Category: Family Fun

Cure Your Cabin Fever, Fox Cities Style


Written by: Adam Schanke, Sports Marketing Manager

At this point in winter, there is a good chance you have had a bad case of cabin fever and cannot wait for spring to arrive! To help cure cabin fever, here are a few outdoor activities to enjoy in the Fox Cities!

Cross-Country Ski – If you have access to a pair of cross-country skis, Bridgewood Golf Course, Reid Golf Course, High Cliff State Park, and Plamann Park are all excellent options. Bubolz Nature Preserve offers rentals for use both on the preserve and off-site.

SnowshoeBubolz Nature Preserve and Heckrodt Wetland Reserve offer snowshoe rentals. 1000 Islands Environmental Center and High Cliff State Park are popular choices among snowshoe owners.

Hiking – Winter scenery offers amazing sights in the Fox Cities. 1000 Islands Environmental Center in Kaukauna and High Cliff State Park in Sherwood provide some of the best winter views.

Sledding – Several parks in the Fox Cities are home to great sledding hills. Check out our previous blog post on sledding hills in the Fox Cities.

Outdoor Ice RinkIce Skate and Hockey – There are a handful of ice rinks in the Fox Cities that allow both ice skating and hockey.  Included among these rinks are Jones Park and Memorial Park in Appleton, Washington Park in Neenah, and Heesakker Park in Little Chute. Ice skates can be rented from Appleton Family Ice Center, located in Memorial Park, for use at the Memorial Park rink.

12091257_642720682497123_3517404046964642470_oPlatform Tennis – A newer sport to the Fox Cities, platform tennis is played on a raised court with heaters underneath, allowing the sport to be played year-round. Two courts, located at the Best Western Premier Bridgewood Resort Hotel, can be reserved through the Bridgewood Platform Tennis Club.

Fat Tire Biking – If you are a proud owner of a fat tire bike, Riverview Gardens has the perfect trail for you. Do you want to see a fat tire bike in action? The Fox Valley Mountain Bikers are hosting the Fat Cupid Classic Fat Bike Race on Sunday, February 14th at Lecker Park in Grand Chute.

Snow Run – The Neenah-Menasha YMCA is hosting the Abominable Adventure 5K Run at Bridgewood Golf Course on Sunday, February 14th. The running route includes paved trails and off-road snow-covered portions of the golf course.

Ice Golf – On Saturday, February 6th, Menasha Rotary Club is hosting the first ever Arctic Open Charity Golf Outing on Lake Winnebago. Grab a friend, your choice of “club” (tennis racket, golf club, hockey stick, etc.), and hit the ice!

Sturgeon Spearing Opening Day – Although the sturgeon spearing license deadline has passed, it is still exciting to be around the festivities of opening day on Saturday, February 13th. Waverly Beach in Menasha and Payne’s Point in Neenah are great places to see the sturgeon up close as they are brought in from Lake Winnebago to be weighed, measured and registered.

The Bridgie Winter Games…Enjoying Winter in Wisconsin

Written By: Matt Ten Haken, Director of Sports Marketing
Bridgie logo   Bridgie skiers
It’s the winter of 2012, I’m sitting in a meeting at the Best Western Premier resort in Neenah and out of the corner of my eye, I see a cross country skier fly by outside the window. What was that guy doing out there? Turns out, a neighbor of the Bridgewood grooms the trails on a regular basis and skiing around the golf course at the hotel is really popular all winter long. I had no idea cross country skiing was available at the Bridgewood!
Fast forward to today, and we are prepping for the 3rd Annual Bridgie winter Games presented by Scheels. What started as a small cross country ski race has morphed into a winter sports festival with a chilly fun run and a platform tennis tournament (think racquetball, but outdoors) combined with cross country ski races for all skill levels. There really is an activity during this event for everyone to try no matter your age or skill level. some of the events are competitive, but the focus of the event is much more to enjoy winter in Wisconsin than to come away with a winning trophy. The Bridgie Winter Games will take place on sunday, February 14. Event start at 9 a.m. and wrap up mid-afternoon. All proceeds from the event will benefit the Neenah-Menasha YMCA’s Annual Campaign. Click here for more information and details on how to register. Sign up before February 7 for extra savings! I will definitely be there enjoying the snow, I hope to see you there too!

Let it Snow…Let it Snow!

The Fox Cities area received more than 12 inches of snow last night. For those of you who are done digging out, and looking to enjoy the fun of this snowy weather, here is a list of some of the great sledding hills in our area:

– Appleton Memorial Park, 1620 E Witzke Blvd
– Erb Park, 1800 N Morrison St
– Plamann County Park, 1375 E Broadway Dr
– Reid Municipal Golf Course, 1100 E Fremont St

– Grignon Park, 800 Augustine St

– Sunset Park, 426 West Kimberly Ave

– Fritse Park, 899 N Lake St
– Memorial Park, 1131 Tullar Rd

– Wanick Choute Park Hill, W4690 Castle Dr

Have fun and be safe!

One Stop Elf Shop just for Kids!

Elf ShopWritten by: Matt Ten Haken, Director of Sports Marketing
The Appleton Farmer’s Market is always great place to find a unique gift for that hard-to-buy-for loved one. With the One Stop Elf Shop, that holiday shopping experience has gotten a little easier for kids too. Last Saturday, our family stopped in at the Elf Shop for our two girls (ages 2 and 5) to buy gifts for each other. We were greeted by a host of friendly elves, that escorted our girls around the shop and helped them each spend their money. There were plenty of unique gifts to choose from featuring items from many of Downtown Appleton’s favorite retailers. In no time, our girls found the perfect gifts for each other and were checked out. Then, they were able to decorate a gift bag for their presents. Located at the far west side of indoor farmer’s market, the Elf Shop has a little bit of something for every shopper.
Elf Shop3Overall, it was a great experience for the girls and a rare stress-free shopping experience for the parents! The One Stop Elf Shop will be open on Saturdays from 9am-1pm in City Center until December 19. BONUS: Mrs. Claus made an appearance on Saturday morning and stopped and talked with the girls for a bit. The girls had wide eyes listening to how many cookies Mrs. Claus needs to bake for Mr. Claus!

Thanksgiving Weekend Family Fun!

Looking for some Thanksgiving break fun for you and your kids? Whether you’re a Fox Cities resident or here visiting family, the Fox Cities has plenty of weekend specials and fun events going on to keep you and your family busy!

arcadeBadgerSportsPark_AppletonWI1102Badger Sports Park is offering special pricing on their Utopia package. With laser tag, mini bowling, inflatables and more. This package is sure to please!

Funset Boulevard
has special pricing on wristbands, game tickets and food!

Let the kids jump out some energy! With trampolines, laser maze, rock climbing walls and more, Xtreme Air trampoline park is fun for kids of all ages!

Kaukauna Public Library’s Schools Out, Fall Crafts event. Let the kids tap into their creative side with arts and crafts!

Paper Valley Model Railroad Club, Open House –  A free event for the whole family. Come check out built to scale model trains in action!

Holiday Drop-in Studio at the Trout Museum of Art – Stop in and make your own holiday crafts, featuring upcycled Christmas ornaments! Free!

Fang’s Holiday Extravaganza! – Head out to Fox Cities stadium for some holiday fun with the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers mascots Fang and Whiffer! Plenty of kids activities and visits from Santa and Buddy the Elf!

One Stop Elf Shop Kids Market – Let the kids pick out gifts for parents, siblings, or grandparents with the help of their own elf shopper!

Last but very not least…pay a visit to the big man himself! Head out to the Fox River Mall to visit and get photos with Santa! Click here for schedule and details.

Visit our website for more events!


Fox Cities Trick or Treat Hours

Halloween2Whether you’re a local resident or you happen to be visiting our area this Halloween weekend, here is a quick look at the trick or treating hours for our Fox Cities area. All cities and times listed below are for Saturday, October 31st.

  • Appleton, 4-8pm
  • Grand Chute: 4-7 p.m.
  • Greenville: 4-7 p.m.
  • Harrison (town and village): 4-7 p.m.
  • Hortonville: 3-5 p.m.
  • Little Chute: 5-7 p.m.
  • Menasha (city & town): 4-7 p.m.
  • Neenah (city and town): 4-7 p.m.

We hope you and your little goblins have a safe and fun Halloween!

For a listing of other fun or spooky events happening this weekend, click here

Test Your Secret Agent Skills…Can You Escape?

IMG_2406 (1)Written by: Jen Hecht, Group Marketing and Services Manager

Whenever I’m asked what my favorite part of my job is my response has always been getting to experience all of the fun in the Fox Cities so I can share my first-hand knowledge with our visitors. This week was a perfect example of that as our staff visited Escape Room Wisconsin, one of Appleton’s newest attractions, for our annual staff retreat.

Escape Room Wisconsin officially opened its first location in Appleton in September this year. Escape rooms are a type of adventure game where the participants are “locked” (don’t worry –  there is a “panic” button) in a heavily themed room and need to use elements of the room to locate clues, solve puzzles and find the key to escape within a set time limit. Players must act fast utilizing their critical thinking skills if they want to beat the odds and escape before the clock runs out!

We put our investigative skills to the test in The Office of Secret Agent 22 Escape Room. Our mission was to explore Secret Agent 22’s father’s office to determine his identity and exact location for the FBI. 10549980_979946605409091_8355880553144319615_oWe had 45 minutes to find the clues, solve the puzzles, diffuse a bomb and find the key to our escape. Our group had a memorable team-building experience trying our hardest to work together to figure out the puzzles, crack the codes and escape the room. Ultimately we were not among the small percentage (about 25%) of successful missions completed since Escape Room Wisconsin’s opening, but we certainly had fun trying!

Escape Room Wisconsin is an exciting and unique activity for so many different occasions from corporate team-building to date night and everything in between. In addition to Secret Agent 22, another escape room “Snape Escape” is scheduled to open this December and the “Date Night” room will open in January. Book a private event any time or sign up for scheduled times to try your hand (or head) at escaping Thursday – Sunday. Visit their website to book your fun escape!