History & Background

The Idea...


The Village of Waunakee has experienced change and growth over the past 20 years, with population doubling from 6,000 in 1990 to 12,000 in 2010. Along with new residents, this change has brought much economic opportunity to the Village.

The Village Board and Waunakee Economic Development Commission are committed to good and sound economic development and growth, which serves the community in high-quality, meaningful ways. A strong and sustainable economic strategy utilizes a diverse approach to community development, which includes business retention, business attraction and retention, tourism, and more. Communities worldwide have found that creative interests and activities can power economic development in significant ways.

Take a look at our region as an example: Madison, Mount Horeb, Lake Mills, Spring Green, Sturgeon Bay, Cedarburg, Galena, Baraboo, Cambridge, and so on. The economies within these communities thrive on businesses, industries, commerce, and attractions that focus on creativity, innovation, imagination, and artistry. Very simply - these economies receive power from the creative abilities of the human intellect.

We believe that opportunity exists to continue building a creative economy right here in Waunakee. So, we designed the Imagination Celebration event to explore our creative side. Based on our 2012 event, we have seen connections made, synergies explored, and opportunities sprout at the event and in the days, months, and years following. There are no limits on how powerful a creative economic engine can be for our community. Through these efforts, Waunakee can become an even better place to live, work, and play.

Our Goals


 Three key goals guide the Imagination Celebration event:
  1. Have Fun! - Those participating and attending should enjoy themselves. Above all else, we hope that, the day after the event, everyone who attended will feel just a bit more "connected" with their community than they did before. It's okay to fall in love with where you live. We strive to foster the "love affair" that all of our residents and business have with the Village.
  2. Reveal Our Creative Side - Quite a few known individuals, groups, organizations, and businesses in Waunakee focus on creativity in their work, whether it be a trade or a hobby. But many more creative endeavors have yet to be revealed. The Imagination Celebration showcases known talents as well as uncovers hidden ones and is bound to create connections, synergies, and awareness that will empower and encourage our Village's creative side.
  3. Foster Continued Relationships - We continue to gather information for Waunakee's Creative Directory, a resource guide with contact information for local creatives and artists published on the Village's Economic Development website.