Frank Lloyd Wright Trail Opens, SC Johnson First Stop

Frank Lloyd Wright Trail
Fisk Johnson (center), chief executive officer and chairman of SC Johnson, tells Gov. Scott Walker a story about Frank Lloyd Wright as Stephanie Klett, secretary of the Department of Travel and Tourism, listens. (Photo by Denise Lockwood)

Frank Lloyd Wright Trail
Photo By Denise Lockwood

Gov. Scott Walker dedicated the Frank Lloyd Wright Trail on Wednesday in the Great Workroom in the Wright-designed Administration Building at SC Johnson.

Now the world can explore a number of the architect’s work as part of a 200-mile tourist attraction known as the Frank Lloyd Wright Trail. Several of Wrights buildings were constructed in the Racine area, which means the city is the first stop on the trail.

Known for creating architecture that was in harmony with the environment, Wright’s buildings also changed how the world saw the SC Johnson Company, said Fisk Johnson, CEO and Chairman of the cleaning products company.

“This building not only changed how the company saw itself, but how the world saw us,” Johnson said. “All of a sudden we were more than a midwestern wax company. Wright gave SC Johnson a new, larger vision of ourselves and what we could be.”

Frank Lloyd Wright TrailOpening in 1939, the SC Johnson administration building is the only remaining operational corporate headquarters that Wright designed.

Walker and Wisconsin Secretary of Tourism Stephanie Klett highlighted how the nine Wright-designed sites will help boost Wisconsin tourism.

The trail traverses several counties. Three of the nine sites —  the SC Johnson Administration Building and Research Tower, and Wingspread — are in Racine County. SC Johnson, Rep. Cory Mason (D-Racine), and House Speaker Robin Vos (R-Rochester) came up with the concept.

“We’re excited to celebrate the dedication and official opening of the Frank Lloyd Wright Trail here today at SC Johnson, which is home to two of the trail stops,” Walker said. “Our tourism industry has come together to create this trail to honor Frank Lloyd Wright’s legacy and highlight some of his amazing creations right here in Wisconsin. Lovers of architecture and nature alike are sure to enjoy this spectacular trail, and we invite travelers from far and wide to put the Frank Lloyd Wright Trail on your bucket list this year.”

Other stops include: Burnham American System Built Homes, Monona Terrace, First Unitarian Society Meeting House, Taliesin and Frank Lloyd Wright Visitor Center, Wyoming Valley School Cultural Arts Center and the AD German Warehouse.

Klett told the crowd that the state was happy to partner with SC Johnson on the project.

“The trail will create greater visitation to Wisconsin and introduce visitors from around the world to our beautiful state and the legacy of Frank Lloyd Wright,” she said.

Students from the University of Wisconsin-Parkside also helped design a mobile app to help tourists learn more about the sites.

The app, which was sponsored by SC Johnson, can be downloaded for free on the App Store.

About Denise Lockwood 3192 Articles
Denise Lockwood has an extensive background in traditional and non-traditional media. She has written for Patch.com, the Milwaukee Business Journal, Milwaukee Magazine and the Kenosha News.