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Take the stress out of planning your Bayfield getaway. On the blog, you'll get the inside scoop of where to go, what to see, and what to do. 

Big Top Chautauqua: Take the Free Shuttle When Staying at Seagull Bay

I bet most of us can think of a song that transports our minds back to a favorite summertime memory.

For some of us, it’s the anthems of the 60s. For others, it’s the disco beat of the 70s or the hard rock of the 80s. For me and Isaac, it’s 90s country and songs from the early 2000s.

My mind immediately wanders to the music of:

  • Jack Jackson
  • Taylor Swift
  • Nelly
  • Kenny Chesney
  • Keith Urban

Their music brings back memories of going to the beach with my friends and spending time at my family’s lake cabin.

In Bayfield, Big Top Chautauqua has anchored our summers by offering live music, dance, and cultural events. The big tent has featured local artists and big-name performers since 1986.

Big Top is a celebration of the arts and “culture under canvas.” And I can’t think of anything better to add to your Lake Superior adventure than seeing a show. This is why we at Seagull Bay continue to be proud sponsors of the free Bayfield Big Top Chautauqua shuttle. Because we want to help you enjoy a unique and hassle-free live music event when visiting Bayfield.

What Is Big Top Chautauqua?

Big Top Chautauqua Tent

Lake Superior Big Top Chautauqua is a non-profit performing arts organization. It’s located at the foot of the Mount Ashwabay Ski and Recreation Area and is a part of the Ashwabay Alliance. This exceptional and intimate venue offers over 60 performing arts events per year from June through September. Did I mention all the magic happens under a big tent?

Big Top Chautauqua’s stage sits under a big blue and gray canvas tent – picture a big circus tent, but better. The very intimate setting has rows of old church pews and vintage fold-down theater chairs offering seating for 900 guests. On beautiful summer nights, seating can be expanded to the grounds surrounding the tent. Here, you can spread your blanket or set up your camp chairs, and listen to live “music under the stars.”

Big Top’s Blue Canvas Orchestra features the talents of local musicians and artists that celebrate the music of legends like Neil Young, John Prine, and the Grand Ole Opry. They share the local history of Bayfield and its surrounding communities. These stories and more are told by weaving in original music and pictures shown on the big screen behind the musicians.

Not only can you get tickets to these one-of-a-kind house shows, but you can also enjoy the music of big-name artists. Talents like Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Brandi Carlile, Bonnie Raitt, and more. Big Top Chautauqua and the Ashwabay Alliance offer you a memorable live music experience unlike any other.

And to help you enjoy your live event, the free shuttle service is available for every event at Big Top.

Seagull Bay Is a Proud Sponsor of the Big Top Chautauqua Shuttle

Seagull Bay Motel Shuttle Stop

The blue canvas tent of Big Top Chautauqua is perched at the base of Mount Ashwabay on top of Ski Hill Road in Bayfield, Wisconsin.

This little hill on the big lake offers a quaint and magical live music experience. But with its cozy 900-seat venue, parking for Big Top’s most popular shows and big-name artists can be a little tricky.

So we’ve partnered with Big Top Chautauqua and Legendary Waters Casino to offer you a free shuttle to and from our locations. Making access to your favorite shows even easier for a hassle-free music event.

Using the Bay Area Rural Transit (BART), the BART bus stops right in front of our doors at Seagull Bay. All you have to do is walk from your room to the designated pick-up area. With us, you can:

  • Avoid the ticket line
  • Skip looking for a parking spot
  • Get a glass of wine or your favorite beer before the show
  • Meet new people excited for the show

The Big Top Chautauqua shuttle takes a few extra steps off your plate when planning your ultimate Bayfield vacation.

Sit Back, Relax, and Enjoy the Show

Using the Big Top Chautauqua shuttle couldn’t be easier.

  • No reservations required
  • Drop-off and pick-up at Seagull Bay are right in the parking lot
  • Drop-off and pick-up at Big Top are at the entrance of the grounds

By taking the shuttle, you can avoid the long lines to and from your show at the Big Top.

And don’t worry if the shuttle is full. The driver will unload its current passengers and come back to your pick-up spot at Seagull Bay.

Big Top Chautauqua Tent at Night

Other tips to help you have the most enjoyable Big Top Chautauqua experience include:

  • Grabbing a sweatshirt or light jacket for cool nights
  • Bringing a blanket or camp chairs if you hold ground seats
  • Pre-ordering your tickets
  • Allow time to purchase your food and drinks at the tent before the show

Whether you take the Big Top Chautauqua shuttle or drive yourself, going to one of the Big Top shows is a must when you visit Bayfield.

Seagull Bay Offers a Hassle-Free Vacation Experience

King bed at East Section Part of Seagull Bay Motel in Bayfield, WI.

At Seagull Bay, we do our best to offer you a comfortable and hassle-free vacation experience when visiting us in Bayfield, Wisconsin. That’s why we strongly believe in supporting community-based businesses like Big Top Chautauqua and its free shuttle service.

Plus, our unique location on the edge of town offers you:

  • Quiet and peaceful lodging
  • Expansive views of Lake Superior
  • Direct access to the Brownstone Trail that follows the shoreline of Lake Superior right into town

When you stay with us, you can literally park your car and leave it parked until it’s time to go home.

Start planning your Bayfield, Wisconsin getaway with us. And make sure to check out the Big Top Chautauqua schedule to enjoy live “music under the stars.”

BOOK NOW and enjoy the show!

Your memories with a view!

Mollie, Isaac, Axel, Ridge, and Banks

Quick Links:

Big Top Chautauqua

Shuttle Service

📸 Jeremy Oswald

July 31, 2023

Get the Most Out of Your Bayfield, Wisconsin Getaway

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Bayfield is brimming with outdoor adventures, local events, and renowned festivals.

To help you plan the ultimate Bayfield vacation, we’ve created a seasonal guide filled with the best our area offers.

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