Decades of Memories At The Rushes: Meet the Foyes

May 31, 2024
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We have many families that come to The Rushes in Door County Wisconsin every year and consider it a part of their family. Here is one exceptional story of the Foye family and why The Rushes is so special in their hearts:

“When we were a young family in the early 2000’s, we were searching for a place where we could bond as a family and create lasting memories. While we have a lot in common with many other families in Wisconsin, we had unique circumstances that made vacationing extra challenging. Our son, John, was born with an extremely rare genetic condition that leaves him in need of 24/7 care. He needs to be connected to life-saving machinery at all times. The first year of his life, he couldn’t even leave the home to go outside, and we were unsure if a family vacation was ever going to be a possibility. That all changed when we encountered The Rushes”

Surrounded by the incredible beauty of Door County, Wisconsin, The Rushes resort has given us a much-needed reprieve from the stress of life. “For us, it is more than just a place to stay. It represents a beloved tradition and a home-away-from-home for our family. For over 20 years, my family has chosen The Rushes for our annual getaway, not just because of the amenities or the stunning location on Kangaroo Lake, but because of the heartwarming experiences and the unwavering sense of belonging we’ve felt from staff.”

We Took The Risk

“The greatest legacy we can leave our children is happy memories”

–Og Mandino

Because of our son’s high medical needs, we had come to terms with the fact that we may never be able to vacation as a family. However, since we were unsure how long our son would live, we wanted to give it a try. We love the Baileys Harbor area, and when we were looking for accommodations, we knew we needed more than a simple bed and breakfast. We were in search of a place that could cater to all of our unique needs and give us a truly personalized experience. That’s when we found The Rushes.

“From the moment we first arrived at The Rushes over two decades ago, it was clear that this place was something special. The staff went out of their way to ensure our stay was comfortable, accessible, and joyful, paying special attention to our son’s medical needs. Their efforts transformed our visit into an unforgettable experience, turning us into lifelong patrons of this serene getaway”

They immediately told us they would put in a wheelchair ramp and allow us to ship equipment up there in advance. They would keep it in a separate garage for us and deliver it to us when we arrived. We brought a couple of carloads of equipment with us, so we were able to make a hospital-type room for John, as he needed to be on oxygen and humidified air at night. We were also able to bring caregivers with us who stayed nearby and came in to do the night shift so we could sleep.

The Rushes Were A Game-Changer

“Rejoice with your family in the beautiful land of life.”

— Albert Einstein

Many of our friends and relatives had suggested taking a trip for our son through Make-A-Wish foundation. Due to the severity of his condition, we didn’t think traveling was an option. However, the success of our first vacation at The Rushes opened the door for a Make-A-Wish trip to Disney World. We are eternally grateful for this opportunity that would not have been possible without The Rushes.

Luxurious Accommodations With The Comfort Of Home

“The space and privacy of a cottage, without the setup and takedown.  Truly the best of both worlds, the peace of our own space without the need to bring our own linens, etc. and clean up after, adds hours to our vacation!”

— Our Many Guests

Each of the 48 townhouses within The Rushes embodies the ultimate cozy retreat. These beautifully furnished living spaces feature Door County fieldstone natural fireplaces, master bedroom suites, private sun decks with gas grills, laundry machines and fully equipped kitchens. Our family appreciates that when we visit The Rushes, we don’t have to pack a van full of supplies. We just take a few changes of clothes and a toothbrush, and we’re on our way! Unlike other vacations that are filled with logistical stress, The Rushes is a true time for relaxation and rejuvenation for me and my wife. Unlike many vacations, we arrive home relaxed and rested, not needed a vacation recovery time!

Endless Activities Right On-Site

“Nature is also great fun. To pretend that nature isn’t fun is to miss much of the joy of being alive”

— Diane Ackerman

Most Door County family vacation packages tend to get pricey and include limited activity options. One thing we love about The Rushes is the abundant family fun included in the condo rental. Located on the Lake Michigan side of Wisconsin’s Door Peninsula, also known as the quiet side, or for some “The Wild Side” you can experience the tranquility of the 1156 acre Kangaroo lake located ½ miles from the Lake Michigan shore or the booming rollers of Cave Point County Park.

The promise of returning to this DC condo community each year brings with it the anticipation of new social connections with other vacationers. While every family can enjoy their own time to bond, there are many activities to enjoy with our visiting neighbors. We have participated in everything from sandcastle-building contests to craft time alongside others staying at the Rushes.

The Draw Of A Waterfront Resort

“You will always find an answer in the sound of water”

– Zhuangzi

The Rushes seem to have endless possibilities for adventures on Kangaroo Lake, especially with the complimentary access to sailboats, canoes, kayaks, paddle boats, paddle boards, and fishing boats. According to Brent Foye “Sailing has always been a passion of mine, and The Rushes provided an exceptional opportunity to share this love with our children. With an impressive fleet of five catamaran sailboats readily available, we embrace the chance to sail whenever we can. This freedom to explore the water at our leisure allowed me to teach my children valuable sailing skills amidst our many water escapades, which also included canoes, kayaks, and paddleboards.”

Kangaroo Lake, with its fine sandy bottom and gentle depth—averaging less than seven feet—provides a safe and delightful playground for children. The beach stretches out, allowing one to wade out a considerable distance while barely reaching a couple of feet deep, making it a perfect environment for safe splashing. “This setting proved ideal for our son John, since there is a large area that is only a couple inches deep where he can scoot himself along in the water without needing to swim.”

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Plenty To Do On Dry Land

“What is the good of your stars and trees, your sunrise and the wind, if they do not enter into our daily lives?”

— E.M. Forster

The Foyes mention, “When we’re not up for water sports, we utilize the property’s array of land activities. We’ve had spirited games with our fellow vacationers on the outdoor volleyball, shuffleboard, pickleball, tennis, and basketball courts. Our family has had many tranquil explorations through the wilderness preserve’s trails, including geocaching adventures. Each visit offers something new to experience.” Even in the cooler months, the indoor pool, sauna and hot tub provide relaxation and fun for the whole family. The Rushes is also a short drive to Sister Bay and Peninsula State Park, which has all kinds of year-round activities like skiing and snowshoeing. Another amazing thing about the wilderness surrounding the Rushes is the opportunity for star-gazing. Our family has had unbelievable views of the Milky Way that really put life in perspective.

  • Finding Sunshine
  • Lasting Impact
  • Home Away From Home
  • Lifetime Memories

Finding Sunshine On A Rainy Day

“Sunshine is delicious, rain is refreshing, wind braces us up, snow is exhilarating; there is really no such thing as bad weather, only different kinds of good weather”

— John Ruskin

Weather is a wildcard in every family vacation. Thankfully, our family has never run out of activities for a rainy afternoon. We have done craft classes and bingo with other guests, and they have plenty of board games available to check out. The wood fireplace is also a great place to curl up with a book and escape the world’s cares, regardless of the weather. The full kitchen allows us to make dinner at home if we don’t feel like venturing out.

Lasting Impact On Our Kids

“Children still need a childhood with dirt, mud, puddles, trees, sticks and tadpoles”

— Brook Hampton

“Our time at the Rushes ignited a profound appreciation for nature and water in my boys. Both of John’s younger brothers became Eagle Scouts, and their pursuits have led them to exciting futures—one graduating with his MBA to work for an outdoor company specializing in camping gear, and the other pursuing degrees in Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering. Their connection to The Rushes continues, with both sons returning to assist with bike and boat repairs, demonstrating the lasting impact this wonderful place has had on our family.”

What Keeps Us Coming Back

“The magic thing about home is that it feels even better to come back”

— Unknown

Brent remembers, “Growing up, I always liked to go to different places. I was a professional skydiver, and I like a lot of variety. I never thought I would like to return to the same place year after year. The Rushes surprised me. It’s really become like a home away from home, one of those vacations where you get rejuvenated because you know what to expect. You can just bring your food, and you don’t have to bring a lot of extra supplies because everything is there.

As far as adventure, every year, we discover new things around the peninsula that we enjoy doing, like new hiking areas. It’s never the same. We still take adventure vacations and travel around the world and across the country, but we go to The Rushes at least one week a year; it’s very, very special.”

Own Or Rent A Lifetime Of Door County Memories

“Sometimes you will never know the value of a moment until it becomes a memory”

– Dr Seuss

If you are looking for the ultimate place to rest and relax and forget about the cares of the world, The Rushes is your answer. Located on Kangaroo Lakin in Door County, Wisconsin, we offer a tranquil, fun-filled hub for your getaway. Stay on-site or take short drives for everything from wilderness to wineries; young or old or anyone in between will surely enjoy their visit.

Contact us today for rental or ownership information and start planning your next family vacation with the Rushes. Your own memories await you!

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Herb Guenther
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