Herb Sparrow

Wisconsin’s Roads to Riches

 
 

Herb Sparrow
Published February 01, 2018

“Every time I come back here, it is with the feeling there is nothing anywhere better than this is.”

Famed architect Frank Lloyd Wright was speaking of Taliesin, the home, studio and school he built on 800 acres of southwest Wisconsin farmland his Welsh grandparents had homesteaded.

The rolling green countryside helped inspire Wright as he developed an organic style inspired by nature that transformed American architecture in the first half of the 20th century.

On a summer jaunt through southern Wisconsin, my wife, Marcheta, and I not only sampled the beautiful rolling green countryside that inspired Wright, but also discovered a fascinating array of attractions and sites that had their own architectural flair in keeping with the Wright tradition.

Group Travel Tradition

Our trip started at an attraction that has perfected the art of hosting motorcoach groups. Owned and operated by the third generation of the Klopcic family, the Fireside Dinner Theatre in Fort Atkinson deservedly claims the title of Wisconsin’s top motorcoach stop.

Groups are greeted at the door, often by a member of the Klopcic family, escorted to their seats for a delicious dinner and then shown into the 652-seat theater in the round for an entertaining show by professional performers.

Dick and Betty Klopcic opened the pyramid-shaped restaurant in 1964 around its namesake fireplace and quickly expanded. We were treated to a repeat of “South Pacific,” the first show presented at the Fireside in 1978 when they added the theater component.

The 2018 season features “Kopit and Yeston’s Phantom,” “Disney’s Newsies,” “42nd Street,” “A Second Helping,” “Disney’s The Little Mermaid,” “Grease” and “Elf the Musical.”

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