Paul Bunyan's Northwoods Cook Shanty
Wisconsin Dells Visitor & Convention Bureau

Paul Bunyan's Northwoods Cook Shanty

Paul Bunyan's Northwoods Cook Shanty

Paul Bunyan's Northwoods Cook Shanty

Paul Bunyan's Northwoods Cook Shanty Map
411 State Hwy 13 SWisconsin Dells 53965
(608) 254-8717
March - October
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(608) 254-8717
(608) 254-8717
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Dine In & Carry Out

Take a walk with Big Paul...thru logging camp memories and cook shanty lore! A vacation dining must...for the entire family. Special children's prices. In the style and atmosphere of the "Ole Time" lumber camp cook shanty. Enjoy breakfast (7 am - Noon). Tour groups welcome. Open daily all summer. If you've changed your travel plans and are unable to visit, we are shipping our famous buttermilk dounuts!  Orders can be placed on our website. 

Convention Overview
Facinating 1890's logging camp atmosphere, serving our Camp Breakfast features FAMOUS buttermilk donuts, dinner features two entree choices, homemade bread, salad or slaw, potato, veggie & dessert. A vacation favorite for all ages!
Paul Bunyan's Northwoods Cook Shanty Convention Amenities
  • Catering On-Site
  • Food Service Adjacent
  • Food Service On-Site
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Paul Bunyan's Northwoods Cook Shanty Videos
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Add Your Paul Bunyan's Northwoods Cook Shanty Story
Paul Bunyan's Northwoods Cook Shanty
Paul Bunyan's Northwoods Cook Shanty Stories
2013-07-09Every time I visit the Wis Dells I always eat here for Breakfast and Dinner! They have the best tasting food and the servers are always friendly.
2012-04-11Paul Bunyan's has been part of my life for 48 years. Every summer my family would have their reunion and the 1st day & the last were always breakfast at Paul's. Now i get to share that with my sons & daughter. Keep makin the doughnuts!! we love um. Thank Paul for all the fun memories & the new one we have yet to make.
2012-02-17I love Paul Bunyan's Cook Shanty Restaurant. Every time I've gone to the Dells or past it by, weather they were open or not. I thought of those years in the 1980's when I went with my High School Buddies to the Dells for a week. The local channel had a great commercial for Paul's. "Come on down to Paul Bunyan's Cook Shanty Restaurant located at routes 12 and 13, in beautiful Wisconsin Dells." It was part of vocabulary fir years. We loved it and so will you!
-MarkVilla Park,IL
2010-07-28Paul Bunyan's Cook Shanty has been a "MUST" every time we go to the Dells. It was amazing to me as a little girl and it still is amazing to me today.It is wonderful to see a Restaurant that can make so many fond memories for everyone. When I tell my three girls that we are going to Wisconsin Dells, the first thing out of their mouths is "Are we going to Paul Bunyan's?" My answer is "Of Course".
2010-04-12I remember going to the "dells" when i was a kid and all the fun we had as a family. Now for the first time, I can bring my kids up there in the summer of "2010" and share with them the same experience's i had as a child. I would like to thank the wisconsin dells people and the staff at paul bunyon's for so many fond memories

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Paul Bunyan's Northwoods Cook Shanty Articles
What's Up With That Restaurant?2010-04-01Quirky places to plunk down for a great meal.Read More
What's Up With That Restaurant?

monks-wisconsin-dells-restaurants-23Monk's Bar & Grill

Let's start with the original Monk's Bar & Grill located in Downtown Wisconsin Dells, named after Monk Heineke. What makes Monk's one of the memorable restaurants in Wisconsin Dells aside from the best burgers in the Dells, is the University of Wisconsin Badgers' memorabilia. It's a shrine to the red-and-white because Monk's sons played football for UW-Madison back in the late 1950s.

Showboat Saloon - Wisconsin Dells Bars

Showboat Saloon

Just down the street is the Showboat Saloon, with its Tug's Kitchen restaurant. Located in a 100-year old building with a distinctive wedge shape, Showboat's always housed a bar, except during Prohibition, although some say drinks were still available through a speakeasy in the basement of this Wisconsin Dells restaurant and bar.

Mr. Pancake - Wisconsin Dells Restaurants

Mr. Pancake

The landlocked Mr. Pancake restaurant in Wisconsin Dells looks like a paddlewheel boat. Why? Because the owners wanted to give patrons the feel of "dining on the water."

Paul Bunyans Dells Restaurants

Paul Bunyan's Northwoods Cook Shanty

If you're into "muffler men" -- those big fiberglass statues that dot the American landscape -- then pull up to Paul Bunyan's Northwoods Cook Shanty, where good ol' Paul towers over this establishment.

So, now you know!


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These Are Some Big Breakfasts2010-04-01Relish a big breakfast while on vacation in Wisconsin Dells.Read More
These Are Some Big Breakfasts

mr.pancake-wisconsin-dells-restaurantsMr. Pancake

You just have to love a place called Mr. Pancake. The owners have been serving big plates of pancakes, French toast, blintzes and waffles since 1962. While there is every fruit variety under the sun and then some, the hands-down winner for many patrons is the potato pancake, a blend of cooked potatoes in a rich egg batter with applesauce and crisp bacon on the side.




paul-bunyans-dells-restaurants-23Paul Bunyan's Northwoods Cook Shanty

Paul Bunyan's Northwoods Cook Shanty lets you dine lumberjack-style, with family portions passed around at big, comfortable tables. You can’t go wrong with their famous “Logging Camp” breakfast of flapjacks with maple syrup, special recipe sausage and baked ham, scrambled eggs, camp fried potatoes and memorable buttermilk donuts.




Howie's Restaurant

Last, but certainly not least, is Howie’s Restaurant, the self-proclaimed Home of Howie’s Huge Breakfast. This plate of pancakes, egg, hash browns, toast and jelly is mighty filling. Upgrade to Howie’s Super Breakfast and you’ll get sausage too. This diner has been a favorite for Dells residents and visitors since 1958.

You know we have to say this…breakfast is the most important meal of the day.


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Happy Time-Out For Toddlers2010-02-09Tour waterparks, attractions and more that are just the right size for the little ones.Read More
Happy Time-Out For Toddlers

Families with Toddlers: Vacation Now Before School Lets Out

Wisconsin Dells has been known as a family-friendly vacation destination for more than a few generations, and this includes activities perfect for the littlest members of the family too. If you have children under the age of five, here are a few suggestions on where to stay and where to play.

Where to Stay Great Wolf Lodge is ideal for families with little ones, both the accommodations and the waterpark. Wilderness Resort, Chula Vista Resort, Mt. Olympus Water & Theme Park, and Kalahari Resorts & Conventions made toddler-friendly play areas a priority too. Baker’s Sunset Bay Resort on Lake Delton is a classic with modern amenities. Lots of mid-size resorts with water playgrounds too, like Atlantis Waterpark Hotel & Suites, Alakai Hotel & Suites, Meadowbrook Resort, and Grand Marquis Waterpark Hotel & Suites. Spring Brook Resort offers easy vacationing in their rental homes and condos. If you like to camp, Sherwood Forest Camping & RV Park is a sure choice, with a toddler-friendly splash pad.

Families with Toddlers: Vacation Now Before School Lets Out

Where to See Animals Timbavati Wildlife Park has behind-the-scenes tours where the children can get up-close with the exotic animals. At Wisconsin Deer Park, they can feed the gentle deer. Don’t forget about the ducks, as in a scenic tour of the Wisconsin River aboard an amphibious DUCK land-to-water vehicle. Circus World, a national historic treasure in nearby Baraboo, has different shows daily under the Big Top.

Families with Toddlers: Vacation Now Before School Lets Out

Where to Eat Meals are delivered by miniature train at Buffalo Phil’s Pizza & Grille. MACS - Macaroni and Cheese Shop has two locations, with gourmet mac and cheese offerings for mom and dad too.  For breakfast, Mr. Pancake is a tradition, as is Paul Bunyan’s Northwoods Cook Shanty.

Stroller Friendly The Scenic River Walk downtown is stroller friendly and the views are stunning. Great for family selfies.

Families with Toddlers: Vacation Now Before School Lets Out

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Dells Debut Offers A Ton Of Fun For Families With Tots2010-07-20Recently it dawned on us. Despite being parents for about five years, we hadn't been to the Dells in a lot longer than that (if you discount one of us attending a bachelor party there). With kids in the house, that didn't seem to make any kind of sense at all to a Wisconsin family.Read More
Dells Debut Offers A Ton Of Fun For Families With Tots

By Bobby Tanzilo
As published on

Recently it dawned on us. Despite being parents for about five years, we hadn't been to the Dells in a lot longer than that (if you discount one of us attending a bachelor party there). With kids in the house, that didn't seem to make any kind of sense at all to a Wisconsin family.

We wrote up a to-do list that was more than a little ambitious for a single overnight stay and with nary a consideration of the weather. Amazingly enough, a little planning went a long way and with one exception, we saw everything we had hoped to in our Wisconsin Dells debut.

If you're planning your first trip to the Dells with very little ones, you might find our itinerary and experience useful...

Timbavati Wildlife Park/Storybook Gardens

We're pretty kid-focused when it comes to planning trips, mostly setting aside whatever it is we'd like to do in favor of what we think the kids would enjoy. That was the philosophy in our approach to the Dells, too, with one exception.

We wanted to take the kids to Storybook Gardens based on childhood memories of it (and of a similar place I used to go as a kid in Lake George, N.Y.). But even in that case, we knew that at least one of our kids was familiar with many of the characters and nursery rhymes illustrated in this Dells landmark.

It's almost amazing that the nearly 60-year-old Storybook Gardens (and Timbavati Wildlife Park), 1500 Wisconsin Dells Parkway, is still going. The park is dotted with displays that present nursery rhyme favorites in three-dimensional glory. There's the mustachioed giant atop Jack's beanstalk and Humpty Dumpty ill-advisedly sitting atop a brick wall.

There are also a number of enclosures with wildlife on view -- everything from gigantic turtles to sloths and kangaroos. There's a great train that circles the property, a wildlife show, camel rides and more.

When we lost a stuffed animal along the tracks, I got a moment to hear a bit about the history of the park, which opened in 1956.

The folks that lease it now have been running it for about eight years and are working hard to make a go of it. You can tell it's not easy to run a traditional place like this in the Dells in 2010 -- there's a lot of glitzy competition for the tourist dollar -- but Storybook Gardens is still fun when there are young kids in the group and I'd recommend it.

Great Wolf Lodge

We had hoped to take a ducks ride on the Wisconsin River next, but the phone rang as dark clouds began to take shape in the sky above. Our room was ready at Great Wolf Lodge, 1400 Great Wolf Dr., right off I-94, and it was nap time (sadly, not for mom and dad), too.

The best thing about Great Wolf is that it solved two problems at once. We got a hotel and a selection of water parks all together in a single package.

The kids loved the Kid Cabin room we got because part of the large room was separated off into a log cabin with bunk beds. When they saw them, sleep was the last thing on their minds. They were ready for a deep woods adventure right in the hotel room.

Great Wolf also has three indoor waterparks and an outdoor one. There are restaurants, an arcade, a spa and more, all wrapped into a single, sprawling complex that means you could choose to never leave the lodge and still have a great time at the Dells.

Because it was our inaugural water park experience and our kids are wee, we had pretty much all our waterpark fun in the Bear Track Landing park, which had a kiddie area perfect for them and a nice wave pool that was fun for all of us.

But we also checked out the other waterparks and I bet next time, now that they've gotten a taste of waterparks, will love the Treehouse Island park, which has a range of awesome sprays, spurts and spouts to douse you from every direction. Spirit Island has a nice and not terribly daunting slide.

Then there's the Howlin' Tornado, which looked awesome for thrill seekers, but not like something to bring your toddlers into.

"The all-under-one-roof, weather-proof offerings at the large waterpark resorts are popular year-round, because they provide a full experience with no weather interruptions and they're a good value," says Carla Minsky, of Wisconsin Dells Visitor & Convention Bureau.

"Which is not to say that guests don't leave the resorts to experience the other attractions around town. Variety is still king and there are classic Dells' rituals that visitors enjoyed when they were young and like to re-create for their children."

When I tell her that taking our kids to a place we remembered going to as kids -- Storybook Gardens -- felt like a rite of passage, Minsky says, "Yes, we hear that a lot!"

Great Wolf Lodge Wisconsin Dells - Even the littlest kids can find waterpark fun at Great Wolf Lodge.

Goody Goody Gum Drop LLC & High Rock Cafe

Afterward, we spent the late afternoon and early evening out in downtown Dells walking around, hoping to see fudge being made at Goody Goody Gum Drop, 401 Broadway, the largest candy store in the Dells. No luck on the fudge, but we got some yummy dessert treats.

But first, we had dinner at the High Rock Cafe, 232 Broadway. We weren't sure what to expect here. At first we thought it might be diner food, but the nice yet casual eatery had a range of delicious sandwiches, salads and entrees -- I had a monte cristo with the most amazing broccoli salad.

Best of all, despite being a nice, adult-looking place, High Rock had a good kids menu and a staff that was fabulous with kids. Skip the gimmicks and get a great meal for the whole family here.

Back at the hotel, we splashed a bit in the water and hit the 8 p.m. storytime and the animatronic show in the Great Wolf lobby, which drew a large crowd and delighted all the kids present.

If mom and dad weren't beat, we might have perched on the deck for a drink and relaxation.

Downtown Wisconsin Dells Shopping - Goody Goody Gum Drop is the largest candy store in the Dells and the hazelnut truffles are quite good.

Paul Bunyan's Northwoods Cook Shanty

The next morning, up early, we weighed the differences between Mr. Pancake and Paul Bunyan's Cook Shanty, opting in the end for the latter, which didn't disappoint. If you've been there, you know. If not, know that you don't order. Servers just bring everything to the table and this is not the time to think about diets or exercise. Especially since the first thing to arrive at table is donuts.

Paul Bunyan

Tommy Bartlett Exploratory - Interactive Science Center

Back at the hotel, we spent more time in the waterparks and had lunch in Great Wolf's Loose Moose Bar & Grill. Then, before leaving for home, we went to Tommy Bartlett's Exploratory Interactive Science Center to see the Russian Space Station MIR core capsule.

First we wound through the maze-like floors of hands-on science and technology exhibits and activities, which our overtired kids didn't appreciate as they likely would have at any other time.

Then we entered the small space that holds the capsule and some other related displays. It felt pretty odd to be standing in a space station and we couldn't help but note how small it was.

Little more than 24 hours after our arrival in the Dells, we got back on I-94 in the opposite direction and headed for home with our Dells debut and a lot of fun under our belts.

Thanks to those ubiquitous racks of brochures, we left armed with the start of another itinerary.

This one may or may not include the Mid-Continent Railway Museum in nearby North Freedom, the Circus World Museum in Baraboo and breakfast at Mr. Pancake. Carla Minsky, of the Dells Visitor & Convention Bureau also suggests the Wisconsin Deer Park.

What it definitely will include is a ducks ride, weather permitting.

The MIR Space Station

Story Highlights

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A Classic Influence Every Step Of The Way2010-09-16Pay homage to all that's classic.Read More
A Classic Influence Every Step Of The Way

Prefer The Wisconsin Dells Classics

Enduring. Endearing. Those were the two words that guided the research for this story on the classic Wisconsin Dells vacation. Many of the Wisconsin Dells hotels, attractions and restaurants included below have been building up a fan base for decades and across generations. Others are slightly more contemporary classics that still say “Wisconsin Dells” in a big way. Combined, they make for lots of choices for travelers who like to go classic.


classic-dells-motels-100Classic Wisconsin Dells Hotels & Motels

A good starting point is downtown, where classic Wisconsin Dells hotel and motels right on the main street are well maintained and still very popular. There’s Fitzgerald’s Motel, where the front sign reminds you to “Smile, you’re on vacation.” Last year, Fitzgerald’s celebrated its 60th anniversary, and owner Margaret Gewont is 100% sincere when she tells you guests are more like extended family than vacationers. A peek in the guest book proves it, with the first entry reading: “Margaret is the ultimate hostess.” The list of downtown Wisconsin Dells hotels and motels is long and varied, so take your pick.


downtown-wi-dells-shops-100Downtown Wisconsin Dells

As long as you’re already on the main thoroughfare, keep your car parked and put on your walking shoes for a stroll up and down Broadway. You’ll pass fudge shops like Swiss Maid Fudge and Wisconsin Dairyland Fudge and likely succumb to the sweets being made behind the picture windows. Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Museum, with its quirky and fun-to-read-about displays from adventures of days gone by, is one of the many amusing Wisconsin Dells attractions on Broadway. As long as you’re downtown, go ahead and have one of those old-timey pictures taken. For souvenirs, Bailey’s Landing and Winnebago Gift Shop are both known for their wide selection of Minnetonka moccasins, a fashion statement in Wisconsin and on the runways of New York.


wisconsin-river-tours-100Classic Wisconsin River Tours

On your walk through the Dells, you’re sure to see a Duck or two. Not the feathered kind, but the WWII amphibious vehicle kind that takes visitors on tours of Lake Delton and the Wisconsin River. Hop on and enjoy the splashdowns and scenery. Another classic river tour choice is a tour boat, either double decker or paddlewheeler. Some even offer shore landings, which is really the best way to experience the grandeur of the sandstone bluffs in the area.


dells-animal-attractions-100Animal-Related Dells Attractions

Now on to real animals, as in the deer at Wisconsin Deer Park, one of the classic Wisconsin Dells attractions that’s been in business for more than 50 years. Here you can feed the deer and also interact with American elk and bison. Wisconsin Deer Park also acts as a zoological supply service, with deer from their park being placed in zoos all over the country.


tommy-bartlett-show-100Tommy Bartlett Classic Attractions

Two Wisconsin Dells attractions that begin with the founder’s name, Tommy Bartlett, are staples on the classic vacation itinerary. There’s the famous Tommy Bartlett Show staged on Lake Delton, the longest running water ski show of its kind in the country. It's replete with complicated ski tricks, fast boats, comedy and acrobatic acts thrown in for good measure. Plus, the Tommy Bartlett Exploratory - Interactive Science Center is also known for its hundreds of hands-on science experiments, a real Russian MIR space station and an exact replica of NASA’s Mercury space capsule.


noahs-ark-water-park-100Noah's Ark Waterpark - A Classic Wisconsin Dells Water Park

If you want to experience a classic Dells water park, then Noah’s Ark Waterpark is it. It opened in 1979 and is the largest outdoor water park in the country, adding something new nearly every year.



More Wisconsin Dells Classics

There are a number of other classic finds worthy of their own mention. In lodging, Dell Creek Motel, with its pretty courtyard gardens, has some of the best curb appeal in the community. On Lake Delton, there’s Baker’s Sunset Bay Resort, a fun place for family reunions. For shopping, Aunt Jenny’s Got-It-All Store is a third-generation Dells’ family business which prides itself on its fun selection of apparel, souvenirs, moccasins, jewelry and toys. For breakfast, try Mr. Pancake with 30 varieties of pancakes and waffles; Paul Bunyan’s Northwoods Cook Shanty with scrumptious donuts; or Howie’s Restaurant, home of Howie’s self-proclaimed “Huge Breakfast” and, if you’re really hungry, his “Super Breakfast.”


wisconsin-supper-clubs-100Classic Wisconsin Supper Clubs

The classic Wisconsin supper clubs in the area deserve a paragraph of their own. If you’re wondering what the requirements are for supper club designation, here goes: clubby bar in which to enjoy that Wisconsin cocktail favorite, the brandy old fashioned, before you sit down to your meal; well trained staff who see to your every need and never rush you; crisp table linens; interesting architecture; relish trays and fresh baked rolls, standout wine cellar; and steaks, seafood and chops that are remarkable. If that sounds mouthwatering to you, then consider one special dinner out at the Del-Bar, Field’s at the Wilderness, House of Embers, Ishnala Supper Club, or the newest entry in the genre of classic supper clubs, Kaminski Bros. Chop House at Chula Vista Resort.



Drive-In Movies In The Dells

For one last flash from the past in the Dells, the drive-in movie.  Big Sky Twin Drive-In Theater shows double features of first-run movies on two screens every night during the summer. Its concession stand is kitschy and comfortably cramped, serving everything you’d want from a classic snack bar. Side note, if you stay at Holiday Shores Camp-Resort or the Wilderness Hotel & Golf Resort, ask about their seasonal outdoor movies too, shown right on the grounds.

That’s it, the classic Wisconsin Dells getaway, filled with sweet memories to last until the next time you visit.


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Wisconsin Dells Visitor & Convention Bureau

701 Superior Street, PO Box 390
Wisconsin Dells, WI 53965-0390
(800) 223-3557
(608) 254-4293 (Fax)

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