Wisconsin—When thinking of Wisconsin, classic Americana comes to mind. It’s a state known for its bucolic landscapes, artisan cheeses and a touch of the old. Yet, modern technology and interest in the state’s roots has lead to new events that highlight a juncture of the past and the present.
Barns across Racine County will be getting a splash of color next month. Not with coats of fresh paint, but through a community art project that will install large quilt patterns on the historic structures’ exterior walls. The Quilts on Barns pieces, featuring classic patterns such as bear’s paw and tulip basket, will be set up along a trail on the county’s roads, making the 15 plywood “quilts” visible to pedestrians, drivers and farmers. During the next two years, an additional 30 quilts will be added to the project. On Oct. 11, Racine County residents are being asked to display their own quilts on their fences and clotheslines as part of county’s Quilt Hang Day to celebrate the project’s unveiling and upcoming harvest.
About an hour to the west in Lake Geneva, new audiences are getting in touch with Wisconsin’s earlier years. The Black Point Estate, a Queen Anne style summer home, is now open for tours thanks to the Lake Geneva Cruise Line. Built in 1888, the mansion is on a bluff overlooking Geneva Lake. Two tours of the estate are given daily, and visitors are able to see all of the home’s original furnishings and as well as learn about past Wisconsin summers on the lake. The cruise line also offers a mail boat tour, showing the intricate way mail gets delivered to resident piers on the lake. — Hilary Solan