Downtown Appleton is one great place to discover a new hobby in 2023!

January in Appleton, Wisconsin is a great time to try a new hobby. The new year is a time for new beginnings and exploring different interests. Maybe you’ve always wanted to
learn how to play the guitar like one of your rock heroes you’ve listened to on
vinyl since you were a kid. Or maybe you’ve always wanted to knit a pair of
mittens to gift to someone you love. Perhaps you want to feel better about
yourself by beginning a new fitness routine, volunteering for a local
non-profit or taking some time for self-care. Whatever your new interest is,
Downtown Appleton is one great place to explore new hobbies.

Get Crafty and Artsy

Knitting and Crocheting

Knitting, crocheting and other yarn crafts are rewarding hobbies for women, men and children alike. Check out Casting On in Downtown Appleton for classes and a beautiful selection of yarn and accessories.


Downtown Appleton has so many options for budding artists and makers. The Fire, Pinot’s PaletteHazelmade, Board and Brush, The Trout Museum, Clayworks and The Atlas Science Center offer classes, while Mud and Prints offers artist grade supplies.


Good photography requires quality equipment. Murray Photo in the Appleton City Center sells cameras, lighting and any other accessories you need to get the most out of your hobby.

Feel the Music

Music Lessons

Taking up an instrument is an enriching new hobby for anyone with an interest in music. Heid Music offers lessons for all ages in piano, percussion, guitar and more. The Lawrence Community Music School also offers lessons and a variety of musical groups to join. 

Singing Groups

If you or someone in your family wants to start singing with a group, Downtown Appleton is home to the Fox Valley Chorus (a chapter of Sweet Adelines) the Appleton Boychoir and the Lawrence Community Girl Choir. Heid Music also offers voice lessons.

Take Care of Yourself

Salons and Spas

Was your New Year’s resolution to find time for self-care? You don’t have to look any further than Downtown Appleton. Relax with a massage at Inspire Spa, Spa Ben Mar Nicos or Sunflower Spa. Freshen up with a cut, color or style at BoldSalon Elan or Shear Chaos Hair Parlour. Visit Float Light for a place where you can immerse yourself in the Midwest’s Largest custom built Float Cabins to help you relax and unwind. 

New Age

If you’re fascinated by the connection between mind and body, Angels Forever, Windows of Light is a great place to explore the metaphysical world. They have a large selection of literature, gemstones and incense.


Dance is a hobby you can begin at any age. Sign up for a class through Unity Dance at the Appleton Parks and Recreation Department, the YMCA or Makaroff Ballet. And, pick up your dance shoes and accessories at Dance!

Working Out

common new activity to take up in the new year is working out. Downtown Appleton has many options for staying active. Get strong at Richmond Tanning and Training or try a class at the Downtown Appleton YMCA. Perhaps a yoga flow is more your speed. Try Sunnyside Up Yoga or YOGA3. If you like to be active outside of a studio, check out the bicycle selection at Appleton Bike Shop. Pick up a new pair of quality running shoes at Joseph Shoes and join a local running group.

Volunteer Your Time

Volunteers are vital to non-profit organizations. Appleton Downtown, Inc. regularly needs volunteers to assist with preparation and day-of logistics for events throughout the year. Contact us if you’re interested in making Downtown Appleton one great place.

Other non-profit organizations in downtown include Harbor House, The Make-A-Wish FoundationNAMI, Pillars and The Salvation Army.

Build Your Collection


Collecting vinyl is not just a trend. Explore all types musical genres and artists at Eroding Windswhere you can find new and used records to add to your collection.

Sports Memorabilia

Celebrate your favorite sports teams and players by starting a sports memorabilia collection. Check out the selection at Scooter G’s.

Comic Books

Throw yourself into a new universe by exploring comic book collecting at Powerhouse Comics. Appreciate the art and creative storytelling found in comic books and learn how to spot valuable issues to add to your collection. 

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