2018 Marquette County Visitor Guide

2018 Marquette County Visitor’s Guide Page 3 Nestled in the gently rolling countryside of south-central Wisconsin, Marquette County lies largely untouched by the heavy footsteps of man. With almost two-thirds of the county’s 320,000 acres remain- ing primitive oak and pine for- ests, and vast, grassy marshes, it is a perfect spot for those who seek nature’s unspoiled beauty. Dotted by nearly seven- ty lakes, and criss-crossed by fifteen sparkling trout streams, Marquette County offers some of the finest fishing in the Midwest. Whether you’re after that tackle-bustin’ pike, bass or walleye, or a skilletful of blue- gill, perch, crappie or bullhead fillets, you’ll find a lake to suit your fancy. And there’s plenty of elbowroom on our county’s streams for those who prefer to tempt some rainbow, brook or brown trout. You might even want to tangle with one of the monster catfish that thrive in the Fox River system and the Grand River. Our waterways and wetlands also abound with water- fowl—ducks, geese, cranes, herons, cormorants and swans—and the woods, marshes and prairies are home to hundreds of species of other birds and mammals, including the majestic bald eagle. If hunting is your pleasure, you’ll find the Marquette County deer herd one of the best in the state. You’ll also have your pick of ruffed grouse, woodcock, pheasant, wild turkeys, ducks, and close to 300,000 Canada Geese. Other small game species are abundant, and there’s plenty of room to hunt, with over 8,000 acres set aside for public hunting. For those who prefer a simple walk or bicycle ride through woodland or meadow, our county is the place to be! During spring and summer, wildflowers bloom in rainbows of color, and about two dozen varieties of wild orchids can be found by those who look closely. Autumn finds the leaves of maple, oak, birch and aspen putting on a color show unmatched any- where. But nature’s beauty is only a part of the Marquette County story…Named for the intrepid Jesuit explorer Père Jacques Marquette, who jour- neyed up the Fox River in 1673, Marquette County is rich in history, and a favorite destination of thousands who revel in searching out historic sites and attractions. Many people like to “relive” part of the explorer’s journey by tak- ing a short canoe trip on the Fox River. Montello, the county seat, was known as “Mont L’eau” (the hill by water) by the early fur traders and explorers; and Packwaukee, named after a Winnebago Indian Chief, is the site of the first frame building and trading post in the county. John Muir, the famed naturalist and father of our nation- al parks, spent his boyhood years in Marquette County, and the old home- s t e a d—F o u n t a i n Lake Farm and John Muir Park—are all part of a new national historic landmark in the southern part of the county. Montello is histor- ic in its own right, for its granite quarry was being worked as early as 1879. Still located on Montello’s main street, the quarry produced fine, red granite, which proved to be the hardest in the world. This beautiful granite was used to build the state capitol in Madison, as well as President Grant’s and Robert E. Lee’s tombs. Westfield is now the home of the Marquette County Historical Society, which is headquartered in the historic Cochrane-Nelson house on Lawrence Street. Inside, one can find countless relics and memories of the settlement days of Marquette County. Antique, craft, gift and other specialty shops are found throughout the county, ready to delight the shopper with unique merchandise in a welcoming atmosphere. Flea markets are held every summer weekend in several com- munities, where bargains beckon. Several times each year, art and craft fairs show off local talent—as well as other artisans—for your browsing pleasure. Special events—barbecues, parades, festivals, auctions, ball games…are held most every weekend somewhere in the county—be sure to attend some of these for a day of good, old-fashioned fun! For the sports-minded, there are two golf courses in the county, a tennis court, and several facilities that offer cross-country skiing during the winter. Miles of snow- mobile trails criss-cross the county, and backroads offer excellent biking. Agriculture is the major industry in Marquette County, and in addition to the traditional Wisconsin dairy farm, you’ll find “muck farms” in the rich bot- tomlands, specializing in crops like carrots and mint. Christmas tree plantations are also common through- out the county. If you’re here during harvest time, be sure to stop at one of the many roadside stands selling fresh produce straight from the field. Modern resorts, motels, campgrounds and bed- and-breakfasts offer the finest in lodging, and you can experience a variety of dining styles in the numerous cafes, restaurants and supper clubs in every Marquette County community. Traversed by U.S. Highway 51 (I-39), and State Highways 22, 23 and 82, Marquette County is easily accessible from all directions—just a short two hours from Milwaukee, and only a three-hour drive from the Chicago area. Marquette County…the ideal place to spend your next vacation! Experience Marquette County The Visitor’s Guide to Marquette County is published annually by the Fox River Publishing Co., N6053 Co. Rd. Y, Montello, WI 53949. The entire contents are Copyright, 2018, by the Fox River Publishing Co. w.marquettecountyguide.com —Sherry & Daryl Christensen— A DVERTISING & D ISTRIBUTION 608-296-3068 cell 608-516-4709 email: sherry.christensen@live.com (or marquetteguide@gmail.com) —Mike & Karen Sue Jacobi— P RODUCTION , L AYOUT , T YPESETTING —Kathleen McGwin— C ONTRIBUTING E DITOR & P HOTOGRAPHER Cover: Artwork by nationally-known wildlife artist Sam Timm. Sam’s artwork is available directly from his studio in Wautoma, WI samtimmwildlifeart.com • 920-787-3146 Printed on Recycled Paper ww The Guide is on our website--visit www.marquettecountyguide.com Marquette County Website Marquette County is online with a website, covering topics and links includ- ing: County Departments; Zoning; Community Information, including Chamber of Commerce contacts, accom- modations and more; Current Weather Conditions; Bike Trails Map; Crime Stoppers Information; County Board Supervisors, and much more! co.marquette.wi.us Also visit the Marquette County Economic Development Corporation website at: mc4ed.org EMERGENCY DIAL 911 Sheriff’s office: 608-297-2115 455 square miles and one stoplight...the wilderness of Marquette County is so close it’s almost in your backyard! Visitor Information Marquette County Visitors Bureau: 1-888-318-0362; and their website: TravelMarquetteCounty.com Montello Area Chamber of Commerce: Visit their website at: www. montellowi.com Neshkoro: Website: www.neshkorowisconsin.com Oxford Chamber of Commerce: Visit their website at: www.oxfordwi.com Westfield Chamber of Commerce: (608) 296-4146; P.O. Box 393, Westfield, WI 53964; and their website is: www.westfieldwi.com Lodging: www.marquettecountywisconsinlodging.com (A Visitor Center with County information is located at Westfield exit #113, just W. of I-39 in the 1st National Bank parking lot.) Photo by George Ancona, Jr. • www.geopicsphotography.com