While writer Myles Dannhausen Jr.’s research confirmed that there’s no single answer to what makes someone a Northern Door local, he did get some ideas for some questions you might ask to test someone’s local credentials.
Here’s a 20-question quiz made up of suggestions from a bunch of locals, a few transplants, and the Door County Living staff. What’s your score?
- What do locals call the intersection where County F and Maple Grove Road meet?
- Why do locals look forward to November 1st?
- What does “Grudge” refer to?
- Who is the man also known as Coyote?
- What is a Norzwich and where do you get one?
- Where is the Overseas Open held?
- Where is someone going if they say they’re “heading into town?”
- How do you pronounce the name of Wisconsin’s only dry municipality?
- Which bar claims to have been the only establishment in the county to legally serve alcohol through Prohibition?
- What building was once home to Johnny’s Cottage Restaurant?
- Who coached a team full of “terminal dinks” to the Wisconsin state baseball championship in 1979?
- Who gave Al Johnson his first goat, leading to the famous tradition of the goats on the roof?
- Who was the Polka King and what did he drive?
- What might old-timers call the building that is now Moretti’s in Sister Bay?
- Who was a potter before he opened the Alibi Restaurant in Fish Creek?
- If you order a fresh lawyer what are you asking for?
- What was the previous name of the Bayside Tavern?
- Where was the original Bunda’s Department Store located?
- Who was Door County’s longest-serving sheriff (from 1962 to 1982), and who was the only person who interrupted his tenure from 1966 to 1968?
- What 100-year-old building used to house the local laundry in Baileys Harbor?
Looking for a good debate, an interesting explanation or a few laughs? Try asking a “local” one of these questions:
- Where can you find a fryer key or a bucket of steam?
- How do you pronounce Fish Creek?
- Do you prefer beaches with sand or rocks?
- What do you do here in the winter?
- BS Corners
- The speed limit through Ephraim increases to 35 miles per hour through the village and 45 miles per hour on the southern and northern stretches of Highway 42.
- The Door County League baseball rivalry between the Baileys Harbor A’s and the Sister Bay Bays
- Norb Blei
- A sandwich from the Fish Creek Market, formerly the Fish Creek General Store owned by Ann and Geri Norz
- Deer Run Golf Course on Washington Island
- Sturgeon Bay
- Ephraim is pronounced EE-fruhm
- Nelsen’s Hall Bitter’s Pub & Restaurant
- Sister Bay Cafe
- Rod “Chief” Billerbeck
- Wink Larson
- Freddie Kodanko, who drove a tractor
- Salty Joe’s Fish Shack
- James “JJ” Johnson
- A slimy, cod-like fish
- Bill’s Bar
- The current On Deck store near the intersection of Highway 42 and 57 in Sister Bay
- Hollis “Baldy” Bridenhagen. His wife, Gloria, served as sheriff for two years when Baldy had to step down to undersheriff because of term limits.
- The current home of Door County Living located at 8142 Highway 57
How do you rate?
0 correct: Have you even been to Door County?
1 to 5 correct: You’re probably a tourist.
6 to 10 correct: You need to make some more local friends and dig into the archives of Door County Living and the Peninsula Pulse.
11 to 13: You’re likely a transplant making your way up the local ladder.
14 to 16 correct: Spend some time at Al’s breakfast counter and read Norb Blei’s Door Way, and you’re on your way to local status (in some eyes anyway).
17 to 19 correct: Chances are you’re a local and were probably born here.
Perfect 20: Your parents were probably born here and so were you.