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Category: Parks

Door County is the only county in Wisconsin with five state parks, plus one state trail. No visit to the peninsula is complete without exploring these pristine open spaces that are home to historic landmarks, rare flora and fauna, hiking trails, and much more.

Peninsula State Park

The crown jewel of the Wisconsin State Park system, Peninsula State Park offers more than 3,700 acres for exploration.

Bike or hike on the Sunset Bike Trail, or challenge yourself on more than 12 miles of off-road biking trails weaving through the woods. Rent kayaks and peddle boats at Nicolet Beach Concessions at famous Nicolet Bay beach, where you can also get snacks, burgers, supplies, and ice cream.

The park is also home to the beautiful Peninsula State Park Golf Course, award-winning Northern Sky Theatre and historic Eagle Bluff Lighthouse. The 75-foot Eagle Tower was closed in May 2015 for structural concerns, but is expected to reopen in 2018. More>>

Potawatomi State Park

Home of the eastern trailhead of the Ice Age National Scenic Trail, 75-foot observation tower and views of Green Bay from the escarpment, overlook of the park’s old ski hill, several picnic areas and playgrounds, more than 2 miles of shoreline, canoe, kayak, paddleboat and bicycle rentals, boat launch and fish cleaning station, nature center and park store. More>>

Newport State Park

Newport State Park is Wisconsin’s only formally designated wilderness park, with miles of sand beach, secluded hike-in camping on the lakeshore, quiet hiking and biking trails, and great skiing in winter. More>>

Rock Island State Park

If you want a quiet beach, Rock Island is your place. The sand beach on the north side of the island was recently lauded in Minnesota Monthly magazine as one of the last “remains of old Door County.” More>>

Whitefish Dunes State Park

It was the rare botanicals, unique beauty and the largest and most significant dunescape on Lake Michigan’s western shore that led noted landscape architect Jens Jensen to recommend Whitefish Dunes as a state park site in 1937. More>>

Ahnapee State Trail

We are quick to praise Door County’s five state parks as the crown jewels of the county, but we often forget about the Ahnapee State Trail. The county-operated trail runs 48 miles between Sturgeon Bay and Algoma and its history as a railroad predates the founding of the parks system. More>>

  • Liberty Grove Clarifies Dog Rules in Town Parks

    After a complaint was registered about dogs “running wild at Hotz Park and Sand Bay,” Liberty Grove Supervisor and Parks Committee Chair Cathy Ward visited several town parks to get a look at the issue. She found that the town had created cause for confusion about park rules.  In her visits, Ward found that three […]

  • DNR Seeks Comments on Equestrian Trail Expansion at Newport State Park

    The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is seeking public comment on a master plan variance to allow the expansion of equestrian trails in Newport State Park in Door County. The public comment period is open through Sept. 16. A master plan variance is a change in the use or management of an area that […]

  • Ellison Bluff, Door Bluff Headlands Nominated for Old-Growth Forest Network

    Ellison Bluff State Natural Area and Door Bluff Headlands, both county parks in Liberty Grove, were nominated for inclusion in the national Old-Growth Forest Network. The nonprofit organization seeks to connect people to nature by creating a national network of publicly accessible, protected old forests and a network of people to help care for them. […]

  • 2023 Door County Runs and Rides

    We’ve made your planning easy with this guide to getting active with 2023 Door County runs and rides to check out. If you want plan to take on many runs, consider signing up for the Run the Door race series. Door County has become a hotbed for silent sports competition and experiences. Whether you want […]

  • The Fairway to Play: Disc Golf Growing in Door County

    Door County’s “ace” disc-golf landscape Disc golf has one objective: to get the disc into the basket. And a decade after the first course opened on the peninsula, the disc-golf scene is definitely gaining momentum here. Shane Solomon got into the game after being injured as a college athlete because with disc golf, he could […]

  • Kendall Park Playground Fundraising Passes Halfway Mark

    Sandy Weisgerber said her daughter, Kendall, had always wished she had a park with a swing set to play on. When Kendall drowned in 1991 at the age of 6 in the water off the town’s marina, the Weisgerber family knew they had to make Kendall’s wish come true for other children in Baileys Harbor. […]

  • Egg Harbor Man Wins 14th Door County Half Marathon

    The Door County Half Marathon and Nicolet Bay 5k returned to spring for the first time since 2019 on Saturday, and more than 1,500 runners were rewarded with perfect May weather for a race.  For the first time, a Door County resident won the Door County Half Marathon. Grayson Stout, 27, of Egg Harbor finished […]

  • Egg Hunt Roundup

    Ready for some outdoor family fun? Here’s a roundup of the community Easter egg hunts taking place this weekend.  APRIL 15 Algoma Public Library, 1 pm 406 Fremont St. in Algoma For a twist on the standard hunt, look for Easter eggs hidden inside the library! After you find five eggs, stay to make a […]

  • DISC GOLF TOURNAMENT APRIL 2

    Door Disc Golf and Riverside Disc Golf are teaming up to present the fifth Spring Time Open at Maxwelton Braes on April 2. The tournament is an official B Tier event of the Professional Disc Golf Association. It will be held at the Wild Berry Field course in Baileys Harbor and at the course at […]

  • DNR Taking Public Comments on Potawatomi State Park Tower

    There are three ways to make public comments until Feb. 22 The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) hosted a virtual public meeting and comment period after the deadline of this issue of the Peninsula Pulse regarding plans for the observation tower at Potawatomi State Park.  The meeting was held Jan. 27, but the public-comment […]

  • Ski By Candlelight at Newport

    Newport State Park will hold its 32nd annual Candlelight Ski, Hike and Snowshoe event Feb. 12, 5:30-8 pm, when part of the trail will come alive by candlelight to guide participants through a glowing, magical winter wonderland. Newport Wilderness Society volunteers will place 300-plus candles along a 1.5-mile wooded trail section. The trail’s terrain is […]

  • First Day Hike at Newport, Other State Properties

    Kick off your new year by getting out into nature on a First Day hike. Each year Wisconsinites join thousands across the nation hiking at state parks, forests or trails on New Year’s Day.  These hikes provide a way for individuals and families to welcome the coming year in the outdoors, exercising and connecting with […]

  • Friends of Whitefish Dunes Earn Accolade

    The Friends of Whitefish Dunes has received the Friends Group of the Year award, presented Nov. 19 by Steve Schmelzer, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources’ bureau director of parks and recreation management, during a special meeting of the Friends board. This active, dedicated group of volunteers was recognized for extraordinary service to the Whitefish […]

  • Start Your New Year at Whitefish Dunes

    The Friends of Whitefish Dunes State Park organization is sponsoring a New Year’s Day activity Jan. 1, 9:30 am – 12 pm, to enjoy hiking, snowshoeing or cross-country skiing. After you’ve tackled the trails, meet outside the picnic shelter around a roaring fire and warm up with some hot chocolate or hot cider.  This is […]

  • IMPERILED SHORES: Wisconsin State Parks Battered as Lake Shrinks Beaches

    By Mario Koran, Wisconsin Watch/WPR Lake Michigan’s winds and waves have sculpted the landscape of Whitefish Dunes State Park. Water delivers fine sand to a shoreline that supports threatened plants like the dune thistle. Wind stacks that sand into the mighty dunes that inspired the park’s name.  Summer visitors splash on its beach or hike […]

  • Message Centers, Maps Guide Bruemmer Park Visitors

    Six new outdoor message centers at Bruemmer Park are assisting visitors with park rules, trail information, maps for the Ahnapee State Trail and Bruemmer Park hiking trails. Follow the 1.35-mile Quarry Trail, the 1.23-mile River Trail or the 0.49-mile Zoo Loop.  “Bruemmer Park is really transforming with the new improvements at the zoo, and with […]

  • CURIOSITIES: The Memorial Pole at Peninsula Golf Course

    As you tee up on the ninth hole of the Peninsula Golf Course, the primary hazard in your vision isn’t a sand trap or a pond, but a 40-foot-tall pole and monument. Good golfers have no trouble avoiding it, but bad golfers will either be drawn into it or find themselves in the adjacent driving […]

  • Access Limited to Peninsula State Park Saturday For Race

    The Door County Half Marathon and Nicolet Bay 5K will return to Peninsula State Park this Saturday, Oct. 30, when almost 2,500 runners are registered to participate in the races – the first running of the event since May 2019.  Some roads in the park will be closed for the races between 7:30 am and […]

  • Bike This: Potawatomi State Park Roads

    A light rainstorm in a state park where trees provide some shelter against the elements may not deter the average hiker from proceeding with caution to trek through a trail. An off-road path that’s already laden with rocks and tree roots and beginning to get muddy, however, may not accommodate a cyclist’s tires, even when […]

  • Wilderness Days Are Back at Newport Sept. 4-5

    Newport State Park will host Newport Wilderness Days Sept. 4-5. This event began in 1992 as a way for the members of Newport Wilderness Society (friendsofnewport.org) to showcase the park. On Sept. 4, participate in coffee on the beach, 8:30 am; “History of Newport: Out of Wilderness into Wilderness,” 9:30 am; a Signs of Autumn […]