The majestic bluffs and grand Mississippi River are the backbones of the La Crosse Region. However, there are some unique facts about the area that you may not know! Test your knowledge and check out seven things you may not realize about the La Crosse Region!
1. Choice Destination:
La Crosse was voted the 2019 Choice Destination by Discover Wisconsin! “For every season, there’s a reason to Discover Wisconsin,” a quote best said by Discover Wisconsin, and in 2019, La Crosse was named the Choice Destination to visit. While we may be biased here, there is official proof we rank among the best!
2. The Most Scenic View: Grandad Bluff
Did you know that you can see the Mississippi River, Minnesota, Iowa, and Wisconsin from the legendary Grandad Bluff in La Crosse? It comes as no surprise that Wisconsin Trails readers voted this “the most scenic view in the state.” The bluff stands 600-feet tall and has become not only a destination point for thousands but also a symbol of this great Coulee Region. If you plan your stay appropriately, you can witness the outstanding, annual Skyrocker’s New Year’s Eve Fireworks Show!
3. The Driftless Region:
The La Crosse area falls within the Driftless Region; narrowly escaping the glaciers’ flattening effects of the last Ice Age. Because the Region has no gravel deposits, “glacial drift,” it maintains an ancient landscape full of scenic views, waterfalls, deep caves, and more. Nestled between the historic bluffs, the area is iconic along the Upper Mississippi River.
4. Record Holder:
At one time, La Crosse broke a Guinness Book record with the most bars/nightclubs located on one street! You can’t miss Third Street in Historic Downtown La Crosse claiming dance bars, country bars, retro martini bars, sports bars and more! With the metro-area containing La Crosse and Onalaska, we boast more bars per capita than other cities in America.
5. Bird-Watching Super Highway
The La Crosse Region and surrounding areas are home to some of the best bird-watching destinations in the upper Midwest. From Bald Eagles, Tundra Swans, and Great Egrets to Bluebirds, Warblers, and Sparrows, the area hosts a wide range of species sure to satisfy all birders. Locations offering notable populations include Myrick Park, Hixon Forest, and Riverside Park. Witness the highest activity of species during migration seasons!
6. Wisconsin Master Cheese Makers
Did you know Wisconsin and Switzerland are the only places in the world that you can become a Master Cheese Maker? These people are some of the smartest cheese heads around and go through extensive learning to become Master Makers of authentic Wisconsin dairy. Speaking of cheese heads, TJ’s Cheddarheads Gift Gallery on Pearl Street offers foam hats and caps, but also can offer you the real deal, Wisconsin Cheese squares, blocks and the like. Stop in for specialty gift boxes of Wisconsin cheeses, sausages, jams, jellies, muffin mixes, popcorn, and other local candies.
7. Prohibition In Wisconsin and the La Crosse Region
In 1919, the Volstead Act, or better known as the Prohibition Act, prohibited the manufacture and sale of alcohol. You may be surprised to learn that Wisconsin did in fact vote for prohibition as the world was going through many anti-German sentiment from the aftermath of World War I. The area had been dependent on liquor and beer sales because of the many breweries in town, though… So much in fact that La Crosse was second in production of beer alongside of Milwaukee! This caused a great deal of illegal activity leading to many Wisconsinites and La Crosse citizens wanting to appeal the 18th Amendment. In 1928, Wisconsin had repealed all state laws enforcing Prohibition and by 1933, the rest of the states had followed suit and so became the end of the Prohibition Era.
You can learn more about La Crosse history by taking the Historic Trolley Tours.