enjoy life with us!
Located on the vibrant and growing West Side, Vista West has raised the bar for senior living in Madison. Offering a full continuum of housing options for active aging adults, Vista West has its own distinct style and personality, so whatever your needs may be, we have a place for you. • • • • • • • • • •
Bright and spacious studio, one- and two-bedroom apartments Beautiful indoor/outdoor gathering spaces and walking trails Delicious on-site dining options Wide variety of enjoy life clubs, classes and lifestyle activities Capri’s signature Blu Grotto Memory Care programming Clean air commitment delivered through NBPI systems Heated, underground parking with electric car chargers Maintenance-free living Fido and feline friendly Countless opportunities to enjoy life — whatever that means to you!
ASK ABOUT OUR RENT SPECIAL!
The sooner you move in, the more you save! Some restrictions may apply.
Contact Jackie Hill today for a tour of our community! (608) 820-1805 | firstname.lastname@example.org | vistawestmadison.com
INDEPENDENT LIVING | ASSISTED LIVING | MEMORY CARE
v o l . 81
publisher Amy S. Johnson email@example.com
editorial director Amy S. Johnson firstname.lastname@example.org
sept– oct 2022
essential arts Emily Balsley........................................................................ 30
senior copy editor & lead staff writer Kyle Jacobson
Ice Age Trail: A Trail on the Rise........................................ 10 Marci Henderson................................................................ 26
sales & marketing director Amy S. Johnson email@example.com
food & beverage
The Deliciouser................................................................... 14
Crea Stellmacher, Linda Walker, Barbara Wilson
Effigy Mounds in Madison.................................................. 18
Debora Knutson, Olivia Seehafer
Birding for All....................................................................... 22
Jeanne Engle, Chris Gargan, Melissa Pierick, Anne Sayers, Kaitlin Svabek
photographer Eric Tadsen
Uncovering Wisconsin’s Hidden Gems: Unexpected Capitals...................................................... 34
additional photographs A & L Kutil Enterprises, LLC/Laurie Kutil, Emily Balsley, Jason Britt, Carolyn Byers/Madison Audubon, Karina Cardella, Girl Scouts of Wisconsin— Badgerland, Lesley Haven, IATA staff, Arlene Koziol, Brandon Olmscheid, Lauren Rapinchuk, Kaitlin Svabek/ Madison Audubon, Travel Wisconsin, Kris Van Handel
subscriptions Madison Essentials is available free at
over 200 locations. To purchase an annual subscription (six issues), send mailing information and $24 to Madison Essentials, c/o Towns & Associates, Inc., PO Box 174, Baraboo, WI 53913-0174. Or sign up for a FREE online subscription at madisonessentials.com.
including From the Publisher................................................................ 4 Contest Information........................................................... 38 Contest Winners................................................................. 38
While Wisconsin is a four-season state, it’s my personal opinion that Madison has two distinct seasons: with and without students. The city is special for many reasons, and a great number of those reasons can be directly connected to the University of Wisconsin–Madison. While I appreciate that fact, there’s always a small squeal of joy that erupts from me each spring commencement. Those of us over 25 aren’t as outnumbered for three whole months! That said, there’s also something quite wonderful when the flurry of fall semester activity returns in September. It’s a different state of liveliness, and I enjoy that as well. Not all that’s great is contained within the borders of downtown, although it’s the center of our community and capitol building. There are numerous places to go and things to do inside, outside, throughout, and around. If you live here, you understand why we love to live here, and if you’re visiting, you’ll quickly learn why Madison repeatedly places on numerous Top 10 lists. To you, our fair city, we devote this Quintessential Madison issue. Enjoy the stories, images, and lives shared within these pages, and don’t forget to visit our sponsors, all of whom are fabulous! And don’t forget to tell them that Madison Essentials sent you.
We welcome your questions and comments. Please submit to Madison Essentials, c/o Towns & Associates, Inc., PO Box 174, Baraboo, WI 53913-0174 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
To place an advertisement, please call (608) 215-5240 or email email@example.com.
all rights reserved. ©2022
No portion of this magazine may be reproduced without prior written permission by Madison Essentials. Towns & Associates, Inc. PO Box 174 Baraboo, WI 53913-0174 P (608) 356-8757 • F (608) 356-8875
Watch for the next issue
November/December 2022. amy johnson
Cover photograph— TOGARASHIER on shishito peppers from The Deliciouser taken by Eric Tadsen Photographs on page 3: left— Banana Cupcakes with Buttercream Frosting from Teddywedgers taken by Eric Tadsen right— taken by Brandon Olmscheid
4 | madison essentials
600 600 WATER WATER ST. ST. SAUK SAUK CITY, CITY, WI WI
803 E. E. WASHINGTON WASHINGTON AVE. 803 MADISON, WI WI MADISON,
674 S. WHITNEY WAY MADISON, WI
SEE MENUS AND DETAILS AT VINTAGEBREWINGCO.COM madisonessentials.com
e sse nt i al dining
Bacon Breakfast Pasty
TEDDYWEDGERS Blast From the Pasty by Kyle Jacobson Opening a restaurant is often an overwhelming, but exciting venture. You get to flex your creative muscle building the menu. You’re taking on a huge risk. You get to share your love of cooking with others. You don’t have time to enjoy your own cooking. But what about purchasing a restaurant with a legacy? Now you’re adding on this layer of being true to what the restaurant was—trying to attract new customers while not losing those who’ve come to love it over the decades. When siblings Anthony Rineer and Karima Berkani purchased Teddywedgers from Raymond Johnson, longtime employee who took over when the original owner, Miles Allen, passed, they immediately felt the enormity of what they were taking on. “The fact that it’s not dine-in made it seem manageable,” says Karima. “It seemed like a good first restaurant to own. Of course, once you actually sign the papers and you get into it, you realize everything is a lot more complicated than you thought.” The first hurdle involved making the same pasty pastry people have come to love. With a strong culinary background, it shouldn’t be a problem for Anthony, right? But, as Karima says, “There were no recipes; we learned by doing. A lot of it was very intuitive cooking that the previous owner was doing. It was just a lot of very early morning cooking side by side with Raymond.” 6 | madison essentials
After weeks of working with Raymond and pretty much having the recipe figured out, the purist in Anthony took the opportunity to go back to the way Miles had done things in 1976. Big pasty pies weighing somewhere in the realm of a pound and a half. Raymond had made the pies smaller for the sake of consumer convenience, but when it comes to tradition, there’s something to the adage that sometimes you have to go back to go forward. “We preserved the classic parts of the menu,” says Karima. “With a few of the recipes, we kind of tried to reinvent them to be how they originally were. Cutting the potatoes slightly bigger to give it more of a homemade feel. I have to say that my brother really elevated the menu. Instead of using canned or frozen vegetables, he started buying fresh. We started sourcing from Wisconsin farmers. Instead of buying rotisserie or alreadycooked chicken, my brother marinates and bakes all the chicken on the bones for the chicken pot pies. Really elevated the taste and made them healthier.”
Guava and Cream Cheese Sweet Hand Pies
Cranberry Walnut Coffee Cake
Other things that were brought back to Teddywedgers include chocolate chip cookies, now made by Anthony and Karima’s mother, Nina. “It was a natural fit for her to do the sweet baking with Wisconsin ingredients, like in our cranberry coffee cake. Teddywedgers has always had really good chocolate chip cookies, but now they’re homemade with real butter and organic flour. Around Thanksgiving, mom usually bakes up apple, pumpkin, and pecan pies and chocolate bonbons for Valentine’s Day— things like that depending on the season.” It’s really important to get it all just right because, as Karima has learned, Teddywedgers has international appeal. She recalls attending a workshop in South Africa for her job in marketing with Uber and meeting someone who went to university in Texas. The individual said they had a roommate who used to get these pocket pastries in Madison but couldn’t remember the name of the place.
“Teddywedgers?” Karima asked. “That’s it!” For all these reasons and more, it’s important to be true to the legacy, but that doesn’t mean Anthony the Purist feels confined to madisonessentials.com
Chicken Pot Pie
it. There’s quite a wide range of cultural backgrounds in the family, which gives Anthony a bountiful sandbox to play in. “Everywhere you go in the world, everyone has a pocket-based food item,” says Karima. “There’s empanadas, there’s sambusa. In the Middle East, there’s sambousek. Anything that you can stuff into a pocket, every culture has its own take. “Anthony made a carnitas pasty, which was really good. Eighteen hours slowcooked pork that he marinated in citrus—super good. My husband is Brazilian, so we have a sweet pie that’s made of goiabada (a guava paste) and cream cheese, which is delicious. Anthony’s made tandoori chicken ones. We made poutine pies in honor of Canada. In honor of our Algerian ties, we’ve made couscous pasties. We’ve done pulled pork and sweet potato. And we’ve also added more vegan options to the menu because our dough is naturally vegan. We don’t use lard or butter in the dough.” Developing the menu while tethering it to Teddywedgers’ roots strikes the 8 | madison essentials
balance needed to keep the signature Madison pasty relevant. Whatever those butterflies were in Anthony and Karima’s stomachs when they bought the place have taken on the form of confidence and delight. It’s one of those things Karima and Anthony always talked about and dreamed of doing. And the way they show just how much fun they’re having comes out in fun nods to Wisconsin traditions and sidekick holidays.
Toffee and Oatmeal Cookies
“Every day there’s a special,” says Karima. “Then on Fridays, there’s a fishbased menu, keeping in the Wisconsin tradition of fish fries, so usually there’s a salmon or a tuna option. And on April Fool’s Day, there’s always something on.” For example, this last April Fool’s they did a confetti cake pasty with Flamin’ Hot Cheetos. For a lot of locals, when you go to the Dane County Farmers’ Market, you get a
Teddywedger. For others, it’s discovering their first pasty. Then there are those who come back and are happy to see the place they went to as kids is still around, traveling hours to relive their childhood. Anthony and Karima call it “a meal fit for a badger,” owning the legacy Miles started almost 46 years ago to the point they’re comfortable setting the course for years to come. Kyle Jacobson is lead writer and senior copy editor for Madison Essentials.
Photograph by Barbara Wilson
Photographs by Eric Tadsen.
e sse nt i al community
St. Croix Falls Segment
Ice Age Trail A Trail on the Rise
by Melissa Pierick
Find Huck Was Here on YouTube for a chronicle of Huck’s thru-hike.
In the grand scheme of the 11 National Scenic Trails, the Ice Age Trail is not the most well-known in the country, a distinction that goes to the Appalachian Trail; nor is it the longest, the North Country Trail; nor the most majestic, which, according to one thru-hiker, is the Continental Divide Trail. But the Ice Age Trail is like no other, and its star is on the rise.
More Popular than Ever
An indicator of the Ice Age Trail’s growing popularity is thruhikers, who attempt to hike from one terminus of the trail to the other in one effort, usually within six months. As of August, a record 21 people declared their attempts to thruhike the Ice Age Trail in 2022, most with previous thru-hiking experience on another National Scenic Trail. Only 4 of the 21 thru-hikers were from Wisconsin, so not only do people want to try and conquer the Ice Age Trail, but most are coming from out of state to do it. 10 | m a d i s o n e s s e n t i a l s
Photograph provided by IATA staff
Millions of people spend time on the Ice Age Trail each year. A 2019 study, before COVID, estimated the number to be 2.3 million. Anecdotal evidence indicates many more people now visit the Ice Age Trail each year.
80 people achieved Thousand-Miler In 2021, more than
Photograph by Lauren Rapinchuk
A Great Alternative Sixty percent of Wisconsin residents live within 20 miles of a segment of the Ice Age Trail, which winds throughout the state, making it easy to get to. Combine easy access with beautiful locations and you have a great day-, weekend-, or week-long excursion. A hike on the Ice Age Trail is an excellent alternative to a National Park visit since it traces the edge of the last glaciation, offering a chance to see things you can’t see anywhere else: world-renowned glacial features, like a world-class set of
kames in the northern Kettle Moraine and a two-mile-long esker on the Parnell Segment. For the only potholes formed during the Ice Age, hike the St. Croix Falls Segment. At Dells of the Eau Claire Segment, hike among rock that is the same age as what’s at the bottom of the Grand Canyon. The Ice Age Trail also boasts more lakes than most National Parks and takes hikers through globally imperiled oak and pine barrens. So skip the hassle of getting a National Park permit and securing lodging years in advance by instead spending your next vacation hiking the Ice Age Trail.
It ’ s a Challenge
You may think a National Scenic Trail in Wisconsin lacks when compared to trails that traverse Colorado, California, and New Hampshire, but that’s not the case. Although it doesn’t have mountains to summit or deserts to wind through, the Ice Age Trail can be a challenging, if not adventurous, hike. Consider the
Heather “Steady” Werderman completed her thru-hike at the end of June. 33 percent thru-hiker completion rate on the Ice Age Trail. Even if a thruhiker has previously conquered one of the Triple Crown of Hiking trails— Appalachian, Continental Divide, and Pacific Crest—there’s no guarantee they can do the same on the Ice Age Trail. Photograph by Kris Van Handel
The number of Thousand-Milers, people who hike the entire Ice Age Trail segment by segment rather than in one effort, is also on the rise. There’s no time limit to achieve Thousand-Miler status; some take months, and others take decades. In 2021, more than 80 people achieved Thousand-Miler status— another record number!
Photograph provided by IATA staff
status—another record number!
Chippewa Moraine Segment
Photograph provided by IATA staff
Dells of the Eau Claire Segment
One reason multiple thru-hikers cited for ending their attempts this year was the solitude of the Ice Age Trail, especially in the western segments. Hikers used to the camaraderie associated with the Appalachian Trail, where thru-hikers often hike in groups, could go days without seeing another person; that’s a dream for some, but a hike-ender for others. Another challenge is established camping areas. On the Appalachian Trail, camping sites are established on average every eight miles. On the Ice Age Trail, the distance between camping sites varies, so more planning is required. Some argue the lack of camping sites gears the Ice Age Trail more toward segment and day hikers, but many thru-hikers figure out a way.
12 | m a d i s o n e s s e n t i a l s
Photograph by Karina Cardella
In completing her Ice Age Trail thru-hike, Arlette “Apple Pie” Laan became the first woman to complete all 11 National Scenic Trails.
Blazed Miles Are Increasing Currently, 682.1 miles of the Ice Age Trail are blazed hiking trail. The remaining miles of the 1,200-mile path are connecting routes—rural roads and highways—which link the blazed hiking segments. The number of blazed hiking miles increases every
year thanks to Ice Age Trail Alliance land protection efforts. The Alliance is a member- and volunteer-based organization that works along with its partners to conserve, create, maintain, and promote the Ice Age Trail. In 2021, the Alliance had its most prolific year of land protection in decades thanks to willing land owners, partners, gracious benefactors, and generous members. 2022 is shaping up to be another banner year. As more land is protected, more miles will be blazed. This means the Alliance’s volunteers, numbering in the thousands, will continue their hard work creating and maintaining the Ice Age Trail. Of all national parks and trails, the Ice Age National Scenic Trail ranked 16th for its volunteer numbers and 9th for its more than 63,000 volunteer hours! Volunteers spent more time on the Ice Age Trail than at Yellowstone National Park.
To learn how you can be part of the volunteer effort to create and maintain the Ice Age National Scenic Trail, visit iceagetrail.org/volunteer. To donate or support the work of the Ice Age Trail Alliance, visit iceagetrail.org/donate. To get hooked on hiking the Ice Age Trail, go to iceagetrail.org for a map to find a trail segment near you. To connect with other Ice Age Trail enthusiasts, a number of Ice Age Trail Facebook pages exist: search for Ice Age Trail, Ice Age Trail Alliance, Get Off the Couch, or Thousand Miler WannaBes. Melissa Pierick is the director of marketing and community relations at Ice Age Trail Alliance.
Since 1971 Italian Specialties & Delicatessen Huge Deli Featuring ®
frabonisdeli.com • Housemade Frozen Pizzas • Hot Sandwiches & Dinners • Homemade Deli Salads • Lasagna & Mostaccioli • Spaghetti with Meatballs • Gluten-Free Pastas & Sauces • Homemade Pasta Sauces • Prosciutto & Mortadella • Meatballs & Sausages • Great Wine Selection Dane BUY
Salads, Olives & Fresh Italian Sausage
• Italian Recipes & Housewares
• Imported Olives,
Olive Oils & Vinegars
• Tomato Products • Artisanal Pasta & Cheeses • Specialty Sub Sandwiches • Take & Heat Dinners • Catering for Large & Small Groups!
FAMOUS FROZEN PIZZAS Check Out Our Pizza of the Moment
Please visit www.frabonisdeli.com for current hours
108 Owen Rd, Monona • 608-222-6632
YOU MAKE THE MEMORIES. WE’LL MAKE THEM LAST. Whether it’s a beloved print or family heirloom, give your piece an artful presentation that will stand the test of time. OPEN Tues – Sat, 10am – 5pm Schedule an appointment or drop by
1901 Monroe St Madison, WI | 608.255.7330 | monroestreetframing.com
e sse nt i al food & beverage
DELICIOUSER MEZZOGIORNO on Roasted Cherry Tomatoes and Whipped Ricotta Bruscetta
by Kyle Jacobson Ever gone into a local meat or seafood market, found the perfect cut or fish for tonight’s dinner, then realized you had no idea what to do with it? You decide to pick out one of their spice blends and hope for the best. But what if you could have some Greater Madison area restauranteurs and foodies design a spice specifically for the food you’re buying? “I developed those for Berke and Benham. He did multiple tastings. So that’s for a fish boil or a shrimp boil. I took those as a jumping off point—” “—And made it deliciouser.” The above conversation between Patrick O’Halloran and Marcia Castro sums up the drive and philosophy of The Deliciouser—a collection of customized spice blends made to enhance everyone’s cooking, from the connoisseur of consommé to the architect of rubs to the boo of berry. But what do these longtime Madison food gurus (Patrick once the owner and head chef for Lombardino’s and Tipsy Cow,
14 | m a d i s o n e s s e n t i a l s
Marcia a partner at The Old Fashioned) bring to the table that isn’t already there? A lot, actually. Little backstory, Patrick and Marcia were once married. Now, not only are they business partners, but Patrick’s current wife, food and travel enthusiast Michelle Oyamada, is also a partner of The Deliciouser along with Michelle’s daughter-in-law, Anne Oyamada. This charm-bracelet connection actually serves as more than a late night who’s who of Madison trivia answer. Each person represents a different tier of chef, and their palates are distinct from one another. What comes out the other end of that funnel is a unique collection of spice blends that showcase every one of their favorite flavors. As Marcia says, “The common denominator is we all love to eat. We travel for food.” The pandemic brought a lot of people back to eating more at home, including everyone at The Deliciouser. This wasn’t a planned venture. During the pandemic, Patrick fell back in love with what he’d lost from being a chef for so long: experiencing a meal from beginning to end with the ones he loves. He admits
he never cooked at home while he was a professional chef, instead dining out. Marcia says, “I think a big part of it was when we were doing it, it really brought a lot of joy. We were having fun. We were cooking and trying things—that sprit had been lost for a while.” That creative and bonding environment is what they envisioned bringing to everyone’s kitchen. They wanted to make spices that were great tasting but not intimidating. Something you can use with a dish you already make that might just make you love it that much more. And the smell of some of these spice blends—“Our jars are this passport to these places,” says Anne. I think it’s about time to address the salty elephant in the room. Not that kind of salty. Like yummy salty. There is another spice game in town, so how does The Deliciouser distinguish itself? “Penzeys is a great shop,” says Patrick. “We love it. But when you come to The Deliciouser’s new kitchen studio, you get a glass of wine, a cup of coffee, and a lesson on how to actually cook and taste the spice blends in a meal.” Marcia says, “The concept of this kitchen studio space is in addition to the teaching, even for dinners. It’s a
small enough space that people can learn; they can talk. For us, it’s opening our doors. Welcome. We want to know our customers. We want them to ask questions.” One thing that I noticed is that even for an amateur like myself, all it takes is a smell of a spice blend to start imagining what I can do with it. Normally, I don’t like to get fancy in fear I’d screw up whatever I was working with. Stick to the recipe. Not to sound too much like an infomercial, but with The Deliciouser’s spices, I don’t feel that same pressure. Maybe it’s the freshness from them toasting and grinding all their blends. Patrick notes that for major spice companies, like those you find at the grocery store, they’re just buying their ingredients in bulk and mixing tons of salt and sugar into their blends. Patrick likes the size of The Delciouser because it allows him to focus on “the handcurated aspect of spices.” The result is more-authentic flavors, which is the only way to really get the flavors from the regions they love. Bomba is a Calabrian Chilean blend that’s southern Italian with chilies. You can just throw it into a tomato sauce to up your spaghetti game. Then there’s Antica.
Quick cook BOMBA Tomato Sauce with Fraboni’s Sausage, Peppers, and Eggplant
From left: Marcia Castro, Michelle Oyamada, Patrick O’Halloran, Anne Oyamada
Fresh Fruit sprinkled with ZÓCALO
“What is Antica?” says Patrick. “If you smell that, it’s just beautiful. It’s all the most ancient spices that the European fleets went to the Far East to get. It’s nutmeg and mace and cinnamon and black pepper. It’s a more adult version of pumpkin pie.” Michelle likes to keep things much simpler. Misoyaki, as mentioned above, is for fish, but Michelle says, “It’s really good on vanilla ice cream with some 16 | m a d i s o n e s s e n t i a l s
pistachcios.” In fact, when offering samples of their spices at markets and events, they simply sprinkle the blends over popcorn. To get to know Patrick, Marcia, Michelle, and Anne better, I recommend visiting their website, thedeliciouser.com. They have a great story in their “About” section. You’ll also find thorough descriptions of their spices along with recommendations on what to use the
spices with. I’ve already made a few steaks with different blends and done some experimenting with what the different blends bring out in the meat. Just to beat the drum one more time, I’ll leave you with their tagline: Spice blends for all cooks, from the culinary curious to the well seasoned. The Deliciouser’s production facility and tasting room will be open sometime this autumn. Kyle Jacobson is lead writer and senior copy editor for Madison Essentials.
Photograph by Barbara Wilson
Photographs by Eric Tadsen.
DEER CAMP Roasted Pork Loin
Tadsen Photography Drone/Aerial Imagery
Fully licensed - FAA part 333 Waiver Stunning stills and 4k video
tadphoto.com - firstname.lastname@example.org - 608-469-2255 madisonessentials.com
e sse nt i al landmark
Effigy Mounds IN MADISON by Jeanne Engle Long before white settlers made their way to Madison, Native Americans were living on the shores of the four lakes. The earliest Indigenous people, ancestors of today’s Native American tribes, most likely arrived around 11,000 BC, shortly after the glacier that covered much of Wisconsin receded. Little is secularly known about the culture of these earliest native settlers since not many artifacts have been found where they lived. Evidence of activities of later native inhabitants has been discovered in ancient campsites, villages, cemeteries, and earthen structures. The most impressive records are mounds built over a period of about 1,600 years for burial of the dead and other ceremonial purposes. Mound building began 18 | m a d i s o n e s s e n t i a l s
around 500 BC in Wisconsin and in the Four Lakes region. Robert Birmingham, former Wisconsin state archaeologist, breaks down the chronology of the mound builders into three stages in his book Spirits of Earth: The Effigy Mound Landscape of Madison and the Four Lakes: Early Woodland (500 BC to AD 100), Middle Woodland (AD 100 to 500), and Late Woodland (AD 500 to 1250). The mounds built by the Early Woodland people were primarily high round mounds over pit graves containing several individuals. During the Middle Woodland period, round or conical mounds were built to a large size and in groups or clusters that were also quite large. Along with bodies of the dead, tools, such as knives, pipes, and chipped stone blades, were buried in the mounds.
Mounds built by Early and Middle Woodland people can be found all over the eastern half of the United States and the Great Plains; however, effigy mounds, those sculpted in the shape of animals, are mostly found in the southern two-thirds of Wisconsin. Effigy mound building reached a peak during the Late Woodland era. Amy Rosebrough, staff archaeologist with the Wisconsin Historical Society (WHS), has found records of at least 3,100 effigy mound sites in Wisconsin, each with many different types of mounds. The Department of Natural Resources (DNR) notes, “Because of the especially dense concentration of effigy mounds in the state, Wisconsin is considered to be the center of what is referred to as effigy mound culture.” Madison and the Four Lakes region have one
from vandalism and looting in 1911. At that time, the legislature also allocated funds for the WAS to locate and map mounds in the state. During a two-year period, volunteers traversed the state mapping and documenting hundreds of new mound groups. Many of the markers that WAS placed at mounds on public lands during that decade survive to this day.
of the largest concentrations of these exceptional creations. Birmingham reports that more than 1,200 mounds were built on or near the shores of the Madison area lakes in 160 locations. Regardless of early attempts to protect the effigy mounds, as many as 80 percent have been demolished by agricultural practices and urban development. In the 1850s, Increase Lapham, a surveyor from Ohio who is regarded as Wisconsin’s first natural scientist, visited the Four Lakes region. He documented many effigy mounds that are no longer extant. Lapham published Antiquities of Wisconsin in 1855. Charles E. Brown, first director of the Wisconsin State Historical Museum (from 1908 to 1944) and founder of the Wisconsin Archeological Society (WAS) in 1903, was also instrumental in mapping effigy mounds throughout Wisconsin. As stated in his obituary, Brown was known throughout the country for his work in Wisconsin folklore, history, archaeology, and Native American lore. He was a member of numerous groups devoted to the study of natural science and archaeology. He worked to preserve the effigy mounds around Madison and promoted Madison as Mound City.
In the late 1970s, mound research and preservation had a resurgence with the celebration of the nation’s bicentennial. The WHS was given funding and the responsibility to inventory the state for historic buildings, historic sites, and archaeological sites worthy of preservation under the auspices of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966. In the 1980s, Madison started a program of designating mounds as city landmarks, and in Dane County, through the parks department, mounds were identified the following decade. Since 1985, mounds in Wisconsin have been protected by law as designated burial sites. What do the effigy mounds represent? According to the National Park Service, “Clues can be found in American Indian legends and mythology and, to a lesser extent, scientific research. The stories and legends of the Native Americans
whose ancestors built the mounds describe [them] as ceremonial and sacred sites. ... Some archaeologists believe they were built to mark celestial events or seasonal observances. Other speculate they were constructed as territorial markers or as boundaries between groups.” The majority of the effigy mounds in Wisconsin are connected to the HoChunk Nation. The Ho-Chunk are living in the same places where the mounds were built, and the forms of the mounds—clan animals and spirits— are very familiar to the Ho-Chunk people. Traditional Ho-Chunk beliefs correspond with the effigy mound forms. Late Woodland settlements dotted the shores of Lake Mendota. Birmingham writes, “Everything about this large lake suggests it was the center of the Four Lakes effigy mound society and its most important ceremonial area.” Two large mound groups, added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1974, on the northwest shore of Lake Mendota are located on the grounds of the Mendota Mental Health Institute (MMHI), 301 Troy Drive, Madison. In honor of these mounds, MMHI uses an eagle as its logo to represent the largest of the mounds.
Brown was able to get a law passed by the state’s legislature to protect archaeological sites on public lands madisonessentials.com
Mendota Mental Health Institute uses an eagle as its logo to represent the largest of the two mounds located on their grounds.
One group of mounds, the Mendota State Hospital Group, includes some of the finest and largest effigy mounds preserved anywhere. One large bird has a wingspan of more than 600 feet; two others are smaller. Two panthers can be seen, one of which has an unusual curved tail. A deer effigy was constructed with four legs rather than the traditional two. Two bears and several conical mounds are also present. The second grouping, known as Farwell’s Point Group, offers an incredible panoramic view of Lake Mendota on a point 70 feet above the lake. The group is made up of conical mounds (the tallest is 10 feet high), parts of two panthers, a bird, and an undefined effigy. Some of the mounds are believed to have been built during the Middle Woodland period, while the effigy mounds were built later during the Late Woodland period. The campus of the MMHI is on state grounds and is open to the public. Anyone wanting to view the mounds should give a courtesy call to the
20 | m a d i s o n e s s e n t i a l s
director’s office, (608) 301-1040. Staff will alert security personnel of the visit.
Jeanne Engle is a freelance writer.
Get down to the Nitty Gritty!
Photographs by A & L Kutil Enterprises, LLC/Laurie Kutil.
. Home of the Famous Gritty Burger Photograph by MOD Media Productions
. Serving Weekend Brunch . ALL AGES WELCOME . Serving Gourmet Milkshakes . Gluten Free, Vegetarian, and Vegan Menu Items
A TRADITION SINCE 1968
Other mound groups in Wisconsin can be found in state parks, state forests, and other lands. DNR asks that visitors avoid walking over or picnicking on the mounds or other burial sites.
#1 PLACE TO CELEBRATE BIRTHDAYS . Drink FREE Beer, Soda or Specialty Cocktails on your Birthday! . Over 700,000 birthdays celebrated since 1968!
223 N. FRANCES ST. 1021 N. GAMMON RD. 315 E. LINNERUD DR. 608-251-2521 608-833-6489 608-837-4999
ns sicia u m l oca ith l w s s point iew lking terv a t n i d n and nes a eadli ons h i s d n s se beyo live ard of... at go h t s never he e n ’v o u i o t y t a rs ing artis conve at record th g in r e v disco elevating voices of the under-represented fact-based news with musi out corpora c to s te influenc oothe e , mus sto i c to m rie ove t s th o, mu at sic to ins empo pir e wer.. .
Now more than ever...
Community Media Is Vital. LISTENER-SPONSORED COMMUNITY RADIO 89.9 FM MADISON • WORTFM.ORG • WORT FM app @WORTFM @WORTnews @wortfm
KEEPING YOU CONNECTED
e sse nt i al nonprofit
Participants in a birding by ear meetup gather to enjoy the soundscape at UW–Madison’s Lakeshore Nature Preserve.
BIRDING for All When people hear the word birder, they might picture a floppy brimmed hat, khaki vest full of pockets, and expensive equipment. Some people believe birders have to be competitive, elite list keepers, but since birding is an activity that can bring so much joy and empowerment, we believe it’s time to rectify that misconception. Anyone who loves and appreciates birds can call themselves a birder—the more the merrier.
HOW TO GO BIRDING
There are so many unique ways to enjoy birds. You do not need to own binoculars, 22 | m a d i s o n e s s e n t i a l s
know how to identify every bird species, or even be outside. In Madison Audubon’s work and collaborations with local partners, we’re committed to offering and expanding opportunities to appreciate birds and nature together. We’re always eager to collaborate with local organizations to create new accessible outings.
Stay Close to Home Our neighborhoods and yards are some of the first places we fall in love with nature and wildlife. Without doing any work at all, you’ll likely hear the chattery robin or see the bright-red
Photograph by Arlene Koziol
by Kaitlin Svabek
Neighborhood birds, like the eastern bluebird, are some of the first birds we encounter and fall in love with.
Photograph by Kaitlin Svabek/Madison Audubon
flash of a cardinal from your doorstep. By planting native plants or putting up bird feeders (either less than 3 or more than 30 feet from windows) you can encourage all kinds of birds to visit. Bird feeders and plants can provide food and habitat year-round and can be enjoyed without having to leave the comfort of your home. There are even some types of bird feeders that record or stream video of your bird visitors right to your computer or phone.
Listen to the Music Birdwatching and spotting birds using scopes or binoculars can be great, but listening to beautiful songs and calls is equally incredible. The low whistling sounds of a mourning dove flying away, the loud con-ga-REE of the red-winged blackbirds, and the unique drumming of woodpeckers allow us to identify birds that we are not able to see. Birding by ear, as it’s called, can be done anywhere and is a rewarding skill set that opens up the bird world. Madison Audubon partners with the Wisconsin Council of the Blind & Visually Impaired to offer a beginning course on the topic each spring. The course is open to participants who are blind, low vision, or sighted. By examining all the different kinds of sounds that birds can make,
from songs to calls to even wing sounds, birders can familiarize themselves with their unique behaviors.
Adventure Together For some people, the idea of venturing out in nature alone might feel uncomfortable, intimidating, or even scary. There can be strength in numbers, so grab your friends for an adventure or join an organized event with a local bird and nature group that will support you, like Madison Audubon, the BIPOC Birding Club of Wisconsin, and the Feminist Bird Club-Madison Chapter.
Join a Birdie Sit Having a comfortable and safe place to stay or sit for a while provides an opportunity to observe and be immersed in nature. While the number of bird species in one spot can be amazing, even more valuable is taking the time to learn and feel connected to individual birds, like hearing a Baltimore oriole call to a mate or watching a chickadee forage and bring food to young in a nest. Being able to focus on the environment around you, looking or listening deeply, is a great way for beginning birders to experience the habitats around them without having to worry about difficult trail conditions or other obstacles that
can limit access for anyone with mobility challenges. Madison Audubon holds birdie sits, a great time to gather and meet other bird lovers while enjoying an easygoing outing, periodically throughout the year.
Bird From the Comfort of Your Couch You can enjoy watching birds far away through livestream video of feeders, nests, and habitats in other places of the world (check out madisonaudubon .org/pond-cam). Did you know you can also go birding virtually? Using a computer or smartphone, you can join a bird outing live. Birdability, a national nonprofit organization that works to ensure that the outdoors are welcoming, safe, and accessible to all, partners with birders and clubs around the country to host sessions that are free and open to anyone who wants to join.
INCREASING INCREASING ACCESS TO ACCESS TO NATURE NATURE
For those who experience barriers to getting outdoors, it can be an additional barrier to figure out what places are suitable for them to visit. Enter Birdability. In addition to supporting current birders, the group seeks to
Photograph by Carolyn Byers/Madison Audubon
There are so many ways to enjoy birds! Kids in Madison Audubon’s education program use binoculars to explore.
Photograph by Lesley Haven
Nature is for everybody, and Madison Audubon is passionate about sharing the joy of birds.
Birders use Access Ability Wisconsin’s outdoor wheelchairs at Pheasant Branch Conservancy during an outing to celebrate Birdability Week in October 2020. introduce the wonders of birding to people with disabilities or other health concerns. Madison Audubon is proud to be a member of their founders circle. Their Birdability Map provides a resource where people can leave detailed information and accessibility reviews of different natural places. In the Madison area, there are already over two dozen entries. Access Ability Wisconsin (AAW) is another incredible organization who partners with Madison Audubon. They manage a set of all-terrain, outdoor wheelchairs in 13 counties (and 24 | m a d i s o n e s s e n t i a l s
growing) that are available for anyone to reserve and haul in AAW’s enclosed trailers to natural areas throughout the state and beyond. These awesome chairs provide independence to the user so they can safely travel over uneven, rocky, and muddy terrain to fully experience nature. At many Madison Audubon field trips and events, we work with AAW to have outdoor wheelchairs available for participants to request.
LEARNING MOREABOUT ABOUT LEARN MORE ACCESSIBLE BIRDING
The third week of October is Birdability Week, which spotlights the importance
of eliminating barriers to the outdoors, especially in the birding community. From October 17 to 23, tune in to Birdability’s virtual programming and Madison Audubon’s local events that highlight the importance of access to nature. As a Wisconsin Birdability Captain, I am always happy to help anyone who has questions about accessibility to nature, the Birdability Map, and more. Nature is for everybody, and Madison Audubon is passionate about sharing the joy of birds. We strive to foster a birding community that is inclusive and welcoming. In the next issue, we will share how you can get involved in
bird conservation in 2023. Until then, happy adventuring! Kaitlin Svabek is the communications specialist at Madison Audubon. Connect with the team at email@example.com or follow them on social media @madisonaudubon.
accessabilitywi.org birdability.org bipocbirdingclub.org facebook.com/feministbirdclubwi gis.audubon.org/birdability wcblind.org
Putting the Urgent Back into Urgent Care Stoughton Health accepts over 160 area insurance plans: Alliance, Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield, Dean Health Plan, Quartz, United Healthcare and more.
McFarland Urgent Care Clinic 5614 US HWY 51 | (608) 838-8242
Oregon Urgent Care Clinic
990 Janesville Street | (608) 835-5373
Stoughton Hospital Urgent Care 900 Ridge Street | (608) 873-6611
Virtual Visits at stoughtonhealth.com
Consult a Stoughton Health provider online about minor illnesses and injuries.
e sse nt i al community
The Spirit of Self and Heart by Kyle Jacobson
Our scheduled editorial was postponed, so we’re resharing a wonderful story from our September/October 2019 issue. Condensing the complexity of life, the ability to experience, appreciate, and comprehend existence, into a linear timeline is a confine that we relish for its simplicity even though it removes much of the nuance that influences connection outside of the mind. Many of us have experienced the edges of temporal removal: when focus dissolves into interconnectedness. For some, it’s an adrenaline rush. For others, it’s getting lost in nature—forgetting the things we deem important just long enough to be uprooted. An awesome rebalancing of the senses. In Marci Henderson, I see someone who seeks to give others the gift of connection as she strives to embrace her own. Today, Marci is the chief executive officer at Girl Scouts of Wisconsin. But when looking at the entirety of her life, it’s easy to see she’s much more than that, and all the parts and pieces that define who she is haven’t changed, but developed, sometimes taking on new shapes. Perhaps it’s the amount of travel she’s undertaken. “I’m always drawn to the areas with seasons.” From the Pacific Northwest to Madison back to Washington state then to Syracuse, New York, and finally back to Madison, her love of nature and sense of community have nurtured a generous and adventurous spirit. 26 | m a d i s o n e s s e n t i a l s
“Out of college, I worked with the Girl Scouts in Germany. We were serving the girls of the U.S. Military.” Marci was the food service director at the camp, and worked with all nationalities across Europe and Africa. When she returned stateside, she got involved with the Red Cross recruiting blood donors. She was working in upstate New York during 9/11, a moment etched into her heart that weighed on her in the brief moment she recalled it. Marci once planned to enter retirement after the Red Cross, but before that day came, she saw an opportunity to take on the role of CEO at Girl Scouts of Wisconsin. “What resonated with me about this opportunity was the mission statement: Girl Scouting builds girls of courage, confidence, and character who make the world a better place. That we’re never done. That we’re always just growing.”
The Girl Scouts very much encapsulates exploration, taking risks, something Marci admires in her “first inspiration. My maternal grandma was a resident of a beautiful, beautiful place in Switzerland, the heart of Switzerland. Like when you think of Switzerland and you think of Heidi and the Alps, that’s where grandma came from. She left there at the age of 29 to come to America. You know the classic story of passage on the boat—she earned her way. She didn’t tell her family she was leaving until a week before. And at that time, I think it was 1922, the chances of her ever seeing them again were pretty remote. ... [She] went through Ellis Island, I’ve seen the manifesto where she signed in, and then took a train to an aunt whom she had never met that had to sponsor her in Portland, Oregon. ... Her independence and her courage and a dedication to animals, she loved the
Her mother inherited that drive to explore. “My mom was a stay-at-home mom until my brother and I went to college. She was a true go-getter. We would wake up, and she would decree that it was adventure day. She would pack a picnic, and we would head off to a park or Mount St. Helens or the Oregon Coast or the Washington Coast—we would just head off someplace for the day. I think sometimes she didn’t even know where we were exactly headed. And that spirit of adventure really ignited our souls.” What amuses me about these stories is that they come with the potential to find moments of serenity. Taking a risk breeds a heavy time of reflection. An almost out-of-body experience that leaves a person questioning if they really had the courage to be somewhere completely unknown to them, to do something profoundly unfamiliar. Marci recalls fly fishing in Yellowstone Park 10 years ago. “I’m standing in the middle of a river with these mountains around me ... with an excuse to be standing in the river. This is just amazing whether I caught anything or not. It really didn’t matter—just the experience was joyful.” It’s a snapshot of the endurance and transformation that is a piece of her grandmother as much as it is of herself. Though Marci can’t imagine displaying her grandmother’s courage, at the core of every risktaker resides the soul of an artist. Marci fosters that by being on the board of Forward Theater, Madison’s
professional theatre company. “I grew up in a family committed to music, theatre, and the visual arts.” Though not artistic by her own account, Marci also spends as much time as she can in Montana to be a part of one of the legacies left by her mother, “the Montana Cowboy Poetry Gathering that happens every year in Lewistown, Montana. It’s a three-day festival with spoken word and music. There’s a strong history of cowboys, who lead a pretty solitary life, and some of them would explore the arts and write poetry and music.” It’s something she’s proud to be on the board of. When her mom passed away a few years ago, Marci found her old Girl Scout sash while cleaning out the home. “It was interesting because a number of the badges I had earned as a young girl were the same ones that I would earn today: outdoors, animals, civic engagement, community service, food, arts.” There’s genuine value for Marci in rediscovering herself. It’s a quality she imparts on everyone she interacts with, whether it be young women in the Girl Scouts,
close friends, or the thoughtful onlooker. “Lots of times, we’re unaware that people are watching,” and when we’re making connections with those people, we never really know who we might inspire. Kyle Jacobson is lead writer and senior copy editor for Madison Essentials. Photographs provided by Girl Scouts of Wisconsin—Badgerland.
Photograph by Barbara Wilson
animals, was so much greater than you could really imagine, and that provides a lot of inspiration to me.”
Classic & Cool Cars Family-Friendly Event Kid Activities Arts & Crafts • Food Carts
we make a difference
madisonessentials.com | homeelementsandconcepts.com | journeyofaging.com 28 | m a d i s o n e s s e n t i a l s
more in store
more in store
If you enjoy exploring our state’s rich natural beauty with your beloved canine companion, then this book is for you! Little Luxuries 230 State St., Stop 2, Madison littleluxuriesmadison.com
Show your Madison pride with Anthology-exclusive stickers. on FB and IG @Anthology230 Anthology 230 State St., Stop 1, Madison anthologymadison.com
Best Seller: Herbal Chai Spice Blend Handmade mugs $29.95-$39.95 NEW LOCATION in downtown Mount Horeb! Telsaan Tea 108 East Main St., Mount Horeb telsaan.com
Old Sugar Distillery’s Bourbon is available again. It features aromatic and cherry-wood smoked malt to balance the classic corn-based mash. Old Sugar Distillery 931 East Main St., Suite 8, Madison oldsugardistillery.com
e sse nt i al arts
EMILY BY CHRIS GARGAN
In softball, Emily Balsley would be known as a player who hits to all fields. Whether it’s mural design and execution, magazine and book illustration, pattern design for fabrics or products, sculptures for public parks, seasonal window decoration, or personal fine arts projects, it seems that Emily has yet to meet an artistic challenge to which she has not successfully risen. Born and raised in Marathon, Wisconsin, the capital of American ginseng production, Emily was a smalltown girl with aspirations to engage the
30 | m a d i s o n e s s e n t i a l s
world with her talents and ambition. Part of her competitive spirit was honed on the softball field, where she became an all-conference shortstop. She worked summer jobs in the farm fields planning and saving for her education in the visual arts. After graduating high school in a class of 80 students, she moved to University of Wisconsin–Marathon County (UWMC) before going to UW– Madison, where she attained a BFA in 2001.
design, she had an opportunity to work with visiting artist and world-renowned illustrator Peter Sís. This encounter and his encouragement sparked the idea that she could thrive as an illustrator. Like many with art degrees, she faced the existential question of how to best enter the field once known as commercial art—art which serves to solve the business, communications, and promotional challenges of institutions or persons.
Towards the end of her college career, where Emily’s focus was graphic
Emily began with Pacific Cycle, the parent company of Schwinn, Mongoose,
Her work is PLAYFUL, SURPRISING, WITTY, and TOPICAL.
Kid Trax, and similar brands. She was quickly recognized for her design capabilities and promoted to work on bike designs, color schemes, decals, and retooling and rebranding the Schwinn identity for the 21st century. She describes this experience as an opportunity to test her design enthusiasm measured against warm childhood memories of biking and small-town nostalgia. It was there that she also met her future husband, Stephen. Leaving Pacific in 2008 to have daughter Stella and ignite a new career as a freelance designer and illustrator, Emily learned sewing, knitting, screen printing, and toy making. She produced over 200 handmade stuffed animals she calls Fuzzies. Emily’s desire to enter the illustration field, specifically the overwhelmingly challenging arena of children’s book and magazine work, led her to Minneapolis in 2011 for a three-day bootcamp for illustrators to learn the business side of the work. She began a blog to promote her work and subsequently joined the 2013 Make Art that Sells course, taught by Lilla Rogers, a principal of an illustrator rep agency.
Following that was a 10-week intensive course by Helen Dardik, an internationally known Canadian illustrator and surface designer. This experience helped Emily build a solid portfolio of work that she used to promote her new career. She was a finalist in a home décor challenge posted by Lilla Rogers that attracted a global talent pool. These opportunities gave her the encouragement and validation to promote herself full-time to the illustration industry.
without stooping to cutesy and sentimental. It has a strong crossgenerational appeal characterized by an insistent inclusivity that does not pander or patronize. Her work is playful, surprising, witty, and topical. It possesses a universal appeal that retains a distinctly Midwestern sensibility.
In 2014, Emily became a freelancer for American Girl (formerly Pleasant Company) doing illustration work for their eponymous magazine and completed her first book, a cookbook for kids, followed by participation in the Surtex Exhibition, which brands itself as a “global sourcing destination for companies seeking unique art, designs, patterns, and prints for commercial use.” It was here she made her first surface pattern sale to Samsung. Subsequently, Emily has worked exclusively as a freelance artist and illustrator.
The range of Emily’s work is astonishing, and in Madison, it’s ubiquitous. She has interior and exterior murals at Chocolate Shoppe Ice Cream; Flamingo Swirls, a mural done in collaboration with OhYa studios on an east Madison laundromat; window murals at Tradition Children’s Market in Middleton; multiple projects at The Bubbler inside the Madison Public Library Central Branch; a stairwell mural celebrating the broad diversity of available opportunities and experiences; an interior mural featuring food cuisines at the Food Fight Restaurant Group; and a plethora of dogs at play on the interior walls of Taproot Training and North Paw Daycare. This list is only a hint of her work.
Emily’s identity and style as an artist have evolved to become instantly recognizable—whimsical and charming
Emily’s commitment to community, children, social awareness, and the value of daily kindness can be seen madisonessentials.com
Her pictorial development process is ELABORATE, MULTISTAGED, and PAINSTAKING. in her illustrations for book publishers and children’s game companies, such as Mudpuppy®, for whom she executed a number of puzzles, including touch-and-feel puzzles. Emily’s
book topics include cooking opportunities for children; bilingual storybooks; a book called Spark on developing creative skills for American Girl publishing; and her most recent work, Every Cake Has a Story, a collaboration with Christina Tosi of Milk Bar fame about a girl who falls asleep with a recipe tucked under her pillow and wakes up to celebrate differences that change her world into something more colorful and exciting. Emily’s style, characterized by bold coloration, economized drawing, and flattened shape making, is deceptive in its simplicity. Her pictorial development process is elaborate, multistaged, and painstaking. She works her ideas from sketchbook musings through color experiments; storyboards; constant revisions; and, in the case of her book illustrations, separating each element and reassembling them using digital technology into larger, more complex compositions. Despite this complexity, her work always remains fresh, spontaneous, and genuine to her spirit. According to Dan Nordskog, creative director at Epic! books, “Emily’s growth as an artist is clearly due to her curiosity, passion, and work ethic. Because of her unique style and voice, Emily has been able to tackle subject matter that, in the hands of lesser artists, could be viewed as clichéd or trivial. Instead,
32 | m a d i s o n e s s e n t i a l s
Emily breathes new life and delight into the community, one thoughtfully applied brush stroke after another.” Emily’s art represents an engagement, a celebration of joy, community, opportunity, optimism, and discovery for both children and the child that still resides within all of us.
Abel Contemporary Gallery
Chris Gargan is a landscape artist and freelance writer working from his farm southwest of Verona. You can find his work at Abel Contemporary Gallery in Stoughton. He is seen here with his dog Tycho Brahe.
Photograph by Larassa Kabel
Photographs by Emily Balsley.
Just minutes from Madison. Find us in Stoughton, WI and online.
524 East Main St. Stoughton, WI 53589 608-845-6600
Image: Charles Munch
by Anne Sayers
I always LOVE (in all caps!) visiting a capital city. Without doing much research, the designation alone is a cue that you’re bound to experience something special, whether it’s the history, the culture, or the buzzing energy. That’s certainly true for our state’s capital. From touring the capitol building itself to traveling the city by boat, bike, foot, or fork, there are so many discoveries to be found in Madison. But Madison isn’t the only capital city in Wisconsin that draws travelers from near and far. Some other distinctions have put Wisconsin on the map and deserve a spot on your bucket list.
MARINETTE COUNTY: WATERFALL CAPITAL OF WISCONSIN
Photograph by Brandon Olmscheid
If you’re interested in chasing waterfalls, Wisconsin has more than 40 to choose from throughout the state. You’ll definitely want to plan a
34 | m a d i s o n e s s e n t i a l s
Photograph by Brandon Olmscheid
e sse nt i al travel
UNCOVERING WISCONSIN’S HIDDEN GEMS
While all the waterfalls along the tour are worth discovering, make sure to bring your camera to capture the exquisite scenery at Veteran’s Falls. Located inside Veterans Memorial Park, you’ll discover three waterfalls and a beautiful walking bridge suspended over the river. Additionally, Morgan Park, near Long Slide Falls, has campsites, a playground, fishing access, and a swimming area.
BOULDER JUNCTION: MUSKIE CAPITAL OF THE WORLD Bordered by two Great Lakes and the Mississippi River, with more than 15,000 inland lakes and 84,000 miles of rivers and streams, Wisconsin has great fishing no matter which direction you set out. But if you’re after the elusive fish of 10,000 casts, make sure to head to Boulder Junction, the Muskie Capital of the World. Boulder Junction has held this prestigious distinction for nearly 60 years due to the abundance of muskies in the area’s waters. There are 194 lakes within nine miles of town, many of
Photograph provided by Travel Wisconsin
Photograph provided by Travel Wisconsin
trip to Marinette County, the Waterfall Capital of Wisconsin and home to 15 jaw-dropping waterfalls along the Pike, Thunder, Peshtigo, and Menominee Rivers. Marinette County’s self-guided waterfalls tour will help you explore their stunning park system with gorgeous forests, rivers, and lakes.
Famous for Steaks
which are officially designated by the Department of Natural Resources as Class A muskie lakes. Take advantage of one of Boulder Junction’s eight different fishing guide services, like Errington’s Guide Service, who will help lead you to some of the area’s best fishing spots. And if you want to plan your own muskie adventure, chart a trip to the Northern Highland-American Legion State Forest, home to 900 lakes and 18 family campgrounds, including the scenic Muskie Lake Campground.
PLYMOUTH: CHEESE CAPITAL OF THE WORLD Plymouth has a rich—and creamy— history when it comes to cheese.
Home of the 20 oz. Bone-in Tenderloin • Friday Night—Fresh Pan-fried Lake Perch • Saturday Night—Prime Rib • Sunday—Chicken Dinner • Late Night Bar Menu & Happy Hour (Beginning at 10:00 pm)
• Seasonal Outdoor Dining in our Grotto • Corral Room Available for Private Parties OPEN DAILY
Mon-Fri Bar Opens at 4:30 pm—Dinner at 5:00 pm Weekends Open at 5:00 pm
For Reservations Call: 256-3570 Entrances at
116 S. Hamilton & 115 W. Main Street tornadosteakhouse.com madisonessentials.com
Photograph by Jason Britt
To experience Plymouth’s cheesy history, head to the Cheese Counter and Dairy Heritage Center. From grilled cheese to paninis and mac and cheese, their cheese-centric menu items are made fresh, and you can buy any of their more-than-100 cheese products. While there, you can learn about Plymouth’s cheese history through the interactive displays. You’ll also want to check out the 21 murals downtown, painted by the Walldogs, a group of highly skilled muralists from around the world. The murals depict businesses from Plymouth’s historic past. Grab your map for the self-guided walking tour at the visitor center. If you’re looking for a uniquely Wisconsin New Year’s Eve celebration, head to Plymouth to watch the Big Cheese Drop at midnight, hosted by the Sartori Company, a locally owned company that has produced awardwinning cheese since 1939. What a legen-dairy way to ring in the new year. 36 | m a d i s o n e s s e n t i a l s
MERCER: LOON CAPITAL OF THE WORLD Wisconsin’s abundant lakes, rivers, and protected forests make it an ideal place for birds to nest and raise their young. Whether you’re a budding birder or an old pro, you’re going to want to pack your optics and plan a trip to Mercer, the Loon Capital of the World. Mercer has one of the highest concentrations of nesting loon pairs in the continental United States. And while spring and summer are the best times to see a nesting pair on any of the 214 lakes in the Mercer area, no matter the season, you can always snap a picture with the iconic Claire d’ Loon, a 16-foot loon sculpture that sits outside the town’s chamber of commerce. Listen closely and you might hear its call.
Book a stay at the Loon’s Nest Motel and enjoy local restaurants within walking distance, like The Pines Restaurant and Beer Garden.
MARATHON COUNTY: GINSENG CAPITAL OF THE UNITED STATES Of course, you know Wisconsin for its agritourism, but did you know it’s also one of the best places in the world to grow ginseng thanks to our rich glacial soils? In fact, 95 percent of the ginseng grown in the United States is grown in Wisconsin, most in Marathon County, the Ginseng Capital of the United States. In total, Wisconsin produces 10 percent of the world’s ginseng. In September, Wausau hosts the International Wisconsin Ginseng
Photograph provided by Travel Wisconsin
Cheesemakers began popping up in Plymouth in the mid-19th century, and in 1918, Plymouth was the location of the National Cheese Exchange, which set the commodity price of bulk cheese. Today, more than 14 percent of the cheese consumed in the United States goes through Plymouth.
Festival, celebrating the crop’s immense impact on Wisconsin’s economy and its flavorful, bitter, earthy, and sweet taste. Learn about the harvesting process, taste some ginseng-infused cuisine, attend a cooking class, and more at this international event. To get an even closer look at ginseng farming, take a tour of Hsu’s Ginseng Enterprises, Inc., right in Wausau. Tours of Hsu’s farms are available throughout the harvest season through late October. After the tour, don’t miss the chance to bring home some fresh ginseng or ginseng-infused products.
Madison’s LGBTQ magazine since 2007
As you plan your travels for this fall and beyond, here’s to new discoveries you can’t find anywhere else. Anne Sayers is the secretary-designee at Wisconsin Department of Tourism. travelwisconsin.com
OPEN DAILY! 3330 atwood ave. madison, wi 53704 olbrich.org | 608-246-4550
5/12/22 11:33 AM
Create a Legacy that Keeps on Giving By making an estate gift, you ensure Dane County Humane Society can continue helping animals, supporting our community, and rehabilitating wildlife for generations to come.
entertainment & media
Dane Buy Local Car Show................ 27
Olbrich Botanical Gardens............... 37
Dane County Humane Society........................ 37, 39
Our Lives Magazine............................ 37
CONTEST Win a $50
WORT 89.9 FM...................................... 21
Green Lake Chamber of Commerce...................................9
services dining, food & beverage
Coyle Carpet One...............................9
Chocolate Shoppe Ice Cream........ 13
Monroe Street Framing...................... 13
Clasen’s European Bakery..................5
The Deliciouser.................................... 17
Fraboni’s Italian Specialties & Delicatessen............. 13
Tadsen Photography.......................... 17
Lingonberry Llama.............................33 Lombardino’s........................................5
Visiting Angels.....................................40 Vista West/Capri Communities...........2
Nitty Gritty........................................... 21 The Old Feed Mill Restaurant............ 37
Old Sugar Distillery.............................29
Abel Contemporary Gallery.............33
Paoli Schoolhouse American Bistro................................20
Pedro’s.................................................. 27 Porta Bella Italian Restaurant........... 12 Sugar River Pizza Company..............25
Deconstruction Inc...............................9 Goodman’s Jewelers......................... 16 Little Luxuries.......................................29
Teddywedgers......................................9 Telsaan Tea..........................................29
Gift Card! Question: “What ingredients are in The Deliciouser’s Antica spice blend?” Enter by submitting your answer to the above question online at madisonessentials.com or by mail with your name, mailing address, phone number, and email to: Madison Essentials c/o Towns & Associates, Inc. PO Box 174 Baraboo, WI 53913-0174 All entries with the correct answer will be entered into a drawing. Contest deadline is October 2, 2022.
Tempest................................................35 Tornado Steak House.........................35 The Village Green...............................24 Vintage Brewing Co. ...........................5
Please support our sponsors!
38 | m a d i s o n e s s e n t i a l s
Winners Thank you to everyone who entered our previous contest. The answer to the question “Which U.S. state is the only one to require its cheesemakers be licensed?” is Wisconsin. An Old Sugar Distillery gift card was sent to our winner, Suzanne Poggio of Verona, WI.
Snuggle puppies, sip nd
d more love and to your home! your new family mber todayl
Bathing Assistance • Dressing Assistance • Personal Care End of Life Care • Errands • Medication Reminders Shopping • Light Housekeeping Meal Preparation • Friendly Companionship Flexible Hourly Care • Respite Care for Families