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Top Picks for Friday Fish Fry’s

fish fry

With lent starting this week, the Friday Fish Fry comes in high demand and the Fox Cities has plenty of options to choose from. These are a few of our staff’s favorite spots!


Mark’s East Side, Appleton – With many Golden Fork Awards under their belt, including a few for Best Fish Fry, you won’t be disappointed here. Reservations a recommended as there is usually a wait, especially for Friday fish fry’s, but we promise it’s worth it!

Houdini’s Escape Gastropub, Appleton – If you feel like venturing outside the traditional fish fry box, this is the place to do it. Their fish tacos are phonomenal, offering them beer battered, blackened or cajun. And if fish tacos aren’t for you, they offer a great perch fry as well. The wait on a weekend night can push 2 hours, so make a reservation if you can, or get there early. I’ve also gone without a reservation and snuck in a bar seat instead.

Heiting Place, Little Chute – Choose from traditional fish fry or a full seafood menu, there’s something for any taste. great food, great service and friendly welcoming atmosphere!

Club Tavern, Menasha – Don’t let the dive bar look from the outside fool you, they offer a great menu with plenty of fish to fill your Fridays! Perfect for casual dining and a great bar to enjoy a cocktail or two!

Under the Dome, Neenah – A small local place with a dive bar feel and great fish!

The Out-O-Town Supper Club, Kaukauna – Traditional supper club atmosphere. They don’t just offer their fish fry on Fridays but you can get it on Wednesdays too!

Jacks or Better, Little Chute – Classic, friendly dining. A staple in Little Chute and a neighborhood favorite!

The Blind Pig Saloon, Menasha – With a 1930’s speakeasy feel they offer a unique dining experience with a classic menu. It won’t disappoint!

Bee Hive Inn, Neenah – A small place so be prepared to wait, but that’s part of the game here. Your best plan is to go in, order, keep your eyes open for a table or a spot at the bar and jump on it! The process is worth the outcome. The fish is great!

Spats, Appleton – A local favorite and longtime College Avenue landmark, “the Tav on the Ave” serves up a special Friday night menu featuring their very popular fish fry and seafood.

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!

Valentine’s Day in the Fox Cities

*Last Updated on: 2/1/2016….check back for updates on additional events and specials.


Looking for a way to celebrate your Valentine’s Day? The Fox Cities has you covered. Whether you’re looking to celebrate a romantic night as a couple or a fun night with friends or family, there’s something for everyone!

Annual Valentine’s Family Festival  Held by United Way of the Fox Cities from 9am – 12:30pm on Saturday, February 13, 2016, at Maplewood Middle School. This event is free to the community and provides safe, fun activities for children ages 12 & under with their families. Enjoy cookie decorating, carnival games, arts & crafts, a photo booth, live DJ and giveaways. Children must be accompanied by an adult.

Bridgie Winter Games Held at the Best Western Premier Bridgewood Resort Hotel. The day’s activities include the Bridgie Cross-Country Ski Sprints, Family Fun-Ski, 5K Abominable Adventure Race and Platform Tennis Tournament. Join the fun or watch from the sidelines, this is a great family-friendly event! Fees to participate are listed on their website. Click here for details.

Dinner at the Ballpark on Friday, February 12 or Saturday, February 13. Enjoy an evening the club level at Neuroscience Group Field at Fox Cities Stadium. All couples will receive a four course meal, bottle of champagne, a long-stemmed rose, a picture taken of the two of you and a pair of ticket vouchers for any Timber Rattlers game during the upcoming season. Sit in the main banquet facility or upgrade to a private suite for an additional fee. The club level bar is open at 5pm and dinner will be served at 6:30pm. Tickets can be purchased at the box office or by calling (920) 733-4152.

The Love Class – How to Improve Your Relationship. The Flow Yoga and Wellness will be hosting this class for couples on Sunday, February 14 from 1:30pm-3:30pm. The class will include; partner yoga poses, a heart-focused meditation, tips to melt anyone’s heart, learning to connect on deeper levels and how to practice ‘arguing’ that improves your relationship. $20 with early registration or $25 at the door.

Chocolate and Yoga at Anu Movement in Neenah on Saturday, February 13, from 11am-Noon. Experienced chocolate with every part of your being! Join us for a 45-minute yoga flow practice that will set the stage for your senses to be amplified. Following with a meditation that will move you to a place to merge with the deep, smooth food of the gods! $20 per person or $35 for two. Click here for details. 

Valentine’s Day Champagne Buffet From 10am-1pm in the Marquette Ballroom at the Best Western Premier Bridgewood Resort Hotel. Featuring Lobster & Shrimp Frittata, Herb Roasted Chicken, Coffee Rubbed Tenderloin, Oysters Rockefeller, Steak Crostini, Bacon Wrapped Scallops, Gourmet Salads & Vegetables, Chocolate Dessert Extravaganza  Adults $18.95 Kids 3-11 $8.95 Under 3 Free. Reservations recommended. 720-8000 ext. 5031.

Valentine’s Day For All Lovers Event at the Melting Pot in Appleton. Choose from the Sweetheart or Forever package. Each includes a five course meal plus some bonus gifts! February 12 – 15, 2016. Call (920) 739-3533 for reservations.

Appleton Beer Factory The first 15 reservations will receive a FREE bottle of champagne. 

Good Company, Pullman’s at Trolley Square and Beefeaters will all be offering some great Valentine dinner specials. Check their websites for details.

2nd Annual Rock for Autism Valentine’s Day with a Cause. Sunday, February 14, from 1pm-4pm, put on by The Shinery, Lions Tail Brewery and Full Throttle ‘Sloonshine. Wine, craft beer, moonshine and music. Tickets are $25. Click here for details!

Fat Cupid Classic, Fat Bike RaceThis fun bike race is hosted by the Fox Valley Mountain Bikers and will be held at Lecker Park in Grand Chute on February 14 at 10am. Click here for details and how to register.

Franklin Street Inn –  Offering their “FREE 4 U Package” with a complimentary value of $50-170! Available from February 1 – March 12, 2016. Your package is prepared especially for you and includes: any whirlpool fireplace suite, romantic extras like whirlpool aromatherapy and plush bathrobes to use, fresh flowers, chocolates, wine or champagne for your Valentine toast, chocolate bedtime dessert, and complimentary room service for your candlelight full home-cooked breakfast. Stay for two nights and also receive a pair of signature engraved logo goblets and complimentary early check-in and late check-out. Visit our website to discover where “Contemporary Luxury Meets Vintage Charm” and select your favorite suite or call 920-209-9711 to reserve now! Subject to availability. Package must be requested when reserving. Not valid with other promos.

Romance Packages Make your night extra special! Some of our area hotels are offering great Valentine’s Day specials and packages! Click here for a list of participating hotels and details for each package.

Get Your Feet in the Sand; No Plane Ticket Required

Written by: Amy Karas, Convention Sales & Marketing Manager

With this frigid January weather, I long to grab a group of my friends, go somewhere warm and put my feet in the sand. Lucky for me I don’t have to travel to a tropical island for some fun in a beach setting. I only need to look as far as my neighborhood tavern and their sand volleyball courts.

I have been playing summer beach volleyball for the past few seasons at both Jefferson Park in Menasha and the Lions Park in Greenville, but always wanted to continue when the weather got cold. This year I finally decided to check out the different Fox Cities venues with year round volleyball.


In December the Pulse Young Professionals organization held an Ugly Sweater Volleyball event at GameDay Sports Bar in Appleton. They rented the courts and encouraged members to come socialize and exercise no matter their skill level.


GameDay also offers open court volleyball from 6-10pm Volleyball3on Monday nights January – May while their league games are in session. Anyone can come and play free of charge. I have organized a group of friends to scrimmage the past few Monday nights. It’s fun to socialize and also get in shape at the same time. Wait staff also services the court area. I love their wide selection of hot beverages.


For the winter season, I decided to get a little Volleyball_The Bar_Lynndalemore competitive and joined a coed tavern league Thursday nights at the Bar Appleton-Lynndale. Each week the game times and opponents vary, but schedules are set in advance and substitute players are allowed in case the regular team members can’t make it each week. When our group transitioned from playing for fun to league, there were a few rules that we had to get used to. The referees were very helpful when they found out that we were a new team.

There are plenty of locations that offer year round tavern league volleyball most nights of the week in the Fox Cities including GameDay Sports Bar in Appleton, The Bar Appleton-Lynndale, Tanner’s Grill and Bar in Kimberly and Capitol Centre in Appleton. With so many options available, it’s easy to rent a court, try out an open night or join a league for winter fun in the sand. I hope to see you there!

Wood Fired Pizza? Yes Please!

Written by: Alison Hutchinson, Convention Sales and Marketing Representative 

Located inside the Marketplace of Historic Downtown Neenah, you can enjoy a meal from Broken Tree Pizza (BTP).  I recently went to this restaurant with my daughter, a girlfriend and her daughter.  We thought this location would be a perfect spot for a girl’s night out.

We started off with an appetizer of their Basil Broken Sticks; breadsticks stuffed with basil and their house blend cheese topped with olive oil and Italian herb seasoning. Delicious! Even though the sticks went quickly, I am glad we only had a half order, to save room for the main event.

076Each of us girls selected a different individual pizza from the menu.  One chose the Single Topping Classic, two of
us chose from the BTP Creations menu; the first, THE ITALIAN (White Sauce with Fresh Mozzarella, Prosciutto, Cherry Tomato, Basil) and the second, BTP SELECT (Red Sauce with House Blend Cheese, Sausage, Pepperoni, Roasted Red Pepper, Red Onion, Black Olives). The fourth chose a B.Y.O. for build your own; a pizza or calzone, select the sauce, and top it your way.

The individual pizzas are 10 inches of a thin crust and Broken Tree Pizza - pizzatopped with fresh local ingredients.  We really enjoyed the smoky flavor the wood fire gives the crust.  A 10 inch pizza may not seem like much, but we all had some leftovers to take home!

Broken Tree Pizza is a great casual environment for any diner.  If you don’t have the time to stay in their restaurant, you can order take-out.  Click here for out more information on BTP and view their menu online. Happy eating!

Appleton Businesses Offer Rare Antiques and Repurposed Decor

Repurposing furniture and antiques has become more and more popular and if you’re on the hunt for something old or something new (to you), Appleton has plenty to offer. Writer Michael Muckian, for Wisconsin, paid a visit to our area and wrote about the treasures he found right here in Appleton.

“Small-town Wisconsin is rife with antique emporiums hawking everything from ancient tractors to faux Tiffany fixtures, from authentic heirlooms to funky kitsch. The state has a regional reputation as a collectors’ paradise…Two stores in Appleton stand out both for the vastness of their selections and the restoration skills of their staff. In the hands of experts, something old really can become new.” ….Click here to keep reading!

Urban Evolutions Outlet, Menasha, WI
Urban Evolutions
Harp Gallery