$0 – $15

Event Information

Share this event

Date and Time

Location

Location

Wauzeka Village Hall

Wauzeka Village Hall, 213 E Front St # B, Wauzeka, WI

View Map

Refund Policy

Refund Policy

No Refunds

Event description

Description

Nature lovers of all ages are invited to attend Family Bat Fest – a day of discovery about the beneficial role of bats and the importance of protecting their native habitat.

The event will be held at the Wauzeka Village Hall where presentations by bat ecology experts, educational activities, and live bats will be shared to help the public better understand and appreciate the world’s only flying mammals. Family Bat Fest is one of Mississippi Valley Conservancy’s Linked-to-the Land events, sponsored by Mayo Clinic-Franciscan Healthcare of La Crosse.

Admission is FREE for the presentations and activities at Wauzeka Village Hall (does not include cave tour), and advance regsitration is required due to limited seating and building capacity. Choose PRESENTATIONS ticket (free) from the ticket options above. If you have purchased a cave tour ticket, it is NOT necessary to also register for the free admission to the presentations at Family Bat Fest in the village hall.

Family Bat Fest runs from 10:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m. and the "Bats LIVE!" presentation will be repeated to allow those attending cave tours to see them before or after. We highly recommend that attendees try to make it to the 10:00 a.m. presentation to avoid over-crowding at the 2:00 p.m. presentation. See FAQ section below for detailsed presentation schedule.

GUIDED CAVE TOURS AT KICKAPOO CAVERNS – advance registration / paid ticket required

A special feature of Family Bat Fest will be a limited number of guided tours of the cave at Kickapoo Caverns – a nature preserve protected by Mississippi Valley Conservancy. The cave tour guides will share information about the history of the cave and how it has been shaped and used over the centuries – all clues to the secrets of the cave. Because of the sensitive nature of the cave and for safety reasons, the cave tours will be limited in number and size, and advance registration is required.

There is a $15 per person fee for the cave tour with a $5 discount for youth under 17 years of age. For youth discount, enter promotional code YOUTH when selecting ticket. Advance registration is required due to limited capacity on buses and in the cave. If you have purchased a cave tour ticket, it is NOT necessary to also register for the free admission to the presentations at Family Bat Fest in the village hall.

Participants who have registered to tour the cave will be transported by bus (according to the time on their ticket) to and from Kickapoo Caverns, a few miles from Wauzeka. Due to parking and conservation restrictions, no private vehicles will be allowed on the property.

Some agility and stamina are required for the cave tours. A steep and challenging 15-20 minute uphill hike is required to reach the cave, and touring the cave involves steep stairways and some passages with low overhead. The cave tour can last for up to an hour, and the inside temperature of the cave is 50 degrees. There are no bats in the cave during the summer months. The cave tour is not recommended for those with claustrophobia.

Further details regarding times, accessibility, and certain restrictions may be found in the FAQ section below and in the descriptions of the tickets available here. Please read them carefully.


FAQs

Are there ID or minimum age requirements to go on a cave tour?

The minimum age for cave tours is 7. All attendees under the age of 17 must be accompanied by an adult. All ages are welcome at the Family Bat Fest presentations and activities at the Wauzeka Village Hall, however.

What are my transportation/parking options for getting to and from the cave tour?

Access to all cave tours is available only via buses departing from Wauzeka at scheduled intervals. Due to parking and conservation restrictions, no private vehicles will be allowed on the property.


Can anyone tour the cave?

Some agility and stamina are required for the cave tours. A steep and challenging 15-20 minute uphill hike is required to reach the cave, and touring the cave involves steep stairways and some passages with low overhead. The cave tour can last for up to an hour, and the inside temperature of the cave is 50 degrees. There are no bats in the cave during the summer months. The cave tour is not recommended for those with claustrophobia. There is almost no cell phone reception at the Kickapoo Caverns property. Total round trip time to and from the cave, including hike and tour, is at least 2.5 hours.


What can I bring and wear to the cave tour?

This is a rain or shine event. The temperature in the cave averages 50 degrees Fahrenheit and cave tours last almost an hour, so bring a jacket. We recommend safe walking or hiking shoes and clothing appropriate for hiking in a wooded area that may be hot and buggy (sandals not recommended). Footwear, clothing, and gear that has been in other caves are not allowed in the cave at Kickapoo Caverns unless they have been thougoughly decontaminated. Cameras are allowed. Backpacks, handbags, wheels, walkers, hiking sticks, food and beverages are not allowed in the cave (consider leaving those items in your vehicle in Wauzeka). If you bring a water bottle, you may leave it in the cave entrance building while you are in the cave. To protect threatened bat populations, all who tour the cave will be asked to decontaminate their footwear and clothing upon returning home using simple instructions that will be provided.


Will there be bats in the cave?

There are no bats in the cave during summer months.


What is the schedule of presentations? (updated 6.18.18)

10:00-10:45
Bats LIVE!
Jennifer Redell, WDNR Bat Biologist and Cave Mine Specialist
and Heather Kaarakka, WDNR Conservation Biologist/Roost Monitoring Coordniator

10:45-11:15
Adventures in Batting
Ben Johnston, WDNR Bat Program Participant since 2011

11:30-12:00
Bat Diets in Wisconsin and Around the World
Amy Wray, PhD Conservation Biologist at UW Madison

12:15-1:00
Bats LIVE!
Jennifer Redell, WDNR Bat Biologist and Cave Mine Specialist
and Heather Kaarakka, WDNR Conservation Biologist/Roost Monitoring Coordniator

1:00-1:30
Geology of the Lower Wisconsin River
Eric Carson, Geologist and Associate Professor, UW-Madison

1:45-2:15
Cave Formations and What They Tell Us
Cameron Bachelor, UW-Madison graduate student of geoscience

2:30-3:15
Bats LIVE!
Jennifer Redell, WDNR Bat Biologist and Cave Mine Specialist
and Heather Kaarakka, WDNR Conservation Biologist/Roost Monitoring Coordniator


How can I contact the organizer with additional questions?

With questions, please contact Mississippi Valley Conservancy by email at info@mississippivalleyconservancy.org or by phone at 608.784.3606 ext. 6.

What's the refund policy?

No refunds will be offered. Mississippi Valley Conservancy is a nonprofit organization, and ticket sales are required to cover event costs. This is a rain or shine event (it doesn't rain in the cave, so weather should not be a factor).

Share with friends

Date and Time

Location

Wauzeka Village Hall

Wauzeka Village Hall, 213 E Front St # B, Wauzeka, WI

View Map

Refund Policy

No Refunds

Save This Event

Event Saved