Wisconsin in the Spring-What to Do!

travel-wisconsinWhile Wisconsin is a northern state that is usually cold, when spring comes around Wisconsin livens up and becomes a great place to visit. Known for their beer and food, Wisconsin certainly has this and more to offer. Read along and see why Wisconsin is a great place to plan your next family  spring break trip to!

Things to Do

  • Miller Park- Milwaukeemiller-park

Baseball season is just around the corner and one of the best places to watch a baseball game is Miller Park. With a beautiful field with a competitive baseball team, you should have a great time. And if a Brewer hits a homer watch the mascot slide down the yellow slide.

  • Green Bay Packer Hall of Fame- Green Bay

Even though football is a couple of months away you can always tour the Packers hall of fame. With legends from Bart Star to Bret Favre and even legendary coach Lombardi , you will love it even if you aren’t a Packers fan.

  • Historic 3rd Ward- Milwaukee

This is where the culture of Milwaukee is at its finest. From local restaurants to gorgeous old brick buildings you can experience the city without the traffic of bigger cities. Some of the best restaurants include but are not limited to Wicked Hop, Milwaukee Ale House, and Jing’s.

  • Harley Davidson Museum- Milwaukee

harley-davidsonThe city where the legendary company was founded way back in 1903. This motorcycle company has a legendary museum that details all of the motorcycles they have produced . If you are even remotely interested in motorcycles or machines in general visit this museum and see what made this company so legendary.

  • Wisconsin Deer Park- Milwaukee

If you like the outdoors and seeing wild animals without all of the time it takes to get out there, then you can just take a stop at Milwaukee’s deer park where you can get really close to these deer and even feed them. Kids will have a ton of fun petting and feeding the deer.

  • Fishing

fishing-wisconsinWith Wisconsin being next to the Great Lakes, Lake Superior, and Lake Michigan in particular, you will always find fish who are eager to bite your lure or bait as the lakes unfreeze and the spawn approaches. The main type of fish you’ll find in these lakes are bass, walleye, muskie, and even salmon. Although there are many more fish including the giant sturgeon.

  • Breweries- EVERYWHRE

With Wisconsin being full of German immigrants, they are obsessed with their beer. There are a ton of breweries available to tour and sample the best Milwaukee has to offer. Some of the brewing companies include but are definitely not limited to…

  • Miller Brewing Company
  • Lakefront Brewery
  • Sprecher BreweryMiller-Brewery-wisconsin
  • Milwaukee Brewing Company
  • Brenner Brewing Company
  • Third Space Brewing Company
  • Good City Brewing
  • Urban Harvest Brewing Company
  • Pabst Brewing
  • Company Brewing
  • AND MORE…

 If you love beer, food, and sports, Milwaukee is the perfect city for you. However, there are also plenty of outdoor activities as well for those who don’t like the city. If you are planning a trip to the Midwest, stop by in Wisconsin!

Hot Tubs & Wisconsin Winters

vacation-rentalNow that winter is upon us and bringing with it, it’s frigid temperatures, especially here in Wisconsin, utilizing a hot tub has never seemed like such a great option.  Should you own a rental property or offer the use of your AirBnB, making sure your hot tub is up and running for your renters and guests use is very important.  In an ever growing competitive market of vacation homes you want to make sure that your spa and its amenities are up to par. While purchasing and the upkeep of a hot tub can be quite the added expense, the relaxation and satisfaction of enjoying one, especially in colder temperatures is quite the luxury! We decided to do our research and provide answers to your most asked questions on hot tub repair and spa maintenance to keep it running its best during the cold winter months!

Hot Tub Repair/Winter Maintenance FAQ

  • What is pricing to fix a leaking hot tub? The price can vary depending on the part that is leaking. If the shell of the hot tub is leaking it can range anywhere between $200-$1100 to repair. If the leak stems further than the shell it can often cost a few hundred dollars more.  In this case it is smart to consider replacing your hot tub instead of repairing it.
  • What is that loud noise coming from the motor & why won’t it turn on? The majority of the time your spa motor won’t turn on because of electrical issues. In this case it is important to call a qualified electrician and/or professional spa technician. The loud noise you hear is generally caused by pump seals that need to be replaced.
  • How do I prevent my hot tub from freezing? First things first make sure you have a hot tub cover and one in good condition at that. This cover is one of the key essentials in preventing your hot tub from freezing. You will also need to monitor the water level and make sure to hot-tub-winterizingmaintain the water temperature.
  • What temp should my hot tub stay at in the winter? Maintaining your hot tub temperature so that it is always at the same temp is important especially if you or your guests will be using it often. Hot tub experts suggest a temperature of 102 to 104 with never allowing it to fall below 90 degrees.
  • Should I get my hot tub “ready” for winter? It is suggested to prevent costly hot tub repairs as well as to catch any issues before they become bigger, to have your hot tub serviced before the winter months. This will ensure that everything is running correctly and that your hot tub is clean and problem free.
  • What is freeze damage in a hot tub? It is important to prevent freeze damage in your hot tub which can lead to costly repairs or needing to buy a whole new hot tub altogether. What exactly is freeze damage? Freeze damage occurs when the water in your hot tub pipes or other equipment freezes. When water freezes it expands which can cause major damage to your pipes and equipment.

Wisconsin-winterEnjoying a dip in a warm hot tub can do wonders to help warm you up after a cold winter day.  It can also help relieve cold sore muscles from winter sports or exploring. Having a hot tub at your disposal in a cold winter climate is a luxury that many look forward to. Whether you are a traveler or a rental property owner having a properly working spa free of problems is sure to make both parties happy!

The City of Milwaukee

milwaukee-wisconsinMilwaukee, the city on the edge of Lake Michigan is home to around 600,000 people. The city is home to a great culture with residents that share their love for sports, cheese, meat, and beer. So before you buy your plane ticket check out some amazing facts and features about this legendary  city.

The History- This city is the result of the French Canadian explorer Solomon Juneau settling the area in 1818. Originally called Juneautown the town eventually changed its name to Milwaukee in 1837. From there during the mass immigrations in the 1840s a lot of Germans came over to Milwaukee and they brought with them their knowledge of beer and food. And since then Milwaukee has continued to grow.

The Food and Drinks- This city was featured on an episode of Man vs Food so you know it has tomilwaukee-city have a great selection of food. This city is in the cheese state of Wisconsin so dairy products like cheese and ice cream can definitely be found here. Milwaukee also has a great selection of deli meats, sausages, and other fresh meats due to the large amounts of land used to raise livestock. And finally, Milwaukee has an amazing brewing culture. In fact, the major league baseball team is named after it. Some popular brewing companies such as the Miller Brewing Company and the Pabst Brewing Company started in Milwaukee and they still brew there today.

Attractions-

  • MLB Milwaukee Brewers
  • NBA Milwaukee Bucks
  • Milwaukee Public Museum
  • Harley Davidson Museum
  • Milwaukee Art Museum
  • Miller Brewery Tour
  • Pabst Mansion
  • Other Brewery Tours
  • Lakefront Brewery Beer Hall
  • Comet Cafe
  • Milwaukee Brat House
  • Oscar’s Pub and Grill
  • Transfer Pizzeria Cafe
  • Blue’s Egg
  • Swingin’ Door Exchange
  • Mader’s
  • Sobelman’s Pub and Grill

downtown-milwaukeeDemographics- The city is home to almost 600,000 people which makes it the 31st most populous city. The median income for a household is $32,216. According to the 2010 census the city consisted of 40% black people, 37% whites, 17% hispanic or latino, and 4% asian.

Climate- Being in the northern US the city doesn’t get very warm. With average highs in July of 72 degrees and average lows in January with 22 degrees. Snowfall is decent and is heaviest in December, January, and February. Due to being next to the biggest freshwater lake bundle the weather rapidly changes there.

Although it is overshadowed by Chicago in terms of culture in the mid-west, Milwaukee has an amazing culture that can rival any other big city due to its brewing and food culture. If you ever plan a trip to the mid-west, you should definitely stop by this city so you can experience the city for yourself.

Weather Proofing Your Deck for the Winter Months

winter-proof-deckWe like to write informative articles about the great state of Wisconsin and all the many sites, destinations and things to do while here. We hope anyone visiting our site will find great information on our state and it’s many cities and such as to plan a great trip or should they be moving here to prepare themselves for all that can be found and enjoyed. Recently I had a fellow reader ask about information on what he should know about weather proofing his vacation rental he just purchased for the winter months here that can be quite harsh. Thinking more about it I realized what an awesome question this was and what a great post it would make. Those that are not from here or live in warmer clients probably don’t know too much about what harsh winter weather can do to your home and vehicles.

So that being said….Let’s talk about weather proofing your deck using a sealant!

deck-sealantClean & Prep– first things first you will want to sweep away and clean off any type of debris that has accumulated on your deck.  Should you have furniture or potted plants and the like you will need to remove those items as well. Use a leaf blower to really get rid of any dust, leaves, dirt etc. The better you prep your deck the better the sealant will hold. Next thing you will need to do is use an oxygen based bleach solution to clean your deck and get rid of any mildew or other stains. Letting the bleach sit for at least 20 minutes will ensure that it cleans the deck surface thoroughly and that you are ready for the next step! Water-repellent sealant!

Staining & Sealant- Should you have an older sealant or stain on your deck we recommend stripping the old off before applying the new. This will help to ensure that the new sealant or stain is put on evenly and will uphold to the best of it’s abilities. Next you will make sure that you choose a water-repellent stain or sealant to aid in keeping moisture of your deck and from getting into cracks and spaces. This is extremely important before the winter months are upon on here in wisconsin because the rain and snow will cause moisture to become trapped in your decks surface which will create wrapping and cause cracks. This in turn will lead to more damage.

professional-deck-sealantDIY or Professional Application- You can definitely attempt to stain or seal your deck on your own. It is not to complicated of a task , however depending on the condition of your deck it can be time consuming. You will also make sure you use the right chemicals and sealants and that you apply them correctly. You can always call in a professional that can do the job for you and help to give you piece of mind before the winter months are upon us.

Need to remove snow or ice from your deck???

Snow- should you need to remove snow from your deck do so with a plastic shovel rather than a metal shovel. The use of plastic will help to ensure less damage than what can be caused by a metal shovel. Alos when shoveling the snow make sure to do so in parallel to the boards to prevent gauging the planks.

Ice- When removing ice try to steer clear of salts and other chemicals because they tend to stain and discolor the sealant or stain that was applied to your deck. Also avoid the use of chippers because this too will damage not only the sealant or stain it will also damage the wood on your deck.

Hopefully this will shed a little light on what it entails to weatherproof your deck as well as provide tips on how to prevent damage from the accumulation of snow or ice!  

 

Wisconsin’s Historical Sites & Landmarks

Like any other state, Wisconsin has its own unique history and historical landmarks to be seen and visited. These landmarks help to showcase the history of Wisconsin that lies beneath the city weAztalan-State-Park know today.  Did you know that Wisconsin first became a state in 1848 and that there are many ancient archaeological sites that can be found throughout its terrain? Check out our list of some of the most popular historical sites and landmarks to be visited when you find yourself in the state!

Historical Sites & Landmarks in Wisconsin

  • Cave of the Mounds- Regarded as a historical wonder the mounds are actually caverns of limestone and stalactites. Incredulous to view with your own eyes, this perhaps is one of the most popular sites to be seen when visiting Wisconsin.  Found my accident we are sure glad that these caverns were stumbled upon
  • The National Railroad Museum- This museum full of preserved historical railroad artifacts and pictures can be found in Green Bay, Wisconsin.  There are exhibits to be explored, tours to be taken and a lot of priceless items from the old railway days
  • Old World Wisconsin- Found in the town of Eagle, this 19th century inspired village showcases farmhouses, gardens, crafts and clothes from that era.  Here you can also witness and learn about the times food preparation and history all together
  • Circus World Museum- This historical museum expands over 50 acres of land in Baraboo, wisconsin. One of the most popular historical landmarks in all of Wisconsin, you can witness circus tricks and the like when you visit.  Definitely a site for both adults and children to enjoy
  • Aztalan State Park- this state park can be found in Jefferson, WI nd is home to some of the most prized archeological sites in all of the state.  I true beauty and wonder to visit.
  • Van-Hise-RockVan Hise Rock- This incredible rock formation is named after famed geologist Charles Van Hise who was both born and raised in Wisconsin. It is found in Rock Springs and is known for its abundant historical geological information
  • The First Capitol-  Found In Belmont, this was the first capitol of Wisconsin and where lawmakers met in 1836 to discuss legislation and such for the state

There are so many historical sites and landmarks to be seen it is hard to choose from them all.  The great thing about the numerous sites and landmarks is that they are filtered throughout the entire state so no matter which part you may be in there is surely something to see or historical landmark to visit.  Make a list of the sites that interest you most and map out a plan so that you are able to travel to all before your trip comes to an end. Not only are you learning a little history about the state of Wisconsin itself but a little piece to the history puzzle of the United States is learned as well!

 

Wisconsin’s Winter Activities

Wisconsin is truly a beautiful state that has a variety of things to see and do for both natives and winter-activities-wisconsinvisitors. While Wisconsin definitely exhibits the four seasons and can have some spectacular weather it is also known for its harsh winters. Should you be making a trip to Wisconsin this winter, fear not!  While winters can be VERY cold and full of snow and ice, there are still a number of great activities to do during the colder months. Check out our list of the top 5 things you must do while visiting Wisconsin in the winter months.

Wisconsin’s Winter Activities

  • snow-train-wisconsinSnow Trains- There are a number of different snow trains that  you can board and enjoy a nice warm ride through the winter landscapes of Wisconsin, depending on the area you are in. Both kids and adults will find a train ride through the winter scenery both fun and relaxing, plus you get to see the beauty of winter from a warm train car!
  • Apostle Island Lake Shore- When the winter weather permits you can visit this magical place and explore the ice caves!  While it can definitely be cold the scenery and beauty will indeed take your breath away!
  • Winterfest Sled Dog Race- Found in Merrill, the dog sled race takes place EVERY year and is fun for the whole family.  With a number of races to watch that showcase both adults and children, they are fun to watch and cheer on while also playing in the snow!dog-sled-wisconsin
  • Cascade Mountain-  This beautiful mountain terrain with its numerous tube chutes is the perfect place to go snow tubing!  With lifts that take you to the top of the chute and chutes for all levels of tubers it is definitely fun in the snow that you will not want to miss.
  • Edgewater Ice Skating Rink- This enormous ice rink is found in Madison and has views of the State capitol for skaters to enjoy while they skate. Whether you are just a beginner or have the skating capabilities to get you in the winter olympics this ice skating rink is big enough for everyone.  With views and scenery to enjoy while you skate it’s definitely a fun winter experience.

While there are many things to do and see throughout the state of Wisconsin, these are a couple of our very favorite. While the weather can be be harsh and freezing as long as you wear your long johns and bundle up accordingly there is so much winter fun to be had and activities to be enjoyed. Check the weather before planning your activities so that you can plan the accordingly. When in doubt get out in all the snow and make a snowman or enjoy nature’s beauty that is all around with a walk and nice cup of hot cocoa or coffee from one of the many local coffee shops!

The Best car Shows In Wisconsin

visiting-wisconsinIf you have had a chance to read some of our previous posts you may have learned a little more on all that Wisconsin has to offer visitors, travelers passing through, and even locals throughout the surrounding cities.  We thought with this post we would take things a bit outside of the box and showcase some of the other events that take place in our great state. From cheese, to football, historic sites etc. Wisconsin is a state that offers a variety of activities and things to do for all types of people and their different interests.  Even the avid car lover!  Whether you love older classic cars, muscle cars, souped up cars, there is pretty much a great car show for all types of vehicle lover!  James, a Wisconsin native, who moved to the warm deserts of Phoenix, Arizona and owns his own automotive repair shop, regularly visits his home state every summer to attend these incredible car shows and enjoy a little bit of Wisconsin while he’s at it.  He gave us the top 5 car shows to attend that take place all throughout the summer months so that there is at least one, summer visitors should be able to attend. Check out our list and if you are planning a summer trip to our beautiful state you may just be able to incorporate one of these car lover events!

Top 5 car Shows In Wisconsin

  • Annual Pontiac & GMC Car Show- this event takes place relatively in the beginning of June, this year it fell on June 2nd. Hosted by the POCI or Pontiac-Oakland Club International ll benefits from this car show will go to the Make A Wish Foundation.  With free admission for all and a variety of food, beverages and music to enjoy you will walk among the Pontiac classics of the 60’s.  Think muscle cars such as the Grand Prix, Lemans & Firebirds. Each year there are different cars to see but one thing remains the same it’s a great show worth checking out and with the proceeds going to such a great foundation it leaves event goers contributing to the greater good as well!
  • Annual Winneconne Road Runners Car Show- held on a Saturday in the beginning of July at Marble Park this is a great event for the whole family. With games for the kids, food, beverages & live music there is plenty of fun to be hand.  The first 150 registrants of the show will receive acar-shows-wisconsin dash plaque and special event crafted trophies will be given out the winning entrants later that afternoon.  With an historical museum on sight, ice cream and pie samples this annual car show just gets better and better!
  • Ridin Durty X car Show- Rated one of the best if not the TOP car show to attend in Wisconsin and a favorite of James as well, this great show is held in mid July. The first 25 entrants receive a t-shirt and the first 50 receive a dash plaque.  With categories from classics, to hot rods, muscle cars, exotic cars, trucks, SUV’s and even lowriders and motorcycles this is a car event for ALL.  Trophies are handed out for all categories wih giant trophies being given to Judges choice and Best In Show.  Held at The Ravine this is definitely one car show worth visiting on your next trip to Wisconsin.
  • 9 WVBO Classic Car Show & Cruise- this car show and cruise is held at Fox Valley Technical College with a cruise down College Avenue to follow. For those that would like to attend a show later in the afternoon this event is held from 3-6pm.  Trophies are awarded to the winners of Best In Show Classic, Paint 7 Contemporary.  Entrants also have a shot at being one of 3 winners that will be featured in the 103.9 WVBO calendar. Food & entertainment compliment this early evening car show.
  • Shriners Car Show- you will find this event in De Pere, Wisconsin at the end of August at the Brown County fairgrounds.  The event goes from 11am-3:30pm and has an array of vendors, swap meet & music. There are 24 classes of cars with trophies for all winners.  This charitable event donates all proceeds to Shriners Hospitals that help children with life changing illnesses.  Another great event for the whole family.

best-car-shows-WIWith so many great car shows to choose from that offer food, fun and entertainment for the whole family you can’t go wrong. Couple it with Wisconsin’s summer weather it is great outdoor fun to be had. Next time you visit Wisconsin are passing through or are a native looking for something nw to do we suggest stopping by one f these car shows.  Most were established to help charitable causes so you feel good attending as well and are doing your part to help those in need!