A Six-Pack of Wisconsin Pop Culture Tidbits

Did you know that Wisconsin is home to some culturally significant moments?

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WISCONSIN MAY NOT BE as well known for its contributions to the pop culture landscape as California and New York. But maybe that’s just because the people here are too modest to brag. 

1. 

The final car chase in the 1980 blockbuster THE BLUES BROTHERS was filmed in Milwaukee, near the Hoan Bridge. You can see the U.S. Bank building in the background as the Bluesmobile hurtles through the air.

2.

Legend has it that the first CHEESEHEAD was actually worn at a Brewers game, not a Packers one. The fan who made it burned holes into an old couch cushion and painted it yellow.

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3.

Little House on the Prairie writer LAURA INGALLS WILDER based much of the series on the western Wisconsin village where she grew up, Pepin. Now the Laura Ingalls Wilder Museum – and a replica of her family cabin – stands where she once lived.

4. 

Alex Jordan Jr., the creator of the HOUSE ON THE ROCK, supposedly idolized Frank Lloyd Wright. There’s little evidence to support that, but he did build his Spring Green tourist trap just a few miles away from the famed architect’s Taliesin homestead.

5.

BARBIE was born in the (fictional) town of Willows, Wisconsin.

6. 

Milwaukee’s own PFISTER HOTEL houses the largest collection of Victorian art of any hotel in the world.


This story is part of Milwaukee Magazine‘s March issue.

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Lindsey Anderson covers culture for Milwaukee Magazine. Before joining the MilMag team she worked as an editor at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago and wrote freelance articles for ArtSlant and Eater.