Author: Elaine Warren
Sheboygan offers a combination of family geared activities, outdoor recreation, and cultural and historical attractions bound to make both visitors and locals happy.
During the warmer months, the county parks are a popular spot for a variety of outdoor activities. Hiking along nature trails, picnicking in a secluded spot and exploring old Indian burial grounds are only some of the activities available at the parks in the city. Besides visiting parks, there are also at least 15 different trails for bikers to explore. Golfers are drawn to several professional golf courses and fishermen are drawn to the beautiful waters of Lake Michigan. Two disc golf courses provide a great day of entertainment for the whole family.
For families visiting or living in Sheboygan, there are several educational spots that cannot be missed. Bookworm Gardens provides an unstructured, free play environment in outdoor spaces centered around children's books and access to nature. The Above and Beyond Children's Museum is filled with interactive and imaginative exhibits, such as a play grocery set, a life-size pin screen, a real bee hive and a kids' recording studio. For the science and math kids, the Spaceport displays real items from NASA and demonstrates what it is like to be an astronaut in space. The city also has plenty of outdoor activities for families, including a miniature golf course and a water park on the lake.
Sheboygan is filled with cultural and historical stops for a variety of interests. The John Michael Kohler Arts Center has multiple art galleries, an outdoor sculpture garden, and performance spaces filled with art representing specific themes, including magic and civil liberties. The Historical Museum features exhibits about the major historical figures in the county's history, including the Weinhold Family's homestead and Judge David Tyler's work. The museum also focuses on the cheese-making industry, with an exhibit on the Bodenstab Cheese Factory. Even more cultural and historical attractions await your discovery.
Nearby you will also find a small monument to the Rouse Simmons Shipwreck that tells the struggle of an early pioneer family and life in the area. The town also contains the remains of early indigenous people with a well preserved Indian Mound Park on the south end of town.
The premier performing arts venue is the Weil Center. During its reign it has welcomed everyone from the Marx Brother to Duke Ellington. The architectural wonder was renovated and reopened in 2001. It is the home of the symphony orchestra and accompanying choirs. The Weil also brings top international shows and performers to the city. Another active scene for live music is Paradigm Coffee and Music on North Eighth Street. It the home of the Etude Sessions, a series of concerts held at their club in support of local art and design academies.
The visual arts figure prominently in the community. Right downtown on New York Avenue sits the Kohler Arts Center. It not only cutting edge exhibits from around the world but is also host to the Midsummer Festival of the Arts and to concerts throughout the year.
The Visual Arts Gallery is not far away and provides workspace for local artist. The gallery holds a “Final Friday” event every month with music and drink where patrons meet artists.