Tag: Appleton

Haunted Fox Cities

Haunted Fox Cities

With Halloween approaching many people flock to the popular haunted house Burial Chamber or Neenah’s Most Haunted for a scare, but some seek a more “real” paranormal experience. Below are a few places in the Fox Cities that are rumored to have had frequent paranormal activity.

10530480_973713412646957_3808768251781511911_o.jpgHearthstone Historic House – Although it is popular for being the first home in the world powered by a hydroelectric central station using the Edison system, that is not all it’s known for. The museum is said to still be occupied by the second owner of the house, A.W. Priest., who owned the home until 1930. Staff, volunteers, and visitors have experienced unusual sounds, such as sneezing when no one sneezed, and the feeling of being watched. Hearthstone embraces this unexplained activity and offers two different haunted experiences leading up to Halloween.

IMG_1485 (1).jpgStone Cellar Brewpub – The oldest brewery in the Fox Cities is a favorite among locals. Apparently it is also a favorite of someone who never left. Bartenders and patrons have witnessed pint glasses moving either from the bar to the floor or from the bar into the dishwasher by themselves. Employees decided to name the individual causing these unexplained acts, Charlie, although paranormal experts believe Charlie may actually be George Walter, the third owner of the building.

175930_300543766721930_1063543925_oAppleton Curling Club – The home to several bonspiels and curling leagues during the winter, Appleton Curling Club is also rumored to be home to a former member or two. Witnesses claim to have heard unexplained footsteps and have seen chairs fall over on their own in the club’s bar area.


Former Bootleggers Bar/Greenville Station – Possibly the most haunted place on this list, Greenville Station has been investigated by several paranormal experts. Some investigators have heard voices and footsteps coming from the floor above. Others have had their hair pulled or legs pinched. One investigator claims to have gotten punched by an unseen force, resulting in a bruise.

riversideRiverview Cemetery – One of the Fox Cities most well-known hauntings, is the story of Kate Blood. Her gravestone, along with her husbands, sit in a separate part of the cemetery. Stories and legends say she murdered her 3 children before killing herself, hence the 3 small gravestones that sit near hers, but records show she only had one child and that she died of disease. She was a mere 26 years old when she died and the reason for their separate grave site remains a mystery.

376864_490084654341150_1121343302_n.jpgThe Zuelke Building – An iconic building in downtown Appleton, now utilized for businesses and office space, is rumored to be haunted by its’ namesake, Irving Zuelke. Most reports come from late-night cleaning crews who say they’ve seen the half torso of a man, one man said he was tapped on the shoulder while cleaning. Music seems to stir up activity here, as one story states that during an event, a pianist took a break from his playing and all the elevators in the building quite working. As he started to play again, the elevators mysteriously started running again.



Our Fox Cities Fall Traditions

Written by: Matt Ten Haken, Director of Sports MarketingLotsOfPumpkins

Apple Picking, Friday Night Football, Pumpkin-flavored everything, Jumping in huge leaf piles….what is there not to like about the fall?! Every family has their favorite fall traditions, here are some of the best autumn activities we like to do, and they’re all right here in the Fox Cities.
Pumpkin & Apple Picking
There are oodles of options for picking your favorite fall produce in the area. We have frequented Sprangers Orchard over the last few years. You can pick your own, or they have a huge pre-picked selection for you to choose from as well. Also, try their delicious apple cider and caramel apples. Sprangers staff is always friendly and helpful, it makes the experience really enjoyable! They are located just outside Appleton, in the Heart of the Valley area, check out their Facebook page.
Pumpkin Carving
A hidden gem that we love to go to each year is the Rades Family Pumpkin Carving Display on Appleton’s east side. Each year the Rades family transform their entire front yard into a pumpkin-themed paradise. They carve intricate designs into dozens of pumpkins and add in special lighting, music, and displays. Our girls have been especially fond of the Disney princess carvings over the years. The display runs the nights of October 29-31, this is non-scary event so it’s great for the whole family. Donations are accepted and appreciated for the Fox Valley Humane Association. Click here for details!
Freaky 5K
The final run/walk that we do each season is the YMCA’s Freaky 5K on October 29. Starting and finishing at Appleton’s Pierce Park, the run takes competitors through three parks and some of the city’s most distinct neighborhoods. Costumes are encouraged! Our girls love the 1/4 Mile Mini-Monster Dash. The 5K field ranges from competitive runners looking for a personal best to novice walkers looking to show off their Halloween costumes. This is a great family event that culminates with post-event food, drinks, and activities. Click here for more information!

Are You Ready for Some Football?

Written by: Amy Karas, Convention Sales and Marketing Manager

Fall is here and that means football season is too. Here in the Fox Cities, with Lambeau Field, home of the Green Bay Packers, just a short 30 minute drive away; there are plenty of opportunities for both area residents and visitors alike to catch a home game. Don’t want to deal with the game day traffic? Hop on a shuttle from one of our local bars and enjoy the ride! The Bar on Lynndale or the Bar on College Ave, D2, or Tanner’s Bar and Grill in Kimberly, all offer transportation and beverages for just $20 per person!

13925839_10154203901144733_8403565281344930166_oWith our 20 communities and Lawrence University in Appleton, the Fox Cities is also home to countless local football teams and plenty of games to catch on any given fall weekend. Lawrence University plays their home games on Saturday afternoons at the Banta Bowl in Appleton. Area public and private high schools have varsity football games on Friday nights at Appleton East, North and West, Kaukauna, Kimberly, Neenah, Menasha, Fox Valley Lutheran, Xavier and St. Mary’s Central fields.


14355697_1467980143216059_811243965567511418_n.jpgDuring football season, Monday nights in the Fox Cities is the place to be if you want to talk shop with Packer players. Clubhouse Live is a weekly pro sports talk program hosted by Green Bay Packers wide receiver Ty Montgomery and his special guests. Watch it live at 6:30pm at The Clubhouse Sports Pub & Grill inside the Radisson Paper Valley Hotel in downtown Appleton, or stream it at clubhouselive.com or postcrescent.com. ‘In the Huddle’ is a Packer radio show hosted by Justin Hull, Packers safety Chris Banjo and tight end Jared Cook. Watch it live at Game Day Sports Bar in Appleton from 6-7pm or listen to it on 105.7 WAPL. Both shows are free to the public!

1973584_10152820185483513_6731381116984047219_o.jpgThere is also an abundance of sports bars throughout the Fox Cities for game-day fun. They offer plenty of flat screen tv’s and game day specials including drinks, food, trivia and giveaways. Some of the more unique venues with great game day specials include Holidays in Neenah, where Packer fans congregate downstairs and Chicago Bears fans come together upstairs; Bad Badger Sports Bar in downtown Appleton, which is a popular venue for Wisconsin pro and college games and features a bowling lane as a bar top; and Game Day Sports Bar in Appleton, with plenty of flat screens playing multiple games you’re always on top of what’s happening in any game, food and drink specials, and their heated outdoor patio is open year-round!

*Photo credit: Lawrence University facebook page; Inside the Huddle facebook page; Bad Badger Sports Bar facebook page.

The Fox Cities is Getting More Space

fcec-sign fcec-dozer
The big news in the Fox Cities is it’s newest construction project, an Exhibition Center being built in the heart of Downtown Appleton.  The ground breaking ceremony was held on Thursday, September 29.  I am in the photo of the bulldozer that was driven by Mayor Hanna to reveal the new building design.  The new center will be connected by a skywalk to the Radisson Paper Valley Hotel.  The Fox Cities Exhibition Center (FCEC) will offer 30,400 square feet of event space, connected to a pre-function space of 7,300 square feet. The FCEC will be able to hold over 1,600 people sitting down for a meal in round tables or, over 2,500 people theater-style, and a trade show there can hold over 150 8×10 booths.  Just think of the possibilities!

FCEC_Rendering4 - Copy.jpgAnother exciting factor is that it’s not going to be just any exhibition center, it’s one-of-a kind design will help it stand out structurally and with more functionality in utilizing it’s surrounding amenities. The best part, the FCEC not only built in the heart of downtown but into the hillside of Jones Park, with a complete wall of glass that will reveal beautiful park views and opportunity to utilize the outdoor space. How exhilarating!

fcec_rendering3-copyBecause the FCEC will be built into the ground, most of its rooftop will be street level. It will feature a plaza that consists of 17,600 square feet that offers event planners an option to have an outdoor element with things like a large tent, movie projection, 100 craft vendors and food truck space. To top it off, it will feature an 82 foot LED spire that is symbolic of the hydro-electricity in the area that began in 1882.  It will help give the building a recognizable landmark for those looking over the downtown landscape.  How cool is that?!

As a Convention Sales and Marketing representative, I can’t wait to bring back conventions that have outgrown the current space of the Radisson Paper Valley Hotel to this new updated space. What’s even more thrilling is all the new groups and conventions we can bring into the Fox Cities that we have never been able to accommodate before.  The space of the Fox Cities Exhibition Center will provide an opportunity to bring in more guests to the area to experience all the great things we have to offer! The FCEC is expected to be completed in Fall 2017. I can’t wait!

Instagram-Worthy Fox Cities Spots

Instagram has fast become a place to not just post a photo, but to show your followers the world from your perspective. We love seeing photos of the Fox Cities from a view we maybe haven’t seen before. From our cool downtown’s to our beautiful parks and nature centers, we’ve put together a little list of great Instagram-worthy spots. Thanks for sharing your Fox Cities view! #explorefoxcities #foxcitieswi

  • Vibrant Downtowns

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Pictured from Top Left: Downtown Appleton; Shattuck Park, Downtown Neenah; Lawrence University Main Hall, Appleton; 222 Building, Appleton; Art Alley Project, Appleton; Shattuck Park, Neenah; Fox Cities Performing Arts Center; Houdini Plaza, Appleton; Shattuck Park, Arial view; Downtown Appleton Farm Market; :Lawrence Memorial Chapel, Appleton; Octoberfest, Appleton

  • Beautiful Trails and Nature
    You’ll find more than just city amenities here, we’ve got plenty of gorgeous nature centers and parks waiting for you to enjoy!

heckrodt-trail-chuckzachariasphotography  fox-cities-sunset-bike  trestle-trail-ellieg17 img_2151  TrestleTrail_MenashaWI6564jre-1  jones-parkmenasha-locks-bridge  thousand-islands-brianne_zinger  img_2370Bubolz-Spring flower  1000Islands_KaukaunaWIfence5710u  HighCliffStatePark_SherwoodWIfallview

Pictured from Top Left: Heckrodt Wetleand Reserve, Menasha; Appleton Sunset; Trestle Trail, Menasha; Gordon Bubolz Nature Preserve, Appleton; Trestle Trail, Menasha; Jones Park, Appleton; Menasha Locks Bridge; 1000 Islands Environmental Center; High Cliff State Park, Sherwood; Gordon Bubolz Nature Preserve, Appleton; High Cliff state Park, Sherwood. 

  • Fox Cities Foodies
    The Fox Cities is home to countless great locally owned restaurants.

fullsizerender-2  rye  IMG_1054appleton-beer-factory  The Source - 2  Happy Bellies-donuts  antojitos-joshdukelow  stone-cellar-maryrhodeTimshel  lions-tail-brewing-co  Marks6

Pictured from Top Left: Broken Tree Pizza, Neenah; Rye, Appleton; SAP, Appleton; Appleton Beer Factory, Appleton; The Source Public House, Menasha; Happy Bellies, Appleton; Antojitos Mexicanos, Appleton; Zuppas Cafe, Neenah; Stone Cellar Brew Pub, Appleton; Timshel Cafe, Neenah; Lion’s Tail Brewing Co, Neenah; Mark’s East Side, Appleton

  • Take Me Out to the Ball Game
    Wisconsin Timber Rattlers at Fox Cities Stadium

t-rats-whiffer-vaughnlowery  _dsc4119b-1  t-rats-fang-in-the-rain-kaijuluvspnutt-rats-beer-pampi_25  t-rats-fang-patricktcooper  stadium

  • Waterfront Oasis
    Gorgeous views on the Fox River and Lake Winnebago

train-crossing-at-fox-river  fox-river-bike-copy  fox-river-train-tracks-lindseyschmidt-copyfox-river-susnet-copy  atlas-waterfront-cafe-therealtorsofc21ace-copy  stone-cellar-at-riverviewkimberly-point-neenah  north-shore-golf-club  EarlyFallFoxRiver

*Photo Credits to the following Instagram users:
@kruegerphotos, @lindsayghintz, @lindseyschmidt, @kimjwillems22, @g_toxx, @alikoestner, @hintzilla, @jkehring, @mitslittle, @brianne_zinger, @chuckzachariasphotography, @kimthielphoto, @joshdukelow, @therealtorsofc21ace, @particktcooper, @vaughnlowery, @maryrhode, @ellieg17, @patrickjnowak, @michelle.a.gauthier, @kaijuluvspnut, @pampi_25

The Sweetest Treats in Town…

Happy Bellies-donuts

Looking for a sweet treat? The Fox Cities is home to some great bakery, candy and ice cream shops that are sure to satisfy your sweet tooth. From cupcakes and cookies to chocolate and candies we’ve got you covered!

Crazy Sweet Candy Store Crazy for sweets? They have more than 100 different ways to satisfy your sweet tooth! Jelly Belly jelly beans, scoop your own bulk candy or saltwater taffy just to name a few. The next time you need a sweet pick me up be sure to stop in! Watch for the addition of their ice cream shop, set to open soon!

Happy Bellies This bakery is special for its dedication to providing dairy & gluten-free options that don’t taste like they’re missing a thing. My son loves their vanilla donuts and their honey lavender cupcakes are incredible. They also have a rotation of take-and-bake options so you can enjoy them at home anytime!

Manderfields Bakery A local favorite with two locations in the Appleton area and one on Menasha. Their donuts are a favorite but also serve up amazing cupcakes, cookies, cakes, pies and breads. They also offer amazing seasonal and holiday cookie and candies options.

Rebecca’s Sweets Boutique This small boutique bakery offers coffee, cakes, cupcakes, cake pops, sweet treats and custom cakes too! They bake in small batches from scratch everyday so it’s sure to be delicious!

SAP Brunch, Brown Bag and BakeryThey pride themselves on made-from-scratch products and locally sourced ingredients. They’re bakery case is ever changing with flavors and products but never disappoints! Everything from breakfast pastries to fabulous fancy desserts; the scones are so so good and the mini pies are delightful! Bonus; they’re coffee is awesome too.

Simple Simon’s Bakery  Another long-time Appleton local favorite, Simple Simon is a traditional bakery with classic favorites. Serving up delicious donuts daily, eclairs, napoleons, turnovers, pies of all kinds, cookies and bars. They also offer custom cakes as well!

Tamara’s the Cake Guru Specializing in all things cupcake and custom cakes. With a flavor list that goes on and on, you’re sure to find something for any taste!

Wilmar Chocolates In business since 1956, they specialize in fresh batch chocolates. Stop in their store any time and they meet you at the door with a free sample. You can purchase pre-made or build your own gift boxes, or try out your candy making skills and make your own candy bar!

Vande Walle’s Candies Over 75 years in business, 29 years in the Appleton area. Best known for their hand-made creamy caramels, they also have award winning chocolates and specialize in custom candy gift boxes for any occasion.

September “Fests” Keeping Summer Alive



Written by: Pam Seidl, Executive Director

While many may view Labor Day weekend as the unofficial end of summer, September in the Fox Cities is full of summer-like festivals that keep the fun going!

Fox Jazz Fest kicks off the month with great music on Labor Day weekend (September 3 and 4 this year).  Fox Jazz Fest is a free, 2-day concert from local, regional and national jazz artists. The 2016 Jazz Fest theme this year is ‘How My Heart Sings’.

2013 seafood fest logoSeafood Fest is September 9 & 10.  This legendary event is a fundraiser for several local Rotary clubs.  Lobster and salmon plated dinners, live music both nights and, new for this year, the Fox Valley Food Truck Rally will also be offering delicious food for any palette. Fun for the whole family!

IMG_2060The Fox Cities Marathon is a festival of races September 16 through 18.  The Guardian Kids Run & the Kimberly Clark Diaper Dash & Toddler Trot take place at the Fox Cities Stadium.  A 5k course starts and finishes at Riverside Park in Neenah on Saturday.  The main marathon, half-marathon and relay races start at UW Fox Valley and finish at Riverside Park. If you’re not a runner, not a problem! There’s plenty of fun to be had by spectators as well!

OctoberfestChalk_dsc_0165f6Octoberfest, the biggest “fest” of all, wraps up the September fun on the 24th.  This community-driven festival that provides family-friendly events for all ages while raising funds for more than 100 local nonprofit organizations.  Locals and visitor alike enjoy this summer-ending days of live music on five stages and great food at one of the 100+ food booths!


These signature festivals plus many other events like Fox Cities Restaurant Week, make September a great time to plan a  visit to the Fox Cities today!