The Capitol Pedaler was designed and built by a Dutchman in bicycle-happy Amsterdam before arriving in Madison to whisk travelers around town in eco-friendly style. Lovingly referred to as ?The Big Red Bike?, it adopted its signature hue state-side in honor of the Wisconsin Badgers, and frequently takes breaks from escorting pub-crawlers and wedding parties to ferry fans on game day. Capable of accommodating up to 14 passengers, with the recommended group size of at least six?eight pedalers the vehicle typically cruises at 5?7 miles per hour?the perfect speed for drag racing local steamrollers.
Prechosen routes include excursions to the zoo or the Old Sugar Distillery, making up to three preselected stops en route at local bars, public parks, and coffee shops. While alcoholic drinks aren?t allowed on the foot-powered party bus, passengers are welcome to bring their own snacks and nonalcoholic drinks to enjoy between stops, and can blast premade playlists of party songs or favorite commercial jingles courtesy of an on-board stereo with iPod and mp3-player connections.
All of Badgerland Bowling Centers' six locations have a lot in common. At each location, groups hurtle colorful balls down slick, glossy lanes, refueling at an onsite restaurant between matches. All of the alleys host birthday, work, and fundraising parties and tournaments such as the Badgerland Bowling 300 Club?which has doled out more than $35,000 in cash prizes since 2002?and the Badgerland Open, which welcomed 113 competitors in 2014, one of whom snagged a grand prize of $500 and 1,000 bragging rights.
But like sextuplets working undercover for the CIA, each center also maintains a unique identity. At Badger Bowl in Madison, live musicfloods the lanes on weekends, and dancers jump and jive on West Coast Swing nights on Wednesday. Nearby at Dream Lanes, laser and disco lights slice through fog amid thundering music during Ultra Bowling every Friday and Saturday evening.
Since the 1950s, Wingra Boats has outfitted groups and individuals for treks along the serene, wake-free Lake Wingra with their fleet of water vessels. Starting out with a small squad of canoes, the company has grown to include more than 100 canoes, kayaks, paddle boats, rowboats, and standup paddleboards. In addition to supplying rentals, the staff keep limbs limber with yoga?performed on dry land or atop paddleboards?and strengthens cores with standup paddleboard lessons. Youngsters get in on the action during Camp Wingra sessions, where they learn to cast, reel, and ask fishes for any seven cards, or paddle and play aboard kayaks and canoes. The staff also lead guided tours and birding expeditions, and tuck vessels away in a private boat marina and storage facility.
For more than 40 years, the staff at Bob's Bike Shop has been matching customers to new two-wheeled companions. Staffers specialize in maintaining the individual parts of nearly all bicycle makes and models, correcting damage caused by routine wear and tear, as well as storage in a garage that angry raccoons have claimed as their home. Their tune-ups include brake and gear adjustment, chain greasing, and detail cleaning. In an effort to become an authority on BMX bikes and products, the staffers spend much of their time attending races and freestyle-cycling events.
Over the past year, CamRock Cafe & Sport—in partnership with the Village of Cambridge and Capitol Water Trails—has transformed the Koshkonong Creek from a tricky maze of fallen trees into a clear and gentle waterway. Situated on the shore of the creek amid miles of meandering snowshoeing, mountain-biking, and cross-country-skiing trails, the café ensures that its clientele doesn't need to look far for something to do. The staff helps visitors take advantage of the terrain with bike, boat, gear, and Go-Go-Gadget 'copter rentals. Hosted events bring people together to explore the trails via bike and listen to live music back at the café, or take part in a yoga or spin class. After guests return from a sojourn, the café supplies them with more than 100 craft beers, toasted gourmet sandwiches, and Alterra coffee from the food and drink menus.