hether it’s roadside attractions, cultural tours, crosscountry road trips, beach resort relaxation, romantic getaways, family outings, outdoor conquests, or out-of-country experiences, Volume One’s annual summer travel section has got you covered. In this year’s edition, we focus on the regional waterways and the cities and attractions that surround them – from adventure getaways to relaxing cruises and lighthouse tours. Check it all out in Hip Trips, where it’s always 70 and sunny.
Smel th • Design: Josh
Paulse • Photos: Andrea rk la C m Sa r: te ri s • W untain, Tyler Grigg
, Thom Fo Editors: Tom Giffey
hether you’re a newbie or a straight-up connoisseur, the Chippewa Valley and surrounding areas offer a vast variety of different wines and beverages. Despite Wisconsin being known as a beer state, we hold our own in the sweet (or dry) treat. So as the weather turns nice, hit the road – or stay right in town – and enjoy the fruit of the vine.
Taking a quick ride
SHORT DRIVES AROUND THE STATE OF WISCONSIN
ra estinations fo d st e b e th to find sin, We wanted und Wiscon ro a ip tr d a nd ro auquick weeke s natural be u o e rg o g e for th e or whether it ’s al experienc n o ti a c u d e sting sked ty, an intere on. So we a ti c ra tt a d ir , we book just a wack y ns on Face io st e g g su us you to give ith: u came up w o y t a h w ’s and here M CLAR K WO R DS: SA
P hilli ps, W I
Lo ca ted in Ph illi ps , W isc on sin , Fre d Sm ith ’s Co nc rete Pa rk proves tha t ce me nt isn ’t jus t for sid ewalk s. Th e pa rk fea tur es over 20 0 fig uri ne s ma de ou t of wi re, ce me nt, an d va rio us jun k art ma ter ial s. It’s fre e to the pu bli c, an d is su ch a big de al tha t the tow n throws an an nu al Co nc rete Pa rk Ce leb ration in mi d-Au gu st fea tur ing even ts lik e a tub a ba nd an d a bio gr ap hic al pu pp et sh ow of Fre d Sm ith .
DIR EC TIO NS FROM EC: West on Highway 29 , the n north on Highway 13 TR AVEL TIM E: 2 hours , 15 minutes
H ayward, W I
Hayward is home to the Fresh water Fishing Hall Of Fame and Museum – or as many know it as , The Mu sk y Museum . The grounds are home to a massive musk y-shaped struc ture and an eq ually massive 88 ,00 0 gallon pond for fishing. At the mu seum , you can learn all abou t the sport of freshwater fishin g and pe ruse the many rec ords that fishermen and wo men have hooked over the ye ars .
Spooner, W I dinner the comes “Here and nge stra train” might be a to d use intimidating phrase but eat, to d get a stubborn chil it might as well be the slogan n for Wisconsin Great Norther sed r-ba one Railroad. The Spo company offers scenic rail s dining in their historic train the for le with options availab entire family. The company also has bed and breakfast train rides, complete with a five nt spe t nigh a course dinner, and in an vintage 1950’s sleeper car.
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DIR EC TIO NS FROM EC: North on Highway 53 , the n west on Highway 63 . TR AVEL TIM E: 1 hour, 45 minutes
DIR ECTION S FRO M EC: Nor th on Highway 53 TRAVEL TIM E: 1 hour, 30 minutes
N el son, W I If you live in Wisco nsin, there’s a 79% you came he re for the cheese. Even if yo u’re among the minority, Th e Nelson Cheese Factory in Ne lson is still a great place to expe rience and rekindle your love wit h the dairy delicacy. The factor y itself no longer makes cheese, but it has adequately compen sated by offering cheeses fro m around Wisconsin and the world, as well as a gourmet me nu of fresh soups, salads, sandw iches, and pizzas.
DIR EC TIO NS FROM EC: West on Wisconsi n Trunk 85 , the n south on Highw ay 25 TR AVEL TIM E: 1 hour
Taking Off resources for traveling around the region, country and world TRAVEL AGENCIES + CENTERS AAA World Wide Travel 3430 Oakwood Hills
Pwky, Eau Claire • (715) 836-8640 • travel.aaa. com.
Destinations Unlimited Travel Professionals W2680 Comings Rd., Eau Claire • (715) 834-5999.
Eau Claire Travel Center 5924 33rd Ave., Eau
Claire • (715) 874-0290.
Higgins Travel & Cruise Center, Ltd. 2514 Golf
Rd., Eau Claire • (715) 834-2686 • higginstravel. com.
Holiday Vacations 2727 Henry Ave., Eau Claire • (800) 826-2266 • holidayvacations.net. Red Cedar Travel 1311 Broadway St. N, Menomonie • (715) 235-8870.
Supreme Travel E3698 750th Ave., Menomonie • 866-683-1648 • email@example.com • supremetravelllc.com.
Thorpe Tours 916 E. Clairemont Ave., Eau Claire • 715-552-5252, 866-553-TOUR • thorpetours@ att.net • thorpetours.com.
Sum pter, W I one You’ll probably have to see this a 0s, 198 the in k Bac it. to believe ed nam ert exp on oliti dem former Tom Every succeeded in building al the world’s largest scrap met tall feet 50 ng suri mea e, sculptur th and 120 feet wide. The behemo in 12 y hwa Hig g alon is located just is and sin, con Wis , Sumpter es one of many Every sculptur eye er Oth . park the in found cts, inse ntic giga are catchers barbeque bellows-driven a ,” and a ean icur “Ep ed train call s. Yep. bird of a estr orch e 70-piec
Alma, W I Buena Vista Park is located 50 0 feet above Alma, and offers the best vie w of the Mississippi River aside from a photoshopped postcard. Describes by Bette r Homes & Gardens magazine as “one of the river valley’s fin est natural balconies,” Buena Vista Park offers breathtaking views and accommodations for the entire family, including pic nic tables, grills, and a small children’s playground.
DIR ECTION S FRO M EC: on South on I-94 , then south 12 way High
Travel Leaders Chippewa Falls 31 E. Columbia St., Chippewa Falls • (888) 642-8270 • travelleaders.com.
Travel Now 630 Broadway St. S #1, Menomonie • (715) 235-8000.
TRAVEL TIM E: 2 hour, 30 minutes
WI/MN TRAVEL WEBSITES
TravelWisconsin.com EscapeToWisconsin.com DiscoverWisconsin.com ExploreMinnesota.com MinnesotaBeautiful.com DNR.WI.gov DNR.state.MN.us
DIR EC TIO NS FROM EC: South on Highway 37 TR AVEL TIM E: 1 hour
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A Brandy New Direction LOCAL WINERY + DISTILLERY BRANCHES OUT WORDS: THOM FOUNTAIN // PHOTO: ANDREA PAULSETH
atthew Rick has been planning Infinity Beverages for a long time. He said he first began building a business plan for a future winery in high school. At the time he was working as a server at a restaurant and would spend time talking to patrons about the various wines that were offered. A couple of years ago that plan became a reality, with Infinity Beverages opening in Banbury Place and promptly growing into a winery, distillery and tasting room surrounded by the warm brick of the old tire factory. Infinity Beverages is a small operation that currently offers a range of wines, vodka and – new to the family – brandy. This new addition to the line-up is a watermelon brandy that comes in a clear, moonshine-style bottle (but I can assure you it’ll taste much better than something like that). The brandy is ‘unoaked’, making it clear, but it still has a classic brandy taste. The watermelon isn’t overpowering and give feedback. easier for everything from transportation – it certainly isn’t a sweet, candy flavor Rick’s business philosophy is about to helping the bartender stay efficient. No – but comes in at the end with a nice, branching out from the traditional and idea is too much for Rick to try. subtle hint. And he’s always working on those new trying to create a unique product – and The brandy is part of a new experiideas. The next in his experimental series that’s apparent in every aspect of his busimental line that is a mulberry brandy that Infinity is starting, he’s been tweaking over The watermelon isn’t overpowering – it certainly with small batches of the last few months and various spirits that give isn’t a sweet, candy flavor – but comes in at the end hopes to have out someRick the ability to try with a nice, subtle hint. time in the future. But get things with little risk. it quick when it comes out He was experimenting ness. Take catering: Instead of providing – Rick is probably already thinking about with creating watermelon wine and had cases of wine to large events Infinity is his next concoction. thought about whiskey, but settled on working, Rick has begun using a new Find out more at InfinityBeverages. brandy. Rick said he’s always working on wine keg, which pours wine just like com or at their tasting room in Banbury new ideas, often making small batches to you’d have a beer. While it seems weird Place, 930 Galloway St., Eau Claire. have patrons at the tasting room sample and almost wrong at first, Rick said its
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Local Wineries in and near the Chippewa Valley
Autumn Harvest Winery 19947 Cty Hwy J, Chippewa Falls • (715) 720-1663 • firstname.lastname@example.org • autumnharvestwinery. com. Cap-n-Corks 5256 Friedeck Rd., Eau Claire • (715)-514-4110 • www.capncorksonline.com. Cottage Winery and Vineyard N7391 County
Rd. F, Menomonie • (715) 864-8898 • info@CottageWineryAndVineyard.com • www.cottagewineryandvineyard.com.
Danzinger Vineyards & Winery S2015 Grape-
view Ln., Alma • (608) 685-6000 • winery@ danzingervineyards.com • www.danzingervineyards.com.
Infinity Beverages 800 Wisconsin St. Bldg 13 Ste. 206 (Mailbox 60), Eau Claire • 920-2420093 • infinitybeverages.com.
Maiden Rock Winery & Cidery W12266 King Ln., Stockholm • 715-448-3502 • email@example.com • www.maidenrockwinerycidery.com. Munson Bridge Winery & Vineyard W6462
Bridge Rd., Withee • 715-229-4501 • sales@ munsonbridgewinery.com • www.munsonbridgewinery.com.
O’Neil Creek Winery Open May-December • 15369 82nd St., Bloomer • (715) 568-2341 • oneilcreekwinery.com. River Bend Vineyard & Winery 10439 33rd Avenue, Chippewa Falls • 715-720-WINE • riverbendvineyard.com. Sandstone Ridge Vineyard & Winery N11601
Kaas Ln, Osseo • 715-984-4020 • sandstoneridge.co.
Seven Hawks Vineyard 17 North St., Fountain City • (866) WINE-741, (608) 687-WINE • www. sevenhawksvineyards.com. Valley Vineyard W10415 521st Ave., Prescott • 715-262-4235 • firstname.lastname@example.org • www.valleyvineyardltd.com. Vernon Vineyards Winery S3426 Peterson Ln., Viroqua • (608) 634-6181 • www.vernonvineyards.com. Villa Bellezza Winery 1420 3rd St., Pepin • 715442-8484 • www.villabellezza.com.
Vino in the Valley W3826 450th Ave., Maiden
Rock • (715) 639-6677 • www.vinointhevalley. com.
The Grape Escape A mississippi river wine trail shows off its natural beauty
Started in 2009, The Great River Road Wine Trail was named after the road that sews these nine wineries together. The famous road itself, recognized as a National Scenic Byway, runs from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico. This particular stretch flanks a railroad and is characterized by glacier-made bluffs. The wineries that dot these valleys benefit from unique soils of the river valley. A fully punched passport gets you a free souvenir wine glass. For more information and a detailed map, visit GreatRiverRoadWineTrail.org.
V alley V ineyard
W10415 521 Ave, Prescott, WI • 262-4235 • www. valleyvineyardltd.co m • Right now several thousa nd pounds of smashed local grapes are waiting inside huge stainless tanks, ready to be bottled and sold from thi s 12-yearold vineyard. These ambitious
winemakers hope to eventually produce 50,000 bo ttles a year, focusing on the Frontenac, Frontenac Gris, Marquette, and St Pepin variet ies. Besides locally grown grape s, they also bring in bunches fro m California and elsewhere so the y can craft their own versions of Merlot, Pinot Noir, and Cabernet Sauvignon.
Canyon River Valley 421 Mill St West, Cannon Falls, MN • (507) 263-7400 • www. • Canno nRiver Winery.com Grapes and valleys are like peas and carrots. These particular grapes thrive in the “lush and rolling hills” of the Sogn Valley, 10 miles southwest of Cannon Falls. A 19th century timberframe barn sits on the vineyard, and a building with century-
old limestone walls composes the downtown winery. While you’re sipping, feel free to use their free WiFi to surf the web, check emails, or blog about your Cannon River Winery experience.
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Falconer Vineyard s
3572 Old Tyler Ro ad, Red Wing, MN • (651) 388-8849 • www.falconervine yards.com • In the mood for a picnic? Spread out on one of the tables near the vineyard. Pair your vittles with one of Falconer’s nine white wine va rieties and seven red wines. Be sure to try the wood fired piz za. If you
really get into it, you might consider buying on e of your own grape vines, wh ich bear the U of M’s Grape Varie ties as well as others that can withstand a harsh winter. Falconer knows its cold clim ate wines, having won the Governor’s Cup at the Minneso ta State Fair for their Fronte nac Port, which was entered into the “International Cold Climate Wine Competition.”
Rd. , Del ane y N14756 -534 608 • Trempealeau, WI rd. eya ovin mer w.el ww 6456 • com • Elmaro Vineyard began e when the first grapes wer , yard vine This planted in 2006. rs hou half a and two located s, Southeast of the Twin Citie grow was started to not only the best grapes and make the
W12266 King Lane, Stockholm, WI • 448-3502 • www. maidenrockwinerycidery.com • This is a winery in which the grape is not king. Instead, the wine crafters focus on tending their very own apple orchard, conjuring such drinks
Danzinger Vineyard s S2015 Grapeview Lane, Alm a, WI • (608) 685-6000 • ww w. danzingervineyards.com • One of the newest in the stat e, Danzinger has been ope n since 2010. Don’t be fooled by the newness, however – they allowed their vines six years to mature before harvesting the
Seven Hawks Vineyard , 17 North St, Fountain City w. ww 741• 6-3 -94 866 • WI m sev enh awk svin eya rds .co , yard vine p f-to • Another bluf the of one is ks Seven Haw t. largest in the upper Midwes the and Soak in the views impressiveness of their 18,000
as Harvest Apple wine and Honeycrisp Hard Cider, which can be described as distinctive, snappy, and sassy. In addition to ciders, they will be bottling up some squashed blueberries, cranberries – and, yes – a few grapes, originating just a few miles from their orchard.
grapes and transforming them into something you can sip. Located on a bluff-like perc h above the Mississippi River valley, the vineyard bears 15 acre s of grape varieties. They also boast an outdoor patio and 25 different kinds of wines, including the 2012 Best of Sho w at the Wisconsin State Fair , Mississippi Mist.
r grape vines, alongside thei s. tree rry che and plum 500 They also offer sweet (no pun intended) lodging options on s site, including five cottage two , city the king rloo ove e sizeable lodges on the ridg in n dow es suit top, and two Fountain City, located above their tasting room.
Garvin Height s Vineyard 2255 Garvin Heights Roa d, Winona, MN • (507) 3131917 • www.ghvwine.com • Twenty years ago, their first grapevine commenced from a seed catalog. Now, not only are these winemakers concerned with creating a successful env iron men t for the ir grapevines, but they also wan t to create a place for wildlife to bustle, taking particularly good care of their bluebirds by
managing some special houses along Garvin Heights Roa d. Their wines come from several vineyards, with each style of wine specific to one vineyard . They even segregate tho se grapes grown in Minnesota so they can wear the Minnesota Grown badge.
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rquette, IA 127 North St, Ma 9 • www. • (563) 873-250 ry.com • ne eagleslandingwi dar, this -ce rtly pa Partly-oak, uses the building which ho ch of a mu winery is almost as wines d an es draw as the vin ally, loc d ste rve Ha themselves. o a int d the wood was forme by er eth frame that is held tog
best wine, but to share the experience of wine making with others. They offer free tasting for up to three wines, but offer various tasting e packages (including win and s food t ligh with pairings y romantic dinners for two). The n seve es, offer seven white win a sell n eve red wines, and from e mad ping top rry strawbe local berries.
r than nails wooden pins rathe nding is a La s gle Ea s. or screw a reminder literal name, as well – frequent t of the eagles tha Located re. sho i the Mississipp s winery thi er, riv the on directly d and be n is also a combinatio seven ce du breakfast. They pro or ite wh en sev red wines, nes, wi rt sse de e fiv s, ne blush wi s, and one eleven berry wine mead.