The Gays Mills Area is nestled in the heart of the beautiful Kickapoo Valley in Southwest Wisconsin.  The glaciers that overtook the Midwest during the last ice age, ten thousand or so years ago, missed this small area, which later came to be known as the "Driftless Region".   The results were unique in all the world, and uncommonly beautiful.  Narrow valleys, rolling Ocooch Mountains, and the winding Kickapoo (translated from the native word which means "sometimes here - somtimes there") River. 

The Gays brothers settled here in the mid- 1800's, building a lumber mill and sawmill, and the little town thrived.  The area became a magnet for many "back to the land" types who moved here in the 1970's.   Gays Mills continues to be the center of an active cultural community,  and is the home of a food co-op which is more than 25 years old, a Cultural Exchange, and an active music scene, and community theater scene.  The driftless region, the Kickapoo Valley, and good old Gays Mills continue to be an attractive place for a new generation of folks who are looking to move to the country. 

Friendly folks, beautiful countryside: the Folk Festival of Music & Dance is proud to call Gays Mills home.


Learn more about the Driftless Area and the nearby city of Viroqua