Nov 7, 2016

Exploring Eagle River, Wisconsin

 Imagine 150 different flavors of soda. Decisions, decisions, decisions. I like the fact that the old-time soda fountains are making a comeback. When I was in Eagle River, Wisconsin I had a great lunch and root beer float at Soda Pops. I passed on the ice cream but most people did not. There is a wide choice of ice cream with 70 topping to choose from. The soda shop is as
authentic as is possible today with an original soda fountain and other original items plus other vintage memorabilia. Soda Pops is housed in a restored 1880 building that was at one time a tavern. During prohibition it became a soda shop. It was a walk into my past when I spend a lot time in the soda fountain in my hometown.  Around the corner is their retail store with a variety of vintage signs, bottles, and more plus
150 kinds of soda. They have the ones you have heard of such as cream soda and root beer but they also have a section called “Totally Gross Sodas.”  They must sell a lot of them because the section was empty except for a few bottles of “Kittie Piddle” and “Bug Barf.” It turns out that the owner is the son of the owner of Riverstone Restaurant & Tavern where I had enjoyed a wonderful meal the night before.

While I was visiting the shops on the main street of Eagle River, John was exploring the Eagle River’s Chain of Lakes with Rohrs Wilderness Tours. The Headwaters of the Wisconsin River flows south from Lac Vieux Desert 40 miles downstream to Eagle River where it joins the magnificent Eagle River chain of lakes to become the mighty Wisconsin River. He didn’t do all 40 miles but said paddling the winding stream that flowed through forest was easy and very picturesque. He was on the lookout for wildlife.  He didn’t see any. I wish I had gone.  After the canoe adventure he went to a place that served ice cream, the Boat House Grill & Creamery where he, too, had a root beer float. Their theme is nautical.  Some people enjoyed their ice cream while sitting in a boat. 

Before meeting up with John I stopped by the Tribute Brewing Company where they have free popcorn and peanuts (just throw the shucks on the floor).  We met at the Pirate’s Hidaway for a sunset ride on a pirate ship. Captain Steve built Northern Wisconsin’s only pirate ship in his driveway. The boat ride on the Eagle River Chain of Lakes was relaxing and even though the sunset wasn’t spectacular we did see a bald eagle.  After the ride we headed to Eagle Waters Resort for a delicious dinner. 

I am impressed with all the small towns in Vilas County.  Eagle
River is the county seat and has about 1400 people that supported two homemade fudge stores. Impressive.  All the towns have unique shops, restaurants, accommodations, and activities that seem to be thriving.  I wish I could say the same for Northern New York. Yes, they have muskie fishing which is a big draw but we have excellent fishing in Oswego County, too. The county hosts a large variety of events year round. The county has so many art galleries that they host a Northwoods Art Tour twice a year.