15th annual Rotary Winter Wonderland opens in Marshfield

Published: Nov. 27, 2020 at 9:12 PM CST
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MARSHFIELD, Wis. (WSAW) - Benefitting local food pantries, the 15th annual Rotary Winter Wonderland opened for the season Friday.

Walking in is like walking in a Winter Wonderland.

“Well, you could see it from space, I imagine,” said David Lewis, a long-time visitor.

“Right away as we walked in we thought ‘wow, there’s a lot here for us to walk through,’” said Jessica Kasmerchac, a first-time visitor from Madison.

The music feels the area, and lights flash to the tune, signaling the start of the Christmas season.

“Without the music, it’d be a little less magical,” Kasmerchac said.

Some were continuing long-standing family traditions.

“We just got here, actually, but we’re enjoying it. This is my sixth year here,” Lewis said, adding that some members of his family had been attending the annual event since its conception.

Others were starting new traditions.

“This is our first time here, and it was certainly worth the drive,” Kasmerchac said.

However, this year brought challenges that the organizers were able to overcome.

“Every year we’ve had a drive-thru and a walk-through event. So we’re anticipating this year the drive-through will be a little bit busier,” said Danielle Nystrom, a co-director and co-volunteer organizer who’s been organizing the event with her father for all 15 years.

Cars piled in, along with plenty of walk-in visitors, all asked to be masked.

“We had a lot of extra planning back in June and July when we worked with the Wood County Health Department and the Marshfield Clinic to make sure that we could safely execute the plan this year, and they were all on board,” Nystrom said.

The music and the lights continued, with the goal of kicking off Christmas in the most holly jolly way possible while benefitting local food pantries.

The Winter Wonderland is taking non-perishable food donations in addition to cash donations. For more information, you can go to their website.

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