Sunday, June 7, 2015

H. H. Bennett Studio, Stand Rock Indian Ceremonial and More to Check Out in Wisconsin Dells This Summer

H.H. Bennett's Photography: Image via Wisconsin Dells Visitor and Convention Bureau.
**Disclosure: No compensation was received for this post. All opinions are 100% my own.

Nothing says summer more than a family trip to the Wisconsin Dells! Having family in Tomah not far from the Dells, I have spent quite a few days there. The atmosphere is always so upbeat and there are bits of childhood nostalgia all over town--such a wonderland for kids! Plus, the stunning sandstone formations along the Wisconsin River are always sure to captivate. The boat tours have always been a favorite of my family's for generations and are a memorable way of viewing the formations. Beautiful adventures!


If you are heading up to the Dells this summer, there are some unique celebrations this year to take advantage of:
  • H. H. Bennett Studio 150th Celebration Weekend June 13-14: Noted landscape photographer H. H. Bennett is responsible for some of the most iconic and well known photographs of the Dells helping to put the picturesque area on the map. Bennett's studio is the oldest running business in the Dells. The studio will be celebrating 150 years June 13-14 with 1800's photographic demonstrations, visits from Dells residents of the past, Ho-Chunk dancing and more. Admission to the museum for this particular weekend will be donation only. Such a treat! (Admission is normally $7 per adult, $6 per student, $3.50 children 5-17, $19 per family.)
  • The Original Wisconsin Ducks Celebrate 70 Years: The Wisconsin Dells has a variety of unique tours allowing families various ways of exploring its splendor. One unique way to explore is to join a Wisconsin Duck Tour. The Ducks are amphibious vehicles that were used in WWII to ferry troops ship to shore. What a novelty to be able to ride in these vehicles! The Original Wisconsin Ducks has the largest fleet of these vehicles currently in action. Today, the Original Wisconsin Ducks allow families to see the Dells from water and land. The Original Wisconsin Ducks is celebrating its 70th year so there may be some special fun coming up, so check their website for updates.
  • Wisconsin Dells Waterslide-athon June 20: 2015 is the 10th Anniversary for this annual charity event that raises funds for the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Madison. Ronald McDonald will be in town at four waterpark resorts and McDonald’s – Lake Delton. Check the website for times. Plus, $1 from every Extra Value Meal sold at the Lake Delton and Wisconsin Dells locations on June 20th will be donated to the House. 
  • Ho-Chunk Experience "Wasi Ra" Show: The Wasi Ra Show honors the Ho-Chunk culture with drummers, singers and dancers. The free show is Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays 6PM-7PM May 27-September 3. The show is at Ho-Chunk behind the waterfall in the atrium. There is a meet and greet from 5PM-6PM.
  • Anniversary Days at Circus World Museum July 1 and 2: Circus World Museum in nearby Baraboo is celebrating 56 years with $5 admission on July 1 and 2. Amazing deal! Circus World contains many circus historical exhibits and has live circus performances. Baraboo is where the Ringling Brothers Circus left on their first tour.
  • Stand Rock Indian Ceremonial Reawakened August 22: Celebrating the once nightly performances at Stand Rock and the 150th Anniversary of H.H. Bennett's photography, the revival will be an intertribal ceremony reflecting on H.H. Bennett, the Ho-Chunk People and their shared legacy in presenting the Wisconsin Dells to the world. Tickets are $22. The extraordinary event will be held at the Crystal Grand Music Theater in Wisconsin Dells.
Glockenspiel via Wisconsin Dells Visitor and Convention Bureau

While you are in Wisconsin Dells, here are some of our favorite to-dos--beyond the Waterparks!
  • Take a stroll along the River Walk where you can enjoy some spectacular views of the Dells and the Wisconsin River.
  • Visit Parson's Indian Trading Post and Museum where you can pick up some gorgeous Native American handicrafts to bring home and peruse intriguing artifacts.
  • A visit to the Wisconsin Deer Park is magical for adults and kids alike! Visitors are able to explore while feeding and petting over 100 deer and other wildlife.
  • Wander through downtown enjoying candy shops, Carr Valley Cheese, a show at the Glockenspiel and more. The Glockenspiel has a little Pied Piper reenactment several times a day--for free!
  • Don't forget Wisconsin Dell's collection of entertainment including the Palace Theater which is a Broadway-quality dinner theater and the Rick Wilcox Magic Theater where illusionist Rick Wilcox wows families.
My family has been traveling to the Wisconsin Dells my entire life. It has been quite amazing to see its growth unfold throughout my lifetime. Each year brings new fun melded with some of the old favorites. What a fun place for families!
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