Philadelphia to Heyward, WI -- Help!

Jul 2nd, 2009, 12:12 PM
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Philadelphia to Heyward, WI -- Help!

My husband and are are going to a family wedding in Heyward, Wisconsin. On January 1. I am planning to do my own research -- we just found out about the location today -- but feel I am going to need as much help as possible from generous Fodor forum participants. We are frankly not thrilled about the notion of Wisconsin in January (or flying to Wisconsin in January) -- Look, honey, they're de-icing the wings again!), so if anyone can allay our doubts/fears, that would be swell. Also, advice about flying versus driving -- we were considering making a car trip out of it, but that might also be pretty dumb in January. Is flying to Minneapolis, then driving to Heyward a do-able/good idea? (We haven't even wrapped our heads around the geography yet.) I checked air fares in two different places; one gave me around $980 round trip (gulp); the other was in the $250-$300 range... much more palatable. We are trying to make this as painless, but also as affordable, as possible. ($2,000 air far, car rental, hotel, gift....sheesh, that's three weeks in France.)

I know I'm babbling. I apologize. I'm anxious. Good news, or even just sound advice, would be so, so welcome.

Thanks so much.

PS. Where the heck IS Heyward?
kagoo is offline  
Jul 2nd, 2009, 01:58 PM
Join Date: Jun 2006
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I can't give you first-hand information but there is a huge ski race in Hayward each February called the American Birkebeiner (the "Birkie" for short). People come from all over the place to attend.

They have a web site that gives information on travel and accommodations that you may want to check out:

Hope that is helpful.
mdwest is offline  
Jul 2nd, 2009, 02:20 PM
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I've been to Hayward once before in the summer (I'm a from California). It is a charming town--EXCELLENT place to be in the summer. My in-laws have a cabin on Spring Lake. Lots of fishing...quaing downtown...great ice cream shop and a mom-and-pop Pie Shop. the town even has a WalMart! There's a really good BBQ joint just outside of town (I forgot the name, but it's near the Al Capone hideout/Summer place. VERY friendly people!!!! But, man, I can't imagine flying/driving or simply BEING in Hayward in January! Good luck to you
LuccaBrazzi is offline  
Jul 2nd, 2009, 02:24 PM
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PS--We flew into Minneapolis and got a rental car. As I recall it was about a 3-1/2 hour drive. But this was in the Summer. Hawyard is near the Eastern edge of Wisconsin (NE of the Twin Cities.) The town has this BIG "Muskie" (a type of fish...the statue is, like, 100 feet long) that you can climb inside and get your picture taken. Cheesy, but fun--especially for this Southern California asian-american guy.

But again, I just can't imagine being there in January. the locals told me all of the lakes (lots of them) freeze over in the winter.
LuccaBrazzi is offline  
Jul 2nd, 2009, 03:10 PM
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Wow. Thank you so much for getting back to me so quickly; I was afraid I'd come up with nothing. I must say I'm not feeling too chipper about Heyward in January, though....

Anyhow, thanks again. I'll keep digging ... and hoping.
kagoo is offline  
Jul 2nd, 2009, 03:58 PM
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Hayward (if you're searching the Internet for information, spelling it correctly will help) is about 140 miles NE of Minneapolis.

The average high temperature in January is usually about 20 degrees--for someone like me who enjoys being outdoors in the winter, that's a pretty nice temp.

Here's a silly event that will be held, I beleive, Jan 2:
Are ya' fast? Or only halffast? Come find out this and every Saturday at 2pm when the Yellow River Bandits hold their weekly shoot at Whiskey Joes in Siren, WI. Step back in time to the late 1800's, strap on a belt and holster and try your hand at one of the fastest (and fastest growing) sports in the world. You'll be shooting wax bullets at a 2 foot round target placed 21 ft. from you, competing against the gunslinger next to you as well as the timer.
Come join the fun! Free to watch, $5.00 to shoot
abram is offline  
Jul 2nd, 2009, 05:01 PM
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It may be cheaper to fly into Milwaukee via U S Airways and drive to Hayward. Better yet if you drive you can pick the days you want to drive depending upon the weather. Dress warm!! It could be 25 to 35 below zero.
bratsandbeer is offline  
Jul 2nd, 2009, 07:05 PM
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There are lots of NS flights from PHL to MSP on Delta. Flying into MKE means a 350+ mile drive to Hayward--I wouldn't want to add over 200 miles to my driving.
abram is offline  
Jul 2nd, 2009, 09:40 PM
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I would fly into MSP and drive from there. It is a much shorter trip than from Milwaukee and I think you will have a bigger choice of flights to MSP. Hayward is a BIG vacation area in the summer and is also a vacation cross country ski destination in the winter. Hayward can get a lot of snow if it is a snowy time of year, but many recent years have not had lots of snow. Is the wedding being held at a Lodge in the Area? Some of the lodges are very nice and would be really fun and cozy in the winter. Hope you have fun.
Cali is offline  
Jul 4th, 2009, 07:22 AM
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Sorry - didn't think Hayward was that far from Milwaukee - 350 miles - that is a bit far. Mpls would be a much shorter drive to Hayward.

We were to go to a wedding in the Mpls area January 1st last year and had to cancel due to weather. You just don't know until then what the weather can do.

If there is a storm in Wisconsin the roads are usually plowed and salted and driveable the next day after a storm. So allow an extra day or two if you drive or fly.
bratsandbeer is offline  
Jul 10th, 2009, 12:50 PM
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I am from Wisconsin. One never knows how the weather will be. Usually we get more snow than ice. Some years we have very little snow. My relatives live in Duluth, driving through Hayward area to get here for the holidays and last year they had NO SNOW at all for December/January. Wisconsin spends a lot of money keeping the roads clear and does a pretty good job of keeping them plowed and salted.But every once in awhile we do get a blizzard and things just kind of stop for a day or a few hours until the plows get out.

Been to Hayward many times, usually in the summer. But it is a beautiful area. In January the ground should be covered with a thick blanket of snow and the tree branches iced with snow. I did live on the Lake Superior shore for a year so drove through Hayward in the winter many times. Never had any trouble.

If you fly in, I would fly into Duluth. It is about a 2 hour drive to Hayward. On the way you could stop at one of my favorite state parks, Amnicon Falls. I have not been there for several years but they used to keep the roads open to the falls, which are just beautiful in the winter. Also some nice views by the Brule River area. Duluth itself is interesting, especially by the Harbor Area. Of course in January the harbor my be iced in....sometimes depending on the temperature they keep a lane open but there are lots of fun shops and places to eat.

Dress warm, Drive slow, bring a camera and some boots!
loftymaples is offline  
Jul 10th, 2009, 02:36 PM
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Fly into Minneapolis. Give yourself a couple of extra days at the front end of the trip in case there's bad weather and flights are delayed/cancelled. If all goes well, you'll have a couple days to explore Minneapolis/St. Paul or anywhere between there and Hayward.

I wouldn't look at this as a trip to Hayward in January. If you're not into outdoor winter activities, you'll probably not enjoy it much. You're better off using this as a chance to see some of the MSP area with the wedding being a 2-day side trip from there.
WhereAreWe is offline  
Jul 13th, 2009, 08:02 AM
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My Daughter works at a camp outside of Hayward in the summer. I ditto what everyone else said about WI in the winter. Except for two things; there is nothing to explore in the winter between Mpls and Hayward - except perhaps for the aforementioned Amicon falls. But it is a beautiful drive and Wi is breathtaking any time of year. We live close to the MPLS airport and it takes 31/2 hours easily if not 4 hours (depending on traffic - lots of 2 lane roads) to get there in the summer. I would say at least 4 hours in the winter - and more if the weather turns. The other thing I would say is to have your car packed for winter driving; full tank of gas, emergency equipment, warm clothes, food and water and a charged up cell phone in case you get stalled. That's not to frighten you about the weather - just to make you confident that you are prepared. According to the weather reports we get up here, Philly gets much worse winter weather than WI does. You get the ice that knocks out power lines and makes driving impossible. It's much easier to drive on plowed and sanded roads than on ice. And I can think of nothing more romantic than cuddling up in front of a fireplace in the WI woods. I could go on, but Hayward in the winter sounds wonderful to me.
PS to LuccaBrazzi - Haha - yes the lakes freeze over in the winter - people drive on them - with big pick-ups.
eileyann is offline  
Jul 13th, 2009, 10:47 AM
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Thanks, everyone. I have a feeling we'd love Hayward (sorry for the original misspelling!) if we could just be magically transported to the lodge where the wedding is being held. Since that's not gonna happen, all of this advice and counsel is most helpful.
kagoo is offline  
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