Waunakee may be a small town compared to Madison, but it packs a lot of punch.  A rejuvenated downtown area manages to be both quaint and convivial, perhaps thanks to the community spirit that is seemingly ever present in this not-so-sleepy village. If you’re looking for an older home with character that’s close to dining and shopping and friendly neighbors, or if you’re wanting new construction with all the bells and whistles for your growing family, look no further than Waunakee. And what’s with the name Waunakee?  The Native Americans that first laid eyes on this gracefully undulating land called it Wanaki, or “fair and pleasant valley.” Can’t argue with that.

The Neighborhood

Most of the houses in Waunakee were constructed post-1990. This means that you’ll find plenty of neighborhoods with large, family homes surrounded by parks and community pools and endless soccer fields. And perpetual new construction to feed the desire for fresh and new. If old homes with historic character are more your thing, downtown Waunakee offers streets lined with grand homes from the early 1900’s mixed in with smaller, attractive bungalows. New condo developments are also popping up here and there. And, as with any true small Wisconsin community, there are opportunities to buy acres of beautiful land for a hobby farm or just to appreciate the bucolic views from your private paradise.

Family-FriendlyParksGreen SpaceCommunity SpiritNew ConstructionSports

The Lifestyle

Almost half of the homes in Waunakee have children living in them, so schools and sports heavily influence what happens in this town. Happily, that means there is a lot going on. From Waunafest and Wauktoberfest. . . and Waunaboom and Waunabowl. . .to candlelight snowshoe hikes, a kid’s chalk walk and an annual public art walk  —the first one featuring “Goats on Main”— you’re gonna wanna be a part of the action ( A Waunakee wannabe, perhaps?) A recent push for revitalization means there is now a thriving downtown that’s home to restaurants, wine bars, coffee shops, brew pubs, spas, boutiques of all kinds and gathering spots for the community, like the new Waunakee Village Center.  Waunakee also sports 267 acres of parks and conservancy land, 13 baseball diamonds, no less than 32 soccer fields and 23 tennis courts. It wasn’t named one of “Ten Best Communities for Families” in the nation by Family Circle magazine for nothing.

The market snapshot



The Schools

  • Elementary School
  • High School
  • Middle School
  • Private School
  • Public School


The the “small town, big heart” friendliness of the people, the connected and engaged community, the outdoor play areas and the blossoming downtown.

Where to Go

In Waunakee

  • Eat
  • Drink
  • Exercise
  • Groom
  • Indulge
  • Pamper
  • Play
  • Shop