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Prairie Villa Rendezvous Festival
Prairie Du Chien, Wisconsin - Great River Road

Prairie Villa Rendezvous
A rendezvous camper playing his hand-carved flute

The Prairie Rendezvous is an annual fair and festival that steps back in time to life in a Mississippi River village and encampment. (Generally held the second week in June) A special campground is constructed on St. Feroile Island near the the historic Villa Louis settlement.

2011 Prairie Villa Rendezvous
June 16 - 19th

More Prairie Region Links

- Prairie Du Chien, Wisconsin
About McGregor, IA
Effigy Mounds National Park
Dubuque, IA - things to see
and do

Old fashioned tents and teepees are constructed and participants in the re-enactment dress and re-create how it was living in such camps in the 1840s. As stated in the fair guide by the Big River Long Rifles organization, the gathering portrays " a period of time . . . of camping in a primitive lodge with no electricity, no tvs, no running water, no indoor plumbing.

The Rendezvous Camp is sprinkled with vendors offering food and goods for sale, as well as demonstrations of traditional crafts such as blacksmithing, pottery making, weaving, cooking over an open fire, knife making, longbow making, and entertainment such as games, fiddle playing, playing wooden flutes, and story telling. In addition, contests (primitive bow shoot, black powder shoot, cooking contest, etc.) are held each day

The event is actually two fairs in one for surrounding the Rendezvous Camp is a gigantic Flea Market and Food Festival as well a music stage. Together the two fairs occupy over 8 square blocks of territory (not including parking). For fair goers wishing to camp or tent outside of the Rendezvous Camp, there is a "modern camping" area available adjacent to the fair grounds (although the term "modern" does not imply much in terms of the facilities available !). We found parking quite adequate.

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The Rendezvous Camp

blacksmith at Prairie Rendezvous

< < < A blacksmith hard at work at his craft.Games at the Rendezvous

A rendezvous camper challenges a young visitor to a traditional pioneer tug-of-war game. > > >

native crafts

< < < An "Indian" and his young buck skinner assistant offer a number of hand-crafted wares to Rendezvous visitors and shoppers.

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Prairie Villa Campers

A family illustrating life on the river in the 1840s.

Campers at the Rendezvous
< < < Even the kids get into the "Act"

An authentic rendezvous campsite
A number of genuine antiques are on display and in use at the campsites.

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Food stand at Prairie Rendezvous

The Food Stands offer Fry Bread, Corn on the Cob, and other traditional foods at reasonable prices.
Marines marching

< < < Some marching marines work up an appetite.

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Flea Market & Fair

The Flea Market at Prairie Rendezvous

Food stands also dot the Flea Market area, musical entertainment, and of course lots of Flea Market goods (below right).music at the rendezvous

flea market

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Ice cream at the Prairie Rendezvous< < < A magician entertains the crowd with some slight-of-hand tricks and two fair goers enjoy some delicious homemade ice cream (right).

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red triaLink to more info on the Prairie Villa Rendezvous Festival
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Prairie du Chien (AKA Prairie du Chein) Travel & Visitor Links

quiltbullet Villa Louis Historical Site
quiltbullet Prairie du Chien Chamber of Commerce
quiltbullet Effigy Mounds National Monument
quiltbullet Wyalusing State Park (Wisconsin)
quiltbullet Pikes Peak State Park (Iowa)

More Great River Road Scenic Byway Pages

- Scenic Drive from Fulton to Galena to Prairie Du Chien
- Scenic Drive from Prairie Du Chien to LaCrosse to Winona
- Scenic Drive from Winona to Red Wing

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