Get In The Holiday Spirit!

Holiday spirit_grumpy cat

What do you do to get yourself in the holiday spirit? Did you put your holiday lights up in September during those summer-like days we had? Have you been listening to Christmas carols since before Halloween? Are the totes of decorations sitting in the family room waiting for the tree to be put up the day after Thanksgiving? If you’re a teeny tiny bit of a Grinch and just need a little coaxing to get in the holiday mood, there are a myriad of things to make that happen!

Holiday spirit_banner

Let’s start with tempting your taste buds, ‘coz Grinch or not, everyone has to eat. The Fireside Dinner Theatre is offering an unforgettable musical version of a classic Christmas tale, and my personal favorite holiday movie (as long as it’s the original 1947, black & white version – I’m a fanatical purist with that movie!) with ‘Miracle on 34th Street’. Rosewood will have you looking back to remember all the songs, hymns, and carols that make this a magical time with ‘Christmas Remembered’, be it with holiday classics like ‘Silver Bells’ or ‘White Christmas’, or with a little bit of a beat and ‘Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree’. The Dancing Horses offers possibly their most spectacular show of the year in the Holiday Magic Show, with rhinestones, glitter and music to celebrate the holidays, along with a visit from Santa and their resident unicorn. Lake Lawn Resort will be hosting ‘The Nutcracker’ ballet, performed by the young people of The Dance Factory, a local dance school, on Nov. 25 at 7:30 pm (with Prime Rib Buffet) and Dec. 17 at 2 pm (with Champagne Brunch Buffet).

Seeing the effort someone else has put in with Christmas lights, especially when they go the extra mile with putting the lights to music that I can listen to from the warmth of my car, is always high on my list of things to do when getting in the holiday spirit. Rosewood’s ‘Listen to the Lights’ showing of outdoor lights and music begins Nov. 16 and lasts through Jan. 1. Running nightly from 5 – 11 pm, every 20 minutes, watch the entire facility light up to the sounds and music of the holidays on 92.9 FM. Holiday spirit_Grand Geneva lights

On Sunday, Nov. 19, the Grand Geneva Resort will kick off their annual 6-week long ‘Christmas in the Country’ celebration with the 23rd Annual Illumination Ceremony, 4:30 – 7 pm. Enjoy holiday cookies, hot apple cider, activities for the kids, live entertainment, the gingerbread house display, and pictures with Santa, then gather outside by the large Christmas tree at 6 pm for the countdown to the illumination of more than 2 million lights throughout the property, followed by a dazzling Grand fireworks display. Starting on Nov. 20, as a fun way to experience all the decorations and lights at the Grand Geneva Resort, trolley tours are available at 5, 6, 7 and 8 pm, though of course you can see all of it from your own car as well. Another mode of transportation to see holiday lights is through the Santa Cruise on Geneva Lake with Lake Geneva Cruise Line. Embark on a magical Christmas boat cruise to Santa’s North Pole hideaway, enchanted by the shoreline holiday lights along the way. Running from Thanksgiving Day through New Year’s Eve (with the exclusion of Christmas Eve and Christmas Day), seven nights a week and at a number of different times, this is sure to become a holiday tradition!

Get in the holiday spirit, give to a good cause and have the chance to win prizes?! I’m in! The Santa Cause Tree Festival kicks off Nov. 24, 4 – 9 pm, and runs Monday – Friday, 4 – 9 pm and Saturday/Sunday, noon – 9 pm, through Dec. 30. The ‘Twelve Charities of Christmas’ each create a themed winter wonderland by decorating a tree that includes marvelous prizes surrounding it. You can stroll through the trees, admiring the decorations and lights, and with the purchase of raffle tickets, enter to win prizes by putting your ticket(s) in your chosen charity’s raffle box(es). I hear tell there’s even a trip to Hawaii as one of the prizes!

Have you written your letter to Santa yet? Drop off your letter in the magical mailbox located in the main lobby at the Grand Geneva Resort and Santa will send a message back to you. You can even watch Santa’s helpers collect the mail at 4 pm each day to deliver it to the North Pole. I wonder if there’s a limit to how long the letter can be, making sure Santa understands how good a girl I’ve been this year and that asking for my own private island in paradise isn’t too much to ask for… Fine, I’ll take a tiny house on the beach if having to admit I wasn’t that good of a girl!

Holiday spirit_SantaA visit with Santa is always a great way to get in the holiday spirit! And maybe the face-to-face time will get me the tiny house on the beach that a letter might not get in among all the letters Santa gets… The Grand Geneva Resort has breakfast with Santa every Saturday and Sunday from Nov. 25 through Dec. 24, 8 am – noon, including fun holiday activities, a keepsake family photo and magnetic frame to take home, and you can even dress in your pajamas for the photo as if it’s Christmas morning! Need more face time with Santa, then Lake Lawn Resort has to visits with Santa planned, Saturday, Nov. 25 or Dec. 16, 8:30 am and 10:30 am. There’s a children’s height breakfast buffet full of delicious breakfast items and treats, holiday-themed crafts to create, Christmas carolers, a life-size gingerbread house for scrapbook-worthy photos, and a chance to sit on Santa’s lap to share your wish list. An evening option with Santa is available with Geneva Lakes Family YMCA’s ‘A Night with Santa’ on Dec. 1, 6 – 7:30 pm. This is a free, family event with cookies, hot chocolate, crafts, photos, and story time with a very special guest. It’s also time to give back by bringing a new, unwrapped toy for Toys for Tots or a non-perishable food item for the local food pantry. Old World Wisconsin hosts Father Christmas at their Old World Holiday Breakfast, Dec. 2 and 9, 9 am and 11 am, or Dec. 3 and 10, 9 am. Enjoy a delicious festive breakfast featuring live holiday music and a visit from four different Santa figures from four different traditions telling stories and singing songs.

Need design ideas for holiday arrangements to make your home be in the holiday spirit? Northwind Perennial Farm offers a class with their floral designer, Sharilyn, on Dec. 2, 10:30 – 11:30 am. Sharilyn will demonstrate design tips for combining greens, twigs and berries to help you create your own beautiful holiday arrangements. How about crafting homemade gifts for friends, family, co-workers, etc.? Think outside the (gift) box and create a gift in a jar at Aram Public Library on Dec. 5, 5:30 – 7 pm. There are two gift jar options, a spa experience and a dessert delicacy, with all materials and instructions included. For reference, both options sound good as a gift for me… just sayin’! Aram Public Library is also offering a class on edible holiday houses, Dec. 12 & 13, 5:30 – 7:30 pm. With all materials provided, put your construction skills to the test as you design and decorate a house made entirely from graham crackers, frosting and candy. Can you say ‘YUM’?!

So this barely touches the surface of all there is to get you in the holiday spirit! Check out the Events Calendar at VisitWalworthCounty.com for the full listing of holiday happenings and more.

Advertisements

What Are You Doing For Thanksgiving?

Thanksgiving_food on table

I’ve done it again… Let the holiday season sneak up on me to the point where it’s just two from Thanksgiving and we won’t mention that means that Christmas is month beyond that. Oops! I just mentioned it! Too late to say “spoiler alert”?! So in honor of Joey Tribbiani (for you non-Friends loving fans, I’m sorry about you not understanding the reference), with a twist on his ‘how you doin’?’ phrase: ” what you doin’ ” for Thanksgiving?

Kick off things off with revving up your taste buds for what’s to come at Delavan Lake Store on the eve of Thanksgiving with their Thanksgiving Eve Pie & Trivia Night, Nov. 22, 6:30 – 9 pm. Enjoy some yummy treats and test your brain power with trivia questions. A perfect place for your sweet tooth and your competitive side for a fun night with friends and family! Admission is easy – $10 for a team or bring a pie of your choice.

Love all the fixings and turkey for Thanksgiving Dinner, but don’t necessarily like all the prep and time it takes to make it all yourself? Not a fan of Aunt Susie’s scalloped corn dish or have never understood Cousin Bob’s idea of stopping at the local gas station for roller-grill hot dogs as his contribution? Here’s the solution – let Lake Lawn Resort do it all for you with their Turkey To Go option! The culinary professionals at the Frontier Restaurant will prepare Thanksgiving Dinner and you take all the credit! Dinner includes a whole roasted turkey (or whole roasted maple-brined breast of turkey), wild rice bread dressing, natural turkey giblet gravy, fresh orange-port cranberry sauce, fresh mashed potatoes, fresh green beans with pecans and bell peppers, fresh baked dinner rolls, and your choice of pumpkin, apple or chocolate bourbon pecan pie. Pre-order by Monday, Nov. 20, and pick up at your scheduled time on Thursday, Nov. 23, between 10:30 am and 4 pm. Whether you have 8 or 20 guests for dinner, there is an option that fits. Think about it – leftovers without the dishes to wash! For details, click here. I’ve attended Thanksgiving at a friend’s and they did this instead of cooking and having the guests bring certain things. It was delicious, plenty of food, a great variety of items, and so convenient! I’d do this in a heart beat for the ease of it all!

Crafted Americana at The Ridge Hotel offers the same option to skip the tradition of cooking and cleaning this Thanksgiving and let them do all the work! Their carry-out menu features all your favorite fixings, starting with house-made fresh-brined turkey, giblet gravy, and sausage and cherry stuffing! Fill up with a full selection of sides, including rustic Yukon mashed potatoes, candied sweet potatoes and their famous green bean casserole with marshmallow & cinnamon brûlée. Five types of house-made pies round out the menu. This year, make Thanksgiving fuss-free with more time for family! For the menu and details, click here.

Still not feeling it with having to clean the house for guests if you host Thanksgiving or with traveling to someone else’s home if they host?  Then celebrate with family or friends while still enjoying the traditional Thanksgiving Dinner offerings at any one of the Thanksgiving Day Buffets. Heck, time it out right and you can eat at more than one if you really love Thanksgiving food! The Abbey Resort, Grand Geneva Resort, Lake Lawn Resort, The Geneva Inn Restaurant, and Crafted Americana at The Ridge Hotel each offer a way for you to skip grocery shopping, cleaning the house, prepping and cooking for hours, doing a pile of dishes afterwards, and to instead spend quality time with family and friends while they each do their best in bringing you Thanksgiving Dinner. Details for each can be found here: The Abbey ResortGrand Geneva Resort, Lake Lawn Resort, The Geneva Inn Restaurant, and Crafted Americana at The Ridge Hotel.

Come home to The Hunt Club for Thanksgiving, as Chef Ryne and team will be preparing traditional dishes alongside some favorite plates from their current menu. There is a 3-course dinner special with options within each course to choose from. You then have a variety of additional items to either add to the 3-course dinner or to have instead, should there be something else that tantalizes your taste buds. No matter which way you go, you’re sure to be satisfied. For menu details, click here.

Not that anyone should be alone for Thanksgiving, but sometimes situations come in to play where being together with family or friends just isn’t possible. If that’s the case, be it for you or for someone you know, then make plans to attend the Free Community Thanksgiving Dinner, Thursday, Nov. 23, 11 am – 3 pm, in the Community Building at Town Park (Hwy. 50 & South Shore Drive). The Friends of the Park, a not-for-profit 501(c)3, are providing a complimentary traditional Thanksgiving Dinner with all the trimmings so no one has to do without. All food is being donated, cooked and served by volunteers. There’s even delivery that can be scheduled for the elderly or homebound, compliments of local Boy Scout troops. For contact details, click here. I’ve attended this event as a delivery volunteer in the past and can attest to it being phenomenal, both from the deliciousness of the food and the loving atmosphere of people coming together in celebration of thankfulness.

As you think of things you are thankful for to fill the jar, and consider how cute the turkey cookies are, give serious thought to the options I’ve talked about for maybe a different take on Thanksgiving this year (like someone else doing all the cooking!). And with one final thought:

Thanksgiving_happy

It’s Started! Get Your Plan in Place to Eat Your Way Through Dine Around The Lakes!

DATL

November 3 – 12, 2017

Dine Around The Lakes has begun, as of Friday, Nov. 3 and goes through Sunday, Nov. 12. There are 21 participating restaurants throughout Walworth County, each with specially designed 3-course menus for lunch and/or dinner. Lunch prices are $10 or $15 per person and dinner prices are $20 or $30 per person.

With 7 days remaining, it’s time to make a plan on how to take in as much as possible of the delicious options offered by these restaurants! Check out their specially designed Dine Around The Lakes 3-course menus and get those taste buds going with anticipation – Click here for menus.

Got vacation time you haven’t used up yet – take it now and make a foodie getaway of Dine Around The Lakes! There are fantastic packages available through our lodging partners – Click here for details.

Don’t forget that tomorrow, Tuesday, Nov. 7, is Charity Day, where the restaurants have opportunity to partner with a local charity of their choice and decide what level to donate at (such as a percentage of the day’s proceeds or a specific dollar amount per meal, etc.). Help support a local charity at the same time as dining on delicious food at the following restaurants: The Geneva Inn Restaurant, Gino’s East and PIER 290. The Geneva Inn Restaurant is partnering with The Friends of Big Foot Beach State Park, giving a $1 from every meal purchased. Gino’s East is partnering with Dan Green’s Touch A Life, Heal A Heart Foundation, giving 10% of the day’s proceeds. PIER 290 is partnering with Santa Cause, giving 20% of the day’s proceeds. The Boat House Bar & Grill is also partnering with a local charity, but since they are closed on Tuesday, Nov. 7, they are doing Charity Day on Thursday, Nov. 9, giving 10% of the day’s proceeds to Lot of Love.

Don’t waste a moment of these 7 days and getting to as many of the participating restaurants as possible! If time is short for you, then pick the restaurants you’ve always meant to try – seriously, specially designed 3-course menus only available during Dine Around The Lakes and at such fabulous prices?! This is the time to try something new! If you’ve got all the time in the world, then of course your tried and true favorites are on the go to list as well! You absolutely can’t go wrong with any of the restaurant choices or any of their menu items! The hardest thing you’ll have to do is make a decision on which restaurants to go to and then which menu options to pick – I’ll take that challenge! An easy decision is to take me along as your guest!  😀

Again, to view the full list of participating restaurants and their beyond delicious menus, visit DineAroundTheLakes.com

Get Your Foodie Fix with Dine Around the Lakes!

DATL“10 Days of Delectable Dining” doesn’t even begin to describe the deliciousness that is the 4th annual Dine Around the Lakes, Walworth County’s official Restaurant Week! Held annually, it is November 3 – 12 this year, and has 21 area restaurants participating. The restaurants will offer a unique 3-course menu for lunch and/or dinner, available only during the Dine Around the Lakes time frame. You can enjoy a 3-course lunch for $10 or $15 person, then go again for a 3-course dinner for $20 or $30 per person. Needless to say, reservations are strongly encouraged as this is a popular event!

The 21 participating restaurants include:

  • 240° West at The Abbey Resort, Fontana – dinner, $30
  • The Black Sheep, Whitewater – dinner, $30
  • The Boat House Bar & Grill, Lake Geneva – lunch, $15 and dinner, $30
  • Café Calamari, Williams Bay – dinner, $30
  • Casual Joe’s, Whitewater – lunch, $15 and dinner, $20
  • Crafted Americana at The Ridge Hotel, Lake Geneva – lunch, $15 and dinner, $30
  • Frontier Restaurant at Lake Lawn Resort, Delavan – lunch, $15 and dinner, $30
  • The Geneva Inn Restaurant, Lake Geneva – lunch, $15
  • Gino’s East, Lake Geneva – lunch, $10
  • Harpoon Willie’s Pub & Eatery, Williams Bay – lunch, $15
  • Hawk’s View Bar & Grille, Lake Geneva – lunch, $15
  • Hunt Club Steakhouse, Lake Geneva – dinner, $30
  • The Lookout Bar & Eatery at Lake Lawn Resort, Delavan – lunch, $10 and dinner, $20
  • PIER 290, Williams Bay – lunch, $15 and dinner, $30
  • The Red Geranium Restaurant, Lake Geneva – lunch, $15 and dinner, $30
  • Ristorante Brissago at The Grand Geneva Resort, Lake Geneva – dinner, $30
  • Royal Oak Farm Country Kitchen, Harvard IL – lunch, $15
  • The Trout House at Rushing Waters Delavan, Delavan – lunch, $10 and dinner, $30
  • The Trout House at Rushing Waters Palmyra, Palmyra – lunch, $15 and dinner, $30
  • The Waterfront at The Abbey Resort, Fontana – lunch, $15
  • Ye Olde Hotel Historic Bar & Restaurant, Lyons – dinner, $30

Make a weekend out of trying several restaurants and take advantage of the lodging specials offered by Harbor Shores on Lake Geneva and Lake Lawn Resort, valid during Dine Around the Lakes only. How about a fun and unique date night and add Lake Geneva Clue Room to the plans with their special Dine Around the Lakes discount? It doesn’t have to be all about the great food when there’s things to do in the area as well to add to the experience! Though yes, it’s primarily all about the food!

To help plan where you’re going to go and get a sneak peek at what you’re going to be eating, go to DineAroundtheLakes.com – peruse the restaurants, look at their menus, visit their websites, and plan, plan, plan your schedule to get to as many as possible! I certainly can’t think of a better way to keep me out of the kitchen then going to all these great restaurants and letting their great chefs cook for me! And you can’t beat the prices for the quality of food and ambiance you’re getting! You could easily treat me to a lunch or dinner (or both) without breaking the bank – hint, hint, hint!

New this year is the addition of Charity Day, Tuesday, Nov. 7, where restaurants have the opportunity to partner with a local charity of their choice, and decide what level they would like to donate at, such as a percentage of the day’s proceeds or a specific dollar amount per meal, etc. This is a way to not only showcase the restaurants and their food, but also support local charities at the same time. Four of the 21 restaurants are participating on Charity Day: The Boat House Bar & Grill, The Geneva Inn Restaurant, Gino’s East, and PIER 290. The Boat House Bar & Grill is partnering with Lot of Love, giving 10% of the day’s proceeds. Lot of Love’s focus is supporting the caregiver community as they care for others, but tend to put their own needs aside. The Geneva Inn Restaurant is partnering with the Friends of Big Foot Beach State Park, giving $1 from every meal purchased. Friends of Big Foot Beach State Park is a non-profit volunteer group that raises funds to help and educate the community about the vast resources available at the State Park. Gino’s East is partnering with Dan Green’s Touch A Life, Heal A Heart Foundation, giving 10% of the day’s proceeds. The Touch A Life, Heal A Heart Foundation is dedicated to providing strength and hope to kids with cancer, health and wellness aid to low-income Walworth County residents, and hope and help to Armed Forces personnel in need. And lastly, PIER 290 is partnering with Santa Cause, giving 20% of the day’s proceeds. Santa Cause supports existing charities in Walworth County and performs random acts of kindness throughout the community.
Dine Around The Lakes 2017 is sponsored by Lake 96.1 WLKG, Lake Geneva Country Meats, Harbor Shores on Lake Geneva, and the Walworth County Visitors Bureau.
Again, to view a full list of participating restaurants and their mouthwatering menus, visit DineAroundtheLakes.com. Don’t delay in getting your plan together and making those suggested reservations, besides letting me know when you’re taking me to lunch (or dinner, or both…)!
Bon Appétit!

 

 

If it’s October, then it must be 31 Days of Halloween!

My calendar says it’s October 2, so yes, it’s officially October! Doesn’t matter if it feels like August with the recent 90 degree days, as the leaves changing color, high schools having homecoming, and the end of the regular season of baseball all says otherwise! So let’s get the calendar filled with 31 Days of Halloween and all things spooky, haunting, eerie and just plain ‘ol Halloween fun!

background blue ghosts
31 Days of Halloween

1. Take a “ride” on the Haunted C&NW Railroad at the Lake Geneva Clue Room. Can you find the vampire before it’s too late? (Daily through October)

2. Go if you dare…to the Haunted Trails at Scenic Ridge Campground in Whitewater. (Oct. 7 & 14)

3. Did you know about the sea serpent in Geneva Lake? Learn this and other “Sordid & Scandalous” tidbits on a walking tour of Lake Geneva by Black Point Estate. (Oct. 7, 14, 21)

4. Are you willing to withstand the horror? Shockwave Haunts at The Fuzzy Pig in Whitewater promises to be a frightful scare. (Fridays & Saturdays through Oct., plus Oct. 26)

5. Embrace death like the Victorians did. Join Black Point Estate and the Lake Geneva Cruise Line for “When Angels Carried Them Away: Death & Mourning in the Victorian Era”. (Oct. 6-7, Oct. 13-14)

6. Ghosts and Ghouls are invading the woods for the Haunted Hayride at Dan Patch Stables. (Fridays & Saturdays now through Oct. 28, plus Oct. 8)

7. Get in the Halloween spirit with Snug Harbor Campground’s Halloween Party! Open to public. (Oct. 7)

8. It’s A-Maze-ing! Find your way through Pearce’s Corn Maze, then grab a pumpkin or tasty treat! (Saturdays & Sundays, through Oct. 30)

9. Hear the Singing Pumpkins at Edgewater Park in Williams Bay. (Fridays & Saturdays through Oct. 28)

10. Get chills from stories of the local lore that surrounds Whitewater during their Spirit Tour. Stories like that of the Poison Widow and peeking into the crypt of Mary Worth will send shivers down your spine. (Oct. 13-14)

11. “Toil & Trouble” kicks off Young Auditorium’s season. Enjoy a comic re-write of Shakespeare’s Macbeth. (Oct. 9-15)

12. “Paint Like the Masters” a fall scene of ‘Moon & Pines’ at Northleaf Winery. (Oct. 15)

13. Learn about “Wisconsin’s Most Haunted Locations” with Black Point Estate and Lake Geneva Cruise Line. (Oct. 20)

14. At “Halloween Legends & Lore” at Old World Wisconsin it’s always spooky, sometimes scary. Come witness ghost tales come to life, learn the origins of the Ridgeway Ghost and hear about the folk and fairytales of the Old World. (Oct. 20-21 and Oct. 27-28)

15. Dress up in your favorite Halloween Costume, stretch your legs, and participate in Delavan’s Skeleton Scurry at Lake Lawn Resort. (Oct. 21)

While you’re already in costume, head to the “Miles for SMILES” event. Includes a 5K Fun Run/Walk with trick or treat stations and costume competitions, followed by music, horse Bingo, apple cider and family fun! (Oct. 21)

16. Enjoy jack-o-lanterns, Halloween nature skits, campfires, games and crafts, along with a hike at the “Eco-Halloween Hike” at the Richard Bong Recreation Area. (Oct. 21)

17. Calling all ghouls, zombies, and mummies for “Ghouls Night Out” to visit the local uptown businesses in Whitewater. (Oct. 26)

18. It’s a “Halloween Bash” at East Troy High School with trick or treating through the school, plus costume contest, pumpkin bowling and face painting. (Oct. 26)

19. Grab your family & friends, rock your Halloween finest and head to Phoenix Park in Delavan for Spook-tacular fun with music, games, mini pumpkin decorating and oodles of candy, too. (Oct. 27)

20. Dig out your blacklight to go with the painting you’ll create at Studio Winery’s Blacklight Glow Halloween Cork & Canvas event. (Oct. 27) Come back the next day for the Halloween Costume Party, with music by the Cherry Pickers. (Oct. 28)

21. Join Northleaf Winery for a HalloWine night full of fun! With boo-tiful music by Katie Scullen, a costume contest, and of corpse, wine, beer and appetizers. (Oct. 27)

22. For the ghouls and goblins who do not wish to be spooked, join friendly characters for an Enchanted Walk through the Kishwauketoe Nature Conservancy. (Oct. 27)

23. Downtown Burlington will be jumping with Spooky City festivities, including spooky crafts, costume parade, hayrides, trick or treating, and lots more family fun. (Oct. 28)

24. Get ready to be Boo’d all weekend during William Bay’s Boo In The Bay event! Enjoy pumpkin races, a craft fair, pumpkin decorating, and more. (Oct. 28 & 29)

25. Celebrate adventurously at Lake Geneva Canopy Tours with their Pumpkin Drop Canopy Tour & Fall Festival! There will be food, live music, pumpkin painting, scavenger hunt and more! (Oct. 28 & 29)

Dress as your favorite player for Sonoma Cellars’ “Green & Gold Tasting” of 3 different wines in honor of the Packers! Beer & spirits will be available as well. (Oct. 28)

26. For witches and werewolves looking for a little something scary to test your wits, the Spooky Walk at the Kishwauketoe Nature Conservancy will do the trick. (Oct. 28)

You’re invited for a Halloween scare, so come join us if you dare! You’ll never know what you’ll find at the Haunted Trail in Wildwood Park in Darien. Both a kid-friendly time and teen/adult-oriented time. (Oct. 28)

27. For an afternoon of frightful fun, it’s Scare on the Square in Elkhorn! Scarecrow and pumpkin decorating, costume contest, bounce house, drinks & snacks – family fun abounds. (Oct. 28)

Start off with “Trick or Treat the Triangle” then bring a non-perishable food item for the local food pantry, and have a fun evening of games and prizes at the Whitewater Youth Halloween Party. (Oct. 28)

28. It’s a Halloween Birthday Spook-tacular Party at Timber Ridge! Carnival games, face painting, arts & crafts, pumpkin decorating, costume contest and more to celebrate Bruce the Moose’s birthday. (Oct. 28)

Light ‘em up at the Lyons Halloween Bonfire after Trick or Treating. (Oct. 28)

29. Trick or Treat on the Street inside the Geneva Lake Museum! Free family fun, with a little bit of history thrown in. (Oct. 29)

Take trick or treating back outside in the Town of Geneva and Delavan Township. (Oct. 29)

Delavan Community Park’s Halloween Party has hayrides, games, a magician, face painting, costume contest, snacks, candy and fun galore! (Oct. 29)

30. Bring the kids for a Halloween Party at the Darien Public Library! There will be games, crafts, and loads of treats! (Oct. 30)

31. Celebrate Halloween with local Trick-or-Treat events throughout Walworth County. (Oct. 31)

Trick or Treat at Aram Public Library in Delavan by visiting the Children’s Desk in costume. (Oct. 31)

Parade through Downtown Delavan in the Goblin Walk, then visit the Spook House afterwards. (Oct. 31)

For more Halloween fun, check out the Events Calendar! Happy Halloween Month!

Oh yah, just a reminder – I LOVE candy corn, so don’t hesitate to bring me some!

So Much Fun & So Much Savings!

Bogo17 CoverYou’ve been patient in waiting for it and here it is! Fun and savings, all in one neat little package! It’s the 2017-2018 Walworth County Visitors Bureau BOGO card, with all deals good through May 31, 2018. Plenty of time to take advantage of the 48 fabulous offers on area dining, shopping, lodging, attractions and more…

The cards are $10 each and are available online at www.VisitWalworthCounty.com/BOGO, and at the Walworth County Travel Information Center at 2375 E. Geneva Street in Delavan (directly across from Lake Lawn Resort, at the airport).
So you’re planning a getaway and you need a place to stay… Look no further than the offers available at Harbor Shores on Geneva Lake, Delavan Lake Resort and T.C. Smith Historic Inn. Situated on the lakefront of Geneva Lake, Harbor Shores offers the best views, fabulous amenities, and easy access to the downtown with all it has to offer.
Delavan Lake Resort is a luxury suite property right on the lakeshore of Delavan Lake, allowing you to unwind and relax while taking in the gorgeous lake view. Experience the luxurious warmth and ambiance of the Grand Victorian era at T.C. Smith Historic Inn Bed & Breakfast, taking in all the historical and artistic significance of the outstanding architecture, all just two blocks from downtown Lake Geneva dining and shopping.
With Mother Nature giving us some beautiful Indian Summer weather and early Fall colors, how about getting out on the links for some Fall golf? Hawk’s View Golf Club, Majestic Oaks at Lake Lawn Resort and Whitewater Country Club each have buy one, get one deals to take advantage of. Nice weather, great golf courses and then each has other offers to use related to fueling up with food after a successful round of golf! Perfect combo!
Even if Mother Nature were to throw some rain in the forecast, don’t despair. There are deals that allow for fun indoors, too! Geneva Lake Museum, Lake Geneva Clue Room, and Spirit of the Lakes Chorus are all good examples of indoor options. If kicking back with a glass of wine is an indoor activity that appeals to you, then the Bottle Shop and Northleaf Winery will fit the bill nicely.
Traditional Fall fun activities of corn mazes, hayrides, apples and pumpkins are covered as well, with Pearce’s Farm Stand and Royal Oak Farm Orchard offering deals. What’s Fall without at least one corn maze and hayride? Boring is what it is! Finding that perfect pumpkin is the ultimate, topped off with a delicious caramel apple!
For a different perspective of things (and a great gift for someone or even for yourself), check out the offer from Gypsy Air Tours and a ride in their open cockpit biplane. If two feet on the ground is more your style, then Lake Geneva Canopy Tours, Lake Geneva Cruise Line, Lakeside Bait & Tackle, Marina Bay Boat Rentals, and the Mountain Top at The Grand Geneva offer biking, boat cruises, fishing, tubing and skiing, respectively, deals.
Need some time to relax and be pampered? That’s offered as well! The Avani Spa at The Abbey Resort and Calladora Spa at Lake Lawn Resort are sure to please with the services they offer. Only requirement is I get to go along to relax and get pampered, too!
Are there family or friends that couldn’t be a part of the getaway? Bring back a gift to let them know you were thinking of them. A+ Power Sports, Geneva Gifts, Lake Geneva Cannery, and Wilson Farm Meats all have deals to fit any type of gift. And I won’t tell anyone if you buy something for yourself, too. It is buy one, get one, so that in itself implies being able to keep one and give one! I would gladly be a recipient of a gift…
So all this activity has me famished, so let’s look at the options for food! My girls and I would do “Dessert First” dinner when they were little, knowing full well we probably wouldn’t get to the actual dinner (‘Woohoo, no broccoli!’ was the usual comment from them…). You can do the same with the deals from 240° West at The Abbey Resort, Delavan Lake Store, and Lake Geneva Pie Company.
If you absolutely insist on eating dinner (or lunch) first, there are certainly offers available for that. Crafted Americana at The Ridge Hotel, Grand Café at The Grand Geneva, Frontier Restaurant and Lookout Bar & Grill at Lake Lawn Resort, Rushing Waters (both Palmyra and Delavan locations), Sperino’s Pepperoni Pub, and Sprecher’s Restaurant & Pub will keep you eating all day, every day, of your getaway.
There are so many wonderful deals to keep you busy no matter what you enjoy doing! A full list of participating businesses and their deals is available at www.VisitWalworthCounty.com/BOGO. Plan that getaway now – heck, plan multiple of them as the deals are good through May 31, 2018!

The Ultimate Fall Drive is in Walworth County!

TW Fall Drive Showdown logo

 

And you can vote here to make it official! Rustic Road 29 – Snake Road in Lake Geneva – has been nominated for the ultimate fall drive in Wisconsin by Travel Wisconsin in The Ultimate Fall Drive Showdown! Help make it the winner by voting now! Yes, right now. Do it! I’ll wait for you..

 

.

Let’s start with a little history lesson, courtesy of the WI Dept. of Transportation: The Wisconsin Rustic Roads program was created over 40 years ago to provide an opportunity to leisurely travel through the state’s scenic countryside. Today, there are 120 designated Rustic Roads in Wisconsin, spanning more than 722 miles through 59 counties.

Every Rustic Road is unique, but all:

  • have outstanding natural features along its borders, such as rugged terrain, native vegetation, native wildlife or include open areas with agricultural vistas.
  • are lightly traveled local access roads, serving the adjacent property owners and those wishing to travel by auto, bicycle, or hiking for purposes of recreational enjoyment.
  • are not scheduled nor anticipated for major improvements which would change their rustic characteristics.
  • are at least two miles long and often provide a completed closure or loop, or connect to major highways at both ends of the route.

A Rustic Road may be dirt, gravel or paved road and it may be one-way or two-way. It also may have bicycle or hiking paths adjacent to or incorporated in the roadway area.

Rustic Road sign
Rustic Road sign example

 

A unique brown and yellow sign marks the routes of all officially-designated Rustic Roads. A small placard beneath the Rustic Roads sign identifies each Rustic Road by its numerical designation within the total statewide system, for example, Rustic Road 29 would read as R 29.

 

 

 

 

So on to the Rustic Roads specifically in Walworth County, of which Rustic Road 29 isn’t the only Rustic Road that Walworth County is blessed to have. As of 2017, there are 6 Rustic Roads in all in Walworth County, with only one other county in the state having more (Racine County has 7). Let’s take a drive together and learn a little bit about each of them!

It seemed only proper to start with Rustic Road 29 (R 29) since it’s being placed front and center with The Ultimate Fall Drive Showdown as an entrant! R 29 may only be 2.7 miles in length, but it’s located in a countryside of natural beauty, passing through an area of natural vegetation and wildlife, bounded in some places by split rail fencing. Another perspective is to think of it as the back yards of the gorgeous lake homes, whose front yards you’ve seen from Geneva Lake, hopefully while taking one of the boat cruises offered by Lake Geneva Cruise Line!

Rustic Road 29 map
Rustic Road 29

The route is particularly beautiful in the fall, hence the inclusion in the Ultimate Fall Drive Showcase! R 29, better known as Snake Road to locals, intersects with WI Highway 50 just west of Lake Geneva and loops back out to WI Highway 50 a bit further west.

Rustic Road 11 map
Rustic Road 11

Rustic Road 11 (R 11) is a 10.3 miles, gently winding route, that provides excellent views of glacial Kettle Moraine topography. It passes through large wooded areas of oak, maple and hickory, with glimpses of a game farm and scenic agricultural land. East of Lake Geneva, R 11 includes South Road, Steel Road, Spring Valley Road and Knob Hill Road between WI Highways 50 and 36. R 11 adjoins Rustic Roads 12 and 36, so you get a 3-for-1!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rustic Road 12 map
Rustic Road 12

Rustic Road 12 (R 12) is a 5.7 miles route that at various points offers panoramic views of lush green hills and valleys. The sharply curving route passes outstanding Kettle Moraine formations, pine and spruce plantations, a tamarack swamp, and several ponds. R 12 crosses the White River and runs through the community of Lyons with its several quaint churches. The route includes Back Road, Sheridan Springs Road, Spring Valley Road, and Church Street, between WI Highways 50 and 36. R 12 adjoins Rustic Roads 11 and 36 for added driving and viewing pleasure.

 

Rustic Road 36 (R 36) includes Cranberry Road and Berndt Road, east from Wisconsin Highway 50, and adjoins Rustic Roads 11 and 12. At 3.6 miles, this narrow, hilly route got its name from from early settlers who harvested cranberries from nearby marshes. The route winds through Wisconsin farmland, glacial marshes and knobs, featuring a wide variety of trees and shrubs.

Rustic Road 36 map
Rustic Road 36

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rustic Road 85 map
Rustic Road 85

Rustic Road 85 (R 85) is 2.5 miles and includes portions of Potter Road and Kearney Road, forming a loop off of County DD. The route runs adjacent to winding Sugar Creek while on Potter Road, as both pass through Nature Conservancy forests and wetlands. The steeply glaciated uplands of Kearney Road includes a mix of farmlands and pine woodlots.

 

 

 

 

 

The newest addition to the Rustic Road family in Walworth County is Rustic Road 120 (R 120). Locals know it as Peck Station Road, with this less-than-2 mile stretch being between WI County Highways A and ES, just west of Alpine Valley Music Theatre, and east of WI Highway 12. It’s so new to the Rustic Road family that the WI DOT hasn’t done an official map of it as of yet. Google however provides, with only a slightly shaky hand adding the brown line in a vain attempt to look somewhat like the other maps! The Google Street View, done in October 2012, of the narrow roadway, shows farm and marsh land, gently rolling hills, and as if to really showcase the rural character of the route, the Google car taking photos of the roadway followed a combine for part of the trip! Can’t get more realistic than that!

Rustic Road 120 map
Rustic Road 120

Whatever Rustic Road you take through Walworth County, the view is guaranteed to be spectacular in any season! My personal favorite is the fall and being able to see the leaves changing colors, hear kids playing in the fallen leaves, catch a glimpse of scurrying little critters in the underbrush, smell the aroma from a burn pile, and enjoy the other wonderful aspects of taking a leisurely fall drive. See you around the bend!