Chaos Indoor Water Park resembles a comic-book metropolis with painted cityscapes and soaring biplanes. The 35,000-square-foot facility thrills visitors with two superfast four-story water slides, one giant kiddie slide and a lazy river meandering past waterfalls.
Skee-ball and bumper cars are among the attractions at the resort's Action City arcade. It also boasts one of the biggest indoor go-kart tracks in the Midwest.
Swanky art-deco touches can be found throughout the resort, from the sleek exterior to the bold black-and-white color scheme in the guest rooms.
Each morning, you can fuel up at the hot breakfast buffet. Items include biscuits and gravy, scrambled eggs, and the resort's signature monkey bread.
At the family-friendly Monkey in the Middle, chefs craft pizzas from scratch. Brave patrons can take on the daunting 30-inch Gorilla pizza.
The Pub serves up burgers, salads, and wraps amid big-screen TVs, poker games, and a photo booth.
Eau Claire, Wisconsin: Former Timber Town in the Northwoods
Eau Claire lies 90 miles east of Minneapolis in the Northwoods region of Wisconsin, a heavily forested area once known for its thriving timber industry. Today, the lumberjacks have been replaced by hikers and mountain bikers. The area is pleasant in the summer—temps average in the mid-80s—and in the cold months, frozen lakes make for scenic ice-skating.
Carson Park, located in the heart of Eau Claire, is a popular spot for jogging along the footpaths, playing baseball in the shadow of a Hank Aaron statue (he once played for the Eau Claire Bears), or watching the sunset over Braun’s Bay. Just past the ball fields, you’ll find the Chippewa Valley Museum, where you can see rotating exhibits about the region’s indigenous tribes, the arrival of European immigrants, and the timber boom. A classic ice-cream parlor nearby serves sundaes and malts.
Downtown, you can catch a show at the State Theatre, where the offerings include musicals, jazz acts, and standup comics such as 30 Rock alum Tracy Morgan. While you’re in the city, you’ll also want to try out some fried cheese curds, stroll through the downtown farmers’ market, or watch roller-derby games at the Eau Claire Indoor Sports Center.