20 in 20: To-Dos In the Fox Cities This Year

A new year brings endless possibilities, making it the perfect time to discover something new and exciting in the Fox Cities at one (or many) of these 20 things to do in 2020.

High Cliff State Park*

High Cliff State Park is the a great spot for all things outdoors: fish in Lake Winnebago, snowshoe in the winter, or camp out in the park. A Fox Cities Original, its breathtaking views, historic effigy mounds, and excellent trails make this state park a must experience in 2020.

Green and Gold Charity Softball Game

Watch your favorite members of the Green Bay Packers swing for the fences in this annual classic. 2020 marks the 20th time the offense and defense clash for bragging rights. Running Back Aaron Jones will captain the offense for the first time this year. Visit the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers website to get your tickets.

Mile of Music*

From July 30 - August 2, Downtown Appleton will be taken over by 200 artists performing original music. Mile of Music, a Fox Cities Original, has been putting on cover-free concerts since 2013. Over the course of four days, we can almost guarantee that you’ll find a new favorite artist who you'll keep listening to, over and over again.

The Great Wisconsin Cheese Festival*

Celebrate National Dairy Month in style at The Great Wisconsin Cheese Festival. The kick off to the summer features a cheese parade, cheese tastings, and Cheese Fest's very own concert series, Cheese Jam.

Fox River Mall

The Fox River Mall has over 100 stores, which makes it the best place to visit in the Fox Cities for a little retail therapy, featuring stores like Macy’s, Ulta Beauty, H&M, Scheel’s, and many more. After a long day of shopping, treat yourself to a delicious meal in one of their full-service restaurants or grab a quick meal from the food court.

Mile of Music | PC: Mile of Music

Zuppas*

Zuppas opened the doors of its current location in 2003 but has been a Fox Cities favorite long before and long since. Whether it be a light and fresh salad or their rich and creamy mac & cheese, you're sure to find something delectable on the menu.

Stone Arch Brewpub*

Wisconsin’s oldest active brewpub has been producing beer since it’s erection in 1858. Its current owners purchased the brewpub in 2004 and haven’t looked back since. The brewpub now distributes to over 100 different bars, boasts a fantastic menu complete with locally sourced ingredients, and in 2019, was awarded the best cheese curds in the state of Wisconsin. Cheers to that!

Lamers Dairy*

Lamers Dairy has been providing the Fox Cities with fresh dairy for over 100 years! Today, Lamers is the place to find everything Wisconsin. It's home to cheese, meat, milk, and even soft-serve made from Lamers’ milk. Watch the milk bottling process while enjoying a frozen treat through their 30-foot observation window.

Octoberfest

Don't spell check us here; we promise it's spelled right. Octoberfest is Appleton's largest block party. College Avenue in Downtown Appleton shuts down for the day while massive stages line the Avenue. Music starts early in the morning and goes late into the afternoon. Enjoy family-friendly activities, like arts and crafts, or try some local brews while you rock out to the music.

Loop the Lake*

The three-mile trail has gorgeous waterfront views, four different trestle bridges, and features multiple parks. Once the ride is finished, take a break and stop for lunch in Downtown Neenah.

Bergstrom Mahler Museum of Glass*

The Bergstrom Mahler Museum of Glass features beautiful sculptures and the most impressive paperweight collection you've ever seen. The Perthshire Paperweight collection will be leaving the museum in late September 2020, so plan ahead. Admission, as always, is free.

Bergstrom Mahler Museum of Glass

Greene's Pour House

Greene's is a fantastic restaurant and bar in the heart of Downtown Neenah. A menu and tap list that will bring out your inner Wisconsinite. Soccer scarves don the walls of the pour house, which provides the perfect atmosphere to take in a match of your favorite soccer club or cheer on the USA soccer team in their World Cup Qualifiers in late September.

Wilmar Chocolates*

Wilmar Chocolates is a must-visit in the Fox Cities, regardless of your 2020 New Year’s resolution. Upon entering the quaint chocolate shop, you’re greeted with a free sample. It may be hard to believe, but it only gets better from there. Nestled in the back of the shop is the Chocolate Bar, a spot where you can have the chocolatiers of Wilmar’s craft you a custom chocolate bar. The gigantic list of mix-ins will surely delight anyone’s sweet tooth.

Appleton Christmas Parade*

This event may be a little far out, but it’s very worth the wait. The parade is the largest nighttime parade in the Midwest. Drawing thousands of spectators annually, the parade features floats, bands, and even a few four-legged friends. This celebration of the holidays is a must-see that even Santa Claus wouldn’t miss.

Greenville Catfish Extravaganza

The Greenville Catfish Extravaganza is put on by the Greenville Lions. Participate in family-friendly activities including arts and crafts, bouncy houses, and the famous catfish races. Once night falls, mosey on over to the main stage for a rockin' concert and an extravagant fireworks display.

Future Neenah Farmers Market

Farm Markets

There’s nothing quite like waking up early on a Saturday in the summer and heading to the farm market. There is never a shortage of fresh ingredients and fresh finds at all of the Fox Cities farm Mmarkets. With markets taking place in Appleton, Greenville, Kaukauna, Little Chute, Menasha, and Neenah, one is never too far from their own version of farm to table. Stop by the City Center Plaza in Downtown Appleton during the winter for the indoor market.

Fox Cities Performing Arts Center*

The Fox Cities Performing Arts Center brings Broadway to the Fox Cities. Every year, the PAC's season schedule has something to get excited about. Recently the hit Broadway musical, Hamilton, made its Wisconsin debut at the PAC. Hits like the Blue Man Group and Dear Evan Hansen are still on the schedule, so hurry to the box office today!

Downtown Neenah

Downtown Neenah makes it easy to shop and eat local. There are plenty of options to find the perfect outfit, some new decor, or to practice some self care. The multiple restaurants provide the equal opportunity for fine dining or a quick bite to eat.

Brunch

Is there anything better than rolling out of bed after a long night, gathering some friends, and catching up over some delicious food and a mimosa or two? The Fox Cities know how to do brunch the right way, with great drinks and mouth-watering entrees. Mohnen’s Family Restaurant is the place to be for the traditional breakfast feast. Made-to-order omelets, pancakes, and waffles are sure to satisfy any appetite. If you’re feeling a bit adventurous try the apple fritter french toast, we promise you won’t regret it. If the classic brunch fare isn’t your thing then Broken Tree Pizza in Neenah is the place to be. They fire up their wood-fire oven a little early on Sundays to serve some of the best breakfast inspired pizzas you could fathom. Enjoy Denver Omelet, Huevos Rancheros, and even Eggs Benedict on a pizza. Looking for more options? Visit our brunch spots blog.

The Perfect Instagram

There is a spot for a photo op around every corner in the Fox Cities. Get out and #ExploreFoxCities at a #FoxCitiesOriginal to #FindYourOriginal or at countless other picture-perfect Fox Cities backdrops.

Mural in Downtown Appleton | PC: Allison White

Finish everything on our list and looking for some more Fox Cities fun? Click on the Visitors Guide below to order a complimentary 2020 Fox Cities Visitors Guide.


* Denotes a Fox Cities Original

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About the Author

Ryan Harvot

Marketing and Visitor Information Specialist
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