Enchanting gardens, vintage aircraft and uplifting live music all await motorcoach groups visiting the Eastern Shores region. Spanning Appleton to Lake Geneva, this region and its art museums, theaters and historic attractions are excellent additions to your itinerary.
Did you know that Harry Houdini grew up in Appleton? Begin your tour with a visit to the History Museum at the Castle. Here you can experience some of Houdini famous tricks through hands-on experiences and learn why he called Appleton home. Enjoy a leisurely cruise down the Fox River and enjoy the beautiful scenery and wildlife. Afterwards, head over to the Bergstrom Mahler Museum of Glass, which holds the largest, most representative collection of glass paperweights in the world. With nearly 5,000 on display, you will be awed by the beauty and intricacy, and you’ll never look at a paperweight the same.
Art galleries, boutiques and gourmet restaurants greet visitors along downtown’s College Avenue, and you can indulge in retail therapy with a stop at Fox River Mall, the largest shopping center in Wisconsin. Hearthstone Historic House Museum, the first residence in the world powered by Thomas Edison’s centrally located hydroelectric system, offers guided tours back to the early days of domestic electricity. The 1882 Victorian mansion features original light fixtures, woodwork and stained-glass windows that will impress any group.
This morning, head to East Troy for a leisurely ride aboard the East Troy Electric Railroad. Step back in time when life was little simpler. The historic rail cars travel a 10-mile trip through beautiful Southeast Wisconsin. Enjoy the depot museum and perhaps a tasty treat at the old-fashioned ice cream parlor located next door.
Dancing Horses Theatre in Delevan presents dazzling spectacles of equestrian artistry. Horses in a variety of breeds perform with exacting precision alongside their trainers in a 90-minute show that concludes with Dancing Waters, where hundreds of water jets are choreographed in a kaleidoscope of changing lights. Special holiday shows are available from November to January. Packages include the performance, a meal and an exotic bird show with parrots singing, roller skating and playing basketball. On backstage tours, visitors meet the trainers and horses up-close.
We’ll continue our trip into the past as we visit Old World Wisconsin, an open-air museum that depicts daily life of settlers in the 19th century, with separate areas that represent the traditions of direct ethnic groups who settled in the state. Explore the gardens, engage with the costumed staff, help with chores and cooking, visit the blacksmith and be enthralled with the stories of Wisconsin’s immigrant past.
This afternoon, enjoy a cruise on Delavan Lake as you board the Lake Lawn Queen. The lake boasts five Frank Lloyd Wright homes and other historical landmarks along its shores. The open-air top deck offers comfortable lounge seating and amazing lake views from every angle, while the climate-controlled main level provides various seating options and panoramic window.
Tonight, take in a delightful meal and performance at Rosewood. Customize the themed show to your group’s preference with a country revue, a trip down memory lane to your favorite 50’s & 60’s songs, a tour of days gone by with hits from the Golden Age of Radio or a Salute to Broadway. Choose from a variety of music genres and themes.
Browse the hundreds of stalls at the famous Shipshewana Flea Market and learn about local history at the Menno-Hof Amish-Mennonite Information Center before driving to Pokagon State Park in Steuben County, which has the most lakes of any Indiana county. Framed by Lake James and Snow Lake, the park offers plentiful opportunities for boating, swimming and hiking. Groups can stay at the rustic, 138-room lodge that overlooks Lake James while enjoying a gorgeous sunset.