Iconic Attractions

From forts to trails to museums and grottos!

Did you know? Sparta native Deke Slayton was one of America’s pioneering astronauts.

Iconic Attractions

Embark on a journey through Monroe County’s iconic attractions! Delve into the rich history and culture of the region as you explore these must-visit landmarks and destinations. From historic sites to natural wonders, discover Monroe County through its iconic attractions.

Elroy - Sparta Trail

Sparta is home to the connection point of two incredible state trails that were converted from former railroad routes. The Elroy-Sparta State Trail is a 32-mile route that winds through five communities, four of which are in Monroe County - Kendall, Wilton, Norwalk, and Sparta.

The most unique features of this trail are the three train tunnels that range in length from a quarter mile to three-quarters of a mile. In the heat of summer, the tunnels stay cool and offer a reprieve for travelers venturing along the path.

Deke Slayton Memorial Space and Bicycle Museum

Deke Slayton was one of America’s first astronauts, part of the Mercury 7 group that was formed by NASA in 1959. Throughout his 20+ year career with NASA, Deke was instrumental in shaping the early days of US manned space flight. In 1975 he was part of the crew for the US/Russian Apollo-Soyuz docking mission, the very first international space mission of its kind which paved the way for the International Space Station.

Why bikes and Deke Slayton? Sparta, Wisconsin is the Bicycling Capital of America with the first Rails to Trails Program in the country where old railroad tracks were converted into bike trails. Deke Slayton is a Sparta area native and one of America’s first astronauts. The community wanted to celebrate both of these traditions, and the Deke Slayton Memorial Space and Bicycle Museum was born.

FAST Fiberglass

Fast Fiberglass is a roadside attraction that is sure to surprise. This unique stop offers a display of fiberglass sculpture molds from past projects.  Fast Fiberglass creates giant roadside attractions you have likely seen across the country.  From fanciful waterslides to statues and art projects, the mold graveyard was once described as an "accidental sculpture garden" and you are welcome to stop and wander through the collection.

Fort McCoy

Fort McCoy is located approximately 7 miles west of Tomah, 6 miles east of Sparta, 25 miles south of Black River Falls, and 35 miles east of La Crosse and the Mississippi River. Each of these communities is home to a variety of industries and offers many recreational and social opportunities and events. The installation enjoys positive working relationships with, and public support from, local, county, and state governments; the chambers of commerce; county and school boards; civic organizations; veterans groups; and the general citizenry within these communities.

Wegner Grotto County Park

Ten miles north of Sparta you will find the Wegner Grotto County Park—a fantastic landscape of concrete sculptures decorated with thousands of glittering glass shards and found objects, such as seashells, china dishes, and arrowheads. The Wegner Grotto is named for its creators, Paul and Matilda Wegner, the German-born couple who constructed these ambitious patriotic and religious monuments on their property from 1929 to 1942. Since 1987 the Grotto has been an official Monroe County park.

World's Largest Bicyclist

Standing tall at 32 feet, the World's Largest Bicyclist is a striking roadside attraction that captures the attention of passersby. Located in Sparta, Wisconsin, this towering figure is a testament to the town's claim as the "Bicycling Capital of America."

Visitors can snap photos and learn about the town's rich bicycling history, making it a must-see stop for travelers exploring the area.

Contact

Address

124 N. Court St.
Sparta, WI 54656
Monroe County, WI

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