Skip Navigation


Below you’ll find information about typical activities during on-campus Grandparents University sessions.

Wednesday Evening Activities

Optional early program check-in and activities at One Alumni Place from 3-6 p.m.

Upham Woods Outdoor Learning Center Field Trip

Upham Woods Outdoor Learning Center provides educational opportunities to youth, youth leaders, and adults through programs focused on environmental and leadership education. In this field trip, participants will visit Upham Woods, have a hot dog dinner, and have a campfire full of skits, songs, and laughter!

Tour departs from Madison at 4:00 p.m. and returns around 9:00 p.m.

Bus ride to Upham Woods will take about an hour.

Cost: $22 per person

Thursday Morning Field Trips

Before the opening session on Thursday morning, you and your grandchild can take one field trip to a campus attraction. Transportation will be provided, and you’ll be back in time for the opening session and lunch.

  • You may choose one field trip during registration.
  • Not all field trip options are available during each session.
  • Field trips fill on a first-come, first-served basis during the registration process.
  • If you choose to participate in a morning field trip, be sure to check-in at GPU no later than 9:30 a.m.
  • Field trips are optional. If you prefer, you may enjoy free time instead or plan an alternative activity.

Field Trip Options

Guide to Physical Activity Levels

Levels of physical activity vary among majors and field trips, so please read the descriptions carefully and choose what best suits your physical abilities:

  • Low: Most activities and tours take place indoors, some walking required. Majors will have mostly seated activities.
  • Medium: Some movement and walking required between classrooms and venues, this may include stairs.
  • High: Significant movement and physical activity, including walking or hiking outdoors.

Every attempt will be made to honor accessibility requests made in advance.

Alumni Park Tour

Alumni Park is a three-part entity: the park, the pier, and the place. The park is Alumni Park itself: the 1.3-acre green space. The pier is the Goodspeed Family Pier. And the place is One Alumni Place: the reimagined Below Alumni Center, which will now serve as a visitor and information center for alumni and others when they return to campus. Take a tour of Alumni Park and create your own Badger Pride Wall rendition.
Physical Activity Level: Medium

Camp Randall

Held in cooperation with the UW Athletic Department, the Camp Randall tour will include an inside look at one of the most historic stadiums in college football. The tour will let you and your grandchild experience the football coaches’ offices, the Hall of Champions, the athletic director’s suite, and, if no teams are practicing, run out onto the field!
Physical Activity Level: Medium

Campus Trolley Tour

Explore some of the most iconic places on campus by trolley with current UW students as your guides. Participants will learn about the history of campus and have opportunities to stop and take photos along the way.
Physical Activity Level: Low

Chazen Museum of Art

The Chazen is home to the second-largest collection of art in Wisconsin: its more than 20,000 works include paintings, sculptures, drawings, prints, photographs, and decorative arts. In October 2011, the Chazen reopened after renovations and 86,000-square-foot additions that doubled its size.
Physical Activity Level: Low

Physics Museum

Explore the Physics Museum on campus. Exhibits are designed by the faculty and staff, then constructed by the departmental shops, staff, and students to give the visitor a hands-on experience of the physics concept and to put physics in the fingertips of the community.
Physical Activity Level: Low

Stem Cell Learning Lab

Participants will view and learn about real stem cells under the microscope. Participants will use the same lab equipment and methods our scientists use, with substitute cells and media due to cost and bio-safety issues. All lab participants must wear close-toed shoes.
Physical Activity level: Low

Town Center at the Discovery Building

Conceived as a vibrant gathering place, the Town Center welcomes campus and community members for events that celebrate science and creativity. The Town Center’s design is as innovative as the scientific community it serves, and visitors will find ample opportunity for hands-on learning as they explore the discovery niches, teaching labs, and interactive displays.
Physical Activity Level: Low

University Theatre

Take a trip through historic Vilas Hall and University Theatre. Explore the many dressing rooms, costume shops, construction areas, and stages. University Theatre is inside Vilas Hall and took many years to complete in the 1970’s. The result of the long construction period is an eclectic building with many twists, turns, and surprises.
Physical Activity Level: High

UW Dairy Cattle Center

Used for both teaching and research, the campus Dairy Cattle Center is located one block away from the classrooms and laboratories of the dairy science department. This facility houses 88 milking cows in a tie-stall barn. Courtesy of a small teaching arena attached to the facility, dairy science undergraduates have hands-on access to cows during all lab sessions.
Physical Activity Level: Medium

UW Geology Museum

With its reconstructed dinosaurs, huge mastodon skeleton, colorful mineral samples, six-foot-diameter rotating globe, and walk-through model of a Wisconsin limestone cave, the Geology Museum has long been a favorite of both kids and adults.
Physical Activity Level: Low

UW Makerspace

Visit the UW Makerspace which strives to empower students by creating a community immersed in emerging technologies, focused on creating innovative product. This field trip will cover the equipment used in the space and collaborative work areas.
Physical Activity Level: Medium

Wisconsin Alumni Association Bucky Pontoon Boat Rides

Take a tour of Lake Mendota on the Wisconsin Alumni Association Bucky pontoon boat!
Physical Activity Level: Low