More than a thousand years ago, the Native American Mound Builders tribe filled effigy mounds with spearheads, pottery pieces, and other ephemera around Swan Lake, which is known today as Delavan Lake. You can find more than 40 of these effigy mounds on the premises at Lake Lawn Resort, which is nestled in 250 wooded acres overlooking the lake. The resort is situated within driving distance of Milwaukee and Chicago, and it’s a pleasant retreat from city life.
Lake Lawn Resort’s two onsite restaurants represent two distinct styles: elegant and casual. Frontier Restaurant's Executive Chef David Ross artfully flame-grills steaks before sending his culinary creations to the crimson-tinged dining room, where each table offers a panoramic vista of Delavan Lake. At Lookout Bar & Eatery, you can watch sports on a 50-inch TV or catch rays on the terrace situated above the outdoor pool.
Delavan, Wisconsin: 19th-Century Circus Relics and Wooded Landscapes
More than a century ago, Delavan blossomed into a circus headquarters and hosted dozens of acts, including P.T. Barnum's legendary Greatest Show on Earth. You can see tributes at Tower Park, where statues of circus animals such as a giraffe and an elephant savor their amnesty from acting as props in mini-golf courses.
Delavan's early days live on through Greek Revival architecture that dates back to the mid-1800s, including the Allyn Mansion and the Israel Stowell Temperance House, originally an alcohol-free safe haven that eventually served as a government meeting center. The quaint downtown district is lined with old-fashioned lampposts and brick-paved walkways, and it boasts an assortment of antique stores and small cafés.