Join the Winona County Historical Society (WCHS) on Saturday, August 11, as it continues its exploration of Winona County. This year, the bus will be touring the southeast portion of the county with stops at a number of interesting sites. The first stop will be in Dakota at the photography studio of Bob Hurt. Hurt is an architect turned aerial photographer who has taken some of the most amazing images of Southeast Minnesota and Southwest Wisconsin. Hurt will give a brief history of Dakota and then you will have a chance to see his artwork. After driving through Dresbach, the second stop will be the River View Winery on County Road 1 near La Crescent. Learn about the winery’s operation and, even though it’s a bit early (always five o’clock somewhere), sample a taste of the wine. Next on the list is Southwind Orchard where even though it is a few weeks before harvesting, you can learn about apple growing. Hegge Haven is the next stop; the group will tour the facilities and have a box lunch. Hegge Haven is a vacation rental by owner on 20 acres on a ridge between La Crosse and Winona that includes a large colonial house and other buildings. After lunch the group will go to Witoka to visit the art studio of Billy X. Curmano. Curmano is a performance artist that has been active for many years and is probably best known for swimming the Mississippi River, being buried alive and sleeping on a bed of nails, among other things. Before returning to Winona the bus will make a quick stop to tour the Bunnell House. It’s going to be a full, fun and educational day!
The bus will leave the Winona Middle School lot — not the Winona County History Center — at 8 a.m. and if there is a second bus it will leave an hour later at 9 a.m. The first bus should return at about 3:30 and the second at 4:30. The cost of the tour including lunch and refreshments will be $55 for members and $65 for non-members. Call or stop in at the History Center to sign up.
Find more and plan your visit at www.winonahistory.org or call WCHS at 507-454-2723.