Its a quaint village nestled along the Mississippi River. But the Village of Stockholm in Pepin County is bursting with friendly faces and Swedish pride.
"I don't know any place in Wisconsin that has a more definite sense of distinctive tie to its environment and history than Stockholm" resident Paul Larson told Newsline 9.
Larson operates '' A Sense of Place.'' It's a small bookshop with a big Scandinavian flavor. The store features books for old and young, many focusing on Swedish contributions to the United States. Larson says the bookshop's merchandise is an excellent compliment to a village that was settled by Swedes.
"It's a shop for people of all ages that features things that give us the sense of place we have" Larson said.
And that sense of community Larson says he enjoys abounds in Stockholm. Of the village's 66 residents, nearly half are part of the village's merchants association. That's a group pooling the efforts of Stockholm's shopkeepers. Their goal is to make visitors feel welcome. And you'll notice their ideas. The village's sidewalks are dotted with blue bikes, umbrellas and dog bowls, for visitors to use for free.
"Children are free to run and be here, and be safe and enjoy their parents and grandparents" Stockholm resident and shopkeeper Nancy Fitzsimmons said.
"In here they come in and I would have to admit the cookies are the first draw. Children need cookies!" Fitzsimmons said smiling. The home goods shop has a daily supply of freshly baked cookies available every day.
Fitzsimmons is a third generation Stockholm resident and says baking is a family tradition. And that's a tradition she enjoys sharing.
"I think that feeling becomes a part of the village. That feeling causes people to feel comfortable."
And that keeps the allure of Stockholm smelling sweet.
To get to Stockholm, follow these directions from cities in Central Wisconsin:
From Wausau: Take Highway 29 west to Exit 75A toward Eau Claire. Follow US 53 South to Exit 87 to US-12 West. Go right onto Clairemont Avenue. Turn left onto Wisconsin 37 South and then right on Wisconsin 25. A right onto Wisconsin 35 and then a right onto County Road J into Stockholm.
From Wisconsin Rapids: Take Wisconsin 13 North to Wisconsin 73 North. Go left onto US-10. Turn left onto Wisconsin 25. A right onto Wisconsin 35 and then a right onto County Road J into Stockholm.
From Rhinelander: From US-51 south take exit 191 A onto Highway 29 west. Take Exit 75A toward Eau Claire. Follow US 53 South to Exit 87 to US-12 West. Go right onto Clairemont Avenue. Turn left onto Wisconsin 37 South and then right on Wisconsin 25. A right onto Wisconsin 35 and then a right onto County Road J into Stockholm.