Summers with the family are full of great memories, but with extracurricular activities and an ever-changing routine, sometimes scheduling things to do together gets lost in the mix. To help you make this summer the best one yet, The Compass editorial staff has created a list of 10 events to enjoy with friends and family. Please note that a selection does not equate an endorsement. Events were selected based upon the following criteria: open to the public, within the Diocese of Green Bay, offered as an event or event series, falls between July 6 and Aug. 20 and is family-oriented.
- Knights on the Fox
This five-week free music series (July 7, 14, 21, 28 and Aug. 4) features a variety of bands and genres for the whole family to enjoy — from dueling pianos and rock music, to Dixieland and pop tunes. Entering its 13th season, Knights on the Fox picnicking begins at 5 p.m., with concerts beginning at 6:30 p.m. Head over to the waterfront behind the Ray Van Den Heuvel Campus Center, or dock your boat at Thompson Marina. Whatever you do, don’t miss out on this riverside roaring good time!
- Waterboard Warriors
From human pyramids to jumps and twists, the Waterboard Warriors are sure to surprise you on the waterfront. Showcasing the talents of 30 skiers from across Wisconsin, the Warriors put on 30-minute water shows in Green Bay and Wrightstown all summer long. Grab the family, and get to the river for these free Fox River spectaculars July 8, 15, 22, 29, Aug. 5, 12, 19 and 26 between the Main St. and Walnut St. bridges! Shows start at 6 p.m. and 7 p.m., and optimal viewing can be found on the Westside waterfront or CityDeck.
- Bay Beach Movies in the Park
While Bay Beach boasts the Elvis Presley coaster favorite, the Zippin Pippin, there’s so much more to be seen. Two nights this summer (July 9, 16), the amusement park will host movies at dusk (9 p.m.) for the whole family to see. Bring your lawn chairs and blankets, grab some snacks at the concession stand, and enjoy a good movie under the stars. Also, be on the lookout for three new rides arriving to the park mid-summer: the Rockn’ Tug, the Tot Spring Ride and two new westbound trains! www.greenbaywi.gov/baybeach
Whether it’s Matt Maher, Newsboys, Chris Tomlin or Tenth Avenue North, you’re sure to find your favorite Christian artist rocking the stage at Lifest 2015 from July 9–12 at the Sunnyview Expo Center in Oshkosh. This Christian music festival is not just music, though. Register for the 5k Fun Run, play on the inflatable games, explore the Art Space and Kidzone, participate in sports tournaments, or travel though an interactive prayer journey. Can’t make the first few days? Visit Lifest on Sunday for a worship service and free final concert!
- Pulaski Polka Days
Are you ready to get your Polish on? Head over to Pulaski for the 37th annual Pulaski Polka Days July 16–19 for a taste of Wisconsin heritage. Enjoy some kielbasa, learn to how to polka, tour the arts and crafts fair, sign up for the Polka Trot 5K, attend a Catholic Polka Mass, or head into the tents to enjoy the bands. If that’s not enough, come for the fireworks, stay for the dance contest, and grab an official Polka Day CD on the way out!
- Door County Fair
Need an excuse to escape up the peninsula? Sturgeon Bay plays host to the annual Door County Fair July 29–Aug. 2 where rides, local merchants and food stands, live entertainment and Door County exhibits are sure to please the whole family! Hop on one of the amusement rides, grab a seat at the Demolition Derby, cheer for your favorite at the Tractor Pulls, or check out the choreography at the Drill Team competition. Have a talent you’d like to share with the world? Enter your exhibit — whether that be baking, gardening or artsy creations! Kids five and under are free, and so is parking, so grab the family and head to John Miles Fair Park!
- Feast with the Beasts
What’s better than dining out with the family? Dining out with the family AND zoo animals! The NEW Zoo is hosting their 16th annual Feast with the Beasts event Aug. 3 from 6–8 p.m. where nearly 40 vendors, from Hagemeister Park and HuHot Mongolian Grill, to Legends and Los Banditos, will join the animals for a night of fun and live entertainment. Tickets are $35 in advance or $40 at the door, but they sell out fast! So call, and get yours today! www.newzoo.org
- Burger Fest and Balloon Rally
In 1885, Charles Nagreen started calling ground beef patties inside a bread bun “hamburgers,” and the rest is, of course, history. Today, Nagreen’s hometown of Seymour celebrates his genius invention every year with the Burger Fest and Balloon Rally. Celebrate this year’s theme of “Charlie and his Hamburger Factory” Aug. 7–9 by taking a tour of the burger memorabilia at the museum, riding in the Motorcycle Charity Ride, participating in the Bun Run, catching sight of the Hot Air Balloon Glow at dusk or taking a shot at the dunk tank. Best of all, make sure you’re there to see (and eat) the 190 pound hamburger! Live music, a parade and the Krazy Ketchup Slide are waiting for you, so grab your favorite condiments and head to Seymour! www.homeofthehamburger.org
- Packers Family Night
It’s that time of year again! Grab your family and friends, and let’s get ready to rumble at Packers Family Night Aug. 8. Start your day off at the Family Night Picnic in Lambeau’s eastside parking lot, visit the Packers displays, and make sure you don’t leave early! After the game will be fireworks and a laser display show! If you bleed green and gold, get your favorite tailgating crew and head on over to Titletown’s pride and joy for a great night of fun, food, family and football!
- Timber Rattlers game
Buy the family some peanuts and Cracker Jacks, and head to the Timber Rattlers game Aug. 14 for a night of tailgating and America’s favorite pastime at 5:30 p.m. in Appleton. Not only is the Diocese also hosting their young adults’ night, but you won’t want to miss Bishop Ricken throwing out the first pitch! So get on your favorite cap, pack up the picnic basket, and head to the Fox Cities for a night you’re sure to remember!
Snap a photo with family or friends at one of these events and post it on Instagram using the hashtag #CompassFamilyOutings. Your photo could be reposted on our official account!