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Community Spotlight: Jacksonport


Nestled along Door County’s eastern shore, Jacksonport is where people go to get away from it all and enjoy stunning natural wonders.

Not far from town you’ll find some of Door County’s most popular natural destinations. Whether it’s an early morning wake-up call to catch the sunrise from Cave Point, or a leisurely paddle through the stillness of Clark Lake, Jacksonport offers you easy access to mother nature.

Windswept sand dunes line the lakeside, never more dramatically than along the sand beach at  Whitefish Dunes State Park, lending the landscape a coastal feel you won’t find in any other Door County community.

Once a logging village, the rural town is now home to 800 residents, quaint cottages, and  affordable motels and hotels near or on the shore. Relax on sandy beaches or get photos of rocky shoreline cliffs. Hike peaceful trails and bike quiet back roads. Walk to shops, restaurants, and grocers. And don't forget to stop at Meridian Park, which is just north of town and signifies the halfway point between the Equator and the North Pole.

Head to the countryside to explore the peninsula on horseback at Kurtz Corral, then taste fine wines in the beautiful confines of Simon Creek Winery.

When it’s time to dine, Jacksonport offers some of Door County’s old-school favorites. Mike’s Port Pub has been serving up great pub grub in a cozy atmosphere for years, while Mr. G’s Supper Club offers a brilliantly muddled old fashioned to accompany a Wisconsin classic meal. Island Fever Rum Bar and Grill is a popular recent addition.

In the morning locals head to Little Bit of Coffee to perk up before a walk along the beach at Lakeside Park. On Tuesdays from May through October that park is home to one of the peninsula’s biggest farmers markets, where you’ll find local produce, crafts, and music all summer long.

Dozens of people run in swimsuits and costume into Lake Michigan for the Polar Plunge.

And even though Jacksonport is known for being Door County’s quiet side, residents do love to have fun. It starts on New Year’s Day, when J.R. Jarosh leads hundreds of friends into the frigid waters of Lake Michigan for the annual polar plunge. Maifest fills the town on Memorial Day Weekend with fun for all ages, and Cherry Fest celebrates the harvest in early August. 

Finally, November brings Door County’s only Thanksgiving Day Parade, a fundraiser for a different charity every year.  

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