Wisconsin Veterans Museum | Events

The museum sponsors events and programs throughout the year, most of which are free. Please check this page regularly for updates.

Did you miss a program at the Wisconsin Veterans Museum?

Visit our  Vimeo and Flickr websites for video and photo coverage of past events.



Date: January 1 - October 28, 2017
Location: Overture Center, Wisconsin Veterans Museum, Wisconsin Historical Society, Pyle Center (downtown Madison/Campus)
City: Madison

OCTOBER 27- 28, 2017  




The Wisconsin World War I Centennial Commission, Wisconsin Veterans Museum, Wisconsin Historical Society, and War in Society and Culture Program at the University of Wisconsin-Madison will host World War 100: A Centennial Symposium on October 27-28, 2017 in Madison, Wisconsin.     


Bruno Cabanes, Professor & Donald G. & Mary A. Dunn Chair in Modern Military History, Ohio State University

Holly Case, Associate Professor of History, Brown University

Jennifer Keene, Associate Professor of History, Brown University

Michael Neiberg, Chair in War Studies, U.S. Army War College


Featured Speakers, paper presentations, and exhibits and tours at the Wisconsin Veterans Museum and Wisconsin Historical Society. *Detailed schedule coming soon*

Call for Papers:

This conference brings together scholars from myriad fields to examine the legacies of the war in its global, imperial, national, and local dimensions.  We invite proposals on a broad range of topics on the cultural, social, and political dimensions of the conflict and from a variety of disciplinary and professional perspectives. We particularly encourage papers that are interpretive in nature and that engage the numerous ways in which the war has continued to inform global and local experiences in the past century. Special programming will be dedicated to the war’s effects on Wisconsin and Wisconsin’s contributions to the war. 

Deadline: May 1st send a title, a brief description of the paper (250 words max.), and a two-page vitae t ww100@lists.wisc.edu. Panel and roundtable proposals should include an additional rationale for the panel as a whole.


Registration: more information coming soon

Hotel Information: 

The symposium has reserved a block of rooms at the Pyle Center (one of the sites of the symposium and easy walking distance to other sites) http://bit.ly/wwi27oct

A list of other hotels convenient (within 15 minutes walking distance) to symposium sites is below.

 Concourse Hotel:                   (800) 356-8293

 DoubleTree by Hilton:            (855) 275-4790

 The Edgewater Hotel:            (608) 535-8200

 Hampton Inn & Suites:           (844) 205-9992

 Park Hotel:                             (608) 285-8000 

About Madison: 

Madison, Wisconsin is the state capitol and the location of the University of Madison-Wisconsin. In the downtown area THERE are numerous restaurants as well as the UW, WVM, WHS and other sites of interest. For more information about Madison go to www.visitmadison.com/. Madison is readily accessed by car via the interstate system, via bus, and Dane County Regional Airport is served by several airlines and is 10 minutes by taxi or hotel shuttle from downtown and the campus.

 *Continue to check this website for updated information*

Learn more about Wisconsin in World War I at  https://bit.ly/ww100wi



School Day Off at the Wisconsin Veterans Museum: Paracord Bracelets

Date: March 31, 2017
Time: 10:00 AM - 2:00 PM
Location: 30 W Mifflin St
City: Madison, WI

School Days Off at the Wisconsin Veterans Museum

 10:00 AM - 2:00 PM

March 31st | April 6, 11,12,13, & 14

Join us for drop-in, FREE family-friendly activities at the museum on "No School" days  for the Madison Metropolitan School District. School Days Off at the Museum is from 10:00 AM - 2:00 PM.  

March 31st Paracord bracelets: One activity used to help veterans suffering from PTSD is to make paracord bracelets. Make your own bracelet and discover how calming it can be!

April 6th Tissue Paper Poppies: It’s 100 years ago today that the United States entered into WWI. Learn more about Wisconsin troops in France, why the poppy is often used as a symbol of remembrance for the war, and make your own tissue paper poppy. 

April 11th World War I Gas Masks: Learn about innovations and tactics used in WWI and how those innovations changed modern warfare. Make a simplified gas mask that people still use today. 

April 12th Clothespin Airplanes: The first time major battles are fought in the air is during WWI. Find out about some famous pilots from Wisconsin and make your own clothespin airplane model.

April 13th Miniature Lighthouses: The Navy and Coast Guard played important roles in WWI. Learn about what they did, how lighthouses were used to help the war effort, and build a miniature lighthouse of your own

April 14th Trench Art: Soldiers in the trenches of WWI made art out of things they found lying around. Choose from our stash of common found objects to make your own masterpiece.



Date: April 4, 2017
Time: 7:30 PM
Location: Playhouse Theater | Overture Center for the Arts 201 State St, Madison, WI 53703
City: Madison


***This FREE performance of Learning to Stay is open to Veterans (+Family Members), Active Military (+Family Members), & Service Providers***



APRIL 4, 2017 7:30 PM

FREE ADMISSION: Veterans (+Family Members), Active Military (+Family Members), & Service Providers


Learning to Stay
Adapted from the novel by Erin Celello
Written by James DeVita
Directed by Jennifer Uphoff Gray
The world premiere of a play commissioned by Forward Theater

Elise Sabato is thrilled when her husband Brad returns from his deployment in Iraq, and their plans for a life and family together can finally be realized. But it soon becomes clear that for Brad, coming home is only the beginning of a long journey. It is up to Elise to find help for a man she no longer recognizes, who suffers from injuries that neither of them can see or understand.

With a story set in Madison, and written and adapted by Wisconsin actor and playwright, James DeVita, Learning to Stay asks what you would do when the person you’re married to is no longer the person you married.

A timely novel, but also a novel that speaks to the tides of any marriage, in peacetime or at war.”- Joseph Monniger, author of Margaret from Maine

Post-show talks with cast, author, and service providers will be held after the performance



Date: March 15 - April 19, 2017
Time: 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM
Location: Madison Public Library Downtown 210 Mifflin Street
City: Madison, WI


 Apr. 19 | May 17 7:00- 8:30 PM

Madison Public Library – Central Branch

210 Mifflin St. Madison, WI 53703 

This year the Wisconsin Veterans Museum WARRIOR BOOK CLUB is meeting at the downtown Madison Public Library-Central Branch.

Books feature this season are: 

March 15Learning to Stay by Erin Cellelo. (Featured guest: Erin Cellelo, Author)

April 19Ceremony by Leslie Marmon Silko

May 17All That You’ve Seen Here is God, a modern translation of Sophocles' Ajax by Bryan Doerries

 Books will be provided. Registration is free and required.

Registration ends March 1st.

To register, contact Erin Hoag at visitor.curator@dva.wisconsin.gov or 608-274-7663


Date: April 21, 2017 - April 30, 2018
Location: 30 W. Mifflin St
City: Madison



WWI Beyond the Trenches: Stories from the Front

A World War I Centennial Exhibit

Over 122,000 Wisconsin men and women served on land, sea, and in the air during World War I.  The Wisconsin Veterans Museum marks the centennial of the First World War with the opening of a major exhibit featuring an up close and personal look at the Great War through the eyes of Wisconsin veterans.

WWI Beyond the Trenches: Stories from the Front uses the Museum’s rich collection and first person accounts to bring to life Wisconsin’s role in shaping global history.  

WWI Beyond the Trenches: Stories from the Front will be on exhibit April 21, 2017-April 2019


Date: April 27, 2017
Time: 5:30 PM - 8:00 PM
Location: 30 W Mifflin St
City: Madison, WI

During World War II, three Milwaukeeans had front row seats to the fighting as influential war correspondents. Photographer Dickey Chapelle put her life on the line covering Marines on Iwo Jima and Okinawa before losing her life during the Vietnam War. Radio journalist H.V. Kaltenborn interviewed Hitler, covered the Czech Crisis of 1938 and announced the attack on Pearl Harbor to millions of stunned Americans. Associated Press Berlin Bureau Chief Louis Lochner had the distinction of being embedded with both the German army (before America entered the war) and the U.S. army in Europe.

Join Milwaukee author, journalist, and Iraq & Afghanistan war correspondent Meg Jones as she shares stories and photographs of these correspondents. Jones will compare and contrast the difficulties of getting your stories out of war-torn countries back to readers during WWII and present time, report on the unique vantage points, and the fascinating lives of these three combat correspondents.

Jones is a reporter for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel who specializes in military and veterans issues. She has traveled to Iraq four times and three times to Afghanistan as an embedded reporter with Wisconsin National Guard and reserves troops since 2003. Meg was a Pulitzer Prize finalist in 2003 for stories about chronic wasting disease discovered in Wisconsin’s whitetail deer herd. She earned a B.A. in journalism and history from the University of Wisconsin and has taught at Marquette University.

$22/members $30/non-members

To register, contact Erin Hoag at 608.264.7663 | visitor.curator@dva.wisconsin.gov or


 Registration/Cancellation deadline: Thursday, April 13th

Cocktails with a Curator

Date: May 11, 2017
Time: 5:30 PM - 7:00 PM
Location: 30 W Mifflin St
City: Madison, WI


May 11th & Oct.19th 

A happy-hour event series (yes, with drinks!) with the Museum's curators, who will share stories from the collections here at the Wisconsin Veterans Museum.

Registration is not required and the event is free to attend

Happy hour with a cash bar begins at 5:30 PM

13th Annual Wisconsin Veterans Museum Foundation Golf Outing

Date: July 10, 2017
Time: 9:00 AM - 5:30 PM
Location: The Oaks Golf Course
City: Cottage Grove

The 13th annual Wisconsin Veterans Museum Foundation golf outing is scheduled for Monday, July 10, 2017. The event will take place at the beautiful course at The Oaks Golf Course in Cottage Grove.

Registration includes green fees, cart with GPS, range balls, tee gifts, lunch and a heavy hors d' eourves reception following golf.

All proceeds from this event support educational programs and exhibits at the Wisconsin Veterans Museum.

Register Now!

Registration Before June 10:
Individual: $95
Foursome: $380 
Registration after June 10:
Individual: $125
Foursome: $500


*Sponsorship are available*


Find more information about sponsorship levels here:

Hope to see you at The Oaks on Monday, July 10, 2017!

Questions? Please contact Eileen Newcomer at eileen.newcomer@wvmfoundation.com or (608) 261-0536.


Date: September 30 - October 1, 2017
Time: 5:30 PM - 4:00 PM
Location: Forest Hill Cemetery, 1 Speedway Road
City: Madison, WI
The Nineteenth Annual Talking Spirits Cemetery Tour at Forest Hill Cemetery will take place the first week of October.

CANDLELIT TOURS-Saturday, Sept. 30: Experience the evening at the cemetery with the Candlelit Tours of Forest Hill Cemetery. On the 90-minute walking tour, local actors share Civil War stories through portrayals of Wisconsin Civil War soldiers and citizens buried at Forest Hill Cemetery. 5:30 PM - 7:30 PM

Rain Date: October 7th.

PUBLIC DAY TOURS-Sunday, Oct. 1: Join us for Talking Spirits Cemetery Tours XIX Public Day tours. On the 90-minute walking tour, local actors share Civil War stories through portrayals of Wisconsin Civil War soldiers and citizens buried at Forest Hill Cemetery. Sunday Tours leave every 20 minutes starting at 12:00 PM-4:00 PM. Purchasing tickets online will allow you to book preferred time slots of tours. 

Rain Date: October 8th 

***Members contact Eileen at 608-261-0536 for special pricing and to reserve your spot***



Wisconsin Science Festival: Camouflage Carnival

Date: November 2-4, 2017
Time: 10:00 AM - 2:00 PM
Location: Wisconsin Veterans Museum
City: 30 W Mifflin Street

Join us at the WVM for the Wisconsin Science Festival as we present Camouflage Carnival.

Camouflage has been used throughout history to hide individuals, groups of people and equipment, and even ships. Learn about how this was done and see examples of camouflage over time. 

Once you have learned the basics of how camouflage works, test your knowledge on model ships and plastic army figurines to see how well you can hide in plain sight!

The Wisconsin Veterans Museum is an educational activity of the Wisconsin Department of Veterans Affairs.