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Your Valentine’s Day Guide to Wisconsin’s Northwoods

Serene forests enveloped in clean, white snow. The smell of wood smoke wafting through the air when you’re outside, and the sound and warmth of crackling logs in the fireplace back at the lodge. Trails beckoning you to the woods for the romantic adventure of a lifetime…

Northwoods Wisconsin is for lovers, no doubt about it. And we’ve got plenty of ideas to top off a magical Valentine’s Day spent Up North.


Plan a Romantic Escape to a Northwoods Resort.

Book a romantic getaway at Chippewa Retreat Resort, in Manitowish Waters. This gorgeous facility on Lake Manitowish features six luxury villas, a beautiful lodge, the 1933 Art Deco Bar, a 10,000-square-foot outdoor patio with a pool and double-sided fireplace, and panoramic lake views. Chippewa Retreat Resort is open year-round and offers special snowmobiling, cross-country skiing, and ice fishing packages in the winter. In addition, all guests get daily passes to the Manitowish Waters Athletic Club (MAC), where you can swim in the saltwater pool, relax in the hot tub and sauna, and get your blood flowing with exercise classes, personal training, and state-of-the-art exercise equipment. Treat yourself and a loved one to the Romantic Getaway Package, which includes a gourmet welcome basket, two in-room massages, and two day passes to the MAC. The price of this package is $300, but for Valentine’s Day, Chippewa Retreat Resort is offering the package for half price when you book a three-night stay at full price. You also have the option to add on a couples’ yoga class for an additional $85. For more information, visit chippewaretreat.com.

Get Cozy Over Dinner.

The region boasts many great causal restaurants that bring Northwoods-style rustic luxury to your dining experience. Among the many excellent options, we suggest Aberdeen Restaurant & Bar, in Manitowish Waters. Aberdeen is a comfortable log lodge-style restaurant and bar, overlooking the Manitowish Waters chain of lakes, perfect for couples seeking a comfortable dinner set in gorgeous environs. Winter hours are 4 to 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday and 4 to 9 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. For more information, visit aberdeendining.com.

Or prepare a candlelight dinner of surf and turf at home. Chef Tom of CT’s Deli (Rhinelander) will show you how. On Thursday, February 6, from 7 to 8 p.m., Chef Tom will teach you how to make a delicious meal of prosciutto-wrapped shrimp and tenderloin, using a sous vide and a cast iron pan. This is a perfect meal to wow your valentine with at home the following week. This is a classroom-style event. Tastings of each course will be provided, and attendees can purchase drinks for half-price. The cost of this program is $30. Please call 715-369-8988 to reserve your spot. Learn more about CT’s Deli at cheftomsdeli.com.


Take to the Trails.

Whether you want to float along the corduroy at WinMan Trails (Winchester) for unbeatable cross-country skiing and fat-tire biking or tour the Northwoods on the many, many miles of snowmobile trails, you and your Valentine have a thrilling journey before you.


Go on a Zip Line Adventure That’ll Make Your Heart Skip a Beat.

Want a Valentine’s Day date that is sure to make your heart skip a beat? Make a reservation at Northwoods Zip Line Adventure Tours (Minocqua) for an exciting winter zip line adventure. Northwoods Zip Line Adventure Tours will be open on February 14 and 15 only and will offer a Valentine’s Special of $30 off per person. Prebook your reservations a minimum of 24 hours in advance during the winter. To book your zip line adventure, call (844) 947-7464. For more information about Northwoods Zip Line Adventure Tours, visit northwoodszipline.com.


Spend the Afternoon Gliding Along an Idyllic Ice Pond.

Glide along the ice with your date at your favorite ice rink or skating pond Up North. May we suggest the Chip Wulff Memorial Pond at Minocqua Winter Park? Whether you just want to slide around in your snow boots or flaunt your finest figure skating skills, this is the picturesque woodland ice pond for you, located next to Minocqua Winter Park’s Chalet. Minocqua Winter Park has more than two dozen pairs of ice skates in a variety of sizes for free rental, but please bring your own skates if you have them. Learn more at minocquawinterpark.org.


Learn, Laugh, and Love.

Learn about the love lives of local wildlife. On Thursday, February 13, North Lakeland Discovery Center will host a hilarious educational program: Nibbles ’n’ Knowledge: Secret Love Lives of Animals. Enjoy delicious snacks as you learn about the secret love lives of Wisconsin wildlife. There will be a cash bar and complimentary appetizers from 5 to 6 p.m.; the program will be held from 6 to 7 p.m. Register by February 11; the cost is $17 for nonmembers and $14 for members, or $20 at the door. The program will be held at Camp Jorn YMCA in Manitowish Waters. For more information, call (715) 543-2085 or visit discoverycenter.net.


Shopping and Chocolates—Need We Say More?

Celebrate V-Day a little early with the Taste of Chocolate event. Grab your date or your galentines and head to Downtown Rhinelander on Friday, February 7, from 5 to 8:15 p.m., for chocolate, shopping, and dining at participating shops and restaurants. Participating businesses will be staying open late and offering special bargains with tastes of chocolate. Attendees will be entered into the Golden Ticket Drawing. Here’s your chance to win $1,000 Downtown Bucks! For more information, call 715-369-8988 or visit www.downtownrhinelander.com.


Share a Bottle of Wine, a Bite to Eat, and Your Favorite Love Story.

Catalyst Wine in Rhinelander wants to hear how you and your Valentine fell in love in the Love Story Contest, taking place on February 14, from 5 to 7 p.m. The winning storytellers will wine their favorite bottle of wine. Judges will be at Catalyst listening all evening. You need not be present when winners are announced in order to win.


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