12 Family Festivals You Can't Miss This Summer

From warm days on the lake and summer sunsets, to cooking brats on the grill and enjoying an ice cream cone, summer in Wisconsin is something to celebrate. The state is dotted with fun summer festivals, but here are just a few kid-friendly summer festivals that the whole family can enjoy.

ChocolateFest – Burlington

Burlington is known as Chocolate City U.S.A, so it’s only appropriate that ChocolateFest is held there. ChocolateFest has been a staple in the community for 30 years and features a carnival, Battle of the Bands, the Miss Burlington Area ChocolateFest pageant, chocolate sculptures, chocolate eating, chef demonstrations, and so much more for families to enjoy.

Rotary Fly-In/Drive-In Breakfast – Reedsburg

What’s cooler to a kid than cars and military air crafts? The Rotary Fly-In/Drive-In Breakfast offers all-you-can-eat pancakes, sausage, toast, scrambled eggs, coffee and milk, and is fun for the whole family with its classic car show, plane rides, bounce house and face painting.

Ice Cream Sundae Thursday – Two Rivers

Did you know that Two Rivers is the birthplace of the Ice Cream Sundae? Visit this iconic town for 25-cent ice cream sundaes, live music and plenty of children’s entertainment. Pretty sure no one, child or adult, could turn down a good old-fashioned ice cream sundae.

Shake the Lake – Madison

While adults will enjoy the live music and tasty foods, the youngsters will have a blast in the Kids Zone, featuring an inflatable zip line, obstacle courses and a petting zoo. The whole family can come together for Wisconsin’s largest fireworks display taking place over Lake Monona.

Hudson Booster Days – Hudson

Adults and kiddos alike will have a blast at this Independence Day celebration, which includes carnival rides and games, delicious food, live music, children’s activities, a parade and lakefront fireworks to top off the weekend.

Bayfield 4th of July Festivities – Bayfield

Spend the Fourth of July in one of Wisconsin’s northernmost cities while taking in the holiday festivities, such as island cruises, berry picking, live music, sailing events and fireworks over Lake Superior. Your whole crew will love it.

Riverfest – La Crosse

La Crosse goes all out when it comes to Riverfest, a self-funded and volunteer-run festival. This year will feature country artist Chris Lane, as well as family-friendly activities, food and fireworks…plus, proceeds go toward local groups and charities! Win-win.

Northern Wisconsin State Fair – Chippewa Falls

Speaking of “going all out”, the Northern Wisconsin State Fair is guilty of it too. We’re talking Frankie Ballard, Cheap Trick and Martina McBride, plus carnival rides, great food stands, livestock, educational exhibits and 4-H displays that kids will love.

German Fest – Milwaukee

“Get Your Deutsch On” at this year’s German Fest, which features five stages of entertainment along with German food favorites, family activities, polka music, Sheepshead lessons, and, of course, fireworks. Just put the kids in lederhosen or a dirndl and head out the door.

Johnsonville Brat Days – Sheboygan

It’s no surprise that brats are a staple here in Wisconsin, and Sheboygan is the Bratwurst Capital of the World, so why not celebrate the local favorite? Johnsonville Brat Days is fun for the whole family, with samples of brat tacos, brat pizza, brat egg rolls and corndog brats, as well as entertainment on four stages, a parade, petting zoo and carnival rides.

Sweet Corn Festival – Sun Prairie

Few things scream “summer in Wisconsin” more than sweet corn. This Sun Prairie festival kicks off with a downtown parade, and continues with a craft show, carnival rides, concessions, live music, a petting zoo, and plenty of sweet corn.

Dairy Days Celebration – Platteville

Wisconsin’s dairy industry is something to celebrate, and Platteville is at the heart of it. The city’s Dairy Days Celebration features a parade, amusement park rides, an arts & crafts fair, live entertainment, and truck and tractor pulls.


Summer is fast-approaching. Do you have your family plans in place? Share your favorite kid-friendly festivals with us in the comments below!

This entry was posted in Fairs & Festivals Events