"And here for first time in my life I saw my beloved Mississippi River, dry in the summer haze, low water, with its big rank smell that smells like the raw body of America because it washes it up."
Jack Kerouac, on his first cross-country journey, in "On the Road."
Whose Grandad this is named after I can't say. But he must have been someone special. His bluff is popular with eagle-watchers, rock-climbers, and anyone who just wants to have a great view of the Mississippi Valley.
Riverfest is a five day family event held every year during the 4th of July weekend at Riverside Park in La Crosse, WI. There is always lots of children's activities and entertainers, water skiers, fireworks on July 4th, bands, magicians, and many more. The Food Fair has great food from some of the best local restaurants and dining establishments in the Coulee Region. There are events, activities, and entertainment for people of all ages
For an afternoon of fun or longer ride on the Mississippi River steamer Julia Belle Swain is like stepping back in time. It is a great way to see the Mississippi River and the La Crosse area. The Julia Belle Swain was built in 1971 in Dubuque, Iowa, and is one of only 5 authentic steam-powered passenger vessels still in operation on the Mississippi River system. It is located at Riverside Park. Multiple day cruises include lodging at your destination as well as ground transportation and tours of historical sites. The steamboat operates from June through late October.
This nine day festival offers something for all ages. Oktoberfest IS AGAIN TWO WEEKENDS! The Grand Maple Leaf Parade (Sept 27 @ 11a.m.), carnival rides, arts and crafts show and ethic foods. Authentic German entertainment, national entertainers as well as local and regional country, pop, rock, and childrens acts during the week. The beautifully illuminated Torchlight Parade is on Thursday, Oct 3 @ 7p.m. Both North and South fairgrounds require buttons to enter.
Approximately 5,000 miles and over 150 years of history provide the only major differences between La Crosse, Wisconsin and Munich, Germany during early October each year. The first few days of the tenth month in both Munich and La Crosse are filled with "merrymaking" and a carnival atmosphere known in both cities as Oktoberfest.
One of the achievements which helped La Crosse gain a 1961 All-American City Award, Oktoberfest, USA, is one of the few authentic Old World folk festivals held annually in the United States. Each year, numerous local industries, civic and fraternal groups plus hundreds of area residents, working on a voluntary basis, combine their efforts with those sponsoring La Crosse Festivals, Inc., in developing and presenting the annual autumn festival.
Take a riverboat cruise on the Mississippi River.
The Julia Belle is a paddleboat that will take you back to the days of Mark Twain. It's a 'must-do' when in LaCrosse. Unfortunately when I was here last the Mississippi was at flood stage and we were only able to have cocktails on the boat tied to the dock. But it was still fun.
Try to get to LaCrosse for Oktoberfest - it's a great time!
This event has been going on for almost 40 years - it is always near the end of Sept or early Oct. Food, dancing and of course, much beer drinking! Fun, Fun, Fun!!