Wisconsin Historical Society: Old World Wisconsin announces May 6 season opening and calendar of events

Eagle, WI – Old World Wisconsin welcomes first-time guests and familiar faces to join us for our spring and summer season, kicking off on May 6-7 with historic sheep shearing demonstrations on the opening weekend. The calendar of upcoming events is now available and staff are busy preparing to welcome visitors for another year of fun, games, and the chance to connect with a few of the “old world” traditions that helped shape our state.

Voted Milwaukee’s top attraction for kids, Old World Wisconsin will offer an array of family-friendly experiences. Guests of all ages may find themselves taking a spin on an old-fashioned tricycle (yes, they were popular for adults in the 1880s!), attending class in a one-room schoolhouse, or exploring historic farmsteads bustling with horses, sheep, chickens and pigs. And don’t forget to stop by and say hello to Old World’s new pair of heritage-breed oxen, Ollie and Finn, one of only two sets of yoke-trained Kerry oxen in the country!

“With warmer weather and longer days ahead of us, staff are eager to welcome guests to all-new ticketed events, like Goat Yoga and Old Fashioned Fish Fry-days,” said Dan Freas, Old World Wisconsin director. “Whether it’s your first visit or your fifteenth, there is always more to discover at Old World Wisconsin.”

Upcoming Events:

  • Sheep Shearing Weekend, May 6-7, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Venture to the 1860s Norwegian immigrant farm for an authentic sheep shearing demonstration and Norwegian dancing. Grab a pair of hand-clippers and try your hand at shearing, then learn how to pick, wash and transform wool into yarn. This experience is part of general admission.

  • Old Fashioned Fish Fry-days, May 12, June 9, July 14, Aug.11, Sept. 8, 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.

Enjoy a family-style fish fry, tasty beverages and live music in the beautiful and historic Clausing Barn. Meals include beer-battered fish served with salad, clam chowder, choice of potato, coleslaw, rye bread and dessert. The price of this ticketed event is $39 per person, including a beverage, and requires advanced registration.

  • Mothers Get in Free Day, May 14, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Treat Mom to an historic day out. Take a tram to the beautiful “Life on the Farm” buildings, hike the nature trails, visit the general store and enjoy a fizzy soda drink at the stagecoach inn.

  • Goat Yoga, May 20, 8:30 to 9:30 a.m.

Bring a mat and join the goats for stretching and sun salutations. The price of this ticketed event is $30 per person and does not include general admission.

  • Heritage Livestock Weekend, May 20-21, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

 In celebration of International Heritage Livestock Day, enjoy special programming associated with Old World Wisconsin’s animal ambassadors and horse-drawn plowing demonstrations (weather permitting).

  • Plates and Pints Beer Dinners, May 26, July 28, Aug.25, Sept.22, 4:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Savor a five-course meal accompanied by tasty beers from local breweries. Learn about the historic brewing process at the Brewhouse and then head to Clausing Barn for a beer pairing dinner. The price of this ticketed event is $99 per person and requires advanced registration.

  • Fathers Get in Free Day, June 18, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Take Dad on a historic retreat. Visit the farmstead, ride a historic bicycle and enjoy a beer in the new Brewhouse.

  • New Glarus Beer Night, June 23, 4:30 to 7:30 p.m.

Join us for a special night with New Glarus Brewing. As the first themed beer picnic to ever be held in Crossroads Village, the evening features live music, a deluxe picnic-style dinner and five to six timed pours plus a pour of a historic brew created onsite. The price is $75 per person. Advanced registration required.

  • Independence Day Weekend, July 1-2, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Gather for a patriotic weekend filled with old-fashioned activities. Take part in a historic baseball game, enter a pie-eating contest, listen to a brass band and be inspired by a historic reading of the Declaration of Independence. 

  • For Liberty & Union: A Civil War Living History Experience, July 22-23, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Explore how Wisconsin immigrants participated in the American Civil War. Step into a Polish immigrant camp, learn about soldiers’ experiences, watch musket-firing demonstrations, and visit a 1860s Pomeranian immigrant farm to delve deeper into their story.

  • Kids Get In Free, August 1-11, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

From collecting eggs in the chicken coop to helping the blacksmith ply his trade, kids can enjoy the old-world experience for free.

Old World Wisconsin’s spring season runs from May 6 through June 11 with general admission on weekends. The summer season, running June 14 to Aug. 27, expands general admission entry to Wednesday through Sunday. Tickets are $20 for adults and teens, $18 for seniors, $13 for children ages 5 to 12 and under five get in free. Visit www.oldworldwisconsin.wisconsinhistory.org for more information or to buy tickets. Wisconsin Historical Society members receive free admission and a 10% discount on ticketed events. 

Click here to view the Old World Wisconsin photo gallery.

About Old World Wisconsin
Old World Wisconsin is a 600-acre regional history attraction featuring interactive environments and immersive stories of 19th-and early 20th-century immigrant farms and rural life. It is one of twelve Wisconsin Historical Society sites and museums around the state. The museum offers hands-on activities led by staff members in historic dress, and guests can visit 10 working farmsteads, explore 12 heirloom gardens, meet heritage animal breeds, and try historic crafts and skills. Old World Wisconsin is open seasonally and is located on Highway 67, south of Eagle, Wisconsin. For more information, visit www.oldworldwisconsin.org or call 262-594-6301.

About the Wisconsin Historical Society
The Wisconsin Historical Society, founded in 1846, ranks as one of the largest, most active and most diversified state historical societies in the nation. As both a state agency and a private membership organization, its mission is to help people connect to the past by collecting, preserving and sharing stories. The Wisconsin Historical Society serves millions of people every year through a wide range of sites, programs and services. For more information, visit www.wisconsinhistory.org.