Recreation & Events



Phelps 4th of July Parade, Picnic and Fireworks

The Town of Phelps celebrates the 4th of July in a grand way.  We start with a parade comprised of floats from local businesses.These tend to be quite unique and always demonstrate local color and creativity. Candy and prizes are tossed from the floats to excited children lining the streets. When the parade is over, that’s when the party really begins. We close off the streets, break out the music and food with street vendors and all kinds of games and activities. Music,food and fun are served up until dusk. Then everyone either climbs in their boats or scrambles to the best lake front areas to watch the fireworks. To watch them up close in a boat is to experience fireworks at their best. We boast the BEST fireworks in the Northwoods. After the fireworks are over you can make your way to one of five restaurants or pubs for food, refreshing cocktails and conversation. Come to Phelps and celebrate with us for the experience of a life time!


Fireman’s Picnic & Pig Roast

Welcome to the Phelps Fireman’s Picnic and Pig Roast held in Mid-July, we start cooking 4 pigs on a open pit around midnight so they are done to perfection by 1 pm when the fun begins, besides all of the great food we also have 2 live bands, dancing, refreshments for all, games for kids and adults, raffles and we finish off the night with awesome firework’s display, an event we have been hosting for over 50 years.

Come join us for this fun, relaxing and delicious event!


Annual Flag Day Celebration

In the United States Flag Day is celebrated on June 14th. It commemorates the adoption of the flag of the United States, which happened that day by resolution of the Second Continental Congress in 1777. In Phelps we celebrate this historical day with a formal ceremony retiring old and tattered flags. This event is held at Sand Lake Pub and has drawn people from all over the country. Following the ceremony there is a pot luck dinner. Bring something to serve, your whole family and plan on a relaxing evening of good food, friends and conversation. This annual celebration is held June 14th starting at 6:00 PM. For more information call Sand Lake Pub at: (715) 545-3200.


Annual Phelps Maple Syrup Fest

Celebrate the Wisconsin heritage of Maple Syrup! Enjoy a family friendly FREE event right here in Phelps!

Learn more about how and where maple syrup is made,  and grab a tasty treat, all at the Annual Phelps Maple Syrup Fest! You might just find some honey activities, too!

Join us in Phelps for a sweet celebration of maple syrup! Phelps Maple Syrup Fest is a family friendly event, where you can:

  • Watch tree-tapping demonstrations
  • Find your favorite maple treats at the Maple Café
  • Take a driving tour of local sugar bushes to see where this popular treat originates and how sap becomes maple syrup
  • Kid’s games and activities
  • View various maple syrup and honey displays
  • Craft Fair
  • Fun & Educational Classes
  • Maple Syrup Judging Contest

This Phelps event is perfect for all ages! The day’s activities and sugar bush tours are free of charge for all attendees. A portion of the proceeds from Maple Syrup Fest will benefit area high school graduates through continuing education scholarships.

Musky Fishing Tournaments

Phelps has one of the highest numbers of lakes per square mile in the world. Lurking beneath the surface of most of our lakes are some of the world’s largest Muskies. If you have never fished for these monsters you are in for the thrill of a life time. There is nothing like a follow up strike right at the boat. If you’re not paying attention and look down to see a huge mouth of teeth emerging out of the depths be prepared to scream! If you’re an experienced fisherman your skills will be pleasantly rewarded by spending time on our lakes. We also have the best local guides who will be happy to put you on the fish. The following is a list of tournaments sponsored locally but feel free to come and fish at your leisure. A day on the lake is a great way to spend a day!

Hank Lesniak’s Valley of the Giants Fishing Tournament

Headquartered at Hillside Resort fishing is on Lac Vieux Desert. This event is held in mid June. For more information call (715) 547-3646.

Swen Fishing Tournament

Headquartered at Hillside Resort fishing is on Lac Vieux Desert. This event is held in early September. For more information call (715) 547-3646.

Annual Midwest Musky Classic

Headquartered at the Phelps Chamber of Commerce this is a three day fishing tournament with fishing on Phelps area lakes. Fishing is from 8:00 AM to 6:00 PM on Friday and Saturday and from 8:00 AM to 11:00 AM on Sunday. The event is held in early October. For more information call (715) 545-3800 or visit

Picnic in the Park

The slow warm days of summer conjure up images of kids jumping off docks, campfires and smores and of course barbeque.  In Phelps the EMT’s and the Northwoods Living Care Foundation do barbeque in style. Picnic in the Park features the best barbeque you’ve ever had, live music, refreshments for all ages, and free entertainment. Don’t forget to bring family as friends; there is always plenty of food! This event is held for the benefit of the Phelps Ambulance Service who is always there when you need them.  It starts at 5:00 PM and ends around 9:00 PM. For more information call (715) 545-2879.  Hope to see you there!

Scare Crow Festival

Held in Mid-September,
10 am to 5 pm  Downtown on the Lake in Phelps, Wisconsin
Fund Raiser for the Phelps Woman’s Club

  • Great Food
  • Wine Tasting
  • Free Chilli
  • Pumpkin Chuckin’
  • Craft Show
  • Quilts & Arts Display and Sale
  • Entertainment
  • Huge Basket Raffle
  • Fall Mum & Pumpkin Sale
  • Beer, Soda, Homemade Treats
  • Free Games for Kids & Adults
  • Free Admission and Free Parking

If you would like to pre-order Mums, you can request the form on by emailing [email protected], go to Phelps Scarecrow Fest FaceBook page or website, or by calling 715-545-3002 and leaving a message.

For more information go to:


If you love to fish, Phelps is your destination! Seventy Five percent of our township is national forest. We have 41 lakes and countless miles of streams. No matter what you’re looking for in fresh water fishing, you’ll find it in Phelps. We have world record setting Musky, Walleye, Bass, Crappie, Perch, Northern Pike and other pan fish in our lakes. Our streams are teaming with Brook Trout, Rainbows and Browns. Fishing in Phelps is a four season activity that we would love to share with you. We have tournaments of all kinds and ice fishing jamborees for kids. Bait, tackle and licenses can all be purchased locally. If you need guide service to put you on the lunkers that too is available locally. It doesn’t matter if you want to soak a worm with a bobber, chase monster Muskie’s and Walleye’s, spin cast or fly cast………it’s all here and waiting for you!


If hiking is your thing Phelps will be a real treat. Phelps is comprised of 80% National Forest and we have two main areas with easy to walk trails. The first is the Black Jack Wilderness area where no wheeled vehicles are allowed. This area consists of a network of trails that take you into Whispering Lake, through peat moss swamps, giant pines and of course the beautiful Black Jack Spring Holes. You can follow the trail to the headwaters of the Little Deerskin River and remnants of an old trapper’s cabin. Not much is left of the cabin but the log walls can still be made out and there is still an old cast iron stove which has been dated back to the early 1900’s. This is truly pristine forest and if solitude is what you’re after you will find it here. This area is open to rustic camping the trout fishing is great.

The second hiking area connects the Spectacle Lake Camp Ground with the Kentuck Lake Camp Ground. There is a great deal of history in this trail as most of it is comprised of abandoned rail road grades. There are sweeping hills, board walks and massive old trees. In early spring wild flowers are abundant and offer up great opportunities for the photographer. The trail is about 2.5 miles long and skirts Kentuck Lake before arriving at the Kentuck Lake boat landing.  For more details and information on these trails click here. For information on GHT Biking and Hiking Trails click here.

May Trilliums

In Phelps we truly love our long cold winters. Part of what we love about our winters is that they make us really appreciate the coming of spring time. Spring in the Northwoods is a magical time. The ice is lifting from the lakes, geese and other birds are returning and maple sap is flowing. At the tail end of Spring a truly magnificent thing occurs in certain areas of our forests. The Trilliums bloom and blanket the forest floor in stunning virgin white. Preferring shaded areas the views are spectacular as rays of sunlight pierce the canopy providing dramatic contrast and an ever changing view. Also during this time many other flowers and trees are blossoming in such abundance that the air is heavy with sweet aromas. It’s an ideal time to visit Phelps and rid yourself of winter cabin fever.  There are three easy access areas to view Trilliums. The first is right on Hwy 17 near Prestige Gardens as your coming into Phelps from Eagle River. The second is off of County Hwy A just south of Robinson Lake and the third area is off of the Kentuck Lake Rd at the Spectacle Lake Campground.  All three locations can be easily viewed without even getting out of your car. If you’re  viewing them at the Robinson Lake area,  a short walk into the tree’s will provide views you will carry in your mind the rest of your life. Come and enjoy!


If you are a birder, then Phelps is a great place for you to visit. We have one person in town who has counted 92 different species of birds in his backyard. We have an Osprey nest right at the edge of town that you can observe without even getting out of your car. Our lakes have islands where Eagles nest that you can access with ease from a boat. There are hiking trails that take you through diverse landscapes that host a wide variety of birds and other wildlife. You can sit on our town dock and watch Canadian Geese, ducks, Osprey’s, Loons and Bald Eagles and all sorts of song birds. Approximately 75% of the Phelps Township resides in Nicolet National Forest. It is truly a unique area and we welcome you to come here and relax while checking out our bird life. Click here for a map showing where to find the Eagles and Osprey nest along with hiking trails.


Dusk is upon you, the fire flickers, casting long shadows about the campsite and the kids squeal with delight as they happily make s’mores. Grandma and Granpa watch the kids as Mom and dad take a leisurely stroll along the beach and speak in hushed tones as loons call out from across the lake. True family time is at hand!

Phelps has two campgrounds on pristine Kentuck and Spectacle Lakes. The campsites are roomy with spectacular views of the lakes. Each site is equipped with  grills and fire pits. Spectacle Lake which has the best sand beach you will ever see, is buoyed off and perfect for kids. There is a wonderful hiking trail that connects both campgrounds by way of historical logging grades. These two campgrounds are ideal for pitching a tent or backing in your RV. Easy access solitude is here waiting for you. If you really want to get off the beaten path check out the Black Jack Wilderness area. This beautiful wilderness is host to Whispering Lake and the Black Jack Spring Holes and the Deerskin River. There are abundant hiking trails throughout this entire area and rustic campers are welcome. Rekindle your soul, reconnect with your family, rest your mind, come camping in Phelps. Click here for a map showing campground locations.


Phelps is a boating paradise.  We have 41 different lakes in our township and many miles of streams. If you are looking for solitude there are lakes ideally suited for kayaks and canoes where you can slip away and become part of the forest. If it’s action and adventure you’re looking for, we have big lakes that are ideal for water skiing, jet skiing and tubing, not to mention sailing.  If your idea of boating is parking the pontoon boat on a sand bar and swimming in the warm shallow water while hanging out with friends, you can find that in Phelps too. Most of our lakes have well maintained easy access boat landings with solid docks to tie up to for loading.

Boating on our lakes and rivers will satisfy all the needs of the outdoor enthusiast. Everything from fishing, wildlife watching and photography to simply putting around. Our lakes provide it all. We hope you will  visit and experience our water resources. Click here for a map showing our boat landing locations.


Big Sand Lake Club Golf Course

This historic course was opened in 1924 and at that time State Hwy 17 went right through the middle of the course. The club house used to be a horse barn and is scheduled for renovations in 2013. The course is open to the public and accepts Visa/Master Card/Discover Cards.  Pizza Beer and refreshments are available for purchase. Click here for a map of how to get to the golf course.

Deerskin Snowshoe Trails

Directions to Snowshoe Trails Parking Area Access to the Deerskin Snowshoe Trails parking area is an easy 5.5 miles from HWY 17 in Phelps. Take FR 2199 (Deerskin Rd.) south from Phelps to FR 2178 (Indian Rd.). Turn left and parking area is 2 miles ahead.

The parking area is also accessible from HWY 70 approximately 7.5 miles east of Eagle River. Turn north onto FR 2178 (Military Rd.) and travel 6 miles to the parking area.


The Deerskin Snowshoe Trails are part of the Phelps Trail System. This trail system consists of biking, hiking, nature and snowshoe trails.

There are four trail loops in the Deerskin Snowshoe Trails. All originate at a parking area along FR 2178 (Indian Rd.). The trail loops range from 1.6 miles to 3.7 miles in length. Trails are gently rolling with some steep areas (=). There is a map depicting these trails in the parking area.

While not part of the Phelps Trail System, across FR 2178 (Indian Rd.) from the parking area, there is a trail into the Blackjack Springs Wilderness area and Whispering Lake. There is a map depicting this trail in the parking area.

Trail Navigation Access to all trails begins from the parking area. Each trail has a clearly marked “Begin” and “End” point. From the “End” point of each trail, blue signs with a “P” will guide you back to the parking area. The trails are single track and one-way only. There is a short segment of trail that is 2-way (Use Caution!). This segment permits snowshoers to get from the parking area to the beginning of each trail and from the end of each trail back to the parking area.

Safety Your safety and having a positive snowshoeing experience is very important to us. While trails are monitored, storms may cause blow downs across a trail.

Deerskin Snowshoe Trails Map

Ice Fishing Tournaments

Phelps Ice Fishing Tournaments

Brrrrr…….it’s cold, but that doesn’t stop us from having fun in Phelps. Winter is when we break out the heavy clothes, boots and warm socks and head to the lake…..the frozen lake. We love ice fishing in Phelps and are proud to say we have some of the best ice fishing lakes in the world. Got a taste for fresh Walleye or Pan fish right out of the ice cold water?  It doesn’t get any better than that!  Come on your own or attend one of the five ice fishing tournaments listed below:

1.     27th Annual Great Northern Ice Fishing Tournament – Headquartered at the West Shore Boat Landing with fishing on Lac Vieux Dessert and sponsored by the Phelps Lions Club. This tournament is held in January. For details and registration please call (715) 545-3327

2.      Northern Exposure Ice Fishing Tournament – Headquartered at Northern Exposure Restaurant and Pub in Phelps right on Hwy 17 with fishing on North and South Twin Lakes. This tournament is held in early February. For details and registration please call (715) 545-3555

3.     Sand Lake Pub Ice Fishing Derby – Starting at 7:00 AM and running until 2:00 PM this derby is headquarted at Sand Lake Pub on Hwy 17 with fishing on Big Sand Lake. This derby is held on Presidents Weekend in February. For details and registration please call (715) 545-3200

Break out your gear and head north to Phelps. We’ll show you how to have a great time when most people are staying indoors. Good Fishing…..Good Food…..Good Fun!


Snowmobiling in Phelps

Phelps is located approximately twelve miles north of Eagle River……the Snowmobiling Capital of the World.  Our town is nestled in the Nicolet National Forest and winter is one of our favorite seasons. When snow settles in for the winter, our woodlands take on an entirely different look and feel. Everything becomes quiet and soft in stark contrasts of black and white with deep greens of pine trees sprinkled in. This is the season when snowmobilers flock to the Northwoods to take advantage of the lake effect snows driven off of Lake Superior.  We have 40 miles of beautifully groomed trails that interconnect with a network that can take you north to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan or south to lower reaches of the Northwoods and beyond.  Along all of these trails are unique sights and spectacular wildlife to see, not to mention great lodging and dining facilities to meet your every need. Our trails are continuously monitored and groomed by the Phelps Snowmobile Club.  This group of fun-loving people work extremely hard to ensure you have the best possible riding experience.  They have weekly trail rides that are open to everyone and they would love to have you join in. Come to Phelps and experience winter as never before!