Posts tagged with "road america"

Kaelen Felix illustrates Elkhart Lake for 360 magazine

Elkhart Lake WI

By Elle Grant x Vaughn Lowery

As summer winds down and fall arrives, many find themselves itching for one last summer getaway, or rather, that first autumn weekend away. 360 Magazine was able to take advantage of such a trip, visiting Wisconsin’s Elkhart Lake this past September. Located in the heart of Moraine State Forest, Elkhart Lake is the ideal natural getaway, being home to lake activities as well as canopied hiking and biking trails.

Elkhart Lake, located on the East side of Wisconsin, is both a stunning sojourn into nature and also a historical destination. With a population just under one thousand, the village maintains a cozy quality, with local shops, restaurants, and activities maintaining a small-town, yet polished feel. Yet during the summertime, the town swells and comes to life. First inhabited by the Potawatomi Indians, the name Elkhart stems from the description Native people had of the area, that the lake resembled the shape of an elk’s heart. Native American culture can easily be explored in the area through local tours and at the Henschel’s Indian Museum. Elkhart is also a significant historical definition in terms of its relationship to racing, reaching its peak in the mid 1950s.

Our stay at the Shore Club was nothing short of superb. The new owners, Tom and Kristin Pagel, have done an incredible job renovating the hotel. Renovations including adding updated technology to enhance guest stays: Netflix, Alexa, a digital concierge through the Whisper app, Peloton bikes will soon be available, and luxury motor sports for those interested. Furthermore, the site also boasts an indoor pool, a game room with ping pong tables and vintage arcade games, and a gym. For those interested in seeing Elkhart on two wheels, free bikes are available for guest use at the front desk. The restaurant on site, the Cottonwood Social, offered consistently well-done meals, including the perfect weekend brunch.

We began our lake escape with a pontoon cruise on the namesake of the area, Elkhart Lake. Before departing, we sipped and snacked on the Osthoff’s signature cocktails and hors oeuvres. On the pontoon boat, we were able to view the lake’s crystal-clear lake waters and receive a tour that included information of the area’s history, legends, and folklore. The evening air aboard the boat made this the perfect way to begin a stay. Following the pontoon ride, dinner at the Osthoff Resort’s newest restaurant, Concourse Restaurant and Lounge, proved to be a unique culinary experience. With specialties such as the honey balsamic trout, seared scallops with sweet pea risotto, and the veal schnitzel with pickled cucumber relish, there was a delicious and refined option forevery set of tastebuds. The restaurant’s décor, a tribute the area and Osthoff’s vintage racing roots, also deserves special note.

Elkhart lake is famed for its historic roots as a racing circuit in the 1950s. During this decade, the village of Elkhart Lake transformed into an open-road race circuit where top sports car drivers traveled from all around the world to take on the unique terrain. Likewise, thousands of fans were drawn to the area, eager to see the athletes and vehicles alike. The racing today is focused at Road America,but the historic circuit is marked with signs denoting Wacker’s Wend, Kimberly’s Korner, and Dicken’s Ditch. This auto focused tour of the area isn’t to be missed. Road America also offers an opportunity to join in on the fun with options such as go-karting and ATVs at this world-acclaimed facility.

Road America and Elkhart Lake are famous as one of the oldest, largest, and most iconic tracks in the world. Currently, its original course is registered on the National Register of Historical Places, emphasizing its significance. Gaining popularity in the 1940s and 1950s, the post-World War II economy spurred on the influx of sporting luxury automobiles. For Elkhart specifically, the notable Sports Car Club of America were the main organizer of their races. Incredibly popular races such as the RoadAmerica 500, SCCA National Sports Car Championship, the United States Road Racing Championship and the IMSAGT Championship. Today, it continues to host luxury races and draw motorsports fans and can even be found in numerous racing video games!

Following a wild time racing, time winding down at the Aspira Spa was well-needed. Inspired by local Native American practices and traditions, but fused with modern technology and science, the spa offers the ideal treatment for any interest party. The inside space of the Aspira is thoughtfully designed and embraces the concept of Feng Shui as well as the natural elements. Personally, we enjoyed the Element Facial; this facial is a mask focused in traditional Chinese medicine representing the five elements. These five elements are wood, fire, earth, metal, and water. Harmony can be restored through the combination of colored light and essential oils inspired by these elements. By exalting the healing practices of indigenous cultures around the world, Aspira is able to provide a holistic, organic, and thorough approach to healing and relaxation.

Traveling back in time once again, visiting the Carriage Museum at Wade House transported us even further back – back to the 1860s stagecoach era located within this Wisconsin Historical Site. To get a full experience of the period, we were able to travel in that manner: horse-drawn carriage! The museum also features Wisconsin’s most diverse collection of transportation of this manner with over 100 horse-and-hand drawn vehicles. For the transportation enthusiasts, this isn’t to be missed.

When one thinks of wine country, Wisconsin might not exactly spring to mine. Yet award-winning sommelier Jaclyn Stuart operates Vintage Elkhart Lake, a charming shop where she hand-selects all wines available. The tasting at her bar came paired with cheese plates, potato chip flights, and other delectable pairing bites. The shop, beyond wine unique to the area, also sells other local delicacies for those interested in bringing home a taste of Wisconsin.

It would hardly be a trip to the lake without time spent on the lake fishing. Elkhart Lake is 119 feet deep and 292 acres wide, providing the perfect home to a variety of fish species: musky, walleye, northern pike, largemouth and smallmouth bass, yellow perch, bluegill and crappie all inhabit the lake. Going with a licensed guide like Jay Brickner will aide in explaining all those numerous species. Below the surface isn’t the only place to find remarkable species – a variety of endangered bird call this estuary home including bald eagles. Whether or not fishing is an interest, time spent on this beautiful, blue lake is worth taking a boat out for. A little closer to shore also boasts the best of the lake’s charms. From the time when Native Americans lived along its banks, Elkhart’s pristine quality has been appreciated. Taking advantage of more advanced activities like a hydrobike or other watersports can be a more adventurous way to embrace lake life. Other options including standup paddleboard, jet skis, and speedboats. Even taking a walk in the sand along the shoreline is another greatway to take advantage of all the lake has to offer.

The natural beauty of Elkhart Lake region is its most obvious draw, but the culinary seen isn’t to be underestimated. Lake Street Café, serving California Bistro style fare, also offers Wisconsin’s third largest wine list ensuring the perfect pairing for any dish. Quit Qui Clubhouse features classic pub and grill fair with a Wisconsin twist, including homemade soups, chili, sandwiches, burgers, and more. Siebkens Resort and 67 Saloon are also phenomenal dinner options reflecting inspiration from the area.

Elkhart Lake proved to be a much-needed September getaway. The natural beauty paired with the historical aspects of the Native American culture in the area as well as the history of luxury racing makes this an incredibly well-rounded destination.

OSTHOFF RESORT TURNS 25!

2020 marks the quarter-century birthday of the The Osthoff Resort! Opening May 19, 1995, The Osthoff Resort was constructed on the same location as the historic Osthoff Hotel, a popular resort destination from 1886 to the 1950s. Throughout its 134-year history, the resort has hosted travelers, locals, and industry professionals, with its historic past, beautiful scenic location and local amenities.

In 1995, the newly opened Osthoff Resort consisted of the main building, and a year later, the south building was added providing additional guest rooms and amenities. In 2005, the north building was built featuring additional guest accommodations, world-class Aspira Spa, a 100-seat restaurant with panoramic views of Elkhart Lake, and a state-of-the-art conference center beautifully designed for groups of up to 1,000 people.

Today, The Osthoff Resort is known for its lakeshore setting on crystal clear Elkhart Lake, a total of 245 spacious suites, award-winning Aspira Spa, and an impressive collection of amenities that include two lakeside restaurants, gift boutiques, indoor and outdoor pools, and elegant ballrooms and meeting venues. “As part of our year-long celebration, we are thrilled to announce that we have started to invest in renovations and enhancements across our Resort,” said Jamie Skelton, Marketing Manager of The Osthoff Resort. “In the near future, we look forward to delighting our guests and members of the community with exciting enhancements to guest premiere suites, dining areas, lobbies and public areas.” The Osthoff Resort looks forward to the next 25 years of making memories, and to help kick off the celebration is offering new overnight promotions:

Anniversary Package

Continuing to celebrate its quarter-century mark celebration, The Osthoff Resort is offering anniversary promotions on behalf of the original room rates from the year it opened, with rates starting at $199.50, and additional milestone promotions all year long. For all anniversary specials, visit Osthoff.com/25th-anniversary. To make a reservation, consumers can call 844.566.4392.


Autumn Overnight Package

September 2 – October 29, 2020: Stay one night in an elegant guest room from $236 in September and $210 in October and receive a $25 dining credit and 25% discount at Aspira Spa (Sunday – Wednesday only).

About The Osthoff Resort
The AAA Four Diamond Osthoff Resort is a Wisconsin tourism landmark featuring elegant suites and guestrooms, a stunning lakefront setting, two restaurants, Aspira Spa, year-round recreation, spa and gift boutiques, and grand conference rooms and meeting spaces. It is located just one hour north of Milwaukee, less than two hours from Madison and approximately three hours from Chicago. For additional information about The Osthoff Resort, visit www.osthoff.com, call 844.566.4392, or follow The Osthoff Resort on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

TRACK DAY WITH LIFERUSH ADVENTURES

By Anthony Sovinsky + Vaughn Lowery

Humans are unique in their ability to overcome the unimaginable. We are forced to explore the unknown –  to push our physical and mental limits. Brave people have taken chances and it has shaped our universe for the better. Whether we are attempting to climb the highest mountain or land our dream job, the thrill of doing something we haven’t done before creates a spark and meaning in our lives. For some of us this becomes a constant journey of discovering the next big thrill or adventure to add to the list of successes. Whether it be a bucket list item or just a childhood aspiration.

LifeRush Adventures is a society striving to deliver outdoor adventures that appeal to the adrenal glands. Recently, we received the pleasure of accompanying them on a trip to the world renowned Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. This course has been in operation for over 40+ years and has hosted some of the greatest races of all time. In 2008, Mazda Raceway was home to the Redbull U.S. Grand Prix where Valentino Rossi (multiple MotoGP World Champion) overtakes Casey Stoner in The Corkscrew (one of the hardest turns in motor racing in which you hit a blind cress into a three-story drop with a unique left-right combination) to win the race. It was Rossi’s first win in America; and he kisses The Corkscrew in front of 150,000 spectators. 

LifeRush Adventures in collaboration with Fast Toys Club makes these spectacular track events possible. Every month they take a different track and list an exotic car to commission (Lamborghini Huracan, Porsche 911, Audi R8, etc.) for your driving pleasure. Or, if you own a sports car, you can track it at $359/day.  Moreover, they possess excellent team building/corporate packages, beginning at $3,000 (includes one supercar plus six laps around the track per person). 

At Mazda Raceway, we were offered a 2017 Corvette Z06. In the morning, we started out with an instructional meeting on how to navigate the track: how and when to pass vehicles; the distinction of flags used; additional safety measures and the proper way to ‘hit the apex.’

Moments after, we paired up with a coach (or ride along instructor), we strapped on our helmets and fastened our passenger seat belts. If you’re a confident driver just hop in the driver’s seat.

LifeRush Adventures also offers an array of spontaneous activities: helicopter tours, costal exotic car drives, paddle boarding and flyboarding.

For additional information on packages and services visit: LifeRushAdventures.com