It's kids and family week here at OnMilwaukee.com and, more than ever, we'll feature articles and blogs about children's health, education, travel, fun and more. Kids and family week is brought to you by Aurora Health Care.
I like to think of myself as a pretty adventurous dad. Weâ€™ve done all sorts of fun stuff with our 5-year-old daughter, but Iâ€™ve also tried to remember that some stuff is better done at an older age.
Sure, weâ€™ve visited a handful of water parks, danced at Organ Piper Pizza, explored the Domes and strolled the aisles of American Science and Surplus and the Mars Cheese Castle â€¦ but thereâ€™s so much more to do, especially now that schoolâ€™s letting out for the summer.
And now that sheâ€™s getting older, I, too, am ready for more adventures. Some of these I checked out when I was kid â€“ and havenâ€™t been back since â€“ while others are new to me. Amy Taylorâ€™s excellent piece on summer travel in Southwestern Wisconsin got me thinking â€¦
In no particular order, I canâ€™t wait to check out:
1. Old World Wisconsin
I canâ€™t believe it, but Iâ€™ve never been to this open-air museum in Eagle, Wisconsin. As I understand it, It portrays housing and the daily life of immigrants in 19th century Wisconsin. The largest outdoor museum of rural life in the United States, it encompasses nearly 600 acres of rolling wooded hills and contains over 60 historic structures. So itâ€™s the embodiment of "Little House on the Prairie?" My daughter will love it.
2. The Wisconsin Ducks
I just barely remember taking a ride on the Ducks when I was a little kid. You already know what the Ducks are, Iâ€™m sure: vintage, WWII era amphibious vehicles that zip around the Wisconsin Dells. But do you remember the awe and wonderment of going from land to water and back again? That first splash â€“ thatâ€™s the look on her face I want to capture.
3. The Jelly Belly Factory
Iâ€™ve never taken this Pleasant Prairie tour, but I expect it to be a big, sugary hit. Apparently, itâ€™s a 30 minute train ride that shows how Jelly Belly makes candy corn, jelly beans, gummies and more. Thereâ€™d better be samples at the end.
4. Cave of the Mounds
Amy Taylorâ€™s article reminded me of this one; I havenâ€™t been to the Cave of the Mounds since I, myself, was in kindergarten. Just a bit west of Madison, itâ€™s celebrating 75 years as the premier cave in the upper Midwest and "the jewel box of America's major show caves," according to its Web site. My recollection that the cave is nice and cool even on the hottest summer day. Maybe we should take this trip in August.
5. The Safe House
Obviously, Iâ€™ve spent a ton of time at the Safe House, including at my 12th birthday party. And yeah, itâ€™s in Downtown Milwaukee, so itâ€™s not really a "trip." This is definitely rainy day, lunchtime spot for a kindergartener. But now that she kind of knows what a spy is, I expect sheâ€™ll be blown away by this Milwaukee landmark. Yes, Iâ€™ll make sure to go during the day.
No Talkbacks for this article.
Post your comment/review now
Disclaimer: Please note that Facebook comments are posted through Facebook and cannot be approved, edited or declined by OnMilwaukee.com. The opinions expressed in Facebook comments do not necessarily reflect those of OnMilwaukee.com or its staff.
Recent Articles & Blogs by Andy Tarnoff
Published July 29, 2015
If you've never heard of floating and sensory deprivation tanks, let us answer this question for you: it's not a form of torture. Rather, some consider it the ultimate form of relaxation, injury recovery and meditation, and it's coming to Milwaukee very soon.
Published July 28, 2015
When you've visited the same place well over 20 times, sometimes you have to look at it a different way. Whether that means taking a bird's eye view from the treetops, or a fisheye perspective from just a atop the water, Wisconsin's crowing jewel that is Door County still looks spectacular from any angle. Even if it's one you have bend a little to see just right.
Published July 15, 2015
Though Liz Lincoln, who writes under the nom de plume of Eliza Madison, just published her first erotic novella, the Milwaukee writer isn't new to penning books about romance. "I've been writing romance forever, really," says Lincoln, who debuted "Fast, Fresh & Hot" this summer on Amazon. " I wrote romance stories when I was in middle school."
Published July 12, 2015
A decade ago, I took a spin around the Milwaukee Mile in a special two-seat IndyCar. I did it again this morning, and it was even better.
Published July 8, 2015
While I only passively care about what happens on the court, I nonetheless passionately, urgently and desperately request Milwaukee and Wisconsin to get its act together and build the Bucks a new arena before it's too late. Just like I preached in the mid '90s when the Brewers were semi-genuinely eying Charlotte as their new home, I'll say it again: Build it now.
Published July 3, 2015
It's a long-standing tradition at Summerfest - and at plenty of other festivals - to use radio station DJs to introduce a headlining band. It may seem like a five-minute formality, but as usual, there's a back story to most of what the public sees while standing on the Summerfest bleachers.
Published June 29, 2015
It hasn't been a good month for the Stars and Bars. Only 150 years after it should've disappeared for good, national online and brick and mortar retailers have yanked the Confederate battle flag from their shelves and their sites. In other words, you will no longer find Confederate beach towels, belt buckles or even the General Lee (I'm bummed about that, actually) at Wal-Mart, Amazon, Etsy, eBay or many other stores around America. Fortunately, you won't find them at Summerfest, either, in the state that lost 12,216 men to the Civil War.
Published June 25, 2015
To me, the Kings Of Leon were supposed to save rock music. When I saw them for a second time at Summerfest in 2006, this time at the Miller Lite Oasis, something felt wrong. KOL seemed slow. Plaintive. Quiet? Turns out that was the direction this band would head in, and it's what made them extremely popular. But I came into tonight's show with an open mind and was rewarded with old Kings, and even lulled a little with new Leon.
Published June 22, 2015
"Summertime" is a great song - so great that it's been covered 25,000 times since George Gershwin wrote it in 1934. One of the more enchanting - and special - versions of the jazz standard has just dropped from Nineteen Thirteen, an enigma of a Milwaukee band. Featuring Victor DeLorenzo on percussion and Janet Schiff on cello as its two permanent members, you almost have to see this group to believe it.
Published June 18, 2015
Even though Summerfest gets passed over by lots of national media - at some point, let's put the onus on getting the word out better, OK? - there's no doubt that this gigantic musical festival is Milwaukee's crowning annual achievement. Here are the annual picks from OnMilwaukee.com Publisher Andy Tarnoff.