Bayfield, WI – Superior, WI Fall Events


Three teams head for the finish in the Superior Dragonboat Race

Bayfield – Ashland – Superior Fall Events

Lake Superior DragonBoat Race
Scenes from the 2011 Lake Superior Dragonboat Race

Lake Superior Dragon Boat Festival August 24 – 25th

The highlight late summer along Wisconsin’s Lake Superior shore is the Lake Superior Dragon Boat Race & Festival at Barker’s Island in Superior, Wisconsin. A highlight of last year’s race was National Womens Dragon Boat Champion, Wiki Wiki Wahini, competing against  two very competent women’s teams – Thunder Bay’s Women on Fire and UMD’s Doggie Paddlers. Wiki Wiki triumphed in a close race and almost won the overall event, losing literally by a nose to a mens-dominant* team from Racine, Wisconsin – Arashi. Race Press Honcho, Jim Keough, told me the Lake Superior DragonBoat Festival is largest in the United States. But even if that is not exactly true it certainly is one of the biggest hosting almost 100 teams.  You can see some pictures and video from last year’s race in our SuperiorTrails.com website page on the Superior DragonBoat Festival and get up to the minute info on this year’s race at the Superior Dragonboat Festival website.

*Dragonboat rules require that a minimum of 8 of the 20 paddlers be women.

Fall is a great time to tour the Wisconsin villages around Lake Superior. The weather starts to cool off, less competition for lodging, campground sites, a table at restaurants, and the fall color starts to change – about mid-September away from the lake and then into early October around the Superior lakeshore. There are also a number of special events you can catch before the snow flies.

Wisconsin Lake Superior September Events & Festivals

Bayfield’s Big Top Chautauqua ends its tent show season in mid-September with its “Big Tap Chautauqua Fest” on Sept 15th.  It is new event that promises to be lots of fun. There will be  Beer Tasting from a number of craft breweries, plus a special Home Brew category. According to the Big Top festival website, the “. . . seats will be out of the tent – just a stage and beer sampling stations. Mt. Ashwabay will have the grills going. Blue Canvas Orchestra leads the musical entertainment joined by the party-time oompahs of The Old Lager Band and local favorites Hoff Stevens.” There also will be a fun 5k hike/walk up some trails of Mt. Ashwabay.

Potato River Waterfalls, Wisconsin
Fall Color at Potato Falls near Gurney, Wisconsin

Stock car racing fans can catch the Northern Nationals at Superior’s Amsoil Speedway (Sept. 7-8) or later in the month catch the Red Clay Classic ABC Raceway (Sept 28 – 29th) in Ashland, Wisconsin.  Earlier in the month is Ashland’s Mural Fest and Car Show (Sept 8th). Lighthouse fans have an opportunity to attend tours and events during the Apostle Islands Lighthouse Celebration (Sept 4 – 22nd).  Later during the Lighthouse festival area visitors can catch the beginning of Bayfield’s Fall Harvest Celebration (which runs through Oct. 16th). On Sept 17th one of our favorite little Lake Superior villages – Cornucopia, Wisconsin –  is holding its annual 7th annual Cornie Art Crawl. Also in September is McDougall’s Dream (Sept 29th) held in Superior, Wisconsin at the Richard Bong Center. It is a fundraising event for the SS Meteor Museum and features seminars on shipbuilding and whaleback ships, plus an evening dinner and auction. See more info on the event here.

About this time (end of Sept, early October) the Fall Color around Ashland & Bayfield begins to show. Color starts to change earlier away from the lake near Copper Falls and Potato Falls.

Wisconsin Lake Superior October Events & Festivals

The Bayfield Wisconsin orchards are open for tours and several fall events are planned, the most popular being the Bayfield Apple Festival (Oct 5-7th).  Last year we attended the 50th anniversary Bayfield AppleFest and you can see some pictures from earlier Bayfield Apple Festival on SuperiorTrails.com. In Ashland you can catch the Whistlestop Marathon & Blues & Brews Festival (Oct. 12 – 13th). The next weekend is an unique event in the Ashland-Bayfield area – the Bayfield Shores Harvest Trail (Oct 19-21). Sponsored by the Bayfield Regional Food Producers Coop, you can tour the farms and facilities of the coop and shop for food as well. There’s also a special 6 course dinner and entertainment as part of the festival. That same weekend you can also take the ferry to Madeline Island for the Madeline Island Fall Festival (Oct. 20th). The last big fall event along Wisconsin’s Lake Superior shore is the first week in November.  Stage North Theater in Washburn sponsors the Big Water Film Festival (Nov 9th -11th).


FYI Fall Event Links on SuperiorTrails:

Superior, Wisconsin Events Links

Bayfield WI Events Calendar & Links

Ashland WI Events Calendar & Links

Lake Superior Fall Color Scenic Drives

Maybe we’ll see you around the Big Lake this fall.

Cheers, Roscoe

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