Fall is a glorious time of year in western Wisconsin. From the leaves changing color to the plethora of local events and outdoor recreational activities that abound, there is something for everyone.

Last week we celebrated the autumnal equinox. As we move forward, the northern hemisphere will be getting fewer and fewer hours of sunlight, marking the beginning of fall. As we feel the beginning of a nip in the air, our trees respond to shorter days and cooler temperatures by producing less and less chlorophyll, and reveal the carotenoids that make up the red, oranges, yellows and brown bursts we see throughout the fall landscape.

The Wisconsin Department of Tourism’s 2022 Fall Color Report website is a fantastic resource if your family plans road trips to catch the changing colors. I encourage you to review it in advance and use it as a resource so you can see the best colors in your community, whether it be on a drive, a bicycle ride or a hike. 

Our local farms have hay rides, pumpkin patches and corn mazes. You can go apple picking and stock up on cider as the days get colder. These are excellent ways to enjoy the beautiful fall weather and support our local farmers.

In western Wisconsin, we are blessed with an abundance of festivals and events that take advantage of this beautiful change. The Wisconsin Department of Tourism and Travel Wisconsin are fantastic resources to help you find the right event for you.

One of the greatest ways to embrace the season and the state’s heritage is visiting an Oktoberfest. Enjoy a little autumn gemütlichkeit at the largest Oktoberfest in Wisconsin this weekend in La Crosse. For beer lovers, Eau Claire’s craft breweries are debuting their autumn seasonal brews, and you can earn rewards for visiting our local pubs with the Eau Claire Brew Pass.

Eau Claire has an abundance of amazing events coming up, and even has a mobile passport program, called the Fall Crawl, where you can earn rewards for visiting local attractions, businesses and eateries. For a fun time for all ages, the Chippewa Valley Expo Center is hosting Jurassic Quest, the largest and most realistic traveling dinosaur show in North America. The following weekend, October 8th – 9th, the West Wisconsin Railroad Club holds its annual train show, free for children 5 and under. 

Wisconsin is a mecca for outdoor activities, and many of our state’s outdoor enthusiasts have been eagerly awaiting this season. The fall hunting and fishing season is one of the best times to take advantage of that the outdoors. Archery season, fall turkey, bear, goose and small game seasons are already underway. Western Wisconsin’s proximity to the mighty Mississippi means waterfowlers will be traveling to our communities for a great hunt.

Anglers are gearing up for the fall feeding frenzy on Western Wisconsin’s lakes and rivers. Whether you prefer to fish in small streams or the Mississippi, our ecosystem is host to a multitude of species of freshwater fish. It’s a great time of year to catch a trout or a walleye at their largest.

People from far and wide know how amazing western Wisconsin can be this time of year. These activities and events aren’t just for passing the time, everyone looks forward to this time of year – one last push for catching good weather before winter sets in. Fall tourism is also a great way to celebrate traditions and be grateful for living in such a beautiful region.

So enjoy the Wisconsin autumn, whether it’s taking a day trip to look at the changing foliage, bringing the family to find the perfect pumpkin, raising a pint at Oktoberfest or spending quality time with friends and family on the water or in the woods. Fall in Wisconsin is a magical time. I encourage you to get out and take in all that our area has to offer.

For more about local attractions, activities and events this fall, please visit:

Eau Claire Events and Festivals Calendar

Eau Claire-area Orchards

WI DNR Hunting Resources

WI DNR Fishing Resources