, please visit their websites. For more information on Walworth County and the Lake Geneva area, have a look at www.visitwalworthcounty.com.

Grandma Vickie’s Cafe

Yerkes Observatory

PIER 290

Geneva Lake Museum

Champs Sports Bar & Grill

Tristan Crist Magic Theatre

Egg Harbor Cafe

Black Point Estate & Gardens / Lake Geneva Cruise Line

Lake Geneva Pie Company

Lake Geneva Canopy Tours

Sprecher’s Restaurant & Pub

 

 

New Member Feature: Carefree Boat Club

The Carefree Boat Club (CBC) has been around for a while now, but the Wisconsin chapter just opened last year. The Lake Geneva/Lake Delavan clubs are brand spanking new for 2016, and the WCVB is crazy excited to introduce them to you! We had a little one-on-one chat with Jim White from CBC and scored all the deets on the new boat club here in Walworth County. Read on to learn how you can take advantage of a boating lifestyle without actually owning your own boat.

WCVB: Please tell us a little about Carefree Boat Club – Wisconsin.
CBC: Carefree Boat Club of Wisconsin consists of two separate Clubs; Carefree Boat Club of Milwaukee and Carefree Boat Club of Lake Delavan/Lake Geneva.  Carefree Boat Club was originally established in Virginia in 2002, has 45 affiliated clubs across the country.  The clubs are private, and our members are the only ones with access to our top of the line fleet of boats. Members can reserve a boat through our online reservation system.  When you arrive, your boat will be all ready for you. We’ll meet you at the dock, hand over the keys, and help get you and your party on the water. Upon your return, we’ll help you dock and disembark. That’s it! It truly is boating with all the fun and without the hassles!

WCVB: How did the Wisconsin chapter get started?
CBC: Our club is a family owned business. Roland Wolff and his son-in-law Paul started the Milwaukee Club in 2015. Then, in the spring of 2016, they opened the Delevan/Lake Geneva Club. Roland’s son Justin had been a member of the Lake Norman Carefree Boat Club near Charlotte NC. After seeing the successful start-up of the Milwaukee Club, he decided to move to Seattle Washington and start up his own club.  This year, Roland’s other sons, Brendan and Connor Wolff also became owners of their own Carefree Boat Club in the San Francisco Bay area! The family that floats together, boats together!!

WCVB: What other locations are there?
CBC: Carefree Boat Club has 45 locations across the country. Clubs are located on inland lakes, the East Coast, the West Coast and the Gulf of Mexico. Similar to a country club, members have reciprocal rights at all Carefree Clubs. Our members have the ability to reserve a boat at any location…..for free. All you pay for is gas!

Carefree Boat Club on Lake Geneva and Lake Delavan. Walworth County, WI

WCVB: What are the benefits of “boating without owning?”
CBC: First is affordability. In most cases the cost of membership is about 1/3 the cost of ownership. We cover the cost of owning a boat. This includes boat purchase, slip fees, insurance, maintenance, repair, taxes, towing coverage, winterization and depreciation.   Second, with no costs of ownership you also get NO hassles of ownership. To get on the water and enjoy a day of boating, all you need to do is show up. We do the rest!

WCVB: What kinds of boats does Carefree Boats have on Delavan Lake, and how many boats are available?
CBC: Our fleet will change and grow as our membership evolves.  As of August 2016 we have 3 awesome new boats on Lake Delevan.
1) a 26’ Sea Ray “Sundancer” 260 Cabin Cruiser – capacity 12
2) a 25’ Chaparral 257SSX Bowrider with Folding Arch Tower – capacity 16
3)a 24′ Coach Tritoon 150 HP and high performance tubes – capacity 15

WCVB: If I am new to boating, can I still become a member?
CBC: Absolutely! In fact, if you’re new to boating and thinking about purchasing a boat, joining Carefree is a great way to learn the ins and outs of boating and determine if ownership is right for you. Additionally, all members are given a training manual upon joining. Members attend one classroom session. After training, members call to schedule a boat for “On the Water” training with the dock master.

Training covers CBC processes, general navigation, docking, and safety. A separate “On the Water” training is done on cruisers to practice docking and learn overnight processes. Upon completion, you will receive a safety certificate from CBC. We call our training program, Be A Better Boater.

Carefree Boat Club on Lake Geneva and Lake Delavan. Walworth County, WI

WCVB: Are there boats on Geneva Lake as well? Does membership include usage of boats on both lakes?
CBC: Currently we have two boats on Lake Geneva.
1) 22’ Bryant Speranza with Mach II Wake Tower – capacity 12
2) 27′ Coach Tritoon 250 HP and high performance tubes – capacity 16
For a small additionally monthly fee members Delevan Club members can have unlimited usage of boats on Lake Geneva.

WCVB: Is there a maximum boat usage allowance for members?
CBC: No.  Members have unlimited access to boats. Boat as much as you like.

WCVB: What benefits are included for members of Carefree Boat Club?
CBC: Benefits include affordability, access to a large variety of like-new, professionally maintained and cleaned boats, great availability, unlimited usage with no additional cost,  training and on the water instruction, and access to locations across the country.

WCVB: What kind of fees are involved?
CBC: There is no fee to use the boats. Like most clubs we charge a one time Initiation Fee and an annual membership fee (which you may choose to pay monthly). We do not require long commitments from our members; you can join for as little as one year.

We do however greatly reward members who will commit to the club for at least three years and give the best overall value to our five year members. Our fees do vary a bit by location based on local costs, fleet configuration and availability of membership and we also have some different membership options.  Please contact us to discuss the various options.

Carefree Boat Club on Lake Geneva and Lake Delavan. Walworth County, WI

WCVB: Are there any requirements for membership acceptance, besides the monetary fees?
CBC: No. We do require all members attend classroom and on-the-water training to ensure a safe and enjoyable boating experience.

WCVB: What is each member responsible for each time they reserve a boat?
CBC: For the most part all members need to do is show up at their reserved time and location! Of course we request our members treat all boats as their own to insure an enjoyable experience for ALL club members.

WCVB: How do I sign up to become a member?
CBC: You can visit our website at CareFreeBoats.com or call us at 262-422-6287. We’ll answer your questions and arrange for a tour.

WCVB: Personally, what is your favorite part about being a member of the Carefree Boat Club?
CBC: The quality and diversity of the fleet of boats is second to none!

WCVB: What is your favorite boat that is on Delavan Lake?
CBC: The one I happen to be on, or if I’m not on the water it’s the next one I have reserved!!

WCVB: Where can we find Carefree Boat Club in Delavan? How about Lake Geneva?
CBC: On Delevan we are located at the Lake Lawn Resort Marina. On Lake Geneva we currently have 2 locations; on Buttons Bay and Williams Bay.

To learn more about Carefree Boat Club, please visit their website, or follow them on Facebook.