A Door County Dream
Do you ever wonder how people came to make Door County their home? One of my favorite things to do as I cruise the county is to stop and talk to folks who share their stories about settling in Door County. From the artists and musicians who share their unique talents, to the owners of quaint shops galleries, and resorts, Door County is home to many wonderful folks.
As I cruised through Ephraim the other day I came across one of these interesting stories. As I walked through the streets of this beautiful little village, I came across a unique lodge tucked back less than a block off Hwy 42. The Village Green Lodge, located on Poplar Street, is a quaint, adults only resort, which would be a perfect stay for a group of motorcyclists.
I talked with Sue Sherman, the owner, and she shared her story about how she and her husband Steve ended up in Door County. Sue is originally from the Milwaukee area and worked at a bank in the city for 20 years. She said she had always dreamed about someday owning a bed and breakfast in Door County. 18 years ago they came across an opportunity to purchase the Village Green Lodge, and they never looked back! Sue showed me around the resort and grounds; it has a cozy, laid back, country feel to it! You would never know that the resort is so close to the main drag as it is nestled in a wooded area on a quiet little side road. I thanked Sue for sharing her story about her dream becoming a reality.
Heading south on Hwy 42 I had a couple of stops in mind. Northern Door County YMCA is located in Fish Creek and because I am a member I thought it would be a nice stop for a quick workout. As a Physical Education teacher, it's part of my everyday routine to find some time to exercise. The YMCA offers basketball, weight room, swimming pool, and a variety of classes. Both facilities (there is also one in Sturgeon Bay) offer a relaxed, friendly, atmosphere.
Continuing on I saw a sign "Fish Creek Park" right on the main drag. From the road it looked like a very small park with a few benches and a gazebo. I stopped for a quick snack and found out that this little park turned out to be so much more! At the base of the hill, to the west of the creek, is the original sight of the Peninsula Players Theater. In 1998 the Township of Gibraltar purchased a 27 acre parcel from the Weckler estate, one of the village's earliest families. Of course I had to explore,and what started as a short stop, turned into a wonderful, peaceful walk through forests, wetlands, and along a creek (Fish Creek) for which the village is named. It felt good to wander along the trails, strolling through open fields, and checking out the numerous wildflowers that were in bloom. Its unbelievable how I have lived here for 24 years and I'm still finding new places to explore!
This was turning into one of those days where I had nothing planed, just cruising and stopping at places on a whim. As I was passing through Carlsville I thought a stop to see a colleague of mine would be fun. Brock Blahnik, who is also a teacher at Sturgeon Bay High School, works during the summer months at Door Peninsula Winery. The winery is located in the old historic school house (built in 1868) and sits right on Hwy 42. The business has expanded over the years, and the winery has become the largest producer of wine in Wisconsin. They offer tours daily and free tastings of a variety of wines.
It was back on the road again to Sturgeon Bay. As I cruised Bay Shore Drive I thought back to the interview I had years ago for a teaching position with the Sturgeon Bay School District. As I await the start of another school year I get excited about being with my students whom I love to teach. My father always told me, "Find a job you love, and you'll never have to work a day in your life." Little did I know that 24 years later, living and raising a family in Door County would be a dream come true!