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The Mystery of Pike Creek

  • Kenosha Public Museum 5500 1st Avenue Kenosha, WI, 53140 United States (map)
When federal funds became available to build a harbor in Southeast Wisconsin, a fierce competition ensued between the town on the Pike River and the town on Pike Creek. Do you know which town won? Did you know that the name Kenosha (Native American), loosely translated, means "Place of the Pike"? Early accounts describe the northern pike and pickerel so prevalent in these healthy rivers you could "walk" on their backs to get to the other side. Today, we challenge anybody to find one. Sad. Did you also know that the Pike River and Pike Creek are two different rivers and watersheds? Many confuse the two... even Google and GPS systems. As part of our heritage, we'd like to differentiate the two and make sure residents know that what goes in these rivers ends up in Lake Michigan ... to our beaches and into our drinking water supply. Finally, did you know that these rivers are some of the most impaired in Wisconsin? Yes, it's true... and the likely reason why you won't find pike, pickerel or most native fish in these rivers. Phosphorus, nitrogen, and sediment from erosion are the main culprits. Today, many residents do not know about Pike Creek. It has disappeared. Where is it and why is it still important in our lives? Sparkles the Water Spaniel, Root-Pike WIN and Professor Kate Gillogly from UW-Parkside will help you discover the answers to these questions through a presentation and fun, hands-on family activities. Come alone or bring your family or friends. Stop in for a bit or stay for the full three hours! Make a day of it and visit the museums and Kenosha HarborMarket. May we plan on seeing you there?   

When federal funds became available to build a harbor in Southeast Wisconsin, a fierce competition ensued between the town on the Pike River and the town on Pike Creek. Do you know which town won?

Did you know that the name Kenosha (Native American), loosely translated, means "Place of the Pike"? Early accounts describe the northern pike and pickerel so prevalent in these healthy rivers you could "walk" on their backs to get to the other side. Today, we challenge anybody to find one. Sad.

Did you also know that the Pike River and Pike Creek are two different rivers and watersheds? Many confuse the two... even Google and GPS systems. As part of our heritage, we'd like to differentiate the two and make sure residents know that what goes in these rivers ends up in Lake Michigan ... to our beaches and into our drinking water supply.

Finally, did you know that these rivers are some of the most impaired in Wisconsin? Yes, it's true... and the likely reason why you won't find pike, pickerel or most native fish in these rivers. Phosphorus, nitrogen, and sediment from erosion are the main culprits.

Today, many residents do not know about Pike Creek. It has disappeared. Where is it and why is it still important in our lives? Sparkles the Water Spaniel, Root-Pike WIN and Professor Kate Gillogly from UW-Parkside will help you discover the answers to these questions through a presentation and fun, hands-on family activities.

Come alone or bring your family or friends. Stop in for a bit or stay for the full three hours! Make a day of it and visit the museums and Kenosha HarborMarket. May we plan on seeing you there?   

Earlier Event: April 29
33rd Annual Kids' Urban Fishing Clinic
Later Event: June 3
Eat & Greet on the Street