Sheboygan is a city of about 50,000 located along the shores of Lake Michigan in central Wisconsin. It is located about 50 miles north of Milwaukee and 65 miles south of Green Bay, a location that offers a wealth of cultural, sporting and entertainment options within a very easy commute distance of other cities.
Sheboygan grew to prominence as an industrial center, manufacturing products such as furniture, enamelware dishes, small cooking utensils and kitchen and bathroom fixtures. The kitchen and bathroom fixture tradition survives today in the nearby town of Kohler, headquarters of Kohler Company. Immigrants to Sheboygan came from diverse cultures; today, many small festivals throughout the city honor the traditions of those immigrants.
ECONOMY AND INDUSTRIES
In the midst of economic turmoil, Sheboygan's unemployment rate has remained relatively low. This stability can perhaps be attributed to the wide base of sectors that Sheboygan relies on to make up its economy. The manufacturing sector has the highest percentage of jobs, followed by trade, transportation, utilities, education and health services and government.
Sheboygan's top employers are:
- JL French Automotive Castings
- Gardner Denver Thomas
- Fresh Brands
- Sheboygan Area School District
- Aurora Health Care Central
- Acuity Mutual Insurance Company
- Nemschoff Chairs Incorporated
NEIGHBORHOODS AND DISTRICTS
Because most of the housing in Sheboygan was built before World War II, the city has plenty of historic neighborhood areas:
- Fifth Street/Superior Avenue: This neighborhood follows the shores of Lake Michigan north of the mouth of the Sheboygan River. It is a densely populated area with mostly small homes, but a smattering of shops, restaurants and bars gives it a lively feel.
- Sixth Street/Lincoln Avenue: This roughly triangular neighborhood is bound to the east by Lake Michigan, to the west by North Eight Street and to the south by Superior Avenue. It is an urban area that enjoys a diverse population in terms of both age and culture.
- Eight Street/Seventh Street: This arrow-shaped neighborhood points south to a bend in the Sheboygan River. It is a pedestrian-friendly area with a dense population that lives mostly in apartment complexes.
- 18th Street/Carmen Avenue: This western Sheboygan neighborhood is filled mostly with single-family homes; small lots give the neighborhood an urban density and feeling.
- Lakeshore Drive/Wilson Avenue: This affordable neighborhood runs along Lake Michigan to the southern border of Sheboygan
- Route 42/Geele Avenue: This western Sheboygan neighborhood is moderately priced and quiet and is home to residents of all age groups.
- Taylor Drive/Erie Avenue: This sprawling residential neighborhood is centered around Memorial Mall and is filled with quiet streets that are lined with single-family homes.
Sheboygan is a lively community with plenty of exciting cultural activities and museums:
- Above & Beyond Children's Museum: Hands-on exhibits allow children to explore various topics, including animals and astronauts.
- Aviation Heritage Center: Located adjacent to Sheboygan County Memorial Airport, this center uses interactive exhibits to simulate flying.
- Sheboygan County Historical Research Center: Written historical records about local areas are archived in this center.
- John Michael Kohler Arts Center: This space features a vast collection of art exhibits, as well as areas devoted to the performing arts.
- Sheboygan County Historical Society: Historically important buildings pepper the museum complex. These buildings include the 1867 Bodenstab Cheese Factory, which showcases early cheese-making implements.
- Stefanie H. Weill Center for the Performing Arts: The historic 1920s Sheboygan Theater was fully restored to provision this venue for performances and guest speakers.
Sheboygan has an extensive park system that incorporates the area's natural features, including two miles of public beaches along Lake Michigan and several outstanding parks:
- Maywood Environmental Park: Trails provide ample opportunity for hiking in the summer, cross-country skiing in the winter and animal-watching year-round, while the Ecology Center offers environmental programs and activities.
- Deland Park: This beach park on the shores of Lake Michigan offers boat ramps, swimming and several children's play areas.
- Jaycee Park Quarry: This former limestone quarry offers swimming and fishing. The park also boasts a 20-hole flying disc course.
- Evergreen Park: White pine trees in this park tower more than 100 feet above visitors, who come for the excellent biking and cross-country skiing trails.
- General King Park: This park boasts a mile of groomed Lake Michigan beach and is a popular destination for wind surfers.
- Vollrath Park: This park is home to a vintage 1930s amphitheater and an 18-hole flying disc course.
- Sipping on Sheboygan's Shores: Visitors are invited to this microbrew and wine tasting event in March at the Blue Harbor Conference Center. The libations come from around Wisconsin and the United States.
- Roar on Sheboygan's Shores: High-end vendors attend this June motorcycle event. The two-day show is held in Deland Park.
- Mayor's Twilight Concert Series at Fountain Park: Concerts are held rain or shine during this summer concert series in Fountain Park.
- Independence Day Festival: Festivities begin July 3rd and continue into July 4th at parks throughout the city. Events include the morning parade on Independence Day and an evening fireworks display.
- Oktoberfest on Sheboygan's Shores: This German heritage celebration occurs at the end of September.
The daily Sheboygan Press is the source of community news for residents of Sheboygan.