BAYFIELD, WI (April 24, 2020): Wisconsin is hooked on Friday fish fries. Travel Wisconsin recently cast a statewide net asking residents to nominate their favorite establishments on social media for the best fish fry in the state. With more than 1,400 comments and a reach of over 225,000 people, Bayfield’s Pier Plaza Restaurant and Lounge and Washburn’s Good Thyme Restaurant and Catering, Patsy’s, and Sparky’s Bar & Grill were ranked among the top 20 in the Wisconsin Fish Fry Faceoff.
Fish fry fanatics are encouraged to vote for Wisconsin’s Favorite Fish Fry as often as once per day, April 24-May 15 at TravelWisconsin.com/FishFryFaceoff. “We are incredibly proud of these establishments for being recognized as some of the best fish fries in the state,” said Melissa Martinez, Director of Washburn Area Chamber o Commerce. “We certainly all look forward to gathering and dining out with friends and family when it’s safe to do so, but until then, we appreciate Travel Wisconsin putting a virtual spotlight on our state’s restaurants, helping them to stay in business and keep people employed.”
The Wisconsin fish fry tradition is more than a way Wisconsinites dine and support area restaurants. The fish fry is a bucket list for out of state visitors. The Wisconsin Friday Fish Fry comes with many variations and are available year-round. Many places serve locally sourced fish, like Whitefish, Northern, and Walleye, but most places offer the traditional Cod, with sides like coleslaw, French fries and rye bread. Deep fried or baked, beer battered, or seasoned, most Wisconsin taverns and restaurants serve this popular Wisconsin favorite on Friday nights.
“As we all remain safer at home, the virtual Fish Fry Faceoff is just one of the many online marketing programs we have leaned into, encouraging Wisconsinites to dream and plan now for future travel,” said Tourism Secretary-designee Sara Meaney. “This contest is fun, engaging and useful information, not to mention a great way for patrons to immediately support their favorite fish fry establishments, and discover new favorites. I encourage everyone to pick up a fish fry, break out the tartar sauce and cast your vote.”
Tourism is a solid investment. Wisconsin saw its biggest year in at least a decade in 2019, more than doubling US Travel Association’s projected national visitor growth rate. 2019 proved that promoting tourism pays off for taxpayers when the return on investment grew to $8 to $1 in contrast to Wisconsin’s previous nine-year ROI average of $6.4 to $1. Tourism promotion is a wise investment for economic recovery, and it starts locally.