Let’s Talk About Family Adventure: Resources for Oshkosh Families

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On our latest podcast, Episode 9: Let’s Talk About Family Adventure, Amanda and Karlene are joined by Heidi Dusek of Ordinary Sherpa to talk all about the magic of family adventures.

We talked about approaching life with a sense of wonder and excitement to amplify the joy of parenting while strengthening our family bonds and shared our favorite tips for trying new things, keeping things joyfully simple, and our mutual agreement that a scoop of ice cream enhances any adventure!

What’s un tourism? What’s a joy audit? What is the living room of Oshkosh? 

PS…Adventure pairs well with ice cream! Make sure you visit Leon’s Frozen Custard and Ardy & Eds Drive-In.

Make sure to give it a listen, and here are some resources to help!

Paine Art Center and Gardens, Oshkosh

15+ Family Adventure Ideas in Oshkosh

  1. Go on a hike or plan a family bike ride on a scenic trail. Check out a nature preserve or trail in Oshkosh, the Fox Cities or Green Bay
  2. Have a picnic at a park and play outdoor games like frisbee or catch. Add some fun and excitement to your picnic or outing. The Winnebago County Parks Department has outdoor games for rent. These games include volleyball, disc golf kit, ping pong paddles and balls, badminton, Yardzee, and bean bags for corn hole. They are $10 to rent with a $10 deposit which is returned once the items are returned. The only exception is the disc golf kit which is $30 to rent, with $10 being returned when brought back in the same condition as received. If you have any questions regarding rental, please call the Parks Office at (920) 232-1960
  3. Set up a backyard camping trip complete with a tent, campfire, and s’mores.
  4. Organize a family scavenger hunt at South Park.
  5. Take out an aqua bike, canoe, or kayak. Rentals are available at Menominee Park. Aqua bikes are $7 for a half hour, and kayak and canoe rentals are $9 for an hour.
  6. Plan a day trip to a nearby beach for swimming, sandcastle building, and beach games.
  7. Go horseback riding at Firl Outfitters in Omro for a guided tour of a cattle ranch with scenic views of Lake Butte des Morts and the Wolf River.
  8. Go fishing at Rainbow Park on the Fox River.
  9. Organize a family photography excursion to capture the beauty of your surroundings.
  10. Plan a family-friendly outdoor yoga or meditation session at Menominee Park overlooking Lake Winnebago.
  11. Plan a family day trip to a Wisconsin State Park.
  12. Go geocaching or letterboxing.
  13. Visit the Paine Art Center and Gardens to explore nature’s beauty.
  14. Explore more of Oshkosh’s waterfront walking along Riverwalk.
  15. Go frisbee golfing at Winnebago County Park. The Green Course is in the center of the park and the 18 holes are perfect for beginners.
  16. Enjoy the lake life. Jump on a catamaran sailboat for a beginner lesson through International Youth Sailing of Oshkosh at Menominee Park.
  17. Catch a sun (or full moon) rise from Ames Point in Menominee Park. Ames Point is also a great place to stargaze at night. 
  18. See the changing of the seasons walking through the Sawyer Creek Nature Preserve.

Ordinary Sherpa

Ordinary Sherpa inspires families to connect through simple adventures. Heidi shares tips on her podcast, book, website, and social media! Get to know Heidi better by listening to Episode 001: Our Adventure Story, and join the online sherpa community.

Save Money This Summer with Discounted Tickets

In cooperation with the Wisconsin Park & Recreation Association, Oshkosh Recreation Department is offering discounted tickets for various attractions throughout the state. Typically these tickets are sold from May through August. 

Tickets Include: 

  • Army Ducks Wisconsin Dells
  • Milwaukee County Zoo
  • Original Wisconsin Ducks
  • Pirate’s Cove Adventure Golf
  • Upper Dells Boat Ride
  • Noah’s Ark
  • Wisconsin Dells Jet Boat Adventures

Other Participating Cities:

  • City of Brillion
  • City of New London
  • DePere Parks and Recreation
  • Fond du Lac Recreation Department
  • Fox Crossing Parks and Recreation
  • City of Green Bay
  • Kaukauna Parks and Recreation
  • Menasha Parks and Recreation
  • Sherwood

Capital Credit Union

  • Green Bay Rockers: 20% off outfield box seats (sections 104-126) using promo code CAPITAL
  • Milwaukee Zoo: Discounted price: $11.25 (Adult), $8.25 (Child 3-12) (Gate cost: Adults-$16.75, Children 3 to 12-$13.75)
  • Timber Rattlers: Use promo code CAPITAL23 for $2 off bleachers and box seats

Community First Credit Union

  • Milwaukee Zoo: Discounted price: $11.25 (Adult), $8.25 (Child 3-12) (Gate cost: Adults-$16.75, Children 3 to 12-$13.75) More info

Note: Fox Communities Credit Union no longer offers discount tickets.

Other Places to Look for Discounts

AAA member? Visit the AAA website for dozens of discount opportunities from theme parks to sports events. Don’t forget to mention your AAA membership when booking accommodations, too! 

Wisconsin State Park Day Passes at the Oshkosh Public Library

Check out Wisconsin State Parks at the library! The program provides library cardholders the opportunity to check out day passes to state parks, forests, and recreation areas.

  • Oshkosh Public Library – Winnefox Library System – Oshkosh, WI
  • Elisha D. Smith Public Library – Winnefox Library System – Menasha, WI
  • Neenah Public Library – Winnefox Library System – Neenah, WI
  • Black Creek Village Library – Outagamie Waupaca Library System – Black Creek, WI
  • Hortonville Public Library – Outagamie Waupaca Library System – Hortonville, WI
  • Kimberly Public Library – Outagamie Waupaca Library System – Kimberly, WI
  • Muehl Public Library – Outagamie Waupaca Library System – Seymour, WI

Full List of Participating Libraries

1000 Hours Outside

1000 Hours Outside is a movement and initiative started by Ginny Yurich in 2019. It encourages families and individuals to spend more time outside in nature. The goal is to accumulate at least 1000 hours of outdoor time in a year, which averages to about 2.7 hours per day. The initiative promotes the numerous benefits of spending time in nature, such as improved physical and mental health, increased creativity, and a stronger connection to the natural world. It aims to counter the trend of excessive screen time and sedentary lifestyles by encouraging people to prioritize outdoor activities and engage in nature-based play and exploration.

Check out their free trackers to track your adventure time outside.

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