Page 5 - Elkhart Lake 2019 Visitors Guide
P. 5                                         (877)355-4278                                                 4

                 LEGENDARY WATER                                      LEGENDARY RACING

                 Spring-fed, crystal clear and 120 feet deep, the unique   Open road racing over the hills and around the curves of
                 blue-green water of Elkhart Lake is a legend itself. In   Elkhart Lake gained prominence in the early 1950s. Now
                 Elkhart Lake you don’t just catch big fish, you can see   land marked, these early closed-loop courses around the
                 them - deep below the surface. From the days when    lake drew sports car racing enthusiasts from across the
                 Native Americans lived on its banks, the pristine quality   Midwest and led to the development, 60 years ago, of
                 of Elkhart Lake’s water has soothed the souls of people   Road America - a rolling four-mile track near the village.
                 from far and wide - and kept them coming back year after  Long recognized as one of the premier road racing tracks
                 year. To many, it’s the legendary water of Elkhart Lake that  in the world, Road America has become legendary. It is
                 makes it famous.                                     a favorite spot for the sport’s best professional and
                                                                      celebrity drivers of every type of racing vehicle from
                 LEGENDARY NAME                                       motorcycles to Indy cars.

                 Well known among local tribes was a handsome young
                 warrior who proved his bravery by slaying an elk and   LEGENDARY TRAIN DEPOT
                 devouring its heart - thus becoming known as Elkheart.   Elkhart Lake’s early growth as a resort destination is
                 Attacting the favor of many young maidens, Elkheart   attributed, in part, to the arrival of the Milwaukee &
                 began wooing the one named Silver Birch. But his eyes   Northern Railroad to the village in 1873. Trains full of
                 soon strayed to another beautiful maiden known as    vacationers, race enthusiasts, gamblers and gangsters
                 Singing Bird, leaving Silver Birch heart-broken. One   alike from Chicago, Milwaukee and Green Bay stepped
                 night as the new lovers paddled out on the lake, an   onto the passenger platform at the village’s depot.
                 arrow from the bow of the dejected Silver Birch pierced
                 Elkheart, who fell into the deep water. Horrified, Singing
                 Bird plunged into the water after him, followed by
                 a sorrowful Silver Birch, who drowned with the ill-fated
                 lovers. Now, when the moon is full, the spirit of Silver
                 Birch passes over the lake crying the name Elkheart.

                 LEGENDARY GAMBLING
                 Elkhart Lake could not escape the wave of illicit
                 gambling in the early 1900s. Illegal gambling became
 A LegendAry getAwAy  the accepted standard in the state and, for all of its
                 resort charm, Elkhart Lake became touted as a gambler’s
                 paradise. The popularity of the slot machine among
                 resort visitors took the village by storm. With the Roar-
                 ing Twenties came an influx of roulette and poker at
                 four well-established
                 Elkhart Lake gambling
                 halls. The end of this
                 legendary era was
                 signaled when, after
                 years of lax enforce-
                 ment, Elkhart Lake’s
                 infamous Paddock
                 Club was raided and
                 gambling equipment

          ELK LAKE _ VISITORS GUIDE _ 2019_New.indd   4                                                           12/18/2018   11:47:29 AM
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