16 Winter Festivals In Wisconsin That Are Simply Unforgettable
We don’t hide from winter here in Wisconsin. It’s the opposite – we celebrate
winter in Wisconsin! Sure, there are some days where they tell you not to leave your house with exposed skin, but we’ve gotten used to that and we’ve embraced our life in the arctic tundra, and the many winter festivals in Wisconsin serve as proof. The seasonal fests are held in communities across the state and have grown into some of the most beloved things to do in winter in Wisconsin. There are quite a few winter festivals in Wisconsin, but if you ask us, the ones below are some of the best.
1. Bayfield Winterfest - March
There's plenty to do at
, which is held in early March each year. Activities include a candlelit hike, run on water, fireworks, boot hockey, and a polar plunge.
2. Frozen Tozen - Boulder Junction - February
Boulder Junction, WI 54512, USA
An ice fishing tournament, bonfires, ice skating, sledding, music, and more await at the annual
3. Cedarburg Winter Festival - February
The highlight of the
Cedarburg Winter Festival
is costumed bed races on the ice, but there is also an ice golf tournament, camel rides, a chili contest, a parade, and a pancake breakfast.
4. Chetek Winterfest - February
is dedicated to all things motorized. During the two-day fest, attendees race snowmobiles and a whole array of other things.
5. Fish Creek Winter Festival - February
Fish Creek, WI 54212, USA
From frozen kickball to a bike toss, the
Fish Creek Winter Festival
, which is held over the course of three days, will help shake your winter doldrums. The heated tent doesn't hurt, either!
6. Iola Winter Carnival - February
Come for the ski jumping, stay for the amazing Scandinavian food. There's so much to love about this annual event. Visit the
Iola Winter Carnival Facebook page
for updated event info.
7. Jack Frost Fest - Spooner - January
The highlight of the
Jack Frost Fest
is the pond hockey tournament, but the frozen turkey bowling is a close second. Add in a bonfire, marshmallow roasting, and a rib and chili contest and you've got a pretty great winter day.
8. Knickerbocker Ice Festival - Lake Mills - February
Lake Mills, WI 53551, USA
Ice softball, a team trivia contest, tons of races and a ton of fun are on the docket at the
Knickerbocker Ice Festival
in Lake Mills. There's also ice sculpting, ice golf and a king and queen.
9. Kickapoo Valley Reserve Winter Festival - January
These folks pack a ton into a single day, with horse-drawn carriage rides, sled dog races, snow sculptures, skiing, archery and more. Plus a bread and chili cookoff. It truly doesn't get much better than the
Kickapoo Valley Reserve Winter Festival
10. Lake Geneva Winterfest - February
Lake Geneva, WI 53147, USA
The highlight of the
Lake Geneva Winterfest
is the US National Snow Sculpting Championships, but there is also an Abominable Snowman Race, a cocoa crawl and the sky circus on ice.
11. Madison Winter Festival
Please note, since the publication of this article, the Madison Winter Festival has gone on hiatus. New festival dates have not yet been released. Check the Madison Winter Festival Facebook page for updated information.
The festival moves to Elver Park this year, which takes away the Capitol Square setting, but means the snow needed for all the events will be usable long after the weekend.
12. Northwest Wisconsin Winterfest and Games - Altoona
Please note, since the publication of this article, the Northwest Wisconsin Winterfest has been canceled.
Car and ATV races, motorcycle and snowmobile races, pond hockey, volleyball, softball, and a hot air balloon event are all part of the schedule.
13. Northwoods Blizzard Blast - Conover - February
Horse-drawn sleigh rides, ice bowling, snow sculpting, and a recliner race make the
Northwoods Blizzard Blast
a can't-miss event.
14. Scandihoovian Winter Festival - Mt. Horeb - February
Mount Horeb, Mt Horeb, WI 53572, USA
Celebrate all things troll at the
Scandihoovian Winter Festival
! Attendees can enjoy a slew of activities, which, in past years, have included a spelling bee, frozen turkey bowling, a fat tire bike race, and more.
15. Schnee Days - Elkhart Lake - January
Schnee is the German word for snow and you'll find lots of wintery events lined up at the aptly named
festival. Attendees can enjoy everything from races and snowshoeing to kite flying and dog sledding.
16. Wausau Winter Fest - January
The whole square gets iced over and there's curling, ice skating, and a ton of food to be had, making the
Wausau Winter Fest
one of the best winter festivals in Wisconsin.
Have you been to any of these awesome winter festivals in Wisconsin? What’s your favorite fest? Know of any other great seasonal events in Wisconsin? Aside from fests and events, what are some other ways to celebrate winter in Wisconsin? Tell us!
Looking for more ways to enjoy winter in Wisconsin? No problem; we’ve got you covered! Check out these amazingly fun things to do in winter in Wisconsin.
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More to Explore
Winter Festivals In Wisconsin
What are some fun things to do in winter in Wisconsin?
There are lots of things to do in winter in Wisconsin, including:
Are there any other seasonal events in Wisconsin?
There are several beloved seasonal events in Wisconsin, including: