Explore. Connect. Relax. Make Memories!
Beaver Dam offers year-round activities for families and people of all ages. If you’re searching for you next adventure, you’ve come to the right spot! Find the best spots to fish, swim, hike, skate, and snowmobile today. Outdoors not your thing? We’ve got you covered with indoor fun too! With so many activities available, you’ll never run out of things to do!
Beaver Dam Lake & River
Beaver Dam Lake & River = Paddling Fishing Boating Skiing Swimming Fun!
With more than 6700 acres and 42 miles of shoreline, Beaver Dam Lake offers plenty of water adventure opportunities including fishing, boating, and paddling in the summer, duck hunting in the fall, and ice fishing, snowmobiling, snowshoeing, and cross-country skiing in the winter. With seven boat launches and three kayak launches, you will find the lake to be readily and easily accessible to explore. Our award-winning Beaverland Must-skis waterski team offers exciting, jam-packed shows throughout the summer at Tahoe Park beginning Memorial Day. View their summer show schedule here. Plan a day or weekend excursion paddling the Beaver Dam River; a class I rated river with known for its whitewater and lazy river sections that winds through the city, rural farmland, and scenic wooded corridors. Bring your own or rent a kayak, canoe, or SUP by the hour, half day or full day from Waterworks Park.
Horicon Marsh State Wildlife Area
Just minutes from Beaver Dam, the Horicon Marsh is the largest freshwater cattail marsh in the U.S. and brings hundreds of thousands of visitors every year who love bird watching and are captivated by the sights and sounds of wildlife in action. The Marsh is home to over 300 bird species, over 10 miles of hiking and biking trails, and 6 miles of kayak and canoe runs. The Explorium, located inside the Education and Visitor Center, offers the public a unique experience to explore the Marsh through time, from Ice Age to present, with state-of-the-art and hands on interactive, narrated exhibits. Air boat rides and mammoth smells await you, as well as regularly scheduled special events and outdoor activities.
The Education & Visitor Center and Explorium
Long before Horicon Marsh achieved international status as an important bird and wildlife area and a destination for outdoor recreation, glaciers carved a basin where a wetland would one day form. Today, guests of Horicon Marsh’s Explorium can get a glimpse of life at Horicon Marsh thousands of years before European settlement and witness how the current wetland came to be.
The experience is narrated by a Clovis spearpoint, who keeps visitors company throughout the journey as they view, listen to, touch, and even smell exhibits that document the changes to the marsh over time. Videos and interactive displays greet guests at every turn, encouraging audiences of any age to learn more about the history and ecology of Horicon Marsh.
There is a small fee to enter the Explorium museum. Education & Visitor Center Programs are free.
Click here for their 2023 schedule of events.
Click here for a schedule of events for the Bird Festival on May 12th – 14th.
Click here for more info about the Wildflowers for Wildlife event.
Outdoor Recreational Activities
Open year round, Horicon Marsh offers many outdoor recreational activities including:
- Wildlife observation
- Hiking, including 1,400 ft. of boardwalk
- Kayaking and canoeing
- Bicycling (in specified areas)
- Snowshoeing (rentals available)
- Cross country skiing (no groomed trails)
- Waterfowl, deer and upland game hunting
Educational Programs & Events
The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources’ Horicon Marsh Wildlife Education Program offers fun and exciting ways to explore the worlds of science and environmental education while meeting state academic standards. There are now classes offered in the winter and summer months too!
All programs are free, though donations are appreciated!
Dodge County Parks & Trails
Dodge County has 20,918 acres of federal recreation areas, 23,372 acres of state recreation areas and 1,131 acres of county recreation land. Known for its lakes, streams and small towns, Dodge County, Wisconsin offers a peaceful rural environment located within an hours drive of Milwaukee, Madison and Fox Valley metropolitan areas.
Astico Park consists of 100 acres of developed and natural areas on the historic Danville Mill Pond of the Crawfish River about 3 miles east of the City of Columbus in the southwestern part of Dodge County. The park features 63 river’s edge and upland campsites including riverside campsites with 50 amp service available, Astico Castle Playground, a restroom/shower facility, a dump station, picnic areas and shelters, shoreline and wooded hiking trails, large open play fields and an expansive river shoreline which provides good canoeing and fishing opportunities in a scenic setting. A canoe launch and canoe/kayak rentals are available.
Derge Park consists of 13 acres and is located just five minutes northwest of the City of Beaver Dam, on the west-central shore of Beaver Dam Lake. Derge Park contains 25 campsites with 30 amp electric hookups and asphalt pads, picnic shelters, a shower/restroom building and a dump station.
Harnischfeger Park is a 132-acre park – the largest in Dodge County! Camping is available with nine sites and a group site. Active and passive recreation abound with several miles of hiking, horseback riding, cross-country skiing trails, snowshoeing, sledding, fishing areas, mini-golf course, disc golf course, volleyball courts, horseshoe pits, baseball field, playground and a canoe launch with canoe and kayak rentals available. An 800 foot boardwalk provides additional shoreline fishing, wildlife and wetland viewing opportunities.
Ledge Park is an 82 acre park that lies along the Niagara Escarpment, a natural rock ledge which divides the park into upper and lower areas and provides a breathtaking overlook of the famous Horicon Marsh and surrounding countryside. It offers picnicking areas, a shelter, hiking trails, 45 campsites, a restroom/shower facility, a dump station and the Fort Ledge Playground.
Nitschke Mounds Park is located near the center of Dodge County adjacent to the Wild Goose State Trail and just west of the Horicon Marsh.The property contains 37 preserved animal effigy, conical and linear mounds believed to have been constructed around 800 AD – 1100 AD. Nine additional mounds identified in 1927 are no longer visible or have not been found. The preserved mounds represent one of the best surviving examples of the Mound Builders culture that once occupied the Dodge County area. A natural and grassed surfaced trails wind around the mounds and through the park.
Wild Goose State Trail is a 34 mile compacted limestone trail on an abandoned railroad grade traverses oak woodlots, fertile farm fields, prairie remnants and sparkling streams as it runs through the rural country sides of Dodge and Fond du Lac Counties and skirts the western edge of the internationally known Horicon Marsh National Wildlife Refuge.
Gold Star Memorial Trail will eventually connect the cities of Mayville and Beaver Dam. The trail is currently open for use but is undergoing construction in phases and will eventually provide important trail links to the Horicon Marsh State Wildlife Area and its world class Education and Visitor Center, the City of Horicon, the Wild Goose State Trail and Nitschke Mounds County Park.
A Day at the Fair & Racetrack
Dodge County Fair
The Dodge County Fair begins Wednesday, August 16th through Sunday, August 20th. Affordable family entertainment as low as $7 per day with the purchase of a $35 season pass or just $15 daily gate admission with FREE stages and grandstands. The annual music festival and county fair entertains over 52,000 fans a year and is the largest outdoor event in the area. A huge tractor pull followed by three nights of national touring artist concerts entertain country and rock fans. Two demolition derbies, a Horse pull, tractor pull, and truck pull at the grandstand plus food, fun and exhibits for the whole family. Don’t forget to taste the great fair food, view the many exhibits and animals while learning, doing and just having a great time!
Beaver Dam Raceway
Racing enthusiasts will enjoy this exciting 1/3-mile oval dirt track racing venue featuring IMCA Sanctioned Stock, Modified and Sport Modified cars, INEX Sanctioned Legend cars, and Unified Street Stock cars. Be sure to make a pitstop at the concession stand, be the frontrunner for pit passes, and ready for another thrilling race season at the track Tuesday nights April through September!
Before you go, check out this helpful race day information including race day info, ticket info, and directions to the Beaver Dam Raceway.
Pumpkin Patches, Orchards & Wineries
Plan a day to visit Wisconsin’s largest pumpkin farm! Enjoy many memorable activities including the Underground Mine, Haunted Granary, corn mazes, farm trains, world’s largest inflatable pumpkin, animals, special weekend entertainment & much more. Waldvogel’s also has tasty treats including build your own caramel apples & mouth-watering turnovers.
Apple Picking Orchards
After you visit Waldvogel’s pumpkin farm, be sure to bring the whole family for a stroll through the rows of sweet smelling apples at one of the many apple orchards in Dodge County, some of them just minutes from Beaver Dam. Choose one or more and begin your search for finding the perfect apples for eating, baking, cooking, freezing, or canning. Apple Picking Orchards in Dodge County.
Edwin Brix Vineyard
Edwin Brix Vineyard & Sell Family Wines is located outside of Juneau, Wisconsin and is Dodge County’s first licensed winery. They grow a variety of red and white cold hardy grapes to produce their high quality wines. 100% of their wines are made from grapes they grow.
Their tasting room is open every day! Monday – Saturday: 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM, Sunday: 12:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Old Hickory Golf Club
Established in 1920, Old Hickory Golf Club is one of the oldest and most respected golf courses in Wisconsin. In addition to the outstanding golf course, Old Hickory offers a full-service restaurant and banquet facility with the best views in the area. Every aspect of the facility is open to the public, and we look forward to serving you. The new owners have made substantial upgrades to the golf course, clubhouse, pro shop, and dining facilities to make your experience even more enjoyable.
The Old Hickory Golf Club Golf Shop is a full-service Golf Shop, stocked with top of the line apparel and equipment. It is the hub of golf activity at Old Hickory Golf Club and a friendly gathering place before the start of your round.
The restaurant at Old Hickory Golf Club has developed a reputation for the best food in the area. The dining room is open for dinner service every Friday throughout the year.
Beaver Dam Country Club
Beaver Dam Country Club sits just a few miles from Horicon Marsh, the largest freshwater refuge in the U.S., on rolling hills and Beaver Dam Lake. The golf course originally opened as a nine-hole layout in the 1960’s but now we feature 18 manicured golf holes.
The layout has a traditional design with small, elevated greens and tree-lined fairways. At just over 6000 yards, length is not the deciding factor. Being in the right spot to attack the greens is critical. The course features small manicured turtle back greens nothing is guaranteed just because you reached the green. Strategically placed bunkers lurk beside the greens and the rolling terrain guarantees some tricky lies.
The third and eighth are two of our particularly memorable holes. These drivable par 4’s provide you with the opportunity for an eagle, granted you play skillfully and are blessed with a little luck.
Tower Lanes Bowling
Tower Lanes offers bowling, food, bar, and fun! Open 7 days a week, order dine in or carry out from their extensive menu that includes appetizers, burgers, sandwiches, salads, and pizza. Don’t forget about Friday Fish Fry!
They also feature:
- 16 Bowling Synthetic Lanes
- Open Bowling
- League Bowling
- Junior League Bowling
- Automatic Bumper Bowling
- Full Service Bar
- Full Grill Menu & Homemade Pizza
- Birthday Parties For Children & Adults
- Pool and Darts
- Enclosed outdoor deck & bar
- Bag Toss Leagues
- 2 Volleyball courts
- MAD Interactive bowling games
- Karaoke Nights
YMCA of Dodge County
The Dodge County YMCA located in Beaver Dam is a state-of-the-art 60,000 square foot facility that includes these great amenities:
Queenax Fitness System
- Drop-In Child Watch Room
- Family Adventure Water Park
- Competitive Swimming Pool
- Health & Wellness Center
- Aerobics/Dance Studio
- Adult & Family Locker Rooms
- Child Care Center
- Adult & Family Locker Rooms
The YMCA offers members two fabulous pools! Their Family Adventure Water Park has a zero depth entry with children’s toys, small Beaver Slide and water fountains for tons of fun, a Lazy River for propulsion walking, large Water Slide with tubes, in-pool water jet area for relaxing, a separate water exercise area and whirlpool. Their Competitive Pool offers 8 lanes for lap swimmers, a zero depth entry for easy access, and diving boards.
Family Center Ice Arena
The Beaver Dam Family Center Ice Arena is home to the Swan City Skaters and Beaver Dam Hockey Association. The Family Center offers many opportunities for the public to enjoy skating from weekly open skates to a variety of fun, special events – such as “Spooktacular” Halloween Skate, Skate with Santa, New Year’s Eve Open Skate, and School Day Off. You can find their open skate schedule and information about their admission fees here.
The Swan City Ice Skaters offer classes, competitions, and spectacular performances including their 2023 Ice Show; Pixies and Pirates on Friday, May 19th and Saturday, May 20th! Order your tickets today!
Dodge County Historical Museum
Take a walk into a bygone world with the Dodge County Historical Society Museum‘s special exhibits of famous personalities from Dodge County including Fred MacMurray, Raymond Zinke Gallun, and Delia Denning Akeley and their permanent exhibits including:
- The Swan Room
- One Room School House
- Our Community at War
- Harold Hemple Rock Collection
- 1902 Rambler
- Era Jewelry Collection
- Evangelical Lutheran Church Steeple
Admission is free and open Wednesdays through Saturday from 1 pm to 4 pm.