Craft a New Tradition at a Northwoods Festival

Compiled by Northwoods News Staff

“Festivals promote diversity, they bring neighbors into dialogue, they increase creativity, they offer opportunities for civic pride, they improve our general psychological well-being. In short, they make cities better places to live.”

-David Binder, in his TED Talk, “The Art Festival Revolution



The Northwoods is a place rich with traditions. From May to November, dozens of celebrations line the streets of our cities and towns. Since many events were canceled or modified last year, 2021 promises to be a summer full of excitement for fairs, festivals, jamborees and other unique events that celebrate everything wonderful about northern Wisconsin.

Whether you live here, have visited for many generations, or are experiencing your first trip Up North, we hope you will use our guide as a resource to spark new traditions. If there is an event you would like us to add, please email us at

Invite inspiration in and discover the cultural bounty of the Northwoods!


Boulder Junction

Sidewalk Sales Day
July 20, 2021
Boulder Junction – Downtown
9:00 am to 5:00 pm
Held throughout the Boulder Junction downtown area, enjoy a bargain extravaganza at all participating shops.

Musky Jamboree
August 8, 2021
Boulder Junction – Downtown
9:00 am to 4:00 pm
64th Annual Musky Jamboree! Car show, over 100 arts and crafts booths, food booths, kids casting contest, Lions Club flea market, live entertainment and more.

Colorama Arts and Crafts Fair
September 11, 2021
Boulder Junction – Community Center
9:00 am to 3:00 pm
29th Annual Colorama Arts and Crafts Fair!



Taste of Conover
June 27, 2021
Conover – Town Park
11:00 am to 3:00 pm
Area restaurants and businesses will feature specialty items including breakfast, lunch, dinner and desserts. Activities for kids and live music for your listening enjoyment.


Eagle River

Art off the Tracks
May 29, June 19, July 10, August 18, September 5 and October 2, 2021
The Warehouse Art Center
10:00 am to 3:00 pm
Garden courtyard Art off the Tracks! Join us for an open house and pop-up artwork vendor sales by artists of the Warehouse. These events are FREE to attend. Your first-class ticket to a day of art with local art for sale, family drop in projects for kids, studio tours and beverages for purchase at the Inspiration Bar.

Memorial Day Arts and Crafts Show and Sidewalk Sales
May 29, 2021
Eagle River – Downtown
10:00 am to 4:00 pm
Kicking off the summer tourist-filled season, this arts and crafts show features many crafters and artists from the area. Food will be available as well as live music. Also featured will be downtown businesses placing sale products on tables outside their stores. Please note: all arts and crafts will be hand made by the seller.

Up North Beer Fest
June 12, 2021
Eagle River – Hi-Pines Campground
2:00 pm to 6:00 pm
Join us for the tasting of microbrews and craft beers from more than 20 featured breweries. Attendees will enjoy live entertainment, receive a souvenir tasting glass and can learn about the brewing process from some of the Midwest’s most celebrated brewers. Friday night’s event is sold out, but tickets are still available for Saturday!

Burger Bash
July 10, 2021
Eagle River – Downtown
10:00 am to 4:00 pm
Join us for a summer arts and crafts show showcasing many area crafters as well as artists from the Northwoods and beyond. Also featured will be downtown businesses placing products for sale on tables outside of their stores. Live music, specialty burgers from our downtown restaurants and beverages will be available.

July 17, 2021
Eagle River – Riverside Park
9:00 am to 3:00 pm
49th Annual Riverwalk Art Show and Sale. Nationally known one-day art and fine craft festival draws top-quality artists and a large, art-savvy and buying public. Live music, picnic-style food and parking provided by non-profit organizations. All proceeds go back into the Eagle River area community for scholarships, artist-in-residence school programs, library programs and promotion of the arts.

Paul Bunyan Fest
August 18, 2021
Eagle River – Downtown
10:00 am to 4:00 pm
41st Annual Paul Bunyan Fest. Family fun event features chain saw carving demonstrations, over 75 arts and crafts vendors and live music. Come on down and enjoy a Paul Bunyan-size luncheon which includes a heap’n help’n of potato salad, corn, a HUGE BEEF sandwich and a cookie. Food is served from 11:00 am to 2:00 pm or until gone.

Labor Day Arts and Crafts Show
September 5, 2021
Eagle River – Downtown
10:00 am to 4:00 pm
Take in a late summer arts and crafts show featuring many area crafters as well as artists from the Northwoods and beyond. Food, live entertainment and beverages will be available.

Cranberry Fest
October 2 through October 3, 2021
Eagle River – Vilas County Fair Grounds
41st Annual Cranberry Fest. Enjoy fresh locally grown cranberries, cranberry marsh tours, Berry Bog Jog 5K Fun Run/Walk, World’s Largest Cranberry Cheesecake and cranberry food of every kind. In addition to the marvelous cranberry dishes and cranberry events, there will be over 275 arts and crafts vendors from all over the country selling handmade arts and crafts on Cranberry Fest’s festival grounds. In Downtown Eagle River you will find activities which include an open-air antique market, Farmers Market, Cranberry Fest luncheon, Lake Country Weaver and Fiber Artists show and sale, food and entertainment.

Old-Fashioneds Up North
November 13, 2021
Eagle River – Eagle Waters Resort
6:00 pm to 8:00 pm
4th Annual Old-Fashioneds Up North. Northwoods bartenders will put their skills to the test in our Old-Fashioned making competition. Each restaurant will be represented by two bartenders who are limited to two Old Fashioned recipes. Heavy hors d’oeuvres will be provided and there will be live entertainment with a supper club theme throughout the evening.


Manitowish Waters

Manitowish Waters Car and Boat Show
May 29, 2021
Manitowish Waters – Little Bohemia on Little Star Lake
10:00 am to 4:00 pm
5th Annual Boat and Car Show. A great day of classic boat and car viewing, live music, food, beverages, kids’ games, informational booths, free Historical Society pontoon boat rides and an awards program. For more information call the Chamber at 715-543-8488.

Northwoods Birds and Wildlife Festival
June 4 through June 5, 2021
Manitowish Waters – North Lakeland Discovery Center
7:00 am to 5:00 PM
Celebrating International Migratory Bird Day and the amazing natural diversity of our Northwoods region with our 17th Annual Northwoods Birds & Wildlife Festival! The festival offers over eight hours of online programming by local naturalists and natural resource experts, as well as in-person field trips to local birding and wildlife hotspots and Bird Banding Demonstrations. All registrants will be automatically entered into a raffle to win a gift basket provided by JJ’s Acres! Raffle drawing on Saturday, June 5th.

Taste of Manitowish Waters
July 17, 2021
Manitowish Waters – Lions Pavilion
11:00 am to 1:00 pm
Manitowish Waters Chamber’s annual “Taste of Manitowish Waters”.
Sample a variety of delicious food prepared and served by local restaurants, beverages and live music!

Cran A Rama Festival
October 2,2021
Manitowish Waters Community Center
9:00 am to 3:00 pm
Celebrating the start of our fall color and cranberry harvest season in Manitowish Waters! Enjoy the arts and craft fair, which will be held both inside and outside, Lioness bake sale, fresh cranberry sales, self-guided fall color tours and pontoon cruises (weather dependent). Taste of Harvest will be held from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm, featuring area restaurants selling samples of their fare. Call the Chamber at 715-543-8488 for information about how to participate in the Cranberry Cooking contest.



Mercer Loon Day
August 4, 2021
Mercer – Downtown
9:00 am to 4:00 pm
40th Annual Loon Day Festival! Over 250 art and craft exhibits. flea market, sidewalk and bake sales, live music, world famous Loon Calling Contest, raffles, food, refreshments and FAMILY FUN FOR EVERYONE!



June Bloom Arts and Crafts Festival
June 5, 2021
Minocqua – Torpy Park
9:00 am to 3:00 pm
More than 50 exhibitors at June Bloom will display and sell a wide variety of unique handcrafted items. The artisans and craftsmen featured at the show are selected for their handmade craftsmanship and artistic talents. You will see original artwork, pottery, jewelry, tapestries, clothing, photography, wood creations and more. Live music, artistic demonstrations and food concessions add to the festival atmosphere.

Minocqua Antique and Vintage Boat Show
June 25 through June 26, 2021
Minocqua – Lake Minocqua at the Boathouse and Redman Realty
29th Annual! Free admission to the public to view antique and classic boats including many wooden beauties from all over the Midwest. Boats can be viewed in the water from The Boathouse docks as well as on shore. Music, food and beverages are available with proceeds going to local causes. The Boat Parade will be held during the Min-Aqua-Bats Water Ski Show intermission on Friday evening.

Annual Gem and Mineral Show
July 16 through July 17, 2021
Minocqua – Lakeland Union High School
9:00 am to 6:00 pm
Gems, beads, minerals, fossils, jewelry, kid stuff, demonstrations, silent auctions, grab bags, Moonstone, Labradorite and other feldspars.

After Loon Delight Craft Show
August 5, 2021
Minocqua – Torpy Park
9:00 am to 4:00 pm
More than 100 exhibitors set up rain or shine and sell a wide variety of unique handcrafted items. The artisans and craftsmen featured at the show are selected for their handmade craftsmanship and artistic talents. You will see original artwork, pottery, jewelry, tapestries, clothing, photography, wood creations, leather goods and more. Live music and food concessions add to the delightful atmosphere.

Minocqua Kawaguesaga Lakes Protection Association Pig Roast
September 4, 2021
Minocqua – Downtown
11:00 am to 2:00 pm
Annual pig roast fundraiser with great food, live music, lake fair, a silent auction and a bike raffle. The mission of the Minocqua/Kawaguesaga Lakes Protection Association is to protect the Minocqua/Kawaguesaga lakes and their surroundings by enhancing water quality, fishery and the aesthetic value of our lakes as public recreational facilities for today and future generations.

September 25, 2021
Minocqua – Downtown
9:00 am to 4:00 pm
Roasters begin cooking their signature beefs before dawn. Herds of creative festival goers dressed in cow-themed costumes come to enjoy the festivities. Events include the 10K and 5K Rump Roast Run and Walk along Lake Minocqua, starting and ending at Lakeland Union High School. Enjoy live music and take a walk through the Prime Choice Craft Show featuring more than 70 vendors. Watch the Beef Eating Contest sponsored by Associated Bank. And remember to buy your deed for the Cow Pie Plop contest!


Presque Isle

Presque Isle Days Festival
July 18, 2021
Presque Isle – Community Park Ball Diamonds
11:00 am to 3:00 pm
Enjoy a variety of events, including the town’s signature, throwback event, Bunyan’s Brewshack! Stop by the Lions Food Tent, food trucks and check out the Professional Lumberjack Competition, old-fashioned kids’ games and the Blessing of the Dogs. New this year: an Axe Throwing Competition! Don’t miss the watermelon, pie and corn-cob eating contests! Hosted on the Softball Fields at Community Center Park off Main Street.



Art Fair on the Courthouse Lawn
June 12, 2021
Rhinelander – Court House Lawn
9:00 am to 3:00 pm
34th annual Art Fair on the Courthouse Lawn. This annual event includes over 100 arts and crafts booths, kids’ activities and plenty of food and entertainment.

Bikes and Burgers Downtown
June 12, 2021
Rhinelander – Downtown
10:00 am to 2:00 pm
4th annual motorcycle show. Enjoy a stroll through downtown while looking at amazing two and four wheeled art and build up your appetite for a real American burger from one of the great restaurants or pubs.

September 11, 2021
Rhinelander – Curran Professional Park
10:00 am to 8:30 pm
This event will include a live polka band, craft fair, food and beer.

Show and Sell Craft Fair
November 20, 2021
Rhinelander – James Williams Middle School
8:30 am to 3:00 pm
37th year of this completely handmade craft show featuring over 100 booths. The Rhinelander Lions Club will provide food and the Oneida County Humane Society is hosting a bake sale to raise money for the homeless pets in the community.


Three Lakes

North by Northwoods Summer Kickoff
June 5, 2021
Three Lakes – Cy Williams Park
11:00 am to 10:00 pm
A music festival by the lake to kick off summer! Artists include David Dall, Scott Kirby, The UnXpected and Madeline Consoer. Pike’s Pine Isle will be on site providing food for the day and The Three Lakes Tavern League will run the beverage tent.

Fish Boil
July 10, 2021
Three Lakes – Historical Museum
4:30 pm to 8:00 pm
Annual Fish Boil in Three Lakes! An evening of a great fish boil meal provided by local fisherman and some musical entertainment. Bring your friends and family for some fun!

Car Show
August 7, 2021
Three Lakes – Northwoods Petroleum Museum
10:30 am to 2:00 pm
This annual show is free to the public and will attract over 225 antique and classic cars, historic boats, antique tractors, hot-rods, custom cars and historic motorcycles. The show opens at 10:30 am and awards are presented at 2:00 pm. Food and beverages are available on the grounds.

Art on Main
August 14, 2021
Three Lakes – Downtown
10:00 am to 3:00 pm
This staple event for the Three Lakes community is celebrating its 17th year. The Art Show is juried by a local artist or teacher, with prize ribbons for the winners. There are 40 to 50 artists and crafters, music, beverages and excellent food.

September 18, 2021
Three Lakes – Downtown
11:00 am to 4:00 pm
Three Lakes Oktoberfest will offer a variety of food, entertainment and vendors. Chefs from the Black Forest will be outside roasting a pig, serving pulled pork sandwiches alongside freshly grilled bratwurst, Bavarian pretzels, sauerkraut and – of course – plenty of German beer! A variety of vendors will have baked goods, crafted wares, live demonstrations and more. The addition of games and friendly competitions provides ample reasons to visit the event.

Pumpkin Fest
October 9, 2021
Three Lakes – High School
9:30 am to 3:00 pm
This annual event features food, arts and crafts, raffle, bake sale, Famers Market, homemade soups and cinnamon rolls. Enjoy cranberry bog tours and consider bringing a non-perishable food item to donate to the Three Lakes Food Pantry. Proceeds benefit the Three Lakes Fire Department.



Wisconsin River Pro Rodeo
June 11 through June 13, 2021
Merrill – Lincoln County Fair Grounds
The Lincoln County Rodeo Association, Inc is entering our 32nd season of professional rodeo. Enjoy a weekend of action-packed western family fun. Cowboys and cowgirls from around the country compete to showcase their talents. Enjoy great food, live music, vendors and shopping for all ages. Experience the beauty of the Wisconsin Northwoods while attending the Wisconsin River Pro Rodeo.

2nd Annual Summer Nationals Auto and Bike Show
July 23 through July 24, 2021
Harshaw – Bonnie and Clyde’s Gangster Park
Bonnie and Clyde’s Gangster Park will host their second annual motorcycle and car show complete with prizes, a road tour, live music by Knock Point and The Dweebs and more.

Tomahawk Fall Ride 40th Anniversary
September 13 through September 19, 2021
Tomahawk – Downtown and Sara Park
Come out for the 2021 Tomahawk Fall Ride and Bubba’s Big Party. Enjoy riding around the lakes, twisting roads and electric fall colors in process. Tomahawk Ride events will be held at Harley Davidson dealerships, and you can take tours of the two Harley Davidson operations and manufacturing plants. The center of the rally is Sara Park, where you can enjoy car, truck and bike shows. Other attractions include live music, camping, biker butt contest, the snowmobile drags, mud bog, lawnmower and bar stool races.