One of the best ways to drink in the fall colors in the Fox Cities is by foot, as the region has a wealth of recreational opportunities. At the 1000 Islands Environmental Center in Kaukauna, there are more than seven miles of trails, including a one-mile stretch right along the Fox River. Two observation decks let you take in a cluster of islands dotting the river. Picnic facilities and a nature center are also on the grounds.
High Cliff State Park in Sherwood is the only state park on Lake Winnebago, and offers panoramic lake views in several spots. The park is open for hiking, biking, boating, canoeing and kayaking, horseback riding and more. Check out the lime kiln ruins, then challenge yourself by hiking the adjacent Lime Kiln Trail, which features a steep climb up to the ancient Niagara Escarpment, over which Niagara Falls tumbles.
The Loop the Lake Trail is a popular recreational trail open to walkers, bicyclists and rollerbladers, among others. A 3.2-mile circular path, it links Neenah, Menasha and Fox Crossing as it circles the southern end of Little Lake Butte de Morts. The path features four trestle trail bridges and some Fox River locks.
SUPER SUPPER CLUBS
Everyone loves supper clubs. Two of the best in the Fox Cities are Mark’s East Side and Black Otter Supper Appleton is famed for its Old Fashioneds, and serves up German-inspired dishes such as schnitzel and sauerkraut balls in addition to traditional supper club fare. Black Otter Supper Club in Hortonville offers steaks, seafood, pork and chicken — and the soup and salad bar is included.
Plan your visit at foxcities.org.
Last weekend in September through October, Hortonville
Take the kids pumpkin-picking via a wagon ride through the fields, then check out the goods in the shed, which include hay bales, mums and apple cider donuts. There’s also a small, family-friendly corn maze and a spacious kids’ play area.
Mulberry Lane Farm
Sept. 16-Oct. 31, Hilbert
Select your perfect (free!) pumpkin, then try your hand at milking a cow or catching a chicken. Hayrides are available, too. A kids’ area features giant tractor tires, hollow logs and retired farm equipment; adults can browse through antiques and memorabilia in the shed and barn. On the weekends, a food truck sells caramel apples, mini donuts, chili and more.
License to Cruise and Octoberfest
Sept. 23-24, Appleton
This massive, two-day block party kicks off with License to Cruise, a classic car show on Friday night. Check out the 400 or so cars while listening to live music and noshing on food. On Saturday, the tunes start at 9 a.m. In addition to bands, a wealth of food booths and, of course, beer, the event features an arts and crafts show and family area.