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Tour Features

The Workshop | Dugout Canoe | Model T Ford | Educational Displays Ice Cream Parlor

The Workshop

Albert’s workshop Cranberry MuseumCome and explore what we call Albert’s workshop – an exhibit full of fascinating woodworking equipment custom made by growers to harvest the unique fruit, including the infamous handrake.

Learn how each handrake was originally made entirely from wood and why, even with the use of patterns and jigs, it took Albert about a week to make just one handrake.

Dugout Canoe

Dugout Canoe Wisconsin Cranberry MuseumOn November 1996, cranberry grower Leo Gordon found a piece of Native American history – a dugout canoe – near his marsh in Watermill, Wis.

Leo contacted the State Historical Society of Wisconsin with his find, and they undertook the task of cleaning and preserving the dugout canoe. The relic – dubbed the “Cranberry Canoe” – is almost completely intact and estimated to be roughly 150 years old.

On permanent loan from the State Historical Society of Wisconsin, the canoe is nearly 11 feet long and a classic dugout shape. First used by Native Americans, dugout canoes were generally constructed out of a single log, shaped through repeated charring and scraping. Cranberries are native North American fruit and were gathered by Native Americans for use as food, medicine and dye.

Check out the eye-catching canoe in the Discovery Center’s Native American exhibit.

Model T Ford

Model T Ford at the Wisconsin Cranberry Discovery CenterIt was a cool fall evening and the threat of frost was in the air. Cranberry grower Carl Getsinger knew this meant only one thing – it would be a long night to keep his berries safe from frost.

Carl owned two cranberry marshes that were located one mile apart. His cranberries would be ruined if they froze, so he needed to flood the beds to cover the vines and protect them from freezing. At the time, walking was his only form of transportation.

It would take about an hour for the beds to fill with water deep enough to cover the vines. While he waited, Carl would take a nap on a cot he had at each marsh. After the beds were flooded at one marsh, Carl would walk to the other marsh and repeat the process.

Eventually, Carl was able to buy a 1914 Model T truck to help with this cranberry chore. Vintage car buffs will recognize that the truck is actually a Model T touring car that Carl modified. A few years after buying the vehicle, he replaced the hand-crank starter with an electric starter. He also mounted a spotlight on the driver’s side to provide additional light while flooding his beds.

Motorized vehicles made a huge difference in transportation for cranberry growers. Stop by and see the 1914 Model T truck that helped Carl get the job done.

Educational Displays

Interactive Display, Cranberry MuseumLooking for a fun, hands-on way to test your knowledge about cranberries? Then you’ve come to the right place! Our cranberry museum offers a variety of exhibits such as slide boards, light up displays and a cranberry corralling game. All ages are welcome to test their cranberry skills at the Cranberry Discovery Center.

Ice Cream Parlor

Ice Cream Parlor Wisconsin Cranberry Discovery CenterA visit to the Wisconsin Cranberry Discovery Center just isn’t complete until you’ve tried some cranberry ice cream. We feature several flavors of ice cream handcrafted by the family-owned Ranison Ice Cream & Candy.

Our ice cream flavors may include cranberry, cranberry truffle, cranberry cheesecake, chocolate cranberry caramel swirl and more.

Visitors to the Cranberry Discovery Center have the opportunity to eat their treat at a restored 1930s marble soda fountain counter as part of the Discover Center experience to relive earlier days.