The Wisconsin Cranberry Discovery Center officially announced last week that it has purchased the building that currently houses the Center from the Warrens Cranberry Festival. The WCDC has been located in the building at 204 Main Street since 2004, but had been renting from the Warrens Cranberry Festival until the purchase was made official at the beginning of June.
WCDC Director Barbara Hendricks says that the purchase is the next exciting step in the Discovery Center’s growth. “We’re so thrilled about this opportunity to continue to further our mission of educating the public about Wisconsin’s number one fruit crop, the cranberry. Having the chance to continue doing so in this historic building in downtown Warrens is really fabulous.” Hendricks went on to say, “Guests from all over the world stop in to visit the Center, offering us the opportunity to educate them about historical and present-day Wisconsin cranberry production practices. We communicate the health benefits and versatility of the fruit as well as how the industry is preserving the multigenerational heritage and history of cranberry farming.”
The WCDC building was originally constructed in 1900 from locally quarried sandstone and operated as a warehouse for the “Union Cranberry Company.” After renovations in 2004, the century-old building now houses a 4800 sq. ft. hands-on exhibit hall, a cranberry ice cream parlor and bakery and a Wisconsin cranberry gift shop that boasts over 200 items made with Wisconsin cranberries. If you’re not able to stop in to shop, the WCDC also has an online store at www.thecranberrystore.com. Over 20,000 people visited the WCDC last year; many of them tour groups of children from schools that, many times, choose to come as a part of their school’s agriculture curriculums.
The Center operates as a non-profit organization and relies heavily on donations to continue to grow their mission and on volunteers for staffing its tours, ice cream counter and its gift shop. “We’re always looking for new volunteers to add to our WCDC family. We also love adding new members to our donor program, “Friends of the Discovery Center,” especially now as we move forward in the next phase of our journey to educate the public. People who are passionate about our education and outreach programs have been and will continue to be a major part of who we are.”
The holiday season is quickly approaching and no doubt many of you are already thinking about what to serve guests at holiday meals as well as thinking about finding that “special something” to give as a gift to customers, neighbors, hostesses or friends. We at the Wisconsin Cranberry Discovery Center would be thrilled to help you with both your holiday shopping and baking needs!
For those holiday get togethers and dinners, we offer a delicious variety of fresh baked or baked then frozen pies for $10.95. Available flavors include cranberry, cranberry-apple, cranberry-walnut and pumpkin. Orders for Thanksgiving pies need to be submitted no later than November 18th and for Christmas no later than December 19th. Your guests will be delighted with whichever flavor you choose!
As for your holiday shopping needs, we have a wonderful selection of over 200 different Wisconsin cranberry products available in-store or through our online store that make lovely gifts for everyone on your shopping list. We can even select items for you to include in a gift box based on your individual gift-giving needs, and are able to ship the gift boxes via UPS for you at an additional charge.
Please call us at #608.378.4878 for more information on holiday gift baskets or to place your gift or pie orders today! As always, you can also visit us online at www.discovercranberries.com.
The official kick-off to the cranberry harvesting season was celebrated on Saturday, October 1st. People who participated in the all-day event were able to take a tour of a local cranberry marsh in the morning in order to see the ripe berries up close. A special treat for tour participants included demonstrations of the traditional hand raking method of harvesting which was used exclusively until more modern, machine-driven harvesting methods were developed.
After seeing the berries in their natural element, many visitors came to the Wisconsin Cranberry Discovery Center to continue the festivities. With the 2011 Cranberry Queen and Princesses on-site, guests enjoyed our cranberry museum, where they learned all about the history of cranberries, and were treated to free samples of gourmet cranberry foods and wines. Families were able to create some cranberry crafts together and then children and adults alike treated themselves to one (or more!) of our famous cranberry bakery and ice cream shop treats.
Many of our Harvest Day guests also took advantage of our fabulous cranberry gift shop in order to get a head-start on their holiday shopping. After sampling the gourmet cranberry items we have to offer, no one wanted to walk out of the gift shop empty-handed! Hot holiday-gift-basket-ready items included our cranberry wines and salsas and our line of cranberry soaps and oils.
If you didn’t make it to this year’s Harvest Day, don’t worry – we’ll do it again next year and you can see some pictures of the event on our Facebook page. In the meantime, you can stop in for a visit seven days a week between 9 am – 5 pm and you can shop our online store 24/7!
If you’re as big of a fan of State Fair-style food as we are here at the Wisconsin Cranberry Discovery Center, you’re going to LOVE our newest product! Featured at this year’s Wisconsin State Fair, “Cran on a stick” was a huge hit with fairgoers who are always on the lookout for the latest and greatest in the foods-on-a-stick often featured at state fairs nationwide.
These delectable delights, made in partnership with the Wisconsin State Cranberry Growers Association by Niemann’s Candies of Wauwatosa, WI, feature sweetened dried cranberries lying in a bed of luscious dark chocolate atop the convenient stick handle. To make this treat even more delicious, white chocolate is drizzled over its top for the perfectly pleasing finish. Honestly, the only thing that could make these things any better would be if the sticks themselves were edible!
If you would like to make summer last a little longer – or even the whole year through – you can visit our store or our online store to pick up a supply (available for $2.50 each) to get you through to the next Wisconsin State Fair.
Attention cranberry fans! The Cranberry Discovery Center has a new website that gives you a glimpse of everything our museum offers and makes it easier than ever to try your favorite cranberry foods or send a cranberry gift item.
Visit us at www.discovercranberries.com, and enjoy a special website launch promotion of 10% off your online order – just for being one of our supporters! Simply enter promo code WCDC10 now until August 1st, 2011.
Also, if you’re a fan of our tour or any of our Wisconsin cranberry products, let us and the world know! We’ll be adding more product reviews and testimonials – like yours – in the future.
Thanks for your past and continued interest in Wisconsin cranberries and happy touring and shopping!
"Such a fun place to spend the day! We explored the shop, toured the museum, and snacked on cranberry ice cream and cranberry coffee. LOVE IT!"
"I am sorry but I do not have time to write a review praising your products, BECAUSE I am too busy enjoying them. My favorite is "Wisconsin Wilderness Cranberry Mustard", trust me this can make EVERYTHING taste better. Thank you very much."