East Troy, Wisconsin is about 40 miles southwest of Milwaukee. What you save at the pump can be put towards a shopping spree at one of several shops throughout the small town.
The town's iconic Rail Road Museum makes special runs in December on it's Christmas Train. Museum President Ryan Jonas says children of all ages will fall in love with trains on their ride"We take you to the North Pole and when we're at the North Pole you can see Santa himself, and do some arts and crafts, hot chocolate and cookies, " Jonas says.
There's also a parade and other family friendly activities adds Jonas. Tickets for the Christmas Train Ride are $15 for adults and $17.50 for children. The museum also has 30 different rail road pieces, including the oldest running Milwaukee Street Car, dinning services, special occasion rides (birthday parties, private parties) and regular train rides from April till October.
Then after you ride the line, General Manager Bruce Firestone says you should hit the slopes at Alpine Valley Resort. Although the ground is mostly still green Firestone says that's not a problem, "Even if there isn't a lot of snow in town, they'll be a tone of snow here."
Alpine Valley has the highest slope in the southeast region of Wisconsin and it's covered in snow fans. The fans, placed every few yards help Firestone cover the land in fresh snow. He says the state of the art chair lifts, 27-holes of golf, and hotel amenities make for a nice visit.
Then grab a warm drink, some nick-knacks, or farm fresh veggies and fruits from the joint shops 2894 on Main and Square Roots. Cafe manager, Joe Morton, says the true reason you've got to stop by is, "We're awesome."
Visitors Tom Larson and his son Tommy couldn't agree more. "We call it our chess club. We come here quite often. Play a game of chess and have lunch. they have great food, great atmosphere," Tom explains. The freshly ground coffee beans and variety of drink and food options, says Tommy, is why he likes coming to 2894 on Main at least two times a week.
But if you're in the mood for a bigger meal and a history lesson, owner of East Troy House and Ivan's Restaurant, David Allen, says you've got to stop by. East Troy House is the oldest Inn in the state of Wisconsin. Allen says every section of the house has a story and the entire building still has most of it's original architecture.
Visitors can enjoy a tour of the banquet hall, bar, pool hall, and attached restaurant. At Ivan's David says there are several dishes you can't go wrong trying out.