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The 1400 hundred people that live in the Laona area are heirs to the shared heritage of the timber industry. The turn-of-the-century marked the founding of Laona - just 20 years prior to logging's heyday. Around 1876, the pine loggers came into the area and cleared off the pine stands scatted thought out the hardwoods. William Duncan Connor purchased 100,000 acres of timberland in Forest County and started the Connor Lumber and Land Company. When the Chicago and Northwestern Railroad came to the area the initial logging of the area took place between 1900 and 1910 and has been going on ever since. A member of the Connor family has operated a sawmill in the community ever since.
Laona was named in honor of the first child born to the first settler in the area a Norman Johnson. Connor Lumber and Land Company built its first sawmill in the area in 1901. Logging camps were opened and roads were built. Laona began to thrive as railroads steamed their way into northern Wisconsin. Laona's economy became largely dependent upon the timber industry. A member of the Connor family still operates a sawmill in the community to this day.

The Lumberjack Special Steam Train, The Community Soup and Nicolet Public Golf Course make the Laona an attractive area.

The Lumberjack Special is a vintage 1916 Vulcan steam engine that was actually used by the Connor Lumber and Land Company in their logging operation is now used to pull a passenger train to the Camp 5 Farm & Museum. The Camp 5 Farm Museum is educational and just plain fun for all ages. When at the Farm, you can enjoy the Nature Center; the museum and its logging lore, complete with working blacksmith shop; the Green Treasure Forest Tour provides a living demonstration of how scenic stands of timber can be harvested and beautiful; a float trip on the Rat River, provides scenery, bird watching and an understanding of ecology.

Sandwiches, snacks and refreshments are available as well as gifts and souvenirs at the 1900 vintage Cracker Barrel Store.




soup kettleThe Community Soup is an annual event sponsored by the Laona Lions Club on the first Sunday in August at the public beach. Hundreds of visitors and townspeople gather for a day of reunions and free soup from the worlds largest soup kettle.


The Nicolet Public Golf Course is an excellent 18-hole golf course located ½mile west of Laona. The public is welcome.


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