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Getting outside in Door County is a must! While you can always explore a trail or lake shore on your own, the calendar is dotted with guided hikes, wildlife tours, bird watching treks, and cross-country skiing meetups. Find a group bicycle ride, a naturalist session, or paddleboard tour and explore Door County’s natural wonders.

  • Door County Celebrations

    Olde Ellison Bay Days Olde Ellison Bay Days, June 23rd – 25th, celebrates its 40th anniversary this year. Sponsored by the Ellison Bay Men’s Club, this three-day event kicks off with a talent show on Friday night at the North Fire Station. Apart from enjoying the amateur talent, locals show up to see who will […]

  • Paul Burton

    Wildflowers: Discovering Door County’s Treasures

    Treasure hunts aren’t just for little kids. Door County offers kids of all ages an opportunity to hunt for compelling treasures—hundreds of unique wildflowers. The prospect of seeing Blue-Eyed Grass or a Dragon’s Mouth or a Ram’s Head has lured many a couch potato outdoors on a personal treasure hunt. Numerous species of wildflowers are […]

  • The Golf Course Transformed: Hill 17 in Peninsula State Park

    Hill 17 on the Peninsula State Park course offers golfers a gorgeous treetop view to tee off from. As one drives into the park from the Ephraim entrance, the golf course presents itself immediately to the right, but to the left there’s nothing but a forest of trees. Shortly thereafter, driving to the golf course […]

  • Connecting Two Worlds: The Washington Island Ferry Line

    The distance from Northport pier, on the northern tip of the Door peninsula, to Washington Island’s Detroit Harbor is just a few miles, but in so many ways the two may as well be worlds apart. Between the shores run the foreboding waters of Death’s Door, which earned its moniker in the days when sailing […]

  • Snowshoeing the Door

    Snowshoeing provides the means for truly discovering those places on both our cognitive and paper maps. For those who love being outdoors and for those who aren’t sure, snowshoeing affords the freedom from groomed ski and snowmobile trails and is a great way to stay in shape through the winter months. Romantic images of explorers […]

  • Kevin Barta

    Iceboating: Pure Speed

    The scene is late December. Whistling winds breathe freezing temperatures upon the Door County winter landscape yet not a flake of snow has fallen. On a bed of ice from an inland lake a distant thunder may be heard from an oddly shaped craft traveling at a remarkably high speed. To be on the ice […]

  • Fish Creek Winter Festival, Door County, Fish Creek

    Celebrating the Off-Season

    One of the most common questions I hear from visitors is, “What do you do up here in the winter?” This question is usually accompanied by an expression made up of part confusion and part sympathetic dismay. Tourists who have never been to Door County in the winter come up with some far-fetched ideas about […]

  • Seeking the Aurora Borealis

    Ask five or six peninsula visitors how often they might expect to see the aurora borealis and you are likely to get five or six different answers – once a year, maybe, if they’re lucky, they’ll say; or once every couple of years; or once or twice in a lifetime. What the answers will all […]

  • Camp David, Dan Eggert, Fish Creek

    The Door County Barn

    I’ve seen you do it, and I do it, too:  pull over to the side of the road, jump out of the car, and attempt – most often in vain – to capture the essence of a big old wooden Door County barn with a camera. My particular favorites are those slightly or even largely […]

  • A Slice of Americana: Friday Night at “The Outdoor”

    In much of America, drive-in theaters are abandoned relics of a bygone era. Decrepit old snack bars crumble in overgrown parking lots, still pointing valiantly at the bones of a decaying screen. They are some of the saddest sights on the American landscape, the old speaker posts standing like tombstones marking the graves of youth […]

  • Palmer Johnson: Building the World’s Finest Yachts

    Back in 1918, a company called Johnson and Gmack was busy building and repairing boats for the Great Lakes commercial fishing fleet. But it wasn’t until 1928, when a man named Palmer Johnson, the founder’s son, built the company’s first wooden pleasure boat that an entirely new era began. Its history has had many chapters […]

  • Gerald Hug, Door County, Fall Colors

    Behind the Curtain of Fall Colors: A Horticulturist Explains What’s in a Leaf

    Door County has been blessed with natural beauty far beyond that of most places. Although this is plain to see on any given day in any given month, it is most evident at particular times, like on a perfect day in May when the world is new and the woods and meadows are alive with […]

  • The Spirit Renewed: Wooden Boat Restoration

    Sturgeon Bay is a boat town and has been ever since the area was settled in the mid-1800s. A trip through the Founder’s Gallery at the Door County Maritime Museum demonstrates the fierce pride this bustling little city of 10,000 has in its maritime heritage to even the most casual observer, and justifiably so. During […]

  • With the Wind: Kiteboarding the County

    When people envision extreme sports, Door County usually is not the backdrop in their brain; however, there is a group of individuals who have rejuvenated the notion of what Door County could be. No longer just the picturesque surroundings for fine dining, art galleries, and antique shops, this crew has found a new vitality in […]

  • The Leap: A Photographic Essay of Door County Weddings

    With its serene atmosphere and changing seasons, Door County has become a popular location for destination weddings. Beyond choosing among the numerous venues within the county, couples have also found alternative ways to bring the area’s traditions into their ceremonies and receptions, be it in a field of flowers, on a century-old farm or along […]

  • Bring Your Yard to Life: Plant Door County Native Species

    As the days get longer and warmer the county comes to life. Grass is growing, flowers are blooming, tree buds are bursting open, and people are getting their yards and flowerbeds ready to plant. As you go through this annual routine, consider how much wildlife is dependent upon your yard for survival. No matter how […]

  • Birding in Door County

    Local birding experts all agree that Door County is a special place for birds and bird watchers. Consider Door County’s geological diversity: the combination of limestone cliffs, sand dunes, boreal forest, deciduous forest, cedar swamps, bogs, lakes, bays, and open farmland; “all of those things spell multiple species,” says local birder Willard A. Hartman. “We’re […]

  • Racing Home: Sailing the Hook Race Death’s Door Challenge

    Sailboat racing has brought friends and families together off the shores of the Door Peninsula for nearly a century. And as intriguing and adventuresome as these races are, none can compare to the granddaddy of them all – the Hook Race Death’s Door Challenge. Spanning 197.4 nautical miles, this course pits experienced crews against each […]

  • Horseshoe Bay Cave

    A Subterranean Exploration: Caves of the County

    We often think of the earth we walk upon as solid and unchanging. Nothing could be further from the truth in Door County. Caves, sinkholes, open joints and fractures are everywhere in the carbonate rocks of the Door Peninsula. Bedrock here is known as the Silurian-aged Niagara Dolomite. Born from warm sub-equatorial waters 425 million […]

  • A Jacksonport Tradition: The Polar Bear Swim

    Winter in Door County brings to mind cross-country skiing, sledding, ice skating and…swimming in Lake Michigan? Usually swimming in the lake is reserved for the summer months, but an exception is made on New Year’s Day as hundreds of people start their year off with a swim in Lake Michigan. If you are up to […]