Thousands of visitors come to experience the whimsy of Jurustic Park each year. This amazing metal sculpture park, located just north of Marshfield, is surrounded by a mystical forested area, and even has an enchanting Hobbit House. But what many people don’t know is that some of the artist Clyde Wynia’s creatures have escaped and have hidden in Downtown Marshfield.
To help you find these zany creatures and discover some of Marshfield’s hidden gems for dining and shopping, we have created the Downtown Jurustic Trail. *This tour clocks in at just under 1.5 miles. Most people walking at a leisurely pace will take about 30-45 minutes to complete it (but we encourage you to stop and enjoy the sculptures, shopping opportunities, delicious dining options, and fun attractions along the way!)
- Kick off your adventure at home base: the Marshfield Area Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MACCI) & Visit Marshfield office building. This is a great place to grab a copy of the official Marshfield Visitor guide, if you don’t already have one. You can enjoy ample parking and a variety of great restaurants nearby if you’d like fuel up before hitting the Downtown Jurustic Trail. It’s here that you’ll meet Tillie, the first creature who, very slowly and steadily, made a new home amongst the rusty reeds.
- Take the trail north on Central Avenue, which Marshfield locals have dubbed “Main Street.” You’ll pass by Strohman Park, a beautifully landscaped firefighter memorial. Nestled near the towering structure of the Chestnut Center for the Arts are two more creatures, who like to say “whooo,” “mew,” and play a tune or two on a stringed instrument. While you’re here, check out the Chestnut’s offerings, including calendar of events, pottery studio, art class schedule, or art exhibitions displayed in their gallery.
- Delightful detour: follow the trail back to Central Avenue by way of the Wenzel Family Plaza. Depending on the time of day at the plaza, you’re likely to see children running through their water feature, morning people stretching on Yoga mats, a food truck feeding folk during the afternoon lunch rush, or live concerts and other entertaining events happening most weekends. If you’re looking to satisfy your sweet tooth before moving on, stop in at the 2 ½ Cups Cupcakery and Bakeshop. At the spot marked #3 on your map you’ll find a towering, metal turtle.
- Continue along the paved walking/ biking trail on East Veterans Parkway. You will pass by the Everett Roehl Marshfield Public Library and the Marshfield Veterans Memorial, showcasing paintings by local artists and a flag display, honoring heroes from the Marshfield area. Look up to see the largest, fire-breathing, winged creature on the tour trail (this fantastical fellow flew in to guard our fair city and hasn’t left since!). Snap a selfie with this scaly friend (#marshfieldmadenew), turn around, and head back to Central Avenue, where you’ll pass the Royal Tokyo Restaurant, housed in a historic train depot, and is a known as a popular dinner spot for Teppanyaki style group meals and the place to go for family celebrations.
- Turn down Central Avenue for more popular restaurants and shopping options, and make your way down to your next destination, Hardacre Park. Named after an influential mayor known for her leadership, you’ll find rusty creatures that swam to Marshfield during a great flood, probably thousands of years ago. You can also pull up a bench and view a painted timeline of Marshfield’s pasts and milestones in the surrounding murals. Next-door is a Marshfield staple, Crabby Dave’s, known to have one of the best brandy old fashioneds in town.
- Meander down a few more short blocks to Nutz Deep II, one of Marshfield‘s most popular restaurants and watering holes (with a wacky name, and seriously good burgers). The creatures here are some of the newest that just escaped Jurustic Park. Be careful – they may not be as used to close, human interaction as some of the other creatures on the tour.
- Cross Central Avenue to find your final stop, the Blue Heron Brewpub, another great place to grab lunch or dinner. You’ll love the modern, gastropub atmosphere in this former ice cream factory building. After finding all the creatures in the Heron, kick back and relax (maybe while enjoying a pint), and you’ll find yourself back at the start of your journey.
Be a good anthropologist and report your findings on the downtown trail back to us, so that creator Clyde from Jurustic Park can help track down these rusty creatures and try to return them to his park!