Ring in the New Year in Door County

New Year’s Day is a time of celebration and fresh beginnings. And what better way to do that than spend New Year’s with new friends (and your old favourites) here at our inn? The Chanticleer Guest House has been decorated for the season, and we’ve got both spacious and cozy rooms available – perfect for a party or a more intimate gathering.

However, the stroke of midnight doesn’t have to mean the end of your fun. Several events are happening this coming New Year’s in Door County. Nearby in the town of Egg Harbor, there’s the annual New Year’s parade, which happens rain or shine – a perfect way to enjoy the sights and sounds of our part of Wisconsin, with live music, food vendors, and ice sculptures.

If you’re feeling brave, you can also head down to Lakeside Park to take part in a Polar Bear Swim in Lake Michigan – though you might want to pack some blankets and a thermos of hot tea or coffee to help warm you up after your dip in the lake!

Of course, there are many things to do in Door County at this time of year, New Year’s Day or no. In particular, you can take advantage of the hiking trails close to our inn, or take part in many other winter activities, like sleigh rides, skiing, and snowshoeing.

The winter snow is always a beautiful sight to behold – what better way to take it in than spending time outside, enjoying nature and healthy activity? We feel that Door County has a rare type of beauty, and love more than anything to show it to others. In particular, it always seems fitting to have visitors with us during New Year’s, so that they can experience the beauty we see every day for the first time.

We wish you and your family a holiday season filled with hope and love – and a Happy New Year!

 

Celebrating 18 Years at The Chanticleer Door County

 

In a few weeks, Bryon and I will have completed 18 years of inn keeping.  It seems like yesterday that guests would arrive and ask us if our parents owned the place!  Ah, the good old days…  Now couples arrive (who look like they could be our children) and call us sir!  The average length of time most people own a bed and breakfast is around 7 years.  Here are a few reasons we still enjoy operating the Chanticleer Guest House after 18 years…

  • Most of our best friends are people who have stayed at the inn.  We have met so many wonderful people over the years, and that is what makes our job so enjoyable.
  • We have our own private living space and respect the privacy of our guests.  In the old days, bed and breakfasts were single family homes in which you would rent a bedroom.  Guests would share a common bathroom and actually use the owner’s living space.  We have our private living area to relax in, and we try to provide the same atmosphere for our guests.  Can you image all of us fighting over the television remote?!?
  •  Treat everyone who walks through the door with respect.  After 18 years, it has made being an innkeeper a fun career and it also makes guests enjoy coming back.
  •  We enjoy that fact that most people are happy when they are on vacation! 

So many wonderful occasions have occurred at the Chanticleer over the years.  Couples have celebrated birthdays and anniversaries, and we’ve hosted weddings and wedding receptions.  Several couples have been engaged here and we suspect one or two children have been conceived here!  We do promote ourselves as a romantic bed and breakfast!

We have so many fun and interesting stories after running the Chanticleer for 18 years.  Guests say we should write a book.  Well, we are starting off with a blog!  Here’s to 18 years of inn keeping and to many more!

 

The Chanticleer Flock of sheep

Before welcoming our first guests in October of 1993, we welcomed our flock of sheep.  With 30 acres of property, 15 acres of which were pasture land, we thought bringing a flock of sheep from home was a perfect fit for a county inn.  We raise Border Leicester sheep; an ancient wool breed, which originated in the “Border” area of Great Britain.  Border Leicester sheep are know for their long, lustrous wool, which is excellent for hand spinning.

Many guests of the Chanticleer ask, “What does it mean to have a working sheep farm”.  Our answer to that common question is we actually shear our sheep, produce lambs in the spring and sell lambs for breeding, and for market.

We try to shear our sheep in the spring time, before the ewes have their lambs.  Shearing at this time of the year helps motivate the ewes to lamb in our barn, out of the elements, which is both helpful to the lambs and the innkeeper!  Lambs are born in late March, or early April, and lambing time is the most stressful time of the year when dealing with our sheep.  Darrin goes out every couple of hours, day and night, to check on the ewes and to see if any lambs are being born.  While most often there are no complications, sometimes we have to help a ewe give birth, or motivate a lamb to start nursing.

Years ago, we used to ship our wool to a woolen mill and have our wool processed into yarn.  A good friend of ours would knit the wool into sweaters and we would offer them for sale at the inn.  The cost of shipping wool became extremely expensive and our friend married, so we stopped producing wool sweaters.  Now, the wool we shear is either given away, or we toss it into the woods for the animals to use for nesting material.  If any reader knows of someone who could use some raw wool, please send them our way!

Many of our guests come from large cities and rarely see livestock, such as sheep.  Although they are extra work, we thoroughly enjoy raising lambs and our guests seem to appreciate being able to watch them graze around the inn.  Please send us your sheep questions and check out the photos of our sheep on our website.