Fairways & Greens
August 18, 2017
|The Hayward Area Chamber Of Commerce Presents The Golf Capital Of Wisconsin|
|Fresh Water Fishing Hall of Fame and Museum, Hayward, WI.|
|Lumberjack World Championships. Photo Courtesy Darlene Prois|
By E. NolanAllow me to clarify one thing from the very beginning: While it might not read like it, this is a GOLF article. Type wigolfcapital.com into your search engine and the web will whisk you away to Hayward, (and Cable) Wisconsin. The Hayward Lakes area is all about golf...GREAT golf. But these two pages are loaded with the bonus "A to Z" intangibles you'll enjoy in a Northwest Wisconsin golf vacation. (Keep in mind: I cannot and won't write about what I don't know, so any/all omissions should be strictly attributed to "lack of personal experience.")
A - Crossover sport enthusiasts - golf and fishing - have it made year-round in the Hayward Lakes area with the (Anglers) Bar & Grill on Main Street and (Angler's Haven) Resort on the beautiful 5,139-acre Lac Courte Oreilles. And skiers (in winter - obviously) can take in (or participate in) the world-famous American Birkebeiner Trail/Races.
B - Legendary golf architect Pete Dye is most famous in Wisconsin for his Kohler-foursome, but don't overlook his northern star - Big Fish Golf Club. Big Fish and Black Bear are two of the area's championship golf options worth investigating, and the historical 9-hole Barker Lake is "Polack Joe" Soltis's straight-up-gangster golf routing. Kick your day off with caffeine at Backroads Coffee & Tea (or Hayward Coffee Company) and if you brought your RV you can park and stay at the Boulder Lodge.
C - The Chippewa Flowage is Wisconsin's third-largest lake at 14,600 acres, plenty deep and full of fish, with amazing sunsets and stays like the Chippewa Inn, Treeland Resorts and the incredibly high-rated Deerfoot Lodge & Resort.
D - Every one of the 50 or so area lakes claims it's own spectacular sunset, but Deerfoot Lodge on the Lake Chippewa Flowage just might claim the marquee evening show. Settle into the starry nights in style with a beverage (or six) from the Deeply Diverse Displays at The Marketplace.
F - If the region is famous for anything it is arguably the Friday Night Fish Fry. A Northwoods tradition across the upper Midwest, the art is perfected in the Hayward Lakes. For variety you can always splurge at the fresh Farmstead Creamery & Café or eat, drink and stay at the Flat Creek Eatery, Saloon, Inn and/or Suites. And Midwest Golfer Magazine tells you, "Everyone in the Midwest should play at Forest Ridges at least once." (Awesome 13th hole - Par 3)
G - There are NINE area Golf Courses and ONE Giant Fiberglass Musky - the world's largest fish (four stories tall and long as a Boeing 757) and centerpiece of the National Freshwater Hall of Fame - which you can actually climb inside.
H - Other main attractions in Hayward include Hookstone Winery - where they make wines from California and Washington grapes (Try the Muskie and Panfish "flavors"), Hayward Amusement Center - with go-karts and mini golf, the Hayward Sports Center - which hosts the famous "Monday Flea Markets," Historic Main Street (with all its fabulous shops) and again - for the golfer - the highly regarded Hayward Golf Club.
I - I've heard from many that Hayward's petite Italia Ristorante Italiano is "the best Italian restaurant in all of Wisconsin." True or not, such raves certainly place the spot on my next-trip-food-map.
J - Families and reunions book area lodges and cabins by the week, and James Netz Photography is readily available to snap your professional group pictures. (Incredible talent.) And Lynn's Custom Catering will feed you. I'd also suggest exploring the Namekagon (River) with Jack's Canoe and Tube Rental - for great fun.
K - Or go Kayaking on the lakes. (All of them!)
L - Famous for fudge - Hayward is - or candy/chocolate in general, I should say. Take caution entering Lynn Marie's Candies (or Tremblay's Sweet Shop). Holy wow! You are in Lac Courte Oreilles territory here - a 5,139-acre lake and/or the friendly band of the Lake Superior Ojibwe tribe. They operate the LCO Casino, Lodge & Convention Center - a great gaming facility and preferred Stay & Play partner of Big Fish Golf Club. Speaking of GOLF, Lakeview Golf & Pizza offers the area's only Par 3 course (9 holes) and Lakewoods Resort is home to the aforementioned Forest Ridges Golf Course.
M - An article like this demands the inclusion of a great name like Mooselips Java Joint, (I mean, come on!) and while Hayward is likely circled on every Mountain Biker's map, it might not even be on a general map if it weren't for Musky Fest. (Okay, that's an exaggeration.) But Musky Fest is a HUGE deal here. They even have a Musky Queen. (And she doesn't even have to fish to win!) In fact, stop by the Moccasin Bar to check out the 67.5 pound 60.25 inch world record musky. The Moccasin Bar itself is in this world, but completely out of it. (You'll see what I mean.)
N - Cable's Lake Namakagon is Ojibwe for "Lake with abundant sturgeons." I don't fish, so I couldn't tell you if that's true. But going back to the "crossover" fish/golfers, Lakewoods Resort is on Lake Namakagon...so maybe that's the best of both worlds for you.
O - There used to be a Famous Dave's in Hayward. When it burnt down THE Dave Anderson came back up and put in the current hot meat market - Old Southern BBQ Smokehouse. Wow! (I could recite the menu to you by heart.)
P - Everywhere you go the most popular family meal is Pizza, and the Hayward Lakes offers you multiple tasty options at the Sawmill Saloon, Coop's Pizza Parloure, Frankie's and Lakeview Golf & Pizza.
R - Families can always find a well-rounded meal at the Ranch Supper Club and I strongly Recommend (to fermented juice aficionados) the short drive down to Stone Lake for the wine and dine experience at Red Schoolhouse Wines (Selection of 180+).
S - Spooner Golf Club is as popular a draw as the Shopping on Main Street and the Scheers Lumberjack Shows (they also have mini golf and ice cream) albeit usually to three different age/gender audiences, respectively. And when the day is dwindling everyone can get together and pop the top on a Spotted Cow Beer (or a root beer) at the Sawmill Saloon or even eat and spend the night at The Steakhouse & Lodge or Spider Lake Golf Resort (with its own 9-hole course).
T - Tremblay's Sweet Shop bears repeating, (Seriously can't help it.) and when you're having a conversation about the best golf courses in the area, the privately owned and managed 18-hole Telemark Golf Club (in Cable) is going to be in it.
W - I've mentioned many things that should put Hayward on your near-future travel map but one of the more intriguing draws to the area is the Lumberjack World Championships (in July this year). It's not the Olympics, but to the competitors it might as well be (and it is rather fun to watch). Also in the "fun to watch" category, take the kids to the Wilderness Walk Zoo for some pretty diverse animal interactions. (Lions and tigers and camels - no lie.) We all scream for ice cream - every now and then - and West's Hayward Dairy is listening... waiting for you. (Homemade waffle cones, malts and shakes... sorry... I should probably stop.)
Z - The letter "Z" might wrap up the alphabet, but your Northwest Wisconsin trip doesn't have to end in Hayward. The Chamber of Commerce encourages visitors to take a day trip north to Bayfield (Flamingo lovers MUST visit Maggie's Restaurant) and Lake Superior's Apostle Islands National Lakeshore. Give yourself that many more naturally stunning reasons to return. And spread the word.
There's no way to cover all of this in one trip, which is why I keep going back. There's always more to explore, more to love and more to share. So when are you going?
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