Welcome to Madison, Wisconsin! We hope you enjoy your stay while you are here. We would love to make your visit as enjoyable as possible. A few things to know while you are in town. 

Local Terms you should know:

The Square – Wisconsin’s State Capitol is Madison and the Capitol Building is a huge landmark. The Capitol is surrounded by 4 streets and those 4 street blocks making that up are referred to as “The Square” (makes sense right?) The Square is where you will find the Saturday morning Farmer’s Market as well as a great variety of restaurants, bars, and shops. The earlier you go to the Farmer’s Market, the less busy it will be (and it gets busy.) When walking The Square for the Farmer’s Market, note that traffic always walks counter-clockwise. I am not sure why, but we do. And be sure to check out Stella’s Bakery for the hot, spicy cheese bread!

The Beltline – Madison is a big city, but even freeway and downtown traffic aren’t as bad as really big cities. I used to live in a much bigger city and now chuckle at what Madison calls “rush hour.” I’m not saying it isn’t slow and frustrating, but it could be so much worse. “The Beltline” is the main thoroughfair from one side of town to the other. (It is also Highways 12/14.) Most people will give directions based on exits off of The Beltline. (I am not exactly sure why it is called The Beltline though…) The Games site is located right off The Beltline and you can actually get there very easily from either the John Nolen Drive or the Rimrock Road exit. (The Alliant Energy Center is located at that intersection.) There’s even a “secret” back parking lot entrance off of Rimrock Road – turn left at the lights before the Clarion Suites and follow that around to the gates.

Willy Street – Our gym is located on Williamson Street. In Madison we shorten that to Willy Street. You will hear about a lot of places “on Willy Street.” It’s a fun neighborhood filled with lots of small, local businesses. Recursive in on one end of Willy Street, just take a walk and you’ll find many great treasures around. Some notables to check out are Bandung Indonesian Restaurant, they are located literally next door in our retail building and are working on a special CrossFit menu for us. Ground Zero Coffee is a block away and next to that is Eldorado Grill. Then you come up on the Underground Butcher and That BBQ Joint for all your meat needs. There’s Madison Sourdough Cafe and Bakery and Burrito Drive. There is also a grocery store called Willy Street Co-op that is similar to Whole Foods (you don’t have to be a co-op member to shop there though.) Further down is Lazy Jane’s Cafe and Grandpa’s Pizza. Pig in a Fur Coat is a nicer restaurant. The list just goes on…

State Street – Located right off The Square, State Street is on the edge of the massive University of Wisconsin campus. No cars are allowed to drive on State Street (it happens more than it should though…we always know the tourists.) State Street is for pedestrians only and is filled will great shops and restaurants. You will also find more of the chains around there too – Walgreens, Noodles and Co, Buffalo Wild Wings, etc. State Street is fantastic for people watching and many places downtown Madison offer outdoor seating/patios. This is also where you will find State Street Brats – if you are looking to try a brat while in Wisconsin, this is your place. (Mark Zuckerburg was recently in Madison and ate some brats there.)

Some of the most popular questions answered.
Madison is a decent-sized city and there is no shortage of fantastic places to go no matter where you are staying in Madison or the surrounding communities. We are located downtown and so most of our recommendations are locally owned, small businesses within walking distance of the gym.

Bandung – special CF menu
Tipsy Cow – gator bites, goat cheese bites, specialty fries
That BBQ Joint – smoked meat, pork tacos
Eldorado Grill – torpedos, Thursday happy hour
Burrito Drive – burritos and quesadillas
Great Dane – brew pub, good beer and bar food
Madison Sourdough – salads and sandwiches
Grandpas Pizza – gourmet/fancy pizzas

Ground Zero
The Public House
Cargo Coffee

B Cycle – Bikes
Brittingham Boats – Canoes, kayaks, paddle boards

Batch Bakery – almond or chocolate croissants
Patisserie – next to/connected to Madison Sourdough

Fancy Restaurants:
Pig in a Fur Coat – yummy local food
Sardine – steak frites (ask for the balsamic butter sauce) good variety and quality of fresh oysters


Interesting in Dropping In at CrossFit Recursive? We’d love to welcome you to our gym!


Still have questions? Email us at and we’ll do what we can to help!


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