Experience Driftless Wisconsin

October 1st, 2011 by

Walk up to the edge of the ridge top and take in the view.  Feel the breadth of the Mississippi River from the bench seat of a boat.  Smell the aromas of autumn hiking along a remote trail.  Taste the flavor of seasonal foods in the kitchen of a Victorian mansion.  Hear a shrieking hawk while walking a family farm. 


Upcoming October events offer you a sampling of all of these experiences in a variety of venues and activities that give you an intimate feel of Driftless Wisconsin.  

On Saturdays and Sundays during the fall, Mississippi Explorer Cruises embarks from St. Feriole Island in Prairie du Chien for a spectacular Fall Foliage Cruise of the river.  The best view of the river bluffs is from the river’s level.  Colored with autumn and accented with limestone outcroppings, the bluffs rise steeply from the river’s edge to create a dazzling amphitheater. 

The Driftless Film Festival on October 6 – 9 at the Temple Theatre in Viroqua offers a screening of films made in Wisconsin, including short films, documentaries, horror films, dramas, and animation.  The films will be shown in the historic Temple Theatre, a restored movie palace built in 1922.  The theatre was restored to its “original Classical Revival interior design” and reopened in 2002, offering patrons the ambiance of early twentieth century architecture. 

The historic Villa Louis in Prairie du Chien will host Breakfast in a Victorian Kitchen on October 8 – 9.  The staff of the carefully restored 19th century mansion will provide a hands-on cooking workshop for adults.  It includes preparation of a meal using foods and utensils of the era, that yes, culminates with consumption of the meal!  A tour of the estate will follow the meal.  Reservations are required. 

As mentioned in my last blog, Gays Mills will host Flavor of the Kickapoo on the same weekend, October 7 – 9.  The event will feature outdoor cooking competitions and silent sports demonstrations, as well as a geocache special hunt.  The event will present many ways you can experience and connect with the Driftless area.

 On October 22, the Mississippi Valley Conservancy will host Seldom Seen Farm Hike near Gays Mills.  Seldom Seen Farm was the setting for “The Land Remembers: the story of a farm and its people,” made famous by local author Ben Logan.  The event will honor Logan with the dedication of a monument, followed by a tour of the farm. The tour will allow you to hike the natural settings of Logan’s memorable story; as well as walk into the experience of a Driftless Wisconsin autumn.