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Wisconsin Cultural Symbols

Wisconsin’s official culural symbols are surprisingly cool.

Cultural Symbols  
Pastry kringle 2013
Dairy Food cheese 2017
Beverage milk Redundant Symbol 1987
Tartan 2008
Ballad Oh Wisconsin, Land of My Dreams 2001
Waltz The Wisconsin Waltz 2001
Dance polka 1993
Wisconsin Cultural SymbolsBottom right: kringle

Milk, the official beverage, is one of the most redundant state symbols. However, it fits Wisconsin like a glove. While two dozen states call the square dance their official dance, Wisconsin adopted the polka. Another unique symbol is the kringle, Wisconsin’s official pastry.

Wisconsin is one of several states with an official tartan. Adopted in 2008, Wisconsin’s tartan is described as a “hunting” tartan with a blue-green background.


If you think the dominant color is white, representing America’s Dairyland, guess again. The color yellow is instead used to represent both the dairy and brewing industries.

Wisconsin’s tartan does include the color red, but it doesn’t represent red granite. Instead, it represents the University of Wisconsin system.

The other colors are brown (representing the fur trade), gray (lead mining), green (lumber industry and forests), and blue (Great Lakes). Yellow and green intersect to represent professional sports in the color combination of one of Wisconsin’s teams.

Below is my vision of a Wisconsin tartan. White represents summer clouds, winter snows, and milk. Yellow represents agriculture, particularly corn, and cheese. Violet represents the state flower, while thin red lines represent the origin of the state’s name.

Blue represents Wisconsin’s waters. Blue and white together symbolize peace.

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